This year's commissioned artists are James Richards, Evan Ifekoya, Sophio Medoidze, and Susie Green & Simon Bayliss. Each artist has been selected because of the sensibility they bring to creating work for the specific context of the cinema. Together they constitute a diverse range of current moving image and contemporary art practice.
James Richards experiments with bringing still images to life via digital animation and the classic documentary trope of the Ken Burns effect, which tracks across and zooms into archive images, his work ruminates on the relationship between the body and technology. For Projections Commissions 2019, Richards has created Uncontrollable Universe, which centres on the immersive potential of the cinema auditorium and the position of the viewer within it.
Evan Ifekoya's current work investigates the possibility of an erotic and poetic occupation focused the radical potential of spectacle. Contoured Thoughts by Ifekoya is a meditation on desire, recovery and the rituals of communion that takes the viewer to another realm where time all but stands still. In this new work for the 2019 Projections Commissions programme the artist offers a moment to share the intimate, the erotic and the otherworldly.
Sophio Medoidze's Xitana (ხითანა) was filmed in the isolated mountainous region of Tusheti in North East Georgia, where life remained largely unchanged since medieval times until last summer, when the Georgian government introduced free wifi access. Medoidze was born in the USSR, brought up in the Republic of Georgia and now lives in London. She works with film, writing, photography and sculpture.
Susie Green & Simon Bayliss collaborate as Splash Addict, an ongoing performance, music and video collaboration. In Big Talk for the Projections Commissions 2019 they undertake a colour-saturated journey driven by a new dance track written by Green and Bayliss. Big Talk is a humorous yet sincere reflection on human relationships, personal expression and how we come together to watch, speak and act. Susie Green is the recipient of the 2019 Projections NE Commission.
The new films will launch at a special event in Newcastle on Friday 22 February 2019, after which they will be screened in front of selected features at Tyneside Cinema and partner cinemas across the UK.
"What can a cinema make possible, and what might the cinema of the future look like? These are questions that artists can help us answer, and that’s what Projections is all about."