21.09.06 - 07.10.06.
Image: Julie Westerman
Commissioned exhibition essay for Distance, an exhibition of work emerging from an exchange between artists from S1 Artspace, Sheffield and Galerie5020, Salzburg.The text explores the notion of distance in relation to proverbial and anthropological accounts of both individual and collective social behaviour and human interaction. Using the metaphor of the body as a symbol of wider social systems, and especially in connection to the tourist or heritage site, the concept of distance is explored as a gesture of protection but also of exclusion. Distance is proposed as an act of separation and isolation, which aims to preserve against unwanted change or progression, but which inevitably results in stasis or stagnation within the body, social system or city space. Referring to the work in the exhibition, the intent is explore how the process of cultural exchange and artistic practice might contribute a sense of dynamism to the social system; where the exchange and flow of ideas and influences might operate as a pulse or energy providing city spaces with potentiality and possibility. The text explores how the notion of cultural distance can be seen to encourage the development of different positions and experiences in order that new social meanings and perspectives might be negotiated, constructed or contested; enabling a more complex dialogic or empathetic relationship with other’s pasts and presents, as well as with one’s own.
Read the essay here
- emma cocker
- Emma Cocker is a writer, artist and Senior Lecturer in Fine Art. Operating under the title Not Yet There, her enquiry focuses on exploring models of (art) practice and subjectivity, which resist or refuse the pressure of a single or stable position by remaining willfully unresolved. As a practice-based enquiry, Not Yet There is shaped by an interdisciplinary, hybridized approach, operating restlessly along the threshold of writing/art. Whilst embracing the potential of the essayistic (as a tentative attempt or trial), Cocker’s practice also includes experimental, performative and collaborative approaches for producing texts about, parallel to and as art practice. Processes of condensation, extraction, fragmentation, listing, footnoting, cross-referencing and appropriation are adopted as critical methods for art-writing, alongside the cultivation of a serialized form of prose-poetry collectively entitled Condensations.