Man Without Beard Uses Power Tools. SHOCKER!

Yep, Gallery 1 is white. And, today, it was filled with sunlight. It’s a tranquil space when emptied. The outer walls of the screening room are white, the inside is black. It won’t be pitch dark in there, there isn’t a roof. People shy from blackout spaces, especially when there’s a curtained entrance – they’re unnerved. It’ll be dusky. There will be seats – we aiming to have seating in front of all the video pieces. A few of the video works have sound, this is an issue. The gallery isn’t vast, we cannot isolate the sound from different tvs within the space – which would be the idle. The video showing in the screening room will have open sound, played through stereo speakers – two other works on 47 inch monitors will each have two pairs of headphones attached. It is a compromise, but the surest solution to ensure the works are best presented. With our gallery spaces, there’s always going to be compromise when showing non-site specific work. We’ve high walls, five iron columns along the centre of the space, huge doors into the gallery store, brick walls (under a conservation order) – it demands compromise. The benefits are, light, it avalanches in through the high windows. The film you’ll notice in the windows, like a frosting, is there to protect the exhibits from ultraviolet damage (you’ll have seen it, like a newspaper kept inside a car’s rear window – yellowing, baked).

Tomorrow, I’ll be mounting monitors and a projector, chasing speaker cable to where it is needed. I’ve got to configure two Mac Minis that’ll be playing videos (a film and a flash text). I’ve tested the two DVD videos and I’ll be setting up players for them. Video is increasingly filmed in HD, which the Mac Minis can handle, our DVD players upscale – but, soon, we’ll need to upgrade to Blu-ray or a dedicated pro media-player. Exciting, isn’t it.

Clive arrived this morning minus his beard. He’s lost years. When I shave mine off, I gain years. My beard is a disguise. Anyway, I was feeling a tad folksy today – I played Alasdair Robert’s album Spoils as I painted provoking a mood that celebrated my having a beard. Clive pointed out our rubber mallet is branded ‘Thor’ – I now have my own Mjölnir. I realise now why Clive has shaved off his beard, it chaffed beneath his Spiderman mask.

A big shout out to the chap who poked his head around the gallery door and thumb’s-upped the painted job. Ta.

The first of the Emergency 5 artwork arrives on Sunday. Can’t wait to meet the artists, to see where the works comes from. It’s always intriguing.

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