Art Night Dundee: Is Almost Here. - FAD Magazine

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FAD Magazine covers contemporary art – News, Exhibitions and Interviews reported on from London

Art Night Dundee: Is Almost Here.

Hannah Quinlan & Rosie Hastings, Live performance commissioned for Art Night 2019 in Walthamstow Town Square and along the Market. Photo by Rachel Cherry, courtesy of Art Night

In 2023, internationally renowned contemporary art festival Art Night will deliver its first full iteration in a city outside London – in Dundee. On June 24 2023, 7pm – late, Art Night will present ten major new commissions in civic spaces across the city by internationally significant and emerging artists. Iconic and unique spaces across Dundee will be used for this wide range of events, from Dundee Contemporary Arts, V&A Dundee, to historic ships the RRS Discovery and the HMS Unicorn, The Little Theatre, Arthurstone Library, Cooper Gallery, Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art & Design (DJCAD) at the University of Dundee, Baxter Park and Pavillion, and the Keiller Centre as well as outdoors in the city’s streets.

Art Night from 7pm until late June 24th full programme: artnight.org.uk

The 10 Art Night commissions in brief are:

At the Little Theatre, Turner Prize winning artist Tai Shani will present My Bodily Remains, Your Bodily Remains, And All The Bodily Remains That Ever Were, And Ever Will Be – a fantastical series of filmic tableaux, adapted from the chamber play presented by Art Night at Fabric, London in 2022. The film will feature an original score composed by Maxwell Sterling and Richard Fearless (Death in Vegas) alongside digital animations by Adam Sinclair. Set screenings every 75 minutes from 7pm, check the Art Night
website for end time.

Nabihah Iqbal portrait, Joseph Hayes

Nabihah Iqbal, From 7pm–10pm performances will redefine Discovery’s decks through sound. The programme features a hybrid traditional/experimental bagpipe performance by Scottish musician and electronic music producer CAIN; Fiscal Harm – one of the many musical projects of Aldous RH – undertakes an experimental saxophone set; avant-garde string duo Balladeste features Tara Franks on cello and Preetha Narayanan on violin, and Nick Hann combines experimental music with Scottish folk.

From 11pm the event moves to the Arctic Bar for a full-on dance party, where Iqbal is joined on the decks by Ursula Holliday, and Richard and Spencer – the living legends of Scotland’s electronic music scene behind the Numbers record label. Iqbal is honoured to be collaborating with Messenger Sound System for the Arctic Bar party – one of the oldest dub sound systems in Scotland, established in 1987 and still going strong. RRS Discovery: 7pm–10pm Arctic Bar: 11pm–2am

Emma Hart, Red and Green Should Never Be Seen, 2022. Ceramic, wood and metal. Installed at Contemporary Sculpture Fulmer. Photo by Corey Bartle-Sanderson. Courtesy of Brooke Benington.

Emma Hart’s BIG UP is a celebration of raving – an ongoing, fundamental force for good in her life. The work features a series of sculptures that have their hands in the air – Hart thinks of them as artworks to dance around with the spirits of the solstice. Situated in a npublic multi-storey car park, the work is accompanied by a live soundtrack from DJ Lucy Jam Tart and DJ Arty Harty Party, who will get the choons going while audiences get themselves going amongst the works. BIG UP is a chance to get heads up, hands up, spirits up. A co-commission with Hospitalfield. Greenmarket Car Park, 7pm–11pm

Saoirse Amira Anis, symphony for a fraying body, film still, 2023

Dundee-based artist Saoirse Amira Anis will present a performance as an extension of her solo presentation at Dundee Contemporary Arts, symphony for a fraying body. For Art Night, Anis embodies a rope-laden, amphibious mythical creature as it journeys to return to the sea, freeing it from the galleries of the DCA to seek the waters of the nearby river Tay. This performance takes place in segments, across multiple venues and within the public realm, culminating at HMS Unicorn. The performances have set start times and locations but will be on the move thereafter. Please feel free to follow Anis on her route, or ask one of our festival guides for help locating her along the way. 7pm: Dundee Contemporary Arts 9pm: Discovery Point to V&A 11pm: V&A to HMS Unicorn.

Inefficient Solutions in Lumsden booth courtesy of the artist

Dundee-based artist Inefficient Solutions will present The Hi-Visit at GENERATORProjects – a participatory photo opportunity that offers several potential benefits to participation. Participants might convey a sense of working hard, by being photographed in a hard work environment; they might prove they are just an ordinary person by wearing a fluorescent yellow bib, or show responsibility by wearing a hard hat; they might enjoy an opportunity to associate themselves with the working class, or to illustrate job opportunities, wealth, economic growth and prosperity, simply by wearing some safety specs. Inefficient Solutions is the performative identity of Dundonian artist Euan Taylor – in his work he commits to the guise of a sub-contractor operating out of Dundee, never deviating from the company’s core values and aims: creating and solving problems; being on the scrounge; building building sites, and undertaking futile endeavors. GENERATORprojects, 7pm–12am

Danielle Braithwaite Shirley, THE LACK: I knew your voice before you spoke, video game stills, 2023

With an ambitious new commission, Danielle Brathwaite-Shirley alerts us to meteoric gulfs in the world as we know it. The earth has changed and the choices we make now will reconstruct how we navigate it. Presented at the historic Arthurstone Library in Stobswell, Brathwaite-Shirley presents an art video game that allows audiences to interact and perform with the work. The decisions taken by participants will influence every element of the world being created throughout the course of the evening. At Keiller Centre audiences are invited to imagine their own “mid-apocalyptic” resetting of the world, through zine making and poster printing. Audiences can choose their own story, make their own game, and consider what they would do, what they would be, and even reconsider the very particles of their being, in Brathwaite-Shirley’s proposed new world. In collectively creating this new sphere, prints, zines and ideas will fill the space
throughout the night. The work is a co-commission with NEoN Digital Arts and Serpentine. 7pm to 1am.

Lucy McKenzie, Náhrdelník (Necklace), film still, 2023

Náhrdelník (Necklace) is a new film by Lucy McKenzie consisting of found footage, sourced from YouTube, of the 1992 Czech television drama of the same name. Showcasing the complex lives and dramas of characters in 19th and 20th century Prague society, McKenzie’s edit focuses on the famous Villa Mueller, and its modernist architecture and interior details where some of the show was filmed. By adding English language and subtitles, McKenzie’s work with the recovered footage creates a new story from a contemporary perspective, and her interpretation contrasts the familiar nature of this nostalgic period television drama, with its darker and more sinister undertones. Echoing the modernist architecture and interior in the film, Náhrdelník (Necklace) is screened inside Charles Rennie Mackintosh’s Oak Room, an iconic example of Scottish modernist design, on loan to V&A Dundee from Glasgow Life (Glasgow Museums) on behalf of Glasgow City Council. During Art Night the film can also be viewed as a large projection in the Juniper Auditorium at V&A Dundee where visitors can enjoy a more relaxed, informal and accessible environment. 7pm to midnight.

Heather Phillipson, Dream Land, film stills, 2023 Heather Phillipson, Dream Land, film stills, 2023

Co-commissioned by Art Night and the Art Fund as part of their Wild Escape programme, Heather Phillipson will present Dream Land (working title), a multi-part project that remixes and revoices archival BBC wildlife footage alongside her own sounds and images. Presented at Cooper Gallery the film presents earthly life as a dream, in which earth’s creatures reappear as interlocutors, harbingers and guides. Art Night will also gift the film to McManus after the events in June. The project will culminate in a live performance at Cooper Gallery and co-commissioned with Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design, during Art Night, tuning in to phenomena unavailable to human senses, conjuring broadcasts from other dimensions. Co-commissioned with Cooper Gallery and supported by the DJCAD Centenary Trust. Exhibition: 16 June–1 July 2023, Monday–Saturday 12pm–5pm. Live event: Mourning
Ritual, 7pm–late on 24 June. End time TBC.

Richy Carey Image Yalla Riso

Richy Carey will present {stereo – type – music} a performance, installation and publication which emerges from his work with choirs, community groups and other collaborators from across Dundee at Baxter Park Pavilion. The work considers how publishing practices can shape the ways we listen to each other, and the kinds of music that can be created from collectively composed scores. A co-commission with The Tetley, Leeds. 7.30pm and 9.30pm.

Maria Fusco and Margaret Salmon, History of the Present, film stills, 2023

At Dundee Rep, Maria Fusco and Margaret Salmon present History of the Present, an experimental opera-film which foregrounds Belfast working-class women’s voices to ask: who has the right to speak and in what way? Written by Maria Fusco and co-directed with Margaret Salmon, the film features sonic contributions by composer Annea Lockwood and opera singer Héloïse Werner. The work is programmed and made on the anniversary of the Good Friday agreement. This work will tour to the Edinburgh Art Festival on 11 August. At Art Night: 7pm–11.15pm [last screening begins 10.45pm]

The free festival is brought to Dundee in partnership with Dundee Contemporary Arts (DCA). Art Night is also collaborating with V&A Dundee; Creative Dundee; NEoN Digital Arts; Cooper Gallery, Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art & Design (DJCAD) at the University of Dundee; Leisure and Culture Dundee, GENERATORprojects; Dundee City Council and Hospitalfield, Arbroath. Art Night Dundee is supported by Creative Scotland and EventScotland’s National Events Programme. National partners include The Art Fund; The Tetley, Leeds; Creative Kernow; Museum of London; Serpentine. Funders and supporters include Henry Moore Foundation, Elephant Trust, Northwood Trust, Simmons & Simmons


In 2021, Art Night went national for the first time, engaging with audiences at a range of museums, galleries and outdoor spaces across the UK as well as being open to audiences globally through a series of newly commissioned online works. In 2023, this format will be developed further, and cemented with a biennial festival.. Since 2016 Art Night has commissioned 60 new artworks and attracted 300,000 live audiences, 800,000 digital and an additional 2 million via touring, museum acquisitions and national projects.

Art Night was set up in 2015 by Philippine Nguyen and Ksenia Zemtsova. The original four festivals took place in partnership with art organisations in different parts of London and were guest curated by leading UK-based curators – The ICA and Kathy Noble (2015); Whitechapel Gallery and Fatos Uztek (2016); Hayward Gallery and Ralph Rugoff (2017`). In 2019, Art Night appointed Helen Nisbet as Artistic Director, her first festival took place in the outer London borough of Waltham Forest to coincide with the Mayor of London’s first Borough of Culture before the first national Art Night festival in 2021.

Art Night invites artists to make ambitious, durational and performative work for non-traditional public spaces. Previous artists making major new commissions for the festival include Barbara Kruger; Joan Jonas; Zadie Xa; Cecile B Evans; Imran Perretta and Paul Purgas; Linder; Celia Hempton; Mark Leckey; Christine Sun Kim; Frances Stark and Anne Hardy.

In four years, Art Night has attracted 260,000 live audiences with an additional +2 million through touring, museum acquisitions and longer displays. 50 artists have presented major new commissions, and 150 artists showed work as part of an open call sister programme – the Art Night Open which ran from 2016-2019. 10,000 participants have actively taken part in Art Night projects; these include local residents, community projects, amateur dancers, choirs and young people from 30 different schools. 2.6 million has been raised and invested in artists and the local economy through 120 partners and funders, and with the support of 6 business improvement districts and 8 local authorities. Art Night was featured in more than
650 articles and reached 40 million views on social media since 2016. Art Night is proud of the work done to support those less familiar with contemporary art in attending the festival, 80% of recently surveyed audiences were not familiar with the artists, contemporary art or disciplines experienced.
artnight.london @ARTNIGHTUK

Artistic Director Helen Nisbet is a curator and writer who lives and works between Shetland and London. She has been Artistic Director for Art Night since 2018 and previously held curatorial positions at organisations including Cubitt; Arts Council Collection; Contemporary Art Society; the Lighthouse and has contributed to programmes at Creative Time, New York; the Venice Biennale and London-based galleries Hollybush Gardens and The Sunday Painter. She is a visiting lecturer for Royal College of Art and Goldsmiths and sits on the advisory board for Gaada in Shetland, a-n and Art Quest. She was a member of the Arts Council Collection’s Acquisitions Committee from 2018 – 2020 and served as juror for The Margaret Tait Award and Glasgow International. Her publications include It Disappears in Blue and Red and Gold (Bookworks, 2018) and These are the stones we have instead of trees (Transit Arts, 2020). Helen will sit on the 2023 Turner Prize Jury.



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