The Physical Center Collective hosted a two-month program promoting new concepts in physicality through emerging performance art, bio-science lectures and film screenings, concluding with a three-week exhibition of video, photography and sculpture.
Physical Center was preceded in New York on November 20, 2010, by Physical Center: Brooklyn, a one-night fund-raiser for the London event, which drew over 500 visitors. A collaboratively curated and artist-led event, Physical Center will provide a group of international emerging artists with the opportunity to exchange ideas, collaborate and produce new work in a non-commercial environment. The event aims at being the first of triennial exchanges showing the work of emerging artists from the UK and US at a similar stage in their careers.
The artists involved are aware that this is a unique opportunity for experimentation and collaboration, each had full run of Guest Projects for up to a week, to explore the program’s theme of physicality. The international group of performance artists involved in this program held performances that push the boundaries of their practices involving collaborations with other artists, dancers, actors, and musicians. Performance artists include Juliana Cequeira Leite featuring Teeth of the Sea, Edward Fornieles, Ian Giles, Katie Hawkins, Bruno Humberto, Megan Palaima and Liz Rosenfeld, Eddie Peake, Shana Moulton, Kristin Sherman, Larry Achiampong, Francesca Steele, and Allison Wall.
The program also included an international group show of emerging and contemporary video art, sculpture and photography with work by artists Awst & Walther, Jenny Baines, Louise Colburne, Bill Durgin, Kate Gilmore, Philip Hausmeier, Antti Laitinen, Jennifer Locke, Kianoosh Motalebi, Catalina Nicolescu, Mariléne Olivier, Tom Price, Andrew Ranville, Eliza Swann, Marianna Ellenberg, Orit Ben-Shitrit, and Amelia Whitelaw.
As an interdisciplinary event Physical Center presented three science lectures by some of the UK’s leading scientists and doctors. These talks are aimed at bringing awareness of recent ideas and developments in the biosciences to an art audience. These 30-minute lectures will be followed by Q&A sessions giving the audience an opportunity to discuss the philosophical and artistic implications of their content. Speakers included Professor John Wearden of Keele University on the human perception of time, Dr Francis Wells on form and the human heart, and Professor Kevin Warwick on the future symbiosis of biology and technology.
On alternating Monday nights the space hosted a series of three film screenings curated by Allison Wall, Rachel Rosen, Jim Hobbs with Louise Colbourne and Amanda Schmitt. These screenings were a rare opportunities to view films rarely shown in the UK by artists such as Valie Export and George Kuchar, framing discussion of the themes addressed in the performance and lecture components of Physical Center.
The program was be accompanied by a limited edition zine including texts and images by participating artists and art historians. This record will provide a platform for critical reflection and launch a new series of exchanges.