Terminus - 08.08.15Date: 8th August 2015
Focussing on the absurd beauty of infrastructure in a post-industrial landscape, Terminus is an exhibition of new artwork considering the legacy of masterplanned dreams. The exhibition includes new and existing installations by David Cotterrell as well as commissions by Ron Wright and Michael Day.
Saturday, 8 August, 4-7 pm
The Scottish Queen, 21-24 South Street, Park Hill, Sheffield, S2 5QX
9 August – 9 September 2015 : Open every day, 2pm - 6.30pm (free entry)
David Cotterrell brings three site-specific artworks to The Scottish Queen in Park Hill this summer. Exploring the legacy of the Tinsley Cooling Towers site, these new works focus on the absurd beauty of infrastructure in a post-industrial landscape.
Commissioned by Sheffield City Council as an initial phase of / part of the Tinsley Art Project , ‘Terminus’ is supported by, S1 Artspace, Urban Splash, E.ON, Sheffield Hallam University, Sheffield Robotics, The European Regional Development Fund and the National Lottery through Arts Council England.
Filmed from the E.ON biomass power station’s chimney over the course of a day, On England’s pleasant pastures seen documents the sweeping vistas of the Tinsley Viaduct, the biomass plant local sewage works, train lines and canals that jostle for space alongside the hills of the Peak District. At 90m in the air, the view is one that would have been visible from the top of the Cooling Towers, which were demolished in 2008. Cotterrell climbed the chimney in July with a six-lens spherical camera to record the panorama of landscape and infrastructure, which is projected on a bespoke curved wall in the gallery.
Developed with the support of Sheffield Hallam University’s Cultural, Communication and Computing Research Institute, Babel is a 3D projection of a simple closed-system created within a game engine. The work depicts an infinitely expanding highway system: as traffic increases and queues build, a viaduct is formed. Gradually slip roads are added, lanes widened and a ring road is created to alleviate pressure. Sweeping feeder lanes distribute fast turning traffic and double, then triple deck highways appear. As capacity increases, more cars are added. As more cars are added, capacity is stretched. A vertigo-inducing monument to highway geometry gradually pierces the clouds as Cotterrell’s ridiculous extrapolation is rendered in real-time.
Automotivation takes its title from Sheffield-based Cabaret Voltaire’s 1984 ‘Gasoline in Your Eye’. Produced with the support of Sheffield Robotics, the work is based on traffic ‘micro-simulation’ models which use parameters including Aggression, Gap Tolerance and Lane-Discipline to demonstrate how driving populations behave. Realised as database engines, these models are not neutral: they depend on programmers’ assumptions and judgments and pre-suppose that smoother flowing traffic is progressive. Automotivation demonstrates patterns of traffic flow like phantom roadblock as a kinetic sculpture of 12m2 of Scalextric-style track and 55 slot cars.
Cotterrell has invited artists Ron Wright and Michael Day to develop two new works for the exhibition, which will also include his 2001 single-channel video work, Car Culture.
A series of events has been programmed to coincide with the exhibition including work with Tinsley Meadows Primary School and an architecture summer school as well as a day of climbing and communicating via public realm sites, which will formally launch the next stage of the Tinsley Art Project - a £450k Major Commission. The ‘Terminus’ project website will feature news and documentation of these events.
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