Hinterlands | Uma Breakdown

Archive Shelf Location BALTIC2022M
Publication Date 27 Oct 2022

Take The Moonlight by The Tail (2021), is a digital story about mourning and the uncertainty that big emotions can bring. It is also a story about carrying a person that you love, from the highest point of Gateshead where the artist lives, over the River Tyne and up to the castle in Newcastle. The work offers a journey that takes you through a landscape of complex swamps, sheer cliffs, unreliable simulations/memories, and a roaming commune of dead souls.

The work was made for arebyte gallery’s Open Screen 2021, which supported artists with disabilities to make digital art around the theme of science fiction. Breakdown was interested in the overlaps between the Russian novelist Gogol’s speech-based writing form of ‘skaz’, the environmental storytelling of video games, the quasi-narrative conveyed witha game’s 'user interfaces', and the saturation of (conflicting) information in Iain M. Banks’ 'Culture' books. The resulting work tells a story about the distortions of reality when going through grief.

The work invites audiences to have a creative role indistinguishable from that of the artist, raising questions about how narratives are shaped and played out and the possibilities for building futures within the digital space. Breakdown creates works that use the language and mechanisms of video games and tabletop role-playing games, seeing in these a reflection of the approach to literature taken by writers such as Kathy Acker and Hélène Cixous. They are interested in the narrative form for the ways in which it can be active and unstable, conveying affect, imagery, and most importantly, invite audiences to speculate.

Format MPEG 4
Related Artist Uma Breakdown
Category Group Exhibition/Multiple Artists
Keywords BALTIC Level 3: Art Space, Ecosystems, Landscapes, Care, Mythology, Folklore, more than human relationships, Time, speculative landscapes, Gaming, Science Fiction
Related Cities/Regions North East (of England), Gateshead
Related Event Hinterlands (22 October 2022 – 30 April 2023)
Related Gallery BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art

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