Jerwood Staging Series 2019 – Common Positions curated by Seán Elder

14 Sep 2019


Jerwood Arts, 171 Union Street , London

Birmingham-based curator Seán Elder brings together moving-image and object-based artworks that depict and support moments of communal imagination, action, rest and thought. These will be temporally installed in the gallery spaces to drop in and out of during the day.

Aberdeen-based artist Kirsty Russell presents a new sculptural installation, providing opportunities for listening, reading, and spending time together. This is accompanied by a film programme comprising ‘Desires Will Leave The House And Take To The Streets’ (1998) and films from the London Community Video Archive.

Shot by Margit Czenki, ‘Desires Will Leave The House And Take To The Streets’ depicts a community’s struggle against the privatisation of public space while capturing their desires and collective visions for a new park in St Pauli, Hamburg. Their campaign successfully halted the selling of land to private investors and resulted in the establishment of Park Fiction, a space for and shared by the neighbourhood, collectively designed by local residents.

‘The Battle for Powis Square’ (1974) and ‘All You Need’s An Excuse’ (1972), from the London Community Video Archive, depict communities in need of spaces for gathering, play and protest, incorporating a diversity of voices within the materiality of the films themselves.

Film Running Order

2pm: Desires Will Leave The House And Take To The Streets

3.05pm: The Battle for Powis Square

3.30pm: All You Need’s An Excuse

3.45pm: Desires Will Leave The House And Take To The Streets

5pm: The Battle for Powis Square

5.20pm: All You Need’s An Excuse

Find out more about the programme for the day, here.

Seán Elder is a curator based in Birmingham whose research is concerned with queer relations acting within curatorial practices. They are currently undertaking a PhD and developing a research-based programme with Grand Union. In 2018 they curated Inherited Premises, a two person show by Rami George and Tako Taal which featured newly commissioned work by the artists, and as part of Grand Union curatorial team programmed Ways of Learning with Lucy Lopez in its first iteration. They have undertaken developed independent projects and writing with organisations including Cooper Gallery, Dundee, Peacock Visual Arts, Aberdeen, LUX Scotland and LUX Moving Image.

Kirsty Russell is an artist based in Aberdeen. Her work is concerned with support, care and maintenance. With reference to the women in her family who work in positions of care, she often returns to the physical and emotional weight of the work that they do and to the repetitive nature of maintenance. Her work expands into places of care, such as hospitals and schools, through project worker and other supporting roles. She is currently taking part in Syllabus IV.


With thanks to:

Christoph Schäfer & Margit Czenki
London Community Video Archive


This is free to attend. Booking is required via Eventbrite.

Kirsty Russell, Comfort Weight, 2018. Image courtesy the artist.