January 19, 2009 - Arthouse at the Jones Center - these are the days: Matt Stokes
January 19, 2009

these are the days: Matt Stokes

Matt Stokes
these are the days

January 24 – April 5, 2009

Arthouse at the Jones Center – Contemporary Art for Texas
700 Congress Avenue,
Austin, Texas


Saturday, January 24, 3:00pm
Talking Art with Matt Stokes

Arthouse at the Jones Center
Free admission

these are the days is an exhibition and debut of newly commissioned work by British artist Matt Stokes. Inspired by punk rock subcultures in Austin—past and present—these are the days is the artist’s first institutional exhibition and original commission in the United States.

Matt Stokes’ artistic practice is marked by anthropological enquiry and an interest in events or informal movements that bind people together. Taking a variety of forms—from organizing events and assembling archives to making films and creating sculptural installations—Stokes’ works are often collaborative in nature and sometimes take place outside the traditional gallery space. Music subcultures have been central to the development of his most recent projects, which have focused on their ability to shape lifestyle, beliefs and create community. Northern Soul, acid/house and black metal are among the genres of music he has explored, poetically revealing music’s intrinsic ability to create fellowship through devotion or the quasi-religious experience of dance.

In 2007 Arthouse invited Stokes to create a new film project. these are the days is the result of Stokes’ close work with communities connected to Austin’s music scene and his extensive research into anti-establishment musical genres, particularly punk rock. Investigating the dichotomies expressed within earlier and later punk communities, the exhibition includes a 16mm film production, an original audio recording, and a collection of ephemera from the 1970s and 1980s related to the punk, post-punk, and DIY movements in Austin. The show’s focal point is the dual film installation. The first film features footage from a specially organized punk show, staged by Stokes, at the Broken Neck in Austin. The second film, created in response at a recording session at Austin’s Sweatbox Studios, depicts a band’s musical reaction to the event footage. A reversal of roles between audience and performers, the film installation examines the concept of response, an idea further explored in the exhibition by the inclusion of an historical archive that provides context for the film. Punk as it was then and as it is now, different yet the same–these are the days.

these are the days, the film installation, is being presented concurrently at Project Space 176, a major new contemporary art space located in Camden, London – an area strongly connected to growth of the UK punk scene.

Matt Stokes was born in 1973 in Penzance, England and currently lives and works in Newcastle/Gateshead, England. He received his BA from Newcastle University in 1997 and is the 2006 recipient of the esteemed Beck’s Futures Prize, awarded by the ICA in London. Forthcoming shows (both solo and group) will take place at Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art (Gateshead), Centro per l’Arte Contemporanea Luigi Pecci (Prato). Stokes is currently artist in residence at 176 (London) and is producing a new commission for VIVID (Birmingham).

The film is co-produced by ZieherSmith and Arthouse.
The exhibition and accompanying publication have been made possible, in part, by Arts Council England, Michael A. Chesser, Johnna and Stephen Jones, Julie and John Thornton, and ZieherSmith, New York.

Arthouse at the Jones Center is supported in part by the City of Austin through the Cultural Arts Division and by a grant from the Texas Commission on the Arts. This project is supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts, which believes a great nation deserves great art. Additional support provided by individuals, corporations, foundations and Arthouse members.

Headquartered at the Jones Center in Austin, Texas, Arthouse is the oldest statewide contemporary visual art organization in Texas. Arthouse seeks to promote the growth and appreciation of contemporary art and artists in Texas. Through its exhibitions and programs in Austin and statewide, Arthouse helps nurture artists’ careers and deepen public understanding of contemporary art.

All exhibitions and programs at Arthouse are free and open to the public.


Arthouse at the Jones Center
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