Preview :: SYNC!! Festival
July 17th 2014
Teigan Kollosche: Still from ‘The debris of techno hardware and word rubbish’, 2014
rubbish bin, CRT monitor, sensor, SD Video, Detritus, iphone4
Whether you’re reading this on a laptop, phone or one of those (questionably) ‘fab’…let… things, there’s little doubt you’ve simultaneously got some other kind of technology at work assisting the (questionably) smooth running of your daily life.
As we all go about going harder, better, faster, stronger with the aid of a things that beep and buzz, the SYNC!! Festival at 107 Projects is artistically musing over just that.
The collective of the same name began in 2012 as a group of artists with a common love of electronic arts exploration, experimentation and sharing. This year’s festival showcases contributions from renowned artists like Cordelia Beresford, Nick Wishart, Josh Harle, Anna Madeleine and Elena Knox, as well as emerging artists Teigan Kollosche, Justin Harvey and FMGrande. While the Symposium has passed, the really fun stuff is yet to come, with a performance evening tonight and the exhibition and workshops continuing over the weekend.
We caught up with collective member Miguel Valenzuela to talk techno and speak SYNC!!
Madeleine (The Flog) :: The SYNC! Festival is back for another year, with an added exclamation mark!! What should we be extra exclamatory about this time round?
Miguel (SYNC!!) :: This year SYNC!! is being held at 107 Projects in Redfern, it includes more artists than last year, an accompanying Symposium addressing the exhibition’s themes and a performance evening featuring some unique, spontaneous and creative uses of technology. The quality of the work is fantastic, it’s an incredible thing seeing how diverse interpretations of the same theme come together to create a breathing entity that is an exhibition. We were very fortunate this year to have the cooperation of 107 Projects which is an amazing gallery/theatre space, the resident artists there have been extremely helpful and the gallery staff and 107 people are great!
Justin Harvey: ‘Slice’, 2014
SIngle Channel Video Loop, 2min
The theme this year is technology, DNA, detritus and the sublime. Traditionally the sublime is an idea that I’d think was distinct from technology and prefaced on ideas of the ‘natural’. Is this something you think is changing?
The theme for the show developed through a series of meetings with members of the collective. We had discussions around themes of how technology is seeping in to every aspect of our daily lives. Media artist Teigan Kollosche saw technology as becoming more tactile and being covered with our DNA, this led to discussions about the amount waste left in technologies trail.
Maybe it’s difficult to construct a relationship between technology and the sublime when it comes to the spiritual or moral realm, but the aesthetics created by and involving technology, including artworks using electronics, digital programming, imaging, video, sound, robotics and GPS technology definitely engage the sublime in some sense within the physical, artistic, intellectual or metaphysical realms.
Do the works speak to each other in their treatment of the themes above or is each artist’s work more distinct in its approach?
The artists were initially approached with the theme and a sound piece composed by Nick Wishart, they were asked to interpret these in whatever way deemed appropriate to interpret the core themes. The SYNC!! core themes were pretty much a guide for the artists to follow, we tried to keep the process open to interpretation and respect the artists aesthetic judgement and give them space. Generally, the works reflect and intersect well with each other.
FMGrande: ‘Red Man and Goat’, 2014
N scale figure, toy animal, slide viewer, iphone 3
Tell me a bit about your collective and how you work.
The collective started in late 2012 and put on our first show in April 2013. With the first show we had 7 artists which consisted of a one week exhibition at the Sheffer Gallery in Darlington. The show got a lot of positive feedback from attendees so we agreed to put on another one the following year. This time around we wanted to develop the 2 week period to include discussion, the Symposium; music and sound, the performance evening, this Thursday night at 107projects from 8pm, and also workshops from some of the artist/performers, which is happening on Saturday the 19th from 12pm. So it has grown substantially from it’s inception. I’ve been a driving force behind this festival in putting in the groundwork to bring the artists together. However as a collective the group all take on a role, from emailing, interviews, publicity to setting for the exhibits and events and this is really a very organic process that may at times seems precarious but we somehow manage to make it happen.
At the risk of playing favourites, what would you say are the must see events and works over the next week?
The exhibition is running from Thursday to Sunday July 20th at 107Projects, Redfern. The other events in many ways are very different from each other so they are bound to attract different people. The symposium really gave participants the opportunity to not only listen to talks on aspects of presenters research but also engage in discussion and bring in new ideas to the topic. While this Thursday’s performance plays with sound, digital and analogue, vision and visual effects artists Nick Wishart (Toydeath), Jon Drummond, FMGrande and Ed LEckie will attract a different kind of audience who are more interested in performative experiences. And finally, the workshops on Saturday the 19th, delve further into how these experiences and artworks are created or made.
Should we expect to see SYNC back next year with yet another “!”? How loud can your collective shout?
Yes, we’ve learnt a lot with the expansion of the program this year. It feels as though we have succeeded in bringing together a strong group of artists and we would like to keep the collective bond growing. We definitely want to be louder to give the festival more impact, so you probably will see another exclamation mark!!!
Keep an eye and ear out for ¡SYNC!! in 2015.
WHAT :: SYNC!!
WHEN :: Until Sunday July 20th
WHERE :: 107 Projects Redfern