Saturday, 29 May 2010

'Rothko in a thunderstorm on acid': Margaret Sharrow at Brighton for UNRAVEL: the longest hand painted film in Britain

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Some of Margaret Sharrow's work for UNRAVEL, copyright Margaret Sharrow and UNRAVEL, 2010


'Like Rothko in a thunderstorm on acid!' A certain hat-wearing scribbler on celluloid was heard describing her work thus... now who could that be?


On 4 December I participated in a workshop for UNRAVEL: the longest hand painted film in Britain, held at the Brighton Museum and Gallery. Recent Royal College of Art graduates Maria Anastassiou and Chris Paul Daniels, along with Kelvin Brown (audio meister from Manchester) were enthusiastically drawing in members of the public to draw on their film. Children and adults alike were persuaded: 'You don't need to know what you're doing! Just give it a go!' And they did, all day long. Thanks to Deutsche Bank funding, the project is being toured all over Britain, and aims to produce a film that echoes the distance from Land's End to John O'Groats - each metre of the distance between those two places will be represented by one frame of film.Without doing all the maths, it works out to well over sixteen hours of film, to be screened at venues TBA next year. In the meantime they're looking to add venues and dates, and I was happy to oblige with some contacts in Wales...


The best part of the day was the screening at the end. It was electrifying to see two dimensional work transformed into the vibrancy of 4D. Mine was particularly explosive as I'd managed to paint over the soundtrack area at the edge of the film, hence my assessment of it as 'Rothko in a thunderstorm on acid'... though I thought the best work was done by a child not more than five, who evolved a totally different way of working to the rest of us.


Check the UNRAVEL blog for upcoming dates and venues.


Below: an example of work by members of the Brighton public (installation view)

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