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Carl GiffneyPhoebe Dick  | Helen Sharp | Walker & Walker | Ruth Le Gear


Walker and Walker, Artist in Residence 2012/13

Residency Exhibition: 'In the air'

Portfolio of previous work:


Artist Statement: Walker and Walker are two brothers who have been working together since 1989. They have recently completed a film Mount Analogue Revisited, which was listed by Fergus Daly as one of the best films of 2010 in a world poll by Senses of Cinema. The film is a reworking of Rene Daumal’s book ‘Mount Analogue’ which was Daumal’s final work and remained uncompleted due to the author’s premature death. The book is an unfinished account of a voyage to an unknown island, where the voyagers seek an improbable mountain which is seen as a means to link Heaven and Earth. Central to this book and the inception of the voyage is a text about a symbolic mountain which was written by one of the protagonists but was challenged by another as being factually based.

Walker and Walker take as a starting point for their film a short passage from the book, where the crew arrive at the shores of an island and are escorted in silence to a municipal building and asked by an official to give an account of who they are and the purpose of their visit. Within the confines of this meeting, Walker and Walker fabricate a conversation between three of the crew members and the official. They speak of the difficulties involved in making a journey to a superior world other to our own, where the truth cannot not exist, given the limits of reason and rationality. The events play out though pure dialogue within a single room and this serves to ground the fantastical nature of the film. Although the film holds true to the book, it is not a literal adaptation, for the conversation that ensues references a broad number of writers, such as Novalis, Stanislaw Lem, Edger Allen Poe, Maurice Blanchot, Hermann Hess, William James. All of whom serve to inform a proposition for the pursuit of the crew’s objectives, a more utopian society. The ending remains unresolved as the viewer is left unaware if the voyagers arrival at this place is instigated by the inhabitants of the island or by their own efforts. It is an adventurous philosophical tale, encompassing poetic passages, leading to a spiritual quest, bordering on science fiction.

They also recently completed a new body of new work which addressed both the concerns of the film and the two adjoining spaces, in which the film and the work were presented; a black box and a white cube; suggestive of day and night, or lucidity and obscurity. Within this binary structure, Walker and Walker introduced a third element at play, a consideration of the notion of a threshold space; which brings together the before and after in a becoming, instead of separating them.

Mounted on the gallery wall, a series of prepositions and conjunctives; ‘if’, ‘or’, ‘do’, ‘is’, and ‘to’ were hung where the center of each of these words, was cut out in sheet aluminum, opening out the possibility of an understanding of these words, creating a small circular narrative in the space between the two letters; if only this had happened as opposed to that, to take action or not, to go here or there.

Other works shown were One Night Only a neon sign of the same text, which goes on for the exact duration of one night only during the course of the exhibition. Echoing the crew awaiting the appropriate circumstances to enable them to enter the shores of Mount Analogue, a taxidermy owl ‘The Owl of Minerva spreads its wings with the falling of the dusk‘ sat perched high above. Clearly it will never fly but as the title declares, it awaits the a certain moment when the conditions are right, creating an enduring interval in the moment itself.

Biography: Joe Walker and Pat Walker are twin brothers who first began collaborating as Walker and Walker in 1989. They co-represented Ireland at the 51st International Venice Biennale in 2005 with their film installation Nightfall. Group shows include Super 8 at Christopher Grimes Gallery in LA; Northern Lights at Galleria Civica di Modena, Italy; The dissolution of time and space at Kunstverein Ludwigsburg, Germany; Presence at Gimpel fils gallery in London; Time’s Arrow in the Rotunda Gallery New York; ‘Til I Die, at the Spencer Brown- stone Gallery New York; How Things Turn Out at the Irish Museum of Modern Art; Are we there yet? Glassbox Paris; Propositions Locks Gallery Philadelphia USA; Utopias Douglas Hyde Gallery, Dublin and (In)Consistency Arthur R. Rose Gallery, London as well as solo shows at Sheppard Fine Arts Gallery, Reno, USA; Floating IP in Manchester UK and the RHA Gallery in Dublin. They have received several Arts Council of Ireland Awards and are represented in several public and private art collections. Their film Mount Analogue Revisited was listed by Fergus Daly in Senses of Cinema world poll as one of the best films of 2010.