SafARI 2010

I was very lucky to be the 'unknown kid' taken a chance on by the wonderful SafARI team this year. SafARI is an unofficial fringe event to the Biennale of Sydney, happening across several 'ARI's sprinkled around the inner-city.

My contributions were two film loops at Locksmith Project Space and a 12m x 3m vinyl cut design on the facade of FBi radio.

The films are about the urban space re-inventing itself in a kind of out-of-control evolution - like all evolution really. 'Former Corner Stores' mimic animal camouflage and warning patterns; 'Solitary Electricity Substations' sing out to potential mates at dusk.

The FBi design is, for me, about the way community radio and ARIs create points of discursive (re)orientation. They allow their audience to literally: think the city differently.

To expand, I tried to make the design about the site itself. I asked myself what radio is, its function today’s media geography, and in particular, what is essential to community radio stations like FBi? I think it acts as a centre amid fragmentation.

As a medium, radio is becoming more and more the purest expression of a sense of community and simultaneity - primarily because it is predominantly live (counter to the trend in TV). As we hear a voice or a song on the radio, what we feel, even more than the songs or voices themselves, is every oscillation and reverberation being listened to by the diasporic audience.

So, in terms of the design, the lines of force lead not outward like the beams and waves of classic push-media representations, but inward as trajectories of audience attention – like a maypole in our everyday dance. The title of the work is ‘Future Maypole’.

flickr, SafARI, FBi interview