I really like the Time Is Away instagram account. They manage to write about music in a way that makes it feel special without it being un-inclusive and give it a context that it rarely gets (unless you are David Toop). They are presenting a project at Black Tower – a gallery and project space for artists in South London.
They have created a project approaching environments and tensions of London using found audio, specially made recordings, texts, images and more. They can explain this far better than I so here the information follows on the project and associated events. There will be a closing party with Danny Bushis & Xvarr playing live and DJ support from Time Is Away and Bruits De La Passion. Information follows...
Time is Away: Fable of the Bees proposes a suggestive municipal environment, activated by sound, to invoke the ghosts of urban improvement.
The title, taken from Bernard Mandeville’s provocative celebration of the public benefits of private interests, resonates with London’s central role in entangled histories of global nance capitalism, colonialism, urban planning and speculative development. Each part of this story is underpinned by value-laden ideas of urban improvement, which have shaped what the built environment looks like, how it is used and who it is for.
Fable of the Bees is conceived as a loose dialogue between three centuries’ of ‘spatial specialists’, including architects, planners, speculators, financial stakeholders and government, and counter narratives of persistence, resistance, resourcefulness and ad-hoc building. At its heart are the tensions between visions of the city as prospected, mapped, surveyed, costed and sold, and other versions pieced together from disparate evidence of diverse lived experiences. By harnessing found audio, specially made recordings, texts, images and objects, this project restores to view multiple versions of London.
Time is Away are London-based duo Jack Rollo and Elaine Tierney. Over six years as residents on NTS Radio, they have used spoken word, field recordings and music as part of their ongoing reflection on the relationship between time, place, power, identity and history-making. Their approach is open-ended, associative, polyphonic and, in places, deliberately opaque, producing a distinctive sonic atmosphere in which to ruminate.
Fable of the Bees runs from 1st February until March 14th and is open Thursday to Saturday from 12-6pm or by appointment. This project has been generously supported by Arts Council England and the Exhibitions Hub in the Department of Art at Goldsmiths.
Saturday 1st February, 6–9pm: Opening
Saturday 22nd February, 4–6pm: ‘Resisting Improvement’ Reading Group, led by Jack Rollo and Elaine Tierney. Participants will reflect on the construction of ideas about urban improvement in the past, explore how this informs thinking about cities in the present and collectively identify ways of doing things differently in the future.
Contact [email protected] for readings.
Monday 24th February, 3–4pm: ‘Time is Away: Fable of the Bees’ broadcast on NTS Radio. Listen live.
Saturday 14th March, 6–9pm: Join us for the Exhibition Closing when music and food activates a utopian moment in South East London. Contributions from Bushis, Gyeongsu and Rahim (Bruits de la Passion), Time is Away and Xvarr.
All events are free and open to everyone.