Thursday, 18 February 2016

'Drawn Into Tomorrow' by IC-98 at Dundee Contemporary Art!

Too often I see deadlines for exhibitions ending and don't manage to see them, more so down the road in Dundee and Glasgow so I made a special effort to check out the IC-98 show at the DCA along with Lara's show. I've been to the DCA a couple of times but I hadn't seen any exhibitions so time to tick a few boxes and what a show!

If you're not familiar with the work of IC-98 then here's a short over view. "IC-98 (originally Iconoclast, founded in 1998) is Visa Suonpää and Patrik Söderlund. IC-98 projects often take the form of installations or publications, combining research, text, drawing and animation. Their intensely abstracted, identifiable visual language weaves myriad bridges between the material and mythical, individual and collective, nature and culture. The investigations running through the works concern the body politic, social formations and architectural constructions, different ecologies and the presence of human and natural history in everyday life."

When I stepped into the first exhibition space the steward warned it was dark and to watch my step, always a good start! And dark it was. As I took baby steps towards the giant projection of what appeared to be roots underground I noticed the subtle movements on screen, the slight shift and change as the underground visage before me opened up, soon moon lit flowers sprang and then the animation loop began again. IC-98s video work is a combination of hand drawn elemetns mixed with digital collage to form a seamless whole, now I'm looking at a giant tree that seems to be shifting and growing before my eyes, I start to wonder if my mind is playing tricks on me or is this tree is really changing?!

I have to say its quite intense viewing but it was quite fun to engage with, I found it almost became a test of wills with the other viewers who joined me on the benches but eventually my back told me it was time to check out. Outside in the foyer a selection of drawings and cards were displayed from various projects, highlighting the drawing skills masterfully blended into the videos. The big room showed 3 more animations, each creating its own unique world. I found myself staring at a stormy sea for 10 minutes, ever now and then a new ships mast would appear on the horizon but the ship itself never came into view. I started to think about how they created these worlds and managed to merge styles and techniques, no mean feat when you see how beautiful the work is!

After another ten minutes watching the classic facade of a Finish building in the duos home town morph and change over a few centuries I finally got up and left. But it was only as I left the dimly lit room it dawned on me, not only had I travelled from Aberdeen to Dundee but I'd gone through time and space and been taken to the edge of my comfort zone and a little beyond. Powerful stuff! 

Sadly the show is finished now but that's no excuse not to get on a bus and pop down to Dundee for the day as there's tons of exhibitions happening with 'Bonefold' opening this weekend at Wasps Studios and a new show 'PUM' on til next weekend at the DCA.