untitled struggle

Untitled Struggle.

130 x 80 x 80cm

Painted plywood and sponge, mechanical elements, mirrored perspex.

The physical act of the foam imploding into itself is an attempt to create a performance loosely re imagining Schopenhauers notion of human life as a 'perpetual swinging pendulum of pain and boredom'; Re-imagined as Intrigue and Enthusiasm. Rigged to a microcomputer and a mechanical chain mechanism, the foam structure abruptly changes its form every six minutes through a sudden and radical crushing and releasing. The performance of the work follows a similar trajectory to that of a stage magic performance. In which it deliberately offers the viewer opportunities for intrigue and expectation via a precisely timed rupturing of pre mediated visual assumptions. 


The mirrored table structure is loosely based on the technique of the 'Proteous' cabinet. A Victorian stagecraft invention designed to conceal a performer within a cabinet or vessel using anamorphosis - a series of tactically placed mirrors to disrupt the field of vision. The mirrors are engineered at 45 degrees to a centre point. Which when viewed in the round create a fluctuating illusion of a four-legged table. Concealing the machinery inside creating a disruption of visual and material experience and re choreographing the perceptive experience of a kinetic form. 

The performance of time is played out via the six minute interval. Six minutes is a engineered timing designed to be slightly too long to wait for. By  allowing the kinetic element to be potentially overlooked by impatience, it attempts to offer multiple questions of attention span, anticipation and investment in visual experience, placing the viewer as the fundamental element in the perception of visual performance.


Unit 1 Gallery, London. Radical Residency. GROUP SHOW, April 2018

2020. Ant Hamlyn