Hannah Rickards

Hannah Rickards

Fogo Island Arts

Hannah Rickards, Grey light. Left and right back, high up, two small windows, 2014. Two-screen projected video installation. Courtesy the artist.

September 28, 2014

Hannah Rickards
Grey light. Left and right back, high up, two small windows

September 24, 2014–April 6, 2015

Fogo Island Gallery
210 Main Street, Joe Batt’s Arm
Newfoundland and Labrador A0G 2X0
Hours: Daily 9am–9pm,
November 16–December 22, 2014 and January 9–January 31, 2015: Saturday 1:30–3pm and by appointment


“Works that interest me most have a fragility or an indeterminacy to their form, surface, boundaries—works that, in Cage’s words are ‘less like an object and more like the weather.’”
–Hannah Rickards in conversation with Adam Chodzko

Fogo Island Arts is pleased to present a major new piece by Hannah Rickards. Grey light. Left and right back, high up, two small windows (2014) is a two-screen projected video installation with eight channels of sound. Structured rhythmically around the pattern of a foghorn sounding, the piece finds its origins in the notion of the foghorn as an auditory marker for non-visibility, or imagelessness.

The piece is a choreography for camera and two performers developed on the basis of recordings of Seldom Community Hall, the only meeting room on Fogo Island within which the foghorn is audible. One screen presents slow, punctuated tracking shots of the hall that were used as a “score” for the performers and camera, whose shifting series of gestures and interactions are shown on the other screen.

The sound presents a detailed spatial image of Seldom Community Hall, with the room acting as a container for the sounds generated by the atmospheric conditions outside, such as the percussive clack of the air vent, the radiators and the foghorn itself; this varies in audibility, and is at times registered only in the paused movements and gestures of the performers.

Across the six movements of this piece, which takes cues from the compositional approaches of composers such as Morton Feldman and John Cage, the dynamics of action, causation, form and improvisation shift across the two screens of the work and beyond it into the staging and framing of the exhibition: objects, images and diagrams used as props within the footage are also present in the gallery.

The work’s non-linear structure involves a series of overlapping frames of reference. Within this a continuous drift back and forth between different forms of attention allows one to look as one might listen, and listen as one might look.

Artist biography
Hannah Rickards lives and works in London. Educated at Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design, her recent solo exhibitions include Modern Art Oxford, Oxford (2014); Artspeak, Vancouver (2010); Whitechapel Gallery, London (2009); Collezione Maramotti, Reggio Emilia, Italy, (2009); and The Showroom, London (2007). Rickards’s work has featured in recent group exhibitions at the Art Gallery of Alberta, Edmonton (2013); S1 Artspace, Sheffield (2013); Kayne Griffin Corcoran, Los Angeles (2013); Murray Guy, New York (2011); Palais de Tokyo, Paris (2009); Walker Art Center, Minneapolis (2009); ICA, London (2008); Johann Koenig, Berlin (2007); and Witte de With, Rotterdam (2006). Rickards was recipient of the second edition of the Max Mara Art Prize for Women in collaboration with the Whitechapel Gallery.

Nicolaus Schafhausen (Director, Kunsthalle Wien) and Jack Stanley (Director of Programs, Fogo Island Arts)

A forthcoming catalogue including texts by Vanessa Desclaux and Melissa Gronlund, and a conversation between Hannah Rickards and Nicolaus Schafhausen will accompany the exhibition.

Acknowledging support
Fogo Island Arts would like to thank the following institutions for their generous support: Shorefast Foundation, Arts Council England Grants for the Arts, Canada Council for the Arts, and the Research Office of Central Saint Martins, University of the Arts London.

Hannah Rickards at Fogo Island Gallery
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September 28, 2014

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