Provocation #1

Last Tuesday (4th) we took one of our stepladders on a trip to the British Library Conference Centre to install a piece to coincide with The Warwick Commission on the Future of Cultural Value.

I’ve written about this project here once before. It was quite anxious making as a roll call of arty VIPs was expected to Robert Peston’s talk and our brief was a to make something to provoke around that event. Adding to the challenge was a fact that the venue would be crowded and not set up to present art. Our solution was the creation of a wall based and flying installation. Central concept was to reflect on the commission’s challenge – two of our Brown Coated protagonists attempt to disentangle and measure an impossible web of strings, cords and threads. These threads sweep around the venue, wrapping knives, suspending coins, forming a cardigan, sprouting a bulb and suspending money. The metaphor is set up by pens flying on lines of coloured thread/ink and with special guest star appearances from Amelia and Poppy on Denise’s giant French Knitting machine the notion of cultural inheritance is addressed.

Ultimately my feeling is that, though our idea was sound and well realized it failed as a provocation because it was too subtle / too discreet / too accommodating. For Provocation #2 I think we will look to be a bit more ‘in your face’.

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