William Hunt

Crossing Borders 2013 | Talk Description | 12 November 2013


Curator Ali MacGilp and artist William Hunt will discuss the relationship between the body, sculpture, choreography and performance art, taking Hunt’s practice as a point of departure.

William Hunt puts his body in extreme situations. He attempts to communicate with the audience through song, his voice under intense physical duress. Often uncomfortable to watch, his works can be absurd and humorous or deeply painful and tragic. Romantic and bathetic by turn, he takes on the forces of gravity, making the human body seem suddenly very frail. Borrowing from the visual vocabulary of Beckettian drama and slapstick, he is sentenced to continue his routine until the point of exhaustion, in a self-created hell. The audience is moved and chastened. A metaphor for the human condition has been played out. He pits his endurance against both the limitations of his lungs and physical barriers. The obstacles he constructs for his own trial by fire are sculptures configured from domestic and industrial objects. He tests himself and his collaborators using idiosyncratic arrangements from his private lexicon of materials: cars, boats, ladders, pulleys, buckets, bins, climbing rope, oil drums, paint, water, marine flares, musical instruments. In his performances, Hunt creates striking scenes of the body in extremis with the familiar sound of the human voice, struggling to sing out, an age-old means of transmuting suffering.

The talk will be proceeded by a short performance by artist Adrian Lee. Please pay close attention for your safety and comfort.

It takes place in conjunction with Fort-Da at Siobhan Davies Studios.

With thanks to Arts Council England National Lottery, the Farook Foundation and Siobhan Davies Commissioning Fund.

http://www.siobhandavies.com/studios/events/current/fort-da.html

Biography

William Hunt puts his body in extreme situations. Often uncomfortable to watch, his works can be absurd and humorous or deeply painful and tragic. Romantic and bathetic by turn, he takes on the forces of gravity, making the human body seem suddenly very frail. The obstacles he constructs for the trial by fire for himself and his collaborators are sculptures configured from domestic and industrial objects. He is presenting A Mobile - Paranalia for five dancers; an exercise in suspension, co-operation and obstruction at Siobhan Davies Studios on 29 November as part of Fort-Da.