Blinc Digital Arts Festival 2012

 

Photo: Craig Morrison and Joel Cockrill

October 26th, 27th and 28th saw the Castle town of Conwy, North Wales, transformed into a giant piece of digital art, numerous buildings in the town became projection backdrops for digital, video, sound and light art created by a host of local and national artists.

 

 

The event is currently in its second year, and like last year coincided with Wales’ largest food festival. The event also paid homage to Alan Turing.

Famed for his mathematical intelligence Turing was fundamental to The Enigma Machine success in the 2nd World War, and considered one of the forefathers of modern computing.

To mark the centenary of his birth, Artist / Curators Craig Morrison and Joel Cockrill were commissioned by the Arts Council of Wales to make a significant light work dedicated to Alan Turing.

The piece, which is entitled ‘Thank you’, was installed in Conwy Castle. Two large lasers programmed with Rolling Spheres or ‘Hyperboloids’ positioned high above the town on the castle towers, beamed green lights that swept across the sea and the sky, the beams flickering at a frequency calculated using Morse Code projecting ‘Thank You’ towards the heavens.

To accompany the lasers a large scale white neon positioned on a plinth, identical in size to the Fourth Plinth in Trafalgar Square, so that Turing’s poetic epitaph can be read while the lasers pulse into the night sky behind.

Craig states that “The significance of the plinth is inherent to the piece. The Fourth Plinth celebrates all that is contemporary in the arts today. Alan Turing’s abstract mathematical achievements epitomize what the plinth represents and in some way is responsible for probably most of the artwork that is displayed. His fundamental work in computing has helped to shape what we see in contemporary life. His wartime work on codebreaking definitely contributed to the preservation of our freedom of expression.”

 

Children’s drawings of Conwy projected onto the Civic Centre

 

Other artists taking part responded to the town and its history, here’s a few videos from my favourites:

 

Neil Coombs:

Neil’s work explores surrealism and its relationship with every day life, the photomontage video creates a face using ordinary everyday objects we normally don’t notice or give any time too:

 

Wendy Leah Dawson:

Wendy’s piece explored the swarm and hive mentality in bees, transforming an old chapel into a giant beehive, Wendy also paid homage to the towns historical bee keeping and honey traditions:

 

Alan Whitfield:

Alan’s video was projected onto the Castle – which was incredibly moving and overwhelming  – the scale, soundtrack and Alan’s presence made for a very powerful piece! Here’s the web version of the video and below that is a photograph by Roger Smith  of the projection on the Castle 

 

 

Elly Stringer + Alys Hughes:

I couldn’t find a version of Elly’s beautiful video entitled: ‘Hireath’ [loosely translates in English as ‘Longing’ – but there is no direct translation] that I could embed but she has put it up on her wonderful blog so head over there for a peek! The video was projected onto a bus outside of the British Legion, and watching it made me think of the time I spend daydreaming on the bus home from work, longing to get home, its a really evocative piece and beautifully made!

 

Alys, who performs in the video, each night completed a live dance performance in front of a projection inside the British Legion, which was stunning I have to say! Over the weekend they then repeated the performance this time in front of the projection on the castle – which unfortunately I missed 😦

 

It is a privilege to have such an amazing event right on my doorstep, and I count myself lucky to have seen it – especially considering the whole event was free! Well Done to all the team, organizers, helpers, Arts Council Wales, Cadw, Conwy County Council and of course the Artists involved!!

 

ME1 – 28th July 2012 – Rochester – Kent

July 28th sees the launch of Music Event One, an exciting new music event to be held in the spectacular grounds of Rochester Castle. Music Event One are proud to announce that this years inaugural event will be headlined by the legendary Public Image LtdPiL top a main stage line up that mixes iconic artists with new and up and coming talent, all enclosed by the historic castle walls, in the gaze of it’s magnificent Keep. Joining PiL are heroes of alternative music The Wedding Present, hometown psyche-pop favourites Theatre Royal and hotly tipped alternative hip-hop act Kids Unique.

Widely regarded as one of the most innovative and influential bands of all timePiL’s music and vision earned them 5 UK Top 20 Singles (including ‘Public ImageThis Is Not a Love Song’ and ‘Rise’) and 5 UK Top 20 Albums. With a shifting line-up and unique sound John Lydon guided the band from their debut album ‘First Issue’ in 1978 through to 1992’s ‘That What Is Not’, before a 17 year hiatus.  John then resurrected PiL in 2009 playing live worldwide. Now after 20 years yet another new and unique chapter is set to unfold in the shape of new PiL material as they confirm that their first new album in 20 years ‘This Is PiL’ will bereleased on May 28thPiL have seemingly returned as relevant as ever, of a recent live performance The Times commented “This was an evening of uncompromising art music, worthy of the total concentration of the audience.”

Joining PiL on the main stage will be The Wedding Present, one of the most influential and successful of Britain’s truly alternative bands. Led by David Gedge, the bands stubborn refusal to play the record industry’s game has seen them notch up an impressive 18 Top 40 hit singles and a heap of critical praise along the way.  In the words of John Peel “The boy Gedge has written some of the best love songs of the Rock ‘n’ Roll Era. You may dispute this, but I’m right and you’re wrong!” In 2012 the band added further to this great canon of songs with the release of acclaimed new album ‘Valentina’.

Taking to the stage before The Wedding Present will be two bands signed to Rochester’s very own independent record label The Preservation Society PresentsTheatre Royal and Kids Unique.  Rochester’s Theatre Royawill release their 2nd album this summer, featuring more music that ‘heads straight for the melodic jugular’ –Artrocker whilst the articulate hip-hip of main stage openersKids Unique is fast finding fans from XFM to Q TV.

As well as a main stage in the castle grounds, Medway Event One will incorporate a fringe festival of live music in venues throughout Rochester. The fringe will feature a variety of acts both new and established, details of which are soon to be announced.

On July 28th the whole of Rochester will be filled with live music from big named acts to unheralded treasures and getting there could not be easier. Rochester Castle is situated just 5 minutes from two train stations (Strood and Rochester), with high-speed rail services making travel from London and the surrounding area of Kent swift and convenient.

Tickets priced £26 will go on sale May 4th  and will be available through Ticketmaster, the Medway Council Box Office and Rochester Visitors Information Centre. Tickets paid for in cash from Rochester Visitors Information Centre will not be subject to a booking fee.

www.musiceventone.co.uk

Rochester Castle
Castle Hill
Rochester
Kent
ME1 1SW

#musiceventone

www.pilofficial.com

‘by arrangement with Solo’

Album ‘This is PiL’ out May 28

Area – South East