Perfume Disco Coma

Project: Perfume Disco Coma
Location: Runcorn & Widnes
Commissioner: Halton BC & Widnes Waterfront EDZ
Cost: £10,000
Co-Curator: beam
Artists: Jordan Basement
Programme: 6 months
Atoll Service: Public Art Curator and Consultant for Beam on behalf of Halton BC
Project Status: Completed 2008
Exhibitions: Perfume Disco Coma shown at:
Tatton Park Biennial 2010
Purescreen 25 Among the Nightingales 2010

Description: In affiliation with beam, Ian Banks prepared the commissioning strategy for Widnes Waterfront EDZ and the public art strategy for Halton Borough Council generally. Works also involved commissioning initial artist residencies for artist-filmmaker Jordan Baseman who produced a film Perfume Disco Coma. The works were produced alongside artist collective TEA who produced an action-research arts investigation of Widnes waterfront called Brown Fields Blue Skies.

Ian Banks acting on behalf of Beam as curator and public art consultant for Halton Borough Council, created in 2007 the Art in Public Places public art strategy for Halton waterfront and a commissioning strategy for Widnes Waterfront EDZ. A critical first phase of this was to establish a Public Art Steering Group and then commission some initial temporary artist commissions as a precursor to test-the-water for Halton Borough Council as it were.  Following a lenghty selection process, the two eventual commissions were created. Perfume Disco Coma has since been described by Matts Gallery and which “…features (local) librarian Wendy Hindley. We hear Wendy as she reflects on her experience of falling into a coma for six weeks. She speaks of coming close to death and her dramatic and unexpected recovery. Wendy’s voice is accompanied by stroboscopic images of a young woman and musically, by a simple piano melody composed by Baseman. The combination of rhythmic after-image and melody create a striking display”.

Developing on from Art in Public Places strategy was the ultimate commissioning in 2009 of a permanent, iconic public art work called Future Flower by London-based architects and artists Tonkin Liu. The giant galvanised steel flower is 14m tall and 4.5m in diameter. The public artwork was visualised as a precursor to the (then) proposed Mersey Gateway suspension bridge, since completed (formally opened in June 2018).

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Categories: Public Art

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