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Dan Auluk is an artist-curator living and working in Birmingham, UK.

 

Auluk's arts practice is interested in the making of art activity (as medium) and the experiences shared through experimental collaborative approaches. The art activity includes experimenting with text, spoken word, sound, video, performance, participation and intervention, manifesting as live art collaborative performances that invite audiences to take part. This live art attempts to blur the boundaries betweeen artist, curator and audience, exploring alternate ways of activating spaces and audiences and destablizing the conventions we are used to, when experiencing art in an exhibition context.

Nobody talks.

 

This was a space for collaborative making, for research and reflection. It was not a space for talking; other forms of communication had to be explored and developed or discarded. Things have happened in this space, things that have gone unseen and unspoken. Now it is time to look and think.

 

Still nobody talks.

 

Each artist brought work into the space, and new works developed alongside and in-between. A tangling and branching out of ideas enabled a merging and transforming to take place – this is research, and it feels dangerous. Dan Auluk, creator/curator, envisaged that this way of working could allow these artists to use making as a form of non-verbal communication, that

the doing could become the dialogue, and that silence could become its own form of conversation. Are we looking at the future? A world without spoken words?

 

Still nobody talks.

 

Sarah Fortes-Mayer is the first artist to be encountered. She offers her hands; her gentle touch a silent communication. She whispers found words into your ear, and then retreats slowly. She will not be drawn into conversation; her job here is done. You are left with the found text, the only remnant of the coupling. It doesn’t make any sense, and you venture

forward.

 

Daniel Hopkins is heard before he is seen, producing highly experimentalsoundscapes that act as an intense backdrop to the event. The music is anxious and dark; penetrating sounds produced by playing guitar with saw and hammer, and anything else to hand, the sounds distorted and brutally projected into the darkness.

 

Alongside this Ana Rutter has sent postcards from the States; minute-long sound postcards with no words behind the pictures. There are no words.

 

Alex Billingham sits, wrapped in a silver foil blanket, looking at the postcards. It is a futile exercise, since Billingham is blindfolded and unable to see. Perhaps he imagines what the words would say…but there are no words, and he cannot know that. He is a fragile and vulnerable figure amongst the moving obstacles in this space, but he continues his tentative

exploration of the room, relying on the help of strangers to avoid harm. His is a reduced world, senses deprived and human contact hard to engage. It is surely a warning.

 

Still nobody talks.

 

A pop-up laboratory setting sees Ian Andrews working furiously. With a considered and scientific approach, he translates the sounds in the room, recording his responses to the activity by drawing. An epic visual soundtrack remains; the frantic and fractured nature of the event captured in linear form. A screen flickers constantly in the background, seemingly

instructions from another world.

 

The audience is invited to join Sally Bailey in collaging over a 50m long painting, adding new voices into the picture space. There are no rules here, just mess, stickiness, and play. Not everyone is comfortable with this freedom and some back away. Her typed text fragments litter the collage and the floor. These are lost words. Lost conversations that never

began.

 

Jen der Fenda parades around the perimeter – her boxing-ring art exhibit/ion gender-fuck character bringing much needed glamour into the chaos and confusion. In gold hot-pants and scrumpled paper nipple covers, she carries her whiteboard aloft, conveying unspoken messages to the audience. She pauses often to swish her silken ponytail; her static poses

acting as full-stops in this performed conversation.

 

The most poignant exhibit is by Jamie Cox. Four small blurry polaroid photographs show his late father; depicting intimate moments that can never be repeated but will always be remembered. Nearby are four postcards made in response to the images by Dan Auluk, to accompany the photos, the typed text alluding to the possibility of a screenplay of the still images. A film that will never be filmed.

 

Vicky Roden quietly repairs the inevitable damage in this violent arena. Deftly stitching, quietly snipping, she asks for nothing in return. Remaking that which has been un/made, she mothers the motherless simian poppets. It is comforting to watch.

 

Still nobody talks.

 

For those willing to be initiated, Collective Unconscious offers a den of pleasure – the private room is intimate and warm, with sweet treats and sex toys laid out for selection. A written contract is drawn up, three interactions agreed and performed; experienced, but never discussed.

 

And in the furthest corner Oscar Cass-Darweish has installed a tiny camera that mostly goes unnoticed. The camera records a minute-long video, and replays it backwards on a website link, each minute erasing the previous minute, all context of time and place is lost. There are no words.

 

 

 

There are no more words.

 

We don’t talk anymore.

Review of We don't talk anymore (opening event) by Sally Bailey

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