The First Art Newspaper on the Net    Established in 1996 Saturday, July 2, 2022

'Wait it Out' by Northern Irish artist Sandra Johnston opens at Project Arts Centre
Sandra Johnston/Richard Ashrowan That Apart, two-channel HD video projection (production still), 2019 Courtesy the artists. Courtesy the artists. Commissioned and produced by Project Arts Centre, Dublin with support from the Irish Museum of Modern Art Production Residency and Arts Department, Northumbria University, Newcastle Upon Thyne, UK.

DUBLIN.- Featuring newly commissioned video installations, this landmark solo exhibition by Northern Irish artist Sandra Johnston grew out of conversations surrounding her time spent in Dublin during the late 1990s. As an emerging artist, Johnston was resident at both IMMA and Arthouse and participated in Project Arts Centre’s OFF Site programme curated by Valerie Connor between 1998 and 1999. During that time, her performance work Reserved took place over two consecutive nights on the rooftop of the former Ormond Hotel with a video installation shown inside the building containing edited footage of her 24-hour performance.

Consisting of two main parts, Wait it Out negotiates personal and historical narratives in relation to the reverberation of sectarian violence in Northern Ireland. The work reflects upon the indeterminate early days of the peace process and the climate of unease which motivated Johnston to relocate to Dublin in 1997. The central installation, That Apart, is an edit of a five-day consecutive filming process (in the gallery at Project and at IMMA) with Scottish moving-image artist Richard Ashrowan. During these sessions Ashrowan recorded a series of singular actions and gestures, a flow of transitional moves that Johnston describes as an ‘autopsy of performative gestures’ extracted from various performance improvisations that have occurred in live contexts across her 27 years of practice.

Negotiating physical gestures that subvert or repurpose the use of things, Johnston utilises domestic objects as well as objects that speak more explicitly to the urban terrorism of Northern Ireland. This sparse and precise use of gestures furthers Johnston’s ongoing interest in art processes as a means to test provisionality and attrition, using objects in ways that speak to their common usage, while also bringing forward introspective moments that actuate hidden languages of memory.

The collaboration with Ashrowan involved responsiveness, trust and patience in the creation of footage that is neither a straightforward performance document, nor a narrated film work. It is instead an intermediary experiment where volatility and stasis contribute to the fragmentation of the working process, forcing it away from clean, conceptual resolution. The filming reveals a number of idiosyncrasies in relation to its own process. The way in which the camera often fails to capture the physicality of movements which would have been evident to audiences in a live context, is contrasted by its ability to lend movements on a micro scale a heightened visuality. These contradictions between filmmaking and performance art were purposefully focused on and worked through within the filming and editing process.

Overprint is a constellation of videos hosted in the gallery’s black box. It includes edited documentation of one of Johnston’s street performances from Belfast during the 2000s alongside two alternating projections of UTV news clips that chart the rise and decline of The Peace People, a movement that began in 1976 as a protest against the ongoing violence in Northern Ireland. The performance video includes extracts from an interview Johnston conducted in 2004 with Peace People leader Mairead Corrigan Maguire as part of her continuing research enquiry into reconciliation processes. This video echoes, and is interrupted by, a 1976 interview between Corrigan Maguire and political commentator David Dunseith, broadcast on the occasion of Corrigan Maguire’s receipt of the Nobel Peace Prize. The interlinking of the various footages necessitates a revision and nuanced understanding of the significance of this woman-led organisation and its education of people across the country in non-violent methods and a radically different approach to conflict resolution.

Wait it Out draws together these new video works that have evolved from the artist’s own archive of performative actions. They are positioned here in ways that offer a potential for cross-referencing historical events that have significantly shaped the standpoints conveyed within the actions. Sandra Johnston and Richard Ashrowan renewed their collaborative experimentation, which began in 2009 and also involves performance artist Alastair MacLennan. Previously, they have developed two film projects in the Scottish Borders region near Hawick. The first resulted in Alchemist (2010, 30 mins, 2 channels) and a second experimental film is currently in production.

Sandra Johnston is a visual artist from Northern Ireland active internationally since 1992, working predominantly in the areas of site-responsive performance and installation. Her actions have often involved exploring the aftermath of trauma through developing acts of commemoration as forms of testimony and empathetic encounter. She has held various teaching and research posts and currently is Senior Lecturer in Fine Art at the Northumbria University, Newcastle. Her practice-based investigation into issues of ‘trauma of place’ were extended as a PhD project entitled – Beyond Reasonable Doubt: An Investigation of Doubt, Risk and Testimony Through Performance Art Processes in Relation to Systems of Legal Justice published in 2013 with LIT (Berlin). She has been a co-founder and committee member of various artist-run collectives in Belfast, notably: CATALYST ARTS and BBEYOND. Some of her most recent performances and projects include: Here-to-Here, Notwithstanding, Fierce Festival 2019, Birmingham, UK (upcoming); The Biennial of Curitiba and p.ARTE Festival 2019 - Curitiba, Southern Brazil (upcoming); Asiatopia 20th Performance Festival, Bangkok Art and Culture Centre, Bangkok, Thailand (2018), Live Action 13, Gothenburg, Sweden (2018), Minimal, Poor, Present, as part of Glasgow International 2018, Scotland (2018), We Shout and Shout, But No One Listens: Art from Conflict Zones, CAMP/ Center for Art on Migration Politics, Copenhagen, Denmark (2017), Rise Up: Ending Racism, Poverty and War, part of Freedom City Newcastle upon Tyne, England (2017), Future Histories, Kilmainham Gaol, Dublin (2016), Border Crossings, SASA Gallery, Adelaide, Australia (2016), Lay Allude, with Alastair MacLennan, Bòlit Museum, Girona, Spain (2016), Tangible Live, EMMA Espoo Museum of Modern Art, Finland (2015), VIVA! Art Action, Montréal, Canada (2015).

Today's News

August 30, 2019

Archeologists find remains of 227 sacrificed children in Peru

New arts documentary on Tadao Ando launches today on iTunes

Exhibition at Kunsthaus Zurich presents Henri Matisse as sculptor

Gemeentemuseum acquires mysterious self-portrait by Paul Thek

Teresa Margolles opens first exhibition in Chile at the Museo de la Solidaridad Salvador Allende opens

Exhibition explores allegory and faith in Netherlandish prints from Lucas van Leyden to Rembrandt

Almodovar recognised with Venice film festival lifetime award

USF Contemporary Art Museum presents The Return of the Real: Robert Lazzarini and Rodrigo Valenzuela

Lucy McRae: Body Architect opens at National Gallery of Victoria Australia

Four winners of A.C. Houen Fund's Certificate for Outstanding Architecture 2019

'Wait it Out' by Northern Irish artist Sandra Johnston opens at Project Arts Centre

Migros Museum of Contemporary Art opens an exhibition about loss, remembrance, activism and art in response to HIV/AIDS

Casino Luxembourg opens two new exhibitions

Contemporary Istanbul announces galleries for 14th edition

Exhibition of Nova Scotia folk artist Maud Lewis debuts at the McMichael Canadian Art Collection

Pioneering Saudi filmmaker vies for Venice glory amid gender row

American Folk Art Museum announces new curator of Folk Art Emelie Gevalt

Fondazione Giorgio Cini presents 'Marianna Kennedy: Invincible Truth'

Ylinka Barotto and Frauke V. Josenhans will oversee exhibitions for the Moody and Rice Public Art

ifa-Galerie Berlin opens an exhibition of works by Saba Innab

'Cosmological Arrows: Journeys Through Inner and Outer Space' opens at Bonniers Konsthall

Exhibition at the Kestner Gesellschaft focuses on the first ten years of CalArts

Lea Pinsky named as Art Encounter's inaugural Executive Director

Straight outta Karachi: Pakistan's surprise hip hop hub

Hidden Phone Tracker App for Business Owners

6 Famous Creators of Weed Art Whose Passion for Bud Fueled Their Brilliance

Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .


Ignacio Villarreal
(1941 - 2019)
Editor & Publisher: Jose Villarreal
Art Director: Juan José Sepúlveda Ramírez

Royalville Communications, Inc
Founder's Site. Hommage
to a Mexican poet.

The First Art Newspaper on the Net. The Best Versions Of Ave Maria Song Junco de la Vega Site Ignacio Villarreal Site
Tell a Friend
Dear User, please complete the form below in order to recommend the Artdaily newsletter to someone you know.
Please complete all fields marked *.
Sending Mail
Sending Successful