Some Swansea Sites

Research output: Non-textual formExhibition

Abstract

‘Some Swansea Sites’ was a temporary, site-specific artwork commissioned by Locws International for the Biennale ‘Art Across the City 09’. It was exhibited alongside Paul Granjon (Venice Biennale 2005). There was a catalogue produced along with filmed interviews and press coverage. The work explored the possibility and contradiction of a stranger making a site-specific work through publishing representations for a location they had never visited. I had not been to Swansea prior to this project. This notion emerged from research into the use of vernacular information about place (my contribution to Venice Biennale, 2005, and ‘SpaceShuttle’, 2006), and ways of exploiting cities’ existing systems of distribution to reinsert that information. I used the site visit to take photographs, which I translated into drawings. As a tourist I took un-touristic photographs. From these I produced five themed posters depicting Swansea sites: ships, bridges, street furniture, urban weeds, assorted landmarks. My images of recognisable landmarks around the city depict sites not normally used to represent the city, thus questioning, perhaps subverting city branding practices. These images were reinserted and distributed in Swansea using two methods: one for private and one for a more public encounter. The posters were published incrementally in ‘The Swansea Herald of Wales’ over the duration of the exhibition, where individual readers found them as a pull-out quiz page in the paper. In tandem with this, they were also very publically sited on large billboards at different locations around the city, echoing billboard works in conceptual art from Felix Gonzalez-Torres to Allan Sekula. Using drawing, however, and creating archives of the known and the unknown, prompted viewers to consider such searching and cataloguing practice as something shared, something using the city’s pre-existing distribution systems to expanding awareness of place.These images were reinserted and distributed in Swansea using two methods: one for private and one for a more public encounter. The posters were published incrementally in ‘The Swansea Herald of Wales’ over the duration of the exhibition, where individual readers found them as a pull-out quiz page in the paper. In tandem with this, they were also very publically sited on large billboards at different locations around the city, echoing billboard works in conceptual art from Felix Gonzalez-Torres to Allan Sekula. Using drawing, however, and creating archives of the known and the unknown, prompted viewers to consider such searching and cataloguing practice as something shared, something using the city’s pre-existing distribution systems to expand awareness of place.
Original languageEnglish
Size6
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2009
EventLows International, 2009 Art Across the City - Technium Square, SA1, Swansea Amphitheatre, The LC Car Park, Oystermouth Road and Swansea Evening Hearld and Post / Swansea
Duration: 18 Apr 200910 May 2009

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