In response to ongoing COVID-19 developments, we have made the decision to postpone the Jerwood/FVU Awards 2020: Hindsight exhibition which was due to open on 3 April 2020.
The gallery at Jerwood Arts will remain closed until further notice.
Guy Oliver and Reman Sadani are the recipients of the Jerwood/FVU Awards 2020. Responding to the theme of Hindsight, each artist explores the power of reflection through the prism of artists’ film, and how moving-image can move us back and forwards through time, assisting recollection, engendering nostalgia, and enhancing collective wisdom. The 2020 edition of the Jerwood/FVU Awards offers an increased budget of £25,000 for each of the two commissioned moving image artworks.
You Know Nothing of My Work
Forthcoming in 2020, Guy Oliver’s project is a multi-chapter rumination on the cultural dilemma of the disgraced popular icon. Considering how collective, systematic failure led to cases of abuse from powerful figures in the cultural scene, this work proposes a conflict between the enjoyment of and respect for their creative work and what we now know (or at times failed to recognise) about their behaviour. Can we erase the existence of abusive yet influential figureheads, or should we acknowledge and discuss their actions alongside their work? Through a piece that uses elements of film musical and music video traditions within the form of an experimental essay, Oliver takes the pulse of society’s reaction to this fast-evolving and contentious subject.
Some time after a mysterious weather event caused a cloud of sand from a faraway desert to settle over an unnamed city, this miasma of dust shows no sign of lifting. Clogging up the eyes and choking off the horizon, it has become a fact of everyday life. In a nondescript apartment somewhere in the city, a woman convenes a gathering at which a group of young people are present. Like every young generation, they are a repository of hope for the future – albeit a future that seems equally murky and obscured. In Reman Sadani’s film ‘Walkout 1’, the assembled young people are also the involuntary subjects of a prophecy, passed down from an elder who was seized by an apparition of a youthful cohort walking ever-upwards towards the clearing sky. To pave the way for the realisation of that vision, the protagonists, following the lead of their female instructor, move large quantities of sand into mounds and slopes – each repeated ritual action steadily re-affirming the instructor’s indefatigable faith; each exhortation for greater effort after the latest attempt comes to nothing slowly spreading doubt amongst the group.
Part physical theatre, part workshop polemic, Sadani’s film dramatises the emotions and tensions of what comes to be recognised as an unmistakably pivotal moment, where power is broken down, and allegiances start to shift. It is an ambiguity deftly encapsulated in the project’s title: rather than actors preparing to walk out onto stage after the curtain has lifted, we end up witnessing a show of dissent, a collective rejection of a preordained script; less a demonstration (as in an illustration or a rehearsal) than a demonstration (as in a protest and a refusal).
The artists were selected by Irene Aristizábal, Head of Curatorial and Public Practice, BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art and Co-curator British Art Show 9 (2020); Steven Bode, Director, FVU; Harriet Cooper, Head of Visual Arts, Jerwood Arts; Shezad Dawood, artist.
The Jerwood/FVU Awards are a major annual opportunity for moving-image artists run in partnership by Jerwood Arts and FVU. They were established in 2012 in response to a need for significant major commissions for early-career moving-image artists at an unproven stage in their practice, and contribute to an ongoing dialogue around urgent or timely concerns within moving image through the curatorial theme which changes with each edition.