Hulk…Smash!

The installation team at aspex consists of Clive Caswell and (me) Markus Lloyd. Though I’m designated the ‘Technician’, Clive has just as much experience of the role – thankfully.

We’ve reused the cinema screens from the AFTERIMAGE exhibition by Karin Kihlberg, Reuben Henry – fitting, as they were winners of Emergency 4. These screens were walls during the previous show, WORKING TITLE. Now, the screen/walls form a Viewing Room for the projection of a video in the EMERGENCY5 exhibition. We’re all about the recycling at aspex (plus, we’ve no storage and the cost of shifting waste is extortionate). It has been our intention to cut down on big builds – it seems we’ve just become far more economic.

We’ve managed to stash away all the Working Title artworks the participant artist’s want to keep. Storage is always an issue, it’s an ongoing game of Tetris. We rarely win.

So, where have we got – well, half the walls have been filled and sanded, made good. Tomorrow we’ll finish off, then get a first coat of emulsion on the walls (brilliant white, vinyl matt, Dulux Trade – if you really want to know). All goes well, they get a second, final coat too. The inside of the Viewing Room will be black, and we’ll paint our own screen (using a projection to define the area, three or more coats of white emulsion and two-coats of a high-reflective white paint – used in theatres – to finish).

As we proceed with transforming the gallery back to pristine white cube, we’re considering the best location for particular works. This is easier with the four video pieces, we have the televisions and projector to hand; the other works are nebulous, we’ve rough dimensions only. I’m already figuring out the lighting. We’ve a limited palette of lamps. There are a few reasonably tight spots (halogens – that emphasise colour), some wide, unfocused spots (halides – replicates natural light) and 7 wall-washes (fluorescents – cooling). It’s tough when the show’s all wall-based, but we’ve floor pieces too. It’s just about doable, if no other lamps blow.

Today, breaking up a redundant stud wall, Clive was The Hulk, his preferred method was jumping on the panels, while I was Thor, wielding a hammer (perforating the panels). Tomorrow, one of us will be Spiderman climbing the skyscraper of our scaffold tower, and the other will be Rex Reed, Mr Fantastic, the elastic man, with a telescopic rod and paint roller.

Today, as I sanded (with Makita palm sander), I listened to Belbury Poly’s From an Ancient Star. 

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