Elly Clarke: Meter Room

Just a quick note.

Keep connected, you are never alone, never alone with a mobile phone in your pocket

– Excerpt from Instantaneous Culture, by Berlin band Theodor Storm

I went to the Meter Room in Coventry for the launch of the ‘Mobility Project‘ by Clarke Galleries. I don’t know if it is something that Clarke looks for, but yet gain this is a space that is pretty cold to be stood around in!

Walking into unused office building the walls are white, the floor is tiled and it is all generally feeling pretty sad. The first piece of work that one sees is a television with a 5 minute documentary, by Elly Clarke, of a traffic jam in Germany. It reminded me of how we can find stillness in our now chaotic instant lives.

Further down was a video projection of two women stood in one position on the pavement. This is of the Red Light District in Berlin where it is sort of expected that women had their own ‘turf’ in prostitution; however this documentary by Kerstin Honeit displays whether they are reacted to on the streets.

Simon Clark’s Postcard Project is particularly interesting. Postcards from Post Office Bay in Floreana (Galapagos Islands) are posted without stamps and visitors can pick up postcards and deliver them if they are heading in that direction. Simon Clark displays a copy of the ones he has picked up for viewers to read. With instant messaging and tweeting being so influential in modern society having this unpredictable service makes one stop and reflect how we do not need to be in contact constantly.

Fedora Romita’s For Informational Purposes Only, 2010 was also interesting: a series of journeys on the U-Bahn in Berlin were recorded from stepping on the train to stepping off. For someone who has been on the U-Bahn I thought it was brilliant because it immediately brought back the smells and visuals of the trains I have been on.

On the whole, the collection of work does make one think about how much we move and how everything is ‘information’. How J-pegs are information in pixels. How we can be GPS-ed everywhere. How we travel in cars. How we stand still. How although we are connected, we can still feel alone.

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