7 03 2008

We checked out the Juan Muñoz exhibition at the Tate Modern, spread out over 14 rooms.

In room 10 there was a particularly striking sculpture called Many Times. 100 Chinese people were gathered in small groups, all deep in conversation and grinning at something. The viewer is excluded from the conversations and the groups as we don’t know what they are whispering about or what they are grinning at. This was a very meaningful exhibit as this is just what it feels like to be deaf. Invisible and excluded. Not knowing what other people are talking about. So it all becomes rather sinister and you start to feel uneasy.

Many Times, 1999 (detail) Private collection © The Estate of Juan Munoz

I’m really glad I’ve got a Hearing Dog to make me ‘visible’ to hearing people and feel included. It’s so easy for a deaf person to get lost within humanity and to say nothing, and become a nonentity.

FOL’s verdict : PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

Tate multimedia guide with BSL

3 02 2008

(Photo: Tate)

At this month’s Tate tour, we were introduced to the multimedia device which has BSL functionality, with subtitles and BSL signing available on the guide’s screen. The signing was done by various people, some of them my friends, it was so nice to see ‘real’ signing and not the impersonal signing provided by a professional. The subtitles were accurate and timely, and easy to read – a factor people often overlook. Each clip showed people explaining how they felt about each piece of art, bringing art to life. The guide is accompanied by a numbered list of the artworks included, correlating with the listed clips on the guide. This means we now don’t have to wait for a BSL guided tour to take place, we can go in and browse at our own convenience. It means I don’t have to tag along the end of a tour and tire myself out trying to lip read the tour guide, and I can improve my BSL at the same time.

The talk this month was on surrealism and I was really pleased with this as this is an area I had never understood or particularly liked (because, basically, I didn’t understand it!). The signer’s introduction explained the foundations and meanings of surrealism, before going on to comment on a number of paintings and taking comments from the audience. There was a person giving a voice-over, well actually he was providing this for the signer which was unfortunate, as this meant he was facing the signer and not the audience. I had a friend there who doesn’t sign, and she had to come to the front and face the audience, so she could see the speaker’s face. So really, this event could be more accessible for deaf-without-BSL. Then we had a super duper open bar. My friend and I were the last ones to be kicked out by security. Oops.

Tate Britain : JMW Turner

28 01 2008


We went to see the ‘Hockney on Turner watercolours’ exhibition at Tate Britain. This was a rare opportunity to see some of his most spectacular works, 150 of his beautiful watercolours, or so the blurb said.

The following areas are fitted with a hearing loop:

* Auditorium
* Manton Studio
* Information Desks
* In addition, hearing loops are available on most gallery tours.

We cheekily tagged on to the end of a gallery tour (I could lip read the curator) then wandered off to explore the ground floor and Turner’s works. Tate Britain specifially say they welcome Hearing Dogs but I didn’t bring mine today, as I know he hates art galleries – all that attention going to the wrong place!

Overall, we were quite disappointed. Turner’s oils are quite dark, I guess this was the style of his times, but I couldn’t for the life of me see why he is lauded as such a great artist. Sure, he can paint. But so can thousands of others. His watercolours were certainly brighter, more colourful and more pleasing than his dark oils, and I can see how he could have influenced the art of his times through the use of colour and light. A rather creepy part of the exhibition was a plaster cast of the 75 year-old Turner’s face, with his mouth fallen in and sunken eye sockets. The Colour and Line exhibition showed how Turner revolutionised watercolour and print through interactive displays and experiments showing his techniques. This exhibition was very useful in that it showed his influence upon the art world and drilled down to the nitty gritty rather then just showing the end results.

Perhaps this is his true legacy, that he changed art for the better.

FOL verdict : PhotobucketPhotobucket

Thumbs up! Tate introduces hand held palmpilot tours

10 10 2007

Tate is going to introduce a hand held palmpilot tour of selected works from the exhibition displays, entirely in BSL with optional subtitles. This service will be available at Tate Britain, Tate Modern and at Tate Liverpool from December 2007.

They are in the process of filming the BSL sequences at the moment, and one important thing they want to do is to include some film clips showing the views of Tate’s visitors. They would like to invite you to come along to two filming sessions next week in order to be filmed responding in BSL to some of the artworks on the tour. It will be a very enjoyable experience, you will be well looked after with a cheese and wine reception. They are filming at Tate Modern on Friday 15th October from 6.00pm – 8.00pm. They are then filming at Tate Britain on Tuesday 16th October again from 6.00pm – 8.00pm.

You do not need to have any art history knowledge, they just want some genuine responses to the artworks they will be discussing. These responses will then be editied into short “vox pop” sequences on the palmpilot tour.

Please email Marcus if you would like to participate in this filming event:
marcus.dickeyhorley @tate.org. uk

These are the works they will be looking at.

Artworks at Tate Modern:
Mark Rothko The Seagram Murals
Claes Oldenburg Counter with Cheese and Ham

Artworks at Tate Britain:
Reynolds – Three ladies adorning a Herm of hymen
Waterhouse – Lady of Shalott
Epstein – Rock Drill
Bridget Riley – Adapting content of Tate Liverpool Riley work
Gwen Johns Portrait

Tate Britain, Friday 7 September 2007 : silent films

31 08 2007

Late at Tate Britain – Image and Sound 18.00 – 22.00

Iconic British silent films will be shown with live music, dominating the enormous central gallery, and Steve Beresford, Scanner and David Toop perform together for one night only. An ideal event for deaf and hard of hearing people as you can enjoy the films!

Late at Tate Britain is a free event on the first Friday of every month with an eclectic mix of events and a bar in the gallery.

Artprojx Hi Fi presents

An artist film compilation featuring:

Alice Anderson – Alice Anderson’s Journal 2004-2005
David Blandy – The White and Black Minstrel Show
Dexter Dalwood – 1800
Ravi Deepres – Eden
Rineke Dijkstra – Annemiek
Nathalie Djurberg – Florentin
Haris Epaminonda – Light, Tarahi II, Tarahi IIII, Tarahi V
Pamela Golden – Love & Hysteria
Jesper Just – It Will All End In Tears
Idris Khan – A Memory… After Bach’s Cello Suites
Joshua Mosely – Beyrouth
Michael Nyman – Moscow 11.19.31
Terry Smith – Overture
Emily Wardill – Basking in what feels like ‘an ocean of grace’, I soon
realise that I’m not looking at it, but rather that I AM it, recognising

Films selected by David Gryn – Artprojx

BSL interpreted tour at the Tate Modern

1 02 2007

BSL interpreted tours are given at the Tate Modern every month and these are a great way to learn about different artists as well as meeting old friends and networking within the deaf community.

I went to see an exhibition recently, The Unilever Series by Carsten Holler, which was a series of huge slides. The artist wondered what effect sliding would have on our daily routine, and could it become part of our daily lives? We could try this out for ourselves by sliding down the slides on a mat, some were better than others as they started from different floors and had different gradients. We landed at the bottom in a heap with a fit of giggles. Certainly enjoyable, especially as our group had an open bar, hehehe – perfect! Of course, as usual, I was the last one to be kicked out, with a goodie bag, hip hip. My greedy friend had three!