Reading The Riots
You may have read reports about the two major riots in Stokes Croft, Central Bristol UK in April 21/28 2011. I have lived and worked in this area for over a decade. In 2009, the new Museum of Bristol commissioned and acquired the large painted
relief sculpture, Reading the Riot (Act). a permanent work acquired for their new contemporary art collections.This commission is on view in the M-Shed Museum of Bristol which is now confirmed to open 17 June 2011.
In 2007, I subverted the Bristol Museum and Art Gallery collections and displays in scenes during the filming of The Two Coins: Meditations on Trade; Due to the films critical success, I was approached to create an uncompromising and
challenging piece regarding the long history of dissent within the city, which in retrospect , since the riots in Stokes Croft, Bristol and democracy protests internationally, Reading the Riot (Act) currently seems strangely prophetic.
For Reading the Riot (Act), I chose to subvertise the museum and subvert historical record. Utilising a large discarded gambling table from a former burnt out local Chinese Restaurant, I used detail from images taken from the Bristol 1831 riots
illustrating the poor protesting for the right to vote nationwide – cut down by the sabre armed horseman after Reading the Riot Act for all to disperse. Directly opposite, with the identical action of the armed horseman, an overseer whips the enslaved- taken from an abolitionist image during the same year. Surrounded by the West African proverb, “If you choose to dance with a crocodile, you must be prepared for when the music stops”.
The resonance with our current socio-political and financial state of affairs is given its most fitting memorial, as a spinning record.
Reading the Riot (Act) is on view in the Museum of Bristol
Saint Stephen’s Reconciliation Art Foundation
On Friday 20th May, the introduction and first fundraising event towards the Saint Stephen’s Reconciliation Art Foundation with a visionary keynote address and piano performance/voice of incredibly resonant virtuosity by Paul Gladstone Reid MBE set the precedence for the broader intention of the Foundation. The foundation is a direct continuation of the Saint Stephens Church’s commitment in its support of the vital function that visual art creates for society and community healing, exemplified by the overwhelming national and international critical success of its first Artist In Residence program and commission the Reconciliation Reredos.
Saint Stephen’s Reconciliation Art Foundation
Apart from coming to the end of my tenure as Artist in Residence, I am involved in the formulation of the Saint Stephen’s Reconciliation Art Foundation which aims to support high quality International and UK artist residencies for emerging visual artists, continuing work and discourse on social reconciliation through the arts by raising £60K in over two years for programming of high profile public works. The foundation is a direct continuation of the Saint Stephens Church’s commitment in its support of the vital function that visual art creates for society, exemplified by the overwhelming national and international critical success of its first AIR program and commission the Reconciliation Reredos. www.saint-stephens.com/2011/01/bristol-reconciliation-reredos-revealed/
An introduction to the Saint Stephen’s Reconciliation Art Foundation and the first of its fundraising events is on Friday 20th May with keynote address and piano performance by Paul Gladstone Reid MBE.
Paul Gladstone Reid is a versatile award winning composer, musician and producer. His work and experience cover a plethora of genres from classical, opera, gospel, ballet, rock, pop, hip hop, jazz, world music, film, theatre and television. He is renowned for creating cross-cultural works of art and has collaborated extensively with such artists and filmmakers as Academy Award winning director, Danny Boyle, artist and filmmaker, Isaac Julien, actors, including Sir Ben Kingsley and Sir Ian McKellen with The Royal Shakespeare Company and award-winning playwright, Kwame Kwei-Amarh among an extensive array of others.
Please take the opportunity to examine this extraordinary artist and cultural visionary. SAVE THE DATE, RSVP! Experience this remarkable event, keynote speaker and performance. Saint Stephen’s Church. Friday 20th May 2011
Reredos Artist in Conversation and Performance
St. Stephen’s Church, Bristol
22 January 2011 1pm- 4pm Free Entry
‘The Art of Reconciliation’ : conversation, reflection and resolution – with Artist in Residence Graeme Mortimer Evelyn at Saint Stephen’s. The unveiling of strong and icon-like work at the altar opens issues of power and inspiration, abuse and reconciliation. The work entitled Bristol Reconciliation Reredos are large-scale hand carved relief and painted altar-piece panels, which responds to Saint Stephen’s Church’s past links with the slave trade and our future together, which demands our attention in the contemporary.
Please come and join artist Graeme Mortimer Evelyn in conversation with curator Kat Anderson about this very unique public art commission for St. Stephen’s Church. The event will also feature a special performance by sound and performance artist Juan Gabriel Gutierrez. The event is free but space is limited so please book. Please contact:email@example.com
The Bristol Reconciliation Reredos will be open to the public from the 21 January 2011. Check link below for latest news updates and description of the Reconciliation Reredos Altarpiece unveiling weekend www.saint-stephens.com/2011/01/bristol-reconciliation-reredos-revealed/