Chris Meigh-Andrews: Sculpting with Light & Time: Installations & Video, 1978-2014.
Chris Meigh-Andrews has been working with the electronic moving image since the 1970s, exploring the technologies that are connected to its production and presentation. With the advent of many and various new media for the recording and playback of the world around us, there is a potential to explore these technologies and expose their part in the production process in order to obtain a greater understanding of their influence and impact upon us. More often than not new technologies are viewed as precise and exact – sealed systems that are incorruptible. But the ways in which information can be transmitted or transferred across media, and through this process can be corrupted or translated, is something that Chris explores and uncovers.
Works such as ‘A Photographic Truth’, 2001, and ‘Temporal View in Amsterdam (After BB Turner)’, 2003, highlight the changing nature of information across time. Taking as their source material early photographs from the Victorian era, new technologies have been used to manipulate this information and overlay them with scenes of the same location, allowing ‘ghosts’ of the present to inhabit a scene from the past and vice versa.
As well as the transference of information, the transference of energy is also a central focus of much of Chris’ work. Information can be viewed as a form of energy and vice versa, particularly when it is mediated via technologies that employ energy to move it around and display it. For example, ‘Perpetual Motion’, 1993, circulates energy from a fan (that takes its power source from the national grid) to a wind turbine that is used to power a small monitor displaying mediated images of nature on a small high-level monitor.
Other works within the exhibition (such as ‘Xtea’, 2009, which is an homage to the creation of XCoffee – the precursor to the development of the World Wide Web, and ‘Turing Test’, 2010-11, which pays tribute to the death of the mathematician Alan Turing) reference historical moments that have been crucial to technological developments. ‘Turing Test’ also questions the idea of truth and where it can be by presenting different possibilities within a work. The idea of truth is a strand that runs across the exhibition. The passing on of information across times and spaces is something akin to ‘Chinese whispers’ – information is passed on and degrades or is misinterpreted and results in a new truth emerging.
Kaavous Clayton, Curator, Minories Gallery, Colchester, Dec. 2014