Wednesday 11 May 2011

Spacemen of the Free World

Roving shutterbug Kitty Keen was recovered sufficiently from her recent encounter with a UFO in the Cotswolds to capture these images of my recent lecture at the Institute of Contemporary Arts in London. ‘Living In Space’ was part of Strange Attractor Salon, a series of talks organized to accompany Nathaniel Mellors’ Ourhouse exhibition which managed successfully to weather the recent royal wedding celebrations, despite the ICA’s close proximity to Buck House. Tickets for the talk were completely sold out; and it was an absolute pleasure to address such an enthusiastic and responsive audience. Even better was the last-minute addition of Leila Sayal to the line-up, magically transforming The Asterism into electro-bohemian pop duo Indigo Octagon, making its first ever public appearance.

Those familiar with the opening and closing themes which Indigo Octagon created for Hollingsville last year will recall how beautifully Leila’s Theremin playing blended in with Mark Pilkington’s freeform analogue shimmer. The background ambience they created for my lecture was pretty much worth the price of admission alone. I could have read out the label from a can of dolphin-friendly tuna to what they were playing, and it would still have sounded classy. A recording was made of the event, and no doubt something will surface in due course. Readers of my blog will, of course, be among the last to know. In the meantime, Life magazine has posted some revealing pictures of Alan Shephard’s space hop, which was partially the inspiration for this talk.

Pictured above: Mark grapples with Misty; Leila at the Theremin; the full effect; KH on the outer fringes of  space – courtesy of the talented Miss Keen

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