Public Address is a series of site specific sound installations, first produced during an artist residency at Hayward Gallery. Subverting the way in which PA systems broadcast instructions and notifications to the public, revealing the invisible mechanisms which govern the individual’s behaviour in the public sphere.
For my The Current Situation solo exhibition I created my third series of announcements which broadcast over the existing tannoy system in the galleries. These were titled ‘Where are you originally from? Answer: Britain.’ I wanted visitors to reflect on the reductive process that may take place when we consider one another’s cultural heritage. Observing ways in which stereotypes are created when we reduce the complexity of a nation, it’s history, it’s identity and the diversity of its people, to a series of simplistic references to do with the food, the weather or what the women look like etc. The work is a series of fictional statements which flipped the lens around to explore how a non-native might reference ‘Britishness’, if we, the audience, were to say ‘Britain’ as the answer to their question, ‘Where are you originally from?’
“Women from the Midlands are so exotic”
During an artist residency at The Hayward Gallery the first edition was created and aired at the Royal Festival Hall, London. This edition explored informal knowledge exchange and was titled ‘How to Avoid Someone you Know on the Bus’.
Example questions broadcast on the existing tannoy system:
“Dose anybody know how to believe in Government?”
“Does anybody know how to stop comparing yourself to old school friends?”
“Does anybody know how to stop being friends with someone you no longer have anything in common with?”
The second edition created responded to the context of being an artist at an Art fair, and was announced during JustMad Art Fair, Miami in 2013.
Example announcements include:
“If you’re an artist, and you’re not exhibiting work here, its OK. You’re not a failure. Tell yourself art fairs are too commercial and you’d rather be in a museum show anyway.”
“Stop comparing yourself to other people.”
“Remember, this is probably the worst moment to show your portfolio to a gallerist, even if they look friendly and available, they’re not here to meet you”