TERMINAL FRONTIERS: A Touring Exhibition 2002 – 2005
virtual migrants are touring the exhibition, Terminal Frontiers, to enable audiences to explore and aesthetically engage in dialogues with the subject of asylum and globalisation in the UK, away from media didacticism. Aesthetic development represents a shift forward from the politicised speaking-out dialogues of many emerging movements in the 80s, and responds to far more sophisticated arguments and imperialist relationships as have developed around the turn of this new millennium. The exhibition shows new artworks incorporating digital, interactive and video art forms by Keith Piper, Kuljit ‘Kooj’ Chuhan and Aidan Jolly, together with a diverse range of artists and collaborators, such as Tang Lin, Hafiza Mohamed, Miselo Kunda-Anaku and Jilah Bakshayesh.
Terminal Frontiers launched at Castlefield gallery, Manchester 12 September - 13 October 2002.
Subsequently it was shown at:
The ICA (Institute of Contemporary Arts) New Media Lounge, London 4 - 26 October 2002. Exhibited scaled down for screen-based priority.
The British Council's "A Sense Of Place" international conference, Cardiff 24th - 27th November 2003 http://www.asenseofplace.org.uk/index.php .
Terminal Frontiers has continued to develop opportunities for original and innovative works and virtual migrants is pleased to announce new interactive artwork by Keith Piper entitled ‘(delete where appropriate): Local/Stranger’. This work is a new development to the exhibition and will premiere at the forthcoming dates of the tour, as part of an ongoing series that originated from the piece ‘Stranger’.
continuing to tour in
full scale to:
metaphorical and at times quite poetic" - Robert Clark, The Guardian
Alongside the continuing range of reviews within the arts press (Art Monthly, The Guardian Guide, Artists Newsletter, and Mute among others) there has been coverage of the educational collaborations in papers such as Sec Ed, TES and online at The Guardian, IRR's website amongst others, particularly looking at the debates and meanings of the work when in direct interaction with tough cross-sections of school kids. The regressively poor and eurocentric review in MUTE lends us an unexpected opportunity to deconstruct such liberal readings of the work (even when presented in this radical guise), and we aim to publish such an article in the near future. Having been profiled and reviewed in ,
Further collaborative works have been produced since Glasgow where various additional works were shown at the Document 2 International Festival. VM artists Kooj and Aidan worked at Glasgow's Red Road flats with various refugee people and also other locals, and one of the outcomes was a video documentary entitled "Surviving In Shawbridge" about the daily racist violence received by a teenage music group called "4-D", comprising Iranian, Zimbabwean, Armenian and Sri Lankan members. Completed in just four days, this was shown at the Glasgow UGC as part of Document 2 on the day it was completed. After completing this, a further video production "No Dogs" and some killer music tracks and textural audio interviews have now been completed from the same Glasgow leg of the journey.
In Derby, a video collaboration with local artists seeking asylum "The Road Home" has been produced, along with an interactive multimedia exploration of a future border-segmented Derby entitled "Sector 17" which was created at Duffield Road PRU assisted by local artist Sophie Powell. All of these will be included on the next bumper edition of the artists' DVD for the tour (see below), ONLY available at the gallery during the exhibition. A further collaboration took place between Aidan and Jilah with local avant-garde jazz vibraphone player Corey Mwamba on the opening preview night, when normally Aidan and Jilah play live music as accompaniment to the "What If I'm Not Real" installation. In addition, funded by Decibel for Q Arts, emerging artist Julius Ayodeji was commissioned to create a work in response to Terminal Frontiers and hence his piece "The Times Grow Worthy Of Our Voice" was exhibited alongside the Terminal Frontiers exhibition. virtual migrants also played a key role in looking at political expression by refugee artists at Derby's Long Journey Home event on 20th Nov intended to develop future possibilities and directions for this complex creative sector.
At Watermans there was an additional set of photographs by Miselo Kunda on show, based on the "What If I'm Not Real" installation and especially created for Terminal Frontiers, and this has continued at Plymouth Arts Centre. Kooj and Aidan conducted a series of production-based workshops with female students from West Thames College resulting in the creation of the poetic short film "I Think I Know You", involving snatches of Somali, Kurdish and Seychelles Creole within an extraordinary riverscape view of West London in which three women in search of missing photo fragments find some resolution though a chance befriending with each other.
In Plymouth there will be a shorter but more intensive period of production involving local refugee artists along with other and local people including from migrant and non-migrant backgrounds. These add to the considerable number of works produced already during the tour which have now formed a discrete project in its own right and which collectively draw out a range of real experiences and expressions of people hidden from even the fringes of the mainstream. Most of these are summarised at www.virtualmigrants.com/tfnew.htm and many will be included on the next edition of the artists' DVD for the tour (see below), ONLY available at the gallery during the exhibition.
24 August – 2 October 2004
9 October – 20
20 January – 6
12 March – 23
Further venues also awaiting confirmation, and exhibition enquiries welcome: info[a]virtualmigrants.com