Thursday, 8 October 2009

Artist's Debt



Artist's Debt

1999 - 2013, Dimensions variable, £8026.65.

Last updated Feb 2010

In the modern global market, debts are traded and sold like assets. A debt has no physical form and yet it exists, undeniably. It is immaterial but also measurable; it has a precise dimension that grows and/or erodes over time. As a young sculptor, I created a debt to the state: a work that would prove to be the most enduring and politically relevant product of my early studies. Inspired, in part, by Pierre Manzoni's seminal work, Artist's Shit (1961), this piece comes with a framed bank statement to verify its conjoined scale and market price. Although ‘Artist’s Debt’ (1999 – 2012) has an intrinsic and increasing monitory value, transferring it to a collector represents a significant economic and artistic challenge; if it were purchased, the work would effectively cease to exist. Please note that the printed statement is not ‘Art’, it is just a legal document that confirms the debt’s existence, authorship and volume. ‘Artist’s Debt’ is a ‘worthless’ piece of conceptual art that continues a broader social interest in the notions of ‘owing’ and being ‘without value’.

Wednesday, 29 July 2009

Room 237



Room 237

Interactive video installation

The University Of Brighton, Brighton, UK

July, 2009

The view into 'Room 237' was blocked by a false wall with a clinical soap dispenser mounted on it. Before entering the installation, visitors were encouraged to clean their hands using the antibacterial gel provided. Above the soap dispenser, an embossed plaque read: 'Strictly No Photography', a sign common to art galleries, military institutions and state detention centres.

In the next space there was a monitor mounted on the left-hand wall. When visitors looked into the monitor, they saw a live relay of themselves filmed from behind, with their turned backs framed in an open doorway. They could now also see the formerly concealed space on the opposite side of the doorway, where a naked body was crouched against the wall, twitching slightly with its face in its hands. The body was a looped and filtered recording of the artist, posed so that its age, health and gender were indeterminate. If the visitor looked for the body directly, they would not find it; it was a kind of digital mirage that could only be witnessed through mediation.

The work continued an interest in social visibility and responsibility and marked a development of the live video-compositing technique first used in 'Private View' 2008. 237 was the number of the studio in the art institution where the installation was sited: it is also the number of the hotel room in Kubrick's version of 'The Shining' where the caretaker stacked the bodies of his murdered family.

Room 237 is one outcome of an ongoing body of research. Areas have included the ethics of war photography; how human suffering is represented and the related notions of endurance, transcendence and authenticity in the work of Chris Burden and Marina Abramovic.












The University Of Brighton, Brighton, UK, July 2009

In these images : Lina Bjorno, Lori O'regan and Lau Mun leng

Don't Look Down





Don't Look Down 

The University of Brighton, Brighton, UK


January 2009

Visitors arriving to see a presentation of my new work were asked to wait outside a studio with a closed door and shaded windows. A screen placed outside the room showed a relayed image of myself, apparently inside the studio, lying on the ground in front of a table with two framed white prints on it. Visitors were let in one at a time, not sure whether the slumped body would turn out to be real or virtual (a mediated image) as in my recent work. If they made it across the threshold of my body they would discover the frames were not blank but contained embossed imprints of my debit card. These cards were positioned upright (like tomb stones) and the prints were priced at the exact amount of the debts their titles referred to. After everyone had seen the work, the plug was suddenly pulled from the wall and the screen outside went dead.




ATM

Performance for video

2009

The body is a resource. Having exhausted my bank account I attempted to use my mouth as an ATM machine. I wanted to draw out the value from my body like oil from the ground. This task was interrupted by my gag reflex which acted as a form of natural and innate resistance. The card was repeatedly rejected and expelled from my body along with tears, saliva and sweat.


Exchange



Exchange

Commissioned pencil drawing (detail) and signed contract

June, 2009

An artist, skilled in forgery, was paid with a twenty pound note in exchange for a realistic scale drawing of that note. Sole legal ownership of the work was then signed over to its author, Reynir Hutber. The note’s number is CD14 521111 and it has a slight tear in the upper left hand corner. The original mass produced note may now take on an aura of enhanced cultural value through its association with a unique copy. The artistic “forgery” can be acquired by a collector today for £20,000 while the original note has been released back into the ebb and flow of daily economic activity, like a fish returned to a vast river.

UNIT




UNIT

Proposal 2009

UNIT is a proposal to cast a pound coin in several hundred pounds worth of solid gold. The coin will be tarnished and introduced into economic circulation where its intrinsic value will be far greater than its symbolic value, the opposite of most art works. It will drift, unnoticed, into the highway of everyday economic transactions. The project will leave no tangible evidence of its creation apart from the empty presentation box. As this work involves introducing unofficial currency into Britain’s economy, it constitutes a kind of unprofitable treason.

Tuesday, 28 July 2009

Private View



Private View

Interactive video installation

The University Of Brighton, Brighton, UK

July 2008

In Private View the audience member walks into a studio and is confronted with a familiar scene, the relayed image of him or her self entering the frame of a wall mounted CCTV style monitor. However, in this instance, there path appears to be obstructed by the digital apparition of a slumped, scarcely breathing body. The body's presence in the frame is an illusion, a chimera of pixels.My hope for this work is to put the viewer in an unfamiliar position; to observe their response, and consider their responsibility, to a non-person.



Documentation of new media installation by Reynir Hutber.
Out of repect for those recorded please do not publish or post without consent. Thanks.