4 Apr 2008 – 4 May 2008

Monika Bobinska

London, United Kingdom


Travel Information

  • 67, 76, 149, 242, 243, 394
  • Haggerston

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The exhibition explores the notion of changing aesthetics, through drawing, text, sound, video and painting.

Using source material from strands of popular culture from the past which have become absorbed into the fabric of contemporary life, James Brooks' practice consciously reworks their original associations of romanticism, melodrama, ornamentation, heroism and psychedelia into a more austere sensibility.

His interest in the strategies of process and durational art making informs the numerous ways in which Brooks 'translates' the nostalgic sound and visual information from sources such as popular music, stage and screen.

Brooks manually converts the component parts of this poignant iconic material to media such as morse code, international phonetic alphabet, halftone drawing, monochrome paint or a half-speed musical tempo. He uses these interventions - the altering or draining away of specific aesthetics - to draw attention to the individual aura and sensibility of the absent original.

He adopts the ostensibly absurd position of being the manual translator of the respective image, recording or text so as to encourage the notion of the human as a living, breathing presence within these self-imposed structures.

Stimulated by a reappraisal of the writings of Auge, Kittler and Lyotard, the work attempts to analyse further the loss of the (analogue) individual with the handing over of key functions to computer and digital processing : the work subtly calls into question society's apparent drift towards 'efficiency' and standardisation.


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