IMT Gallery is pleased to present One Another’s Company, London based artists Lucy Beech and Edward Thomasson’s first collaborative exhibition of film and performance work in the UK.
The show brings together new works by the artists who each have an individual art making practice and frequently work in coalition to produce live performance based works. For their exhibition at IMT Gallery, Beech and Thomasson will be showing two new narrative films conceived individually, as well as a performance piece devised in collaboration. Presented together, both the performance piece and the films investigate how the artists’ collaborative concerns manifest and inform their individual work. Employing strategies of repertoire theatre in their mode of production, bothRetreat, 2011, Lucy Beech and Escape, 2011, Edward Thomasson consider and examine spectatorship and representation in everyday life with particular emphasis on the live and the rehearsed, performed and observed.
Lucy Beech’s Retreat, 2011, explores notions of performance staged within non-theatrical environments. This strategy is employed within the film as a way to understand the structure of a particular group of women’s emotions. Set within a marquee, the women participate in a workshop where they cast domestic objects. As the objects begin to take shape the women split into separate roles becoming both the performers and audience members to their activity. They engage in a controlled exercise that involves throwing their constructed objects at one another. As the collective procedure intensifies the objects’ function is transformed. A poetic game ensues that reveals the construction of metaphor as an activity for collective catharsis.
Edward Thomasson’s Escape, 2011, brings together a number of scenarios that approach and critique the notion of escapism as a passive activity. Constructed around text and coming together using musical sequences, the film interweaves different narratives. In one scenario, a group attempt to loose themselves leaving the confines of a room. In another, a man in a basement slowly works away at the wall to create a tunnel through which to escape. Testing the limits of both social and theatrical empathy, Escape, 2011 comments more broadly on various systems of contemporary survival and its relationship to performance.
Collaboratively Beech and Thomasson’s practice recognises the limitless possibility and potential in the unsettling distance between the audience and ‘stage’. They utilise repetitive body based movement and employ the rhetoric of theatre as a strategy to intensify this gap rendering the audience unable to repose into one mode of experience. For their performance piece at IMT Gallery, Beech and Thomasson bring together spoken text, constructed sound and movement by way of performers sat at tables. Through their actions the performers create an atmospheric soundscape and the props become the stage for the narrative to unfold.
Beech and Thomasson’s recent collaborations include: 7 Year Itch, More Soup and Tart, Barbican Theatre, London;Holding it Together, Night and Day, Modern Art Oxford; The Cigarette Game, Testing Ground: Live, Zabludowicz Collection, London and in Making Mistakes at Paradise Row, London.
Lucy Beech (born in 1985) studied a BA at the Chelsea College of Art and Design, London. Recent exhibitions include:Fire in the Belly, Visions in the Nunnery, The Nunnery, London and I Was There, On Face Work, Stedefreund, Berlin.
Edward Thomasson (born 1985) studied an MA at the Slade School of Fine Art and a BA at Chelsea College of Art and Design, London. Recent exhibitions include; Drill, New Contemporaries 2010, touring to ICA, London and Plain Sailingand Find a Problem to Solve, The Life Room, CHELSEA Space, London.
Running concurrently with the exhibition will be a series of film screenings by other artists also concerned with investigating collaboration within their practice.
Lucy Beech and Edward Thomasson – One Another’s Company is an exhibition made by Hana Noorali and supported by the Arts Council England.