Sheffield Fringe 2016: Object Documentary

Sheffield Fringe 2016: Object Documentary

Bloc Projects

Mairéad McClean, No More, 2014. Video. Courtesy of the artist.
June 8, 2016

June 10–18, 2016

Opening: June 10, 6pm

Bloc Projects
71 Eyre Lane
Sheffield S1 4RB
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Artists: Mox Mäkelä (Finland), Timo Menke & Nils Agdler (Sweden), Patricia Bandeira (Portugal), Ted Kennedy (USA), Peter Martin (UK), Francesco Pedraglio (UK), Leafcutter John (UK), Emma Leach (UK), Alison J Carr (UK), Jumana Manna & Sille Storihle (Norway/Palestine), Rosalind Nashashibi (UK), Richard Wiebe (USA), Pat Law (UK), Sasha Litvintseva (UK), Sarah Beddington (UK), Mairéad McClean (UK), Xiaowen Zhu (China), Tinne Zenner (Denmark), Daniel Jacoby (Peru), Ben Balcom (USA), Sky Hopinka (USA), Andrée-Anne Roussel (Canada), Zachary Epcar (USA), Patricia Azevedo & Clare Charnley (UK/Brasil), Scott Willis (UK), Ian Nesbitt (UK), Liz von Graevenitz (UK), Alistair Macdonald (UK), Michael Day (UK), Richard Bartle (UK), Maud Haya-Baviera (UK), Lesley Guy & Lea Torp Nielsen & Dale Holmes (UK), Jenni Olson (USA), Bloc Studios Artists. With special contributions from Gareth Evans and Adam Pugh.

Bloc Projects is pleased to host Sheffield Fringe 2016: Object Documentary, a nine-day programme of screenings, presentations, and artists’ talks exploring the intersection of art and documentary practices, curated by Minou Norouzi.

The programme launches on Friday, June 10 with screening programme Reciprocal Relations and a live light-controlled performance by Leafcutter John. On Saturday, June 11, Rosalind Nashashibi, Jumana Manna & Sille Storihle, Sasha Litvintseva, Sarah Beddington, and Mairéad McClean‘s works are presented in dialogue across two programmes, one selected by guest curator Gareth Evans, followed by a discussion with featured artists led by writer Adam Pugh. Sunday, June 12 sees two film programmes, featuring works by Daniel Jacoby, Zachary Epcar, Ben Balcom as well as by Bloc Studios artists, and an Open Studios event. From Monday, June 13, the gallery hosts two daily showings of Jenni Olsen‘s 16mm film The Royal Road, which seamlessly explores colonial history and butch identity.

The complete Sheffield Fringe 2016 catalogue can be found here.

About Sheffield Fringe
Now in its fifth edition, Sheffield Fringe includes both emerging and established artists working with the moving image in diverse ways. Formerly an annual event, Sheffield Fringe is now held in Sheffield biennially, outside of which it operates nomadically through international exhibitions, events and research projects. Its Sheffield-based manifestation coincides with Sheffield International Documentary Film Festival (Doc/Fest), with the intention of creating a complimentary platform, and a context in which to encourage exchanges between the contemporary art and documentary film communities.
About the programme
The Sheffield Fringe 2016 programme, Object Documentary investigates the ethical challenges of regarding documentary film as an object and documentary material as a resource, through a diverse series of talks and screenings exploring themes ranging from international conflict resolution in varying geographies from present day Palestine to historic Scotland; the nature and creation of stories; political use-value in filmmaking; colonial histories; and reflections on memory and butch identity.

Curatorial statement: Object Documentary investigates “documentary” film as an art object, where thinking of and trading documentary as an object opens up the possibility of the “objectification” of actuality.

Documentary practice deals with the social world, live situations, “real” things. Relating to the social world as an object and putting it in the service of artistic activity can create an ethical challenge. Indeed thinking of documentary as an object, and of documentary material as a resource, can be discomforting. Beyond its status in the market place as an art object, the other ways in which documentary film can manifest as an object are difficult to articulate. But they can be felt. Sometimes visible, sometimes implied, one of the ways in which an “object relation” becomes palpable is in the relationship that creates the work. Where a discomforting relation is detected, we tend to address such occasions as “problematic.” The first problem arises with the designation of value when defining an object vis-à-vis a subject: in an effort to designate value through language, we speak of documentary subjects, not documentary objects. The second problem arises with exactly what we mean by the word “documentary.” So far, known characterizations remain narrow. 

Whether regarded as artworks or documentaries, the critical stance of the contributions to Sheffield Fringe 2016 lies in the relationship of the filmmakers to the material.

About Bloc Projects
Bloc Projects is an artist-led project space in Sheffield, UK presenting a regular programme of exhibitions, events, residencies, exchange projects and educational activity. Established in 2002, the organisation provides a platform for early–mid career artists to develop and present new work, encouraging experimentation, and inviting critical dialogue. Bloc Projects delivers partnerships projects, and has been a long-term member of the Art Sheffield Consortium. 

Media information
Jade Richardson, press [​at​] / Charlotte Morgan, info [​at​]

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June 8, 2016

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