The Centre Of Attention
Exhibitions @ The Centre Of Attention
* The Centre Of Attention

The Centre of Attention at Wiltons Music Hall 

The 13 films in this programme represent 13 artists from around the world (Argentina, Germany, Canada, United States, Ireland, France, Italy, Britain). These artists and these films have nothing in common to all appearances, other than they caught the attention,appealed intellectually, emotionally or mysteriously to the Curator of the programme.
Alas having said that, the vanity of the Curator is another matter: though he has indicated that there is something of great importance which links the 13 artists and their films, what that may be, and on what level; on how many levels… the Curator has been reluctant to inform me.
I found this to be a very unsatisfying and indeed unprofessional stance to assume. This led me onto a path I was reluctant to pursue. But in the name of Art and in the spirit of Nietzsche’s superman (or Dostoievsky’s Rodi), I proclaimed myself above the law of men and forced my entry into the apartment of the Curator. There I looked for relevant material.
Only a few fragment pertaining to the matter of the Wiltons Music Hall exhibition could be found, however. Some scribbled notes. You may, like me, find them unhelpful. What else I discovered on that night, I cannot say yet. Still, the fragments are recorded below and I wish you luck in finding sense in them.
The Sunday Conceptualist
September 2000

It is the pointless things that make life worth living.
“Art tolerates no dullness” Whistler

“those who think, enjoy walking in the shadows. Their minds feel at ease there as if they were in their element” (???)

A concerted effort to move away from the practice of confusing purity with the sublimated / to move away from the received aesthetic of the art film

To avoid: formal reductionism, a denial of visual pleasure. Patience testing, boredom and a literalism which exasperates

These films challenge the anti visual nature of the majority of art film and its denial of pleasure in general.

A boring film requiring your time and investment to then provide no payback is rarely done well, and indeed of little interest outside the artist’s endeavours at centering oneself.

There are of course the pious pleasures of punishment, torture or humiliation on which many formal films play on. Why sublimate these pleasures while disparaging others more joyous or exuberant?

These films by these artists challenge the post structuralist connoisseur’s position by being an alternative to the aesthetic they understand.

Induration (???)

A works that seduces, gives pleasure (/pain) does not mean that the work is empty of intellectual investment by the artist. Although this is often the assumption. This concern to be seen as intellectual or even conceptual has seen the artist of the past embark on attempts to purge their work of all that did not convey and signify serious, worthy, intellectual. Intellectualism, conceptualism, integrity and seriousness of purpose is signified by making boring, stilted, dreary film and video work. And it is sad that in the present climate it does remain enough.

That a film, combination of sound, idea, duration and image, may provide a pleasure at a non intellectual level for the viewer is always frowned upon. The results test the bounds of patience and good humour.

The artists and the films shown at Wiltons avoid these pitfalls.