Sunday 22 June 2008

Welcome to Artranspennine08! taking place from June 13th - August 15th 2008. Artranspennine is a large scale cross-regional exhibition with an array of emerging and established artists working in a variety of disciplines. Artists will be placing work, staging performances and creating interventions at a variety of locations across the transpennine route. To hear about specific times and dates please join our mailing list at or join our Facebook group, for general news click here. We will also be selecting events and artists of the week below to assist in your navigation of the blog, details of each artist’s projects can be found in the link list to the right.

Thanks for visiting; we hope you enjoy the show.

Saturday 21 June 2008

For Artranspennine08, Bryony Moore presents her new video work, 'Halfway House' The work was filmed at Edale, a location on the Pennines halfway between Manchester and Sheffield -the two cities where the artist and her boyfriend live, respectively. Having spent years separated by this giant hill, 'Halfway House' presents Moore's attempt to take it on, while simultaneously creating the opportunity to star in her own real-life love story.

Thursday 12 June 2008

"We explore the presence of energy within ourselves, and the world around us, through a direct and conscious interaction between the two."

For the past few months Wess and Baskeyfield have been exploring the above statement through the manipulation of sculptural forms - The Frame, The Sheet, and the L Block - all of which relate directly to their earlier work within the studio and emphasise, at this stage, the importance of the studio to their practice.

For Artranspennine 08 Wess and Baskeyfield propose to take these forms outside the confines of the studio to a number of predetermined locations and explore them through the freshness of these new environments, and explore the environments through the forms. A residue of explorations will be left at each site, perhaps a white frame, or something more subtle. The entirety of their exploration will be documented. Wess and Baskeyfield will make journeys over the course of five weeks, on the Friday or the Sunday of each week, starting on Friday 13th June.

Wednesday 11 June 2008

(to see the video in the context of Google Map click here)

'First Person Rambler'

This work involves the walking of a section of the Trans Pennine Trail, starting near Stockport and heading East. Fred McVittie will be carrying a stick over his shoulder, to the end of which is attached a video camera that will record his progress. The viewpoint of the video recording will echo that found in ‘first person shooter’ video games. Whilst walking Fred will also be speaking aloud whatever occurs to him at the time; this forming a soundtrack to the moving image.

The project is a bringing together of two ideas; firstly that of walking through a landscape as a metaphor for the bindlestiff ramblings of thought and feeling, and secondly the sense of being outside of oneself. This second sense is most vividly exhibited in the avatar relations of video games and online virtual environments, but also features within a wide range of discourses, from spiritual practices and psychotic episodes to the ideals of empirical objectivity.

Chris Clarke's project at the Cornerhouse Bookshop. For 'Untitled', Chris Clarke used the contents of a bookshop to create a site-specific installation. Throughout the day, Clarke wrapped all of the books in brown paper, obscuring their titles and covers in order to create a walk-in sculptural environment. While the shop (attempted to) function as normal, the materials inside gradually lost their individuality and were rendered indistinguishable. (Click on picture above to see Chris Clarke's Slideshow)

During Artranspennine 08 Tim Machin will be creating a narrative across the transpennine region - this will exist in a number of forms; cards in newsagent's windows, 'lost dog' posters sellotaped to lamposts and small–ads, together with some Google maps and writing created in unconventional, ephemeral places from bulletin boards to Flickr discussion groups, the whole project will be able to be monitored online at Lost Dog.

Jemma Egan is planning to make several tongue-in-cheek interventions at bus stops (locations tbc) that cast a new context on the would-be passengers. By altering the otherwise uniform, innocuous locations, Egan want to allow people (either knowingly or unwittingly) to participate in novel interactions with their everyday environments and at the same time become an exhibition for all that pass by.

Janet Griffiths presents the further fantasy flying adventures of her alter ego ‘Wendy’ who whilst flying around the Pennines nosedives into a bush. Details of the location of this installation will follow soon.

The Artranspennine Reading Room

Curator: Lewis Biggs

At the back of the Artranspennine98 exhibition guide is a page of ‘Thanks and Acknowledgements’. Signed by the Curators-in-Chief, Lewis Biggs and Robert Hopper, it concludes with the following sentence about Tate, Liverpool and the Henry Moore Institute, Leeds;

"The work of these two organisations over the last decade had provided the solid foundation upon which artranspennine98 has been built, as the first in a series of recurring exhibitions in this unique region."

The Artranspennine98 Reading Room is an installation to be shown at the Artanspennine08 hub space, Manchester, and focuses on the idea of legacy as it runs through the Artranspennine project. The piece consists of a bookshelf on which are placed copies of the Artranspennine98 Exhibition Guide, a 144 page, perfect bound, publication measuring 12.5cm x 15.5cm. There will be a dozen or so copies of the book. The bookshelf is set at a height of around 110cms – roughly eye height for a seated person. In front of the bookshelf are two empty chairs for the visitor to sit on.

The Artranspennine98 exhibition guide is presented as an artefact. We think of this piece as a sculpture rather than an archive, which allows the visitor to reflect upon the development of the exhibition over the ensuing period. The reading room of the title becomes a parody of contemporary museum practice in which reading materials are provided to illuminate the actual exhibition. The redundancy implied in having many more copies of the book than positions to sit and read it reflects the contents of a publication now, for the most part, ten years out of date. However it’s worth noting that a number of the original public projects are still present in the region and the occasional utility of the guide points to larger issues surrounding the continued existence of the Artranspennine concept. Indeed much of the pleasure of flicking through an out of date Exhibition Guide is derived from the chance to make a casual assessment of what has persisted and what has disappeared.

In this sense questions of legacy are foregrounded in the work much in the same way that the entire Artranspennine project has become a mediation, by a diverse and growing group of artists, on the legacy of a project initiated as a collaboration between the north’s two leading Museum spaces. That artranspennine98 has initiated a series of recurring exhibitions as originally intended, although through a mechanism quite different perhaps from that foreseen by the founding curators, is the subject of a work that takes the format of the exhibition, rather than the region in which it occurs, as its organising principle. We are particularly pleased that this work affords us the opportunity to collaborate with Lewis Biggs as project curator, enabling his return to an exhibition concept he co-founded over ten years ago.

Currently installed at Apartment - view by appointment.


Becky Bowley will take the train from Sheffield to Manchester. In Sheffield she will dig a hole and take the earth to the next stop, Grindleford, where she will then dig another hole and fill that hole with the earth from Sheffield, she will then take the earth from Grindleford to Hathersage, where she will then dig another hole, and fill that hole with the earth from Grindleford, and this process will continue along the hope valley line until she reaches Manchester and then goes back to Sheffield to fill the original hole with the earth from Manchester.

Transmerge is a ritual that communicates an artistic desire to merge body and land for creative peaceful purposes without boundaries of ownership. Prehistorically land and rock art may have been used to define boundaries, and ownership of the land to certain ‘tribes’ and to indicate their beliefs and rituals. These boundaries of land and people continue today causing global and personal conflict between individuals. Land and people are separated by differences that can be transformed into a merger of unique parts at peace with each other, which is ritualised in the performance of Transmerge.

The performance will be two days long and take place on the 21st and 22nd of June, Becky will work closely with arts photographer Julian Hughes to document the performance. The photographs will be exhibited alongside a diary of the process and mapping of exchanged earth holes at where details of times, and stops will follow shortly.