Interview - Robert Orchardson

  • The List
  • 28 February 2008
Robert Orchardson

David Pollock talks to the artist whose sculptural works frame the films of Sarah Tripp and The Magic Lantern at the CCA’s new exhibition

David Pollock What form does your work take?

Robert Orchardson Effectively, it’s sculpture, it’s three-dimensional work. But it also sits between sculpture and the references which play out within each piece. Certainly for this exhibition the works are also functional in the sense that they interrelate with other parts of the show; they’re pieces of furniture too, and architectural interventions. I can use a moment from a film or an architectural detail to inform a piece, and these are chosen randomly.

DP In what way?

RO There’s a series of wooden screens I’ve made which take stills from the stargate sequence at the end of Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey, a very trippy, hallucinogenic, fast-moving animation. So it uses the language of traditional furniture-making alongside this modern design – someone described it as being like a Bridget Riley piece conceived by arts and crafts carpenters. It creates a paradox between these two idealisms, the futurist and the traditional, although I prefer to think of it as a tension.

DP Which pieces have you created for this show?

RO I’ve made large aluminium screens which were derived from various different areas, primarily the work of an architect named Bruno Taut. He wrote a book called Alpine Architecture in 1917, which was a utopian proposal for a series of crystalline buildings to be built across the top of the Alps. The technology just wasn’t there to create these, but I’m interested in the way people borrow these ideas to create something new. Of course, I’ve also been influenced by the films being shown here, although they aren’t a collaboration. I’ve designed the forms they’ll be projected onto and the seating around them, so again there’ll be a tension there which adds a more tangible element to the experience of watching video art.

Let Me Show You Some Things, CCA, Glasgow, until Sat 29 Mar.

Let Me Show You Some Things

  • 4 stars

Sculptural installation and videotheque pieces by Glasgow sculptor Robert Orchardson, all designed around writer and inter-disciplinary artist Sarah Tripp's short film 'Let Me Show You Some Things', which will be screened on the installation.

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