In the present moment of political turmoil, Latham’s axiom And what can we say to be to be going on now…? can be read with a note of exasperation, frustration but also close analysis. The phrase acts as a bridge to a previous political moment in the mid 1980’s, when Latham had just moved to 210 Bellenden Road, now ‘Flat Time I–Io’, and throughout which he was engaged in correspondence with the Arts Council of England (sometimes expressed by Latham as an arm of ‘United Kingdom Corporation’) over their lack of recognition and refusal to seriously consider his Time-Based ideas. Alongside this correspondence the exhibition presents documentation of Latham’s work Distress over Parliament. A direct response to his personal frustrations with the Arts Council, this action was a largely overlooked public performance in which Latham shot two maritime flares over the House of Parliament on Mayday 1983.
Also presented is Latham’s video work, The Gulf from the Dadarama video series produced by Anna Ridley for Channel 4 in 1985; Latham’s textual contributions to the radical publication, AND: Journal of Art and Art Education; and several book ‘intercourses’, sculptural studies by Latham; all alongside Flat Time House’s permanent display of John Latham's work which provides an introduction to his cosmological theory.
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