A multidisciplinary research
& development arts space.
Richard Bowers - Sunlight and Dirt
Sunlight and Dirt.
Richard Bowers will be based at Shift throughout October working on a Arts council Wales funded R&D project, Sunlight and Dirt.
Richard will use sound recording, composition and arrangement, video and architectural installation, to explore aspects of time and memory; of what constitutes our perception of self and of the elements of our personal history that elude our memories as we age; of identity as seen through our own memories and through the perceptions of others transmitted to us over time. Sunlight and Dirt brings forward images and sounds – creative and documentary – into a stylised replica of a room in the artists childhood home.
Throughout the research period at Shift, Richard will have open studio days sharing his process and the developing project.
… my activities on show there, visible from the outside … gallery, laboratory, a performance space for an audience of one neighbour … staring at me and my friends disapprovingly from the garden … white haired and ghostlike against the darkness … I made a soundtrack for Coleridge's 'Rime' … this may be heard, in part, somewhere in this piece, along with other short pieces from cassettes …clumsily assembled from fragments of radio, records, and recorded sounds - a tabla, a spinning top, my voice, guitars, a French horn and trumpet, saxophone, bass guitar, a handmade harp with a fretworked peace symbol for a sound-hole, broken glass, struck bottles … a tape loop of some thirty feet or so, passed through two tape recorders … stretched out through the lounge, wrapped around microphone stands … there were early attempts at painting … paintings of human remains in Neolithic burial chambers and a sculpted relief of the same in plaster, left to decay amongst garden foliage … the sheeps' skulls, gathered on a trip to Darmoor with girlfriend and her brother … a sheep's skull and other bones arranged on the parquet with candles and Tarot cards … animated grotesquely … a caricature of demon worship … captured in stop-motion on celluloid … an 8mm movie camera and projector … short films … some narrative, some documentary … some frames are visible here … they have the status of family photographs - all eagerness and no deeper thinking … the moving image does the thinking (see elsewhere) … then video and the prospect of cheaper experiments … borrowed equipment from the Diocese of Gloucester Cathedral … an impossibly large video recording pack with a separate camera … videoing directly from the cathode ray tube screen … coloured noise … the usual stuff … wild choices and accidents of content and attempts to coerce them into a form … achieved some 30-35 years later in the work you are witnessing today … I feel as though … like phantoms from childhood … those immature acts were stockpiled for my maturity … waiting for a context that had not yet been discovered … an uncertain groping for a form … and where did they end up? … here in a retrospective of sorts … self portraits … because I look in the mirror and see only myself … struggling to find the form of an artist … a shape of who I am …