Blood Sport – Live at Cafe Oto video

On 5th May Blood Sport released their latest LP, Live at Cafe Oto which, as the name suggests, is a live recording of a 40 minute set they did as part of their residency at Cafe Oto.

To coincide with its release Blood Sport asked me to create a one-take video. The video below shows track two from the LP, Melts Into.

The full 40 minute video will be made available at a later date. In the meantime you should buy their LP. They will be performing alongside Heavy Lifting at Supersonic Festival on June 16th.

Blood Sport - Live at Cafe Oto

Copyright as Frame and Prison video

CREATe have put the video from the Copyright as Frame and Prison panel discussion online.

Using the works within the exhibition as a starting point, a panel featuring artists and copyright experts will discuss how emerging technologies are shaping creative processes, how (perceptions of) copyright enable and inhibit those technologically-enabled processes and the appropriateness of appropriation.

The panel featured exhibiting artists Andrea Wallace & Ronan Deazley (Display at Your Own Risk), Duncan Poulton (Pygmalion), alongside myself, and Dr Shane Burke (lecturer in Law at Cardiff University).

May thanks to the audience for attending and for such great questions, and to CREATe for filming it.

No Copyright Infringement Intended continues at Phoenix until 21st May.

No Copyright Infringement Intended Curator’s Tour, 11th May

On 11th May I’ll be conducting a curator’s tour of the No Copyright Exhibition currently on at Phoenix in Leicester

Join No Copyright Infringement Intended curator Antonio Roberts for a guided tour of the exhibition, followed by a chance to ask questions about the show. The tour will be preceded by a short presentation called Ctrl + C, looking at the one-way system of cultural appropriation by corporations.

The tour is free to attend. No booking necessary.

There will be two tours on the day taking place from 13:00 – 14:00 and 18:00 – 19:00. This will be a great chance to ask questions about the works and curatorial decisions. See you there!

Elephant Magazine – Copyright as Medium

Issue 30 of Elephant Magazine was released in early March and, in a similar vein to issue 27, focuses on copyright:

CREATOR: gd-jpeg v1.0 (using IJG JPEG v62), quality = 82

The first copyright law, made in the eighteenth century, granted artists the exclusive right to control the copying of their original creations for 14 years. Too brief a period? Perhaps, but by the beginning of the twenty-first century, copyright’s term had grown to cover the life of the artist plus 70 years – which means that Picasso’s Les Demoiselles d’Avigon will remain protected until 2043, 136 years after it was completed. Too long, surely?

In this issue we look at the twentieth-century phenomenon of “copyright creep” and its implications for artists working in the Digital Age.

The issue features an article from Dr Shane Burke titled Copyright as Medium. In the article he talks to several artists, including myself about copyright the use of copyright as a theme and driving force behind the creation of artworks. He pays particular attention to the “Blurred Lines” sonification piece I made the Common Property exhibition at Jerwood Space in 2016.

“The piece is effective only as long as it pushes the boundaries of what is acceptable. As the laws change I would need to change the work to reflect this. Overall for it to be effective it needs to do the opposite of what is permitted by law. It is only by doing this, and highlighting how, quite frankly, stupid these laws are that I can hope to bring about change.”

Asked how he feels about the fact that copyright law may impact directly on the form of this works, Roberts averred: “I’m happy about it but it also confuses me. I’m annoyed by the fact that a change in law can physically alter the state of an artwork (e.g. if I were ordered to censor/cover up offending parts of the work) or change how it’s perceived. At the same time, if in doing this it can help to start a discussion around copyright laws then I’m happy to be a part of it.” When asked if he considered copyright law as an artistic raw material in terms of his work, he replied: “Yes, as long as law can physically alter the appearance of an artwork then law is something tangible that can be manipulated and worked with.”

Go read the whole article on their website and buy the latest issue of Elephant Magazine for more.

Copyright as Frame and Prison: A Public Discussion, 28th April

On 28th April from 18:30 to 20:30 there will be panel discussion, Copyright as Frame and Prison, to coincide with the No Copyright Infringement Intended exhibition currently on at Phoenix in Leicester.

Alongside our exhibition No Copyright Infringement Intended, this discussion will highlight the disruptive power of technological innovation on culture and copyright.

Using the works within the exhibition as a starting point, a panel featuring artists and copyright experts will discuss how emerging technologies are shaping creative processes, how (perceptions of) copyright enable and inhibit those technologically-enabled processes and the appropriateness of appropriation.

The panel discussion will feature exhibiting artists Andrea Wallace & Ronan Deazley (Display at Your Own Risk), Duncan Poulton (Pygmalion), alongside myself (I curated this whole shindig), and Dr Shane Burke (lecturer in Law at Cardiff University).

This event is free. Tickets available here.

No Copyright Infringement Intended opening, 7th April

April 7th saw No Copyright Infringement Intended open its doors to the public. The exhibition, taking place from 7th April to 21st May, features work by 10 national and international artists, each exploring the relationship between copyright and culture in the digital age, investigating how the concept of ownership and authorship is evolving and coming into conflict with outdated copyright and intellectual property laws.

(photos below by Pamela Raith)

No Copyright Infringement Intended

No Copyright Infringement Intended

No Copyright Infringement Intended

It was really encouraging to see a large number of attendees, each with lots of questions about the ways in which the works challenge copyright and how it relates to their own practice or interests. Copyright is a sometimes complex issue and so I’m glad people didn’t shy away from learning more about it 🙂

No Copyright Infringement Intended

No Copyright Infringement Intended

No Copyright Infringement Intended

No Copyright Infringement Intended

My thanks go out to Chris Tyrer at Phoenix for the invite to curate this exhibition, Gino Attwood and the rest of the team at Phoenix for their help installing the works, and, of course, the artists – Nick Briz, Emilie Gervais, Nicolas Maigret, Christopher Meerdo, Jan Nikolai Nelles & Nora Al-Badri, Duncan Poulton, Fernando Sosa, Andrea Wallace & Ronan Deazley – for agreeing to be part of this exhibtion. I couldn’t be happier with it!

There will be two events during the exhibition: a panel discussion about the themes of the exhibition and a curator’s tour. More information on these will follow.

There’s plenty more photos from the opening night and installation photos available on my Flickr stream. If you take any please let me know and/or tag them with #nocopyrightintended.

There are plenty of printed programmes available (designed by the awesome Kerry Leslie) which is a work of art in itself. Message me if you want one. It’s also available online for your viewing pleasure:

The exhibition continues until 21st May at Phoenix. It will then go on to Vivid Projects in September.

Ways of Something at Flatpack Festival, 9th April

Flatpack Festival, in association with Vivid Projects, will be presenting the first UK screening of all four episodes of Ways of Something on 9th April from 12:15 pm – 2:30 pm at The Victoria.

Lorna Mills, features 114 net-based artists reinterpreting John Berger’s original Ways of Seeing, leaving only the original script and voice-over in tact. The resulting piece features animation, 3D rendering, gifs, film remix and webcam performance.

I’ll be there wearing my Vivid Projects Curator hat and will be doing a short introduction to the screening (I contributed to episode two). It’s also worth checking out the screening of the original Ways of Seeing that will be happening a day earlier on 8th April. In fact, just check out the whole of Flatpack Festival ’cause it’s awesome.

Imperica – Copyright, Culture, and Creativity

Imperica recently released the first issue of its digital magazine. I’m happy to have contributed an article called Copyright, Culture, and Creativity. The article focuses on how large commercial corporations appropriate and exploit internet cultures and aesthetics.

Beginning to understand copyright on even a basic level can be a career in itself and take years of study. Just as no users of technology read the terms of service, no artist spends their time studying the Statute of Anne in order to understand Copyright. And why should they? We’re in the business of creating art, not law.

It is this naeivtiy and lack of understanding which corporations, with their teams of copyright lawyers, can exploit in order to push the boundaries of what is acceptable. Artists, which includes anyone creating anything (yes, even a tweet is your work of art), do not have the luxury of being able to call upon the advice of expensive legal teams every time they create an artwork.

One such example of this exploitation is Left Shark. This high profile case centers around a meme born out of Katy Perry’s performance at the 2015 Superbowl. The performance featured Perry performing with dancers in costumes, including two sharks positioned either side of her. Viewers noticed that the shark on the left appeared out of sync with the other one, appearing even slightly drunk. The internet loved this and quickly Left Shark was born, with the memes appearing almost immediately.

It’s a good article to read to gain a greater understanding of the concepts behind No Copyright Infringement Intended.

The magazine also features some great articles and essays from Philip Ellis, Catherine Young, Ana Mendes, and more (they’re also looking for contributions for issue two. It’s available to buy now for £/$/€2.

No Copyright Infringement Intended, 7th April – 21st May

I’m happy to announce that I’ll be curating the No Copyright Infringement Intended exhibition at the Cube Gallery at Phoenix, Leicester, taking place from 7th April – 21st May.

Image: Still Not Sure if Art or Copyright Infringement by Emilie Gervais

No Copyright Infringement Intended is a group exhibition exploring the relationship between copyright and culture in the digital age, investigating how the concept of ownership and authorship is evolving and coming into conflict with outdated copyright and intellectual property laws.

Since the 1990s the internet has provided the opportunity for mass copying, redistribution and remixing of content – profoundly changing the way culture is produced and shared and sparking legal battles and debates that still rage on. Today, the increasing availability of technologies like 3D scanning and 3D printing have extended the ability to digitally copy and reproduce to the physical realm.

For many people now, mass sharing, copying and remixing seems like a natural form of self expression. Rather than embracing this change and using it to their advantage, rights holders and lawyers often resort to reinforcing outdated laws – penalising those who copy – and placing barriers on technology’s ability to share information and content freely.

Meanwhile, among artists there is widespread misunderstanding of copyright and how it affects their work. The phrase “No Copyright Infringement Intended” is often used as an attempt to avoid repercussions of copyright infringement. The phrase has no legal standing, but its widespread usage shows a lack of awareness of existing laws and the consequences of breaking them.

Featuring 10 national and international artists working across a range of creative practices, the exhibition highlights the ongoing tension between production and copyright, considers the new artistic, social and political possibilities created through this tension and suggests new ways forward for artists, rights holders and the wider creative community.

The exhibition features work by Nick Briz, Emilie Gervais, Nicolas Maigret, Christopher Meerdo, Jan Nikolai Nelles & Nora Al-Badri, Duncan Poulton, Fernando Sosa, Andrea Wallace & Ronan Deazley.

In addition to the awesome exhibited works there will be a panel discussion and curator’s tour. More information on those to follow.

Many thanks to Phoenix/Chris Tyrer for inviting me to curate this exhibition and Arts Council England for their support 💯

Black Hole Club 2017 launch, 3rd March

Black Hole Club officially returns on March 3rd with a takeover of Digbeth first Friday’s event at Vivid Projects. The night will feature the work of members both new and existing.

The Black Hole Club returns with a night of experimental new work in progress featuring performance, video, slides and assemblages. Focusing on the world around us, the works explore brutalism and taxonomies of the city ; ritual assemblage and incantations; states of mind; narratives of water and the body … and a golden glitter bath.

Featuring: Pete Ashton, Alex Billingham, David Checkley, Elizabeth Cuffley, Ferric Lux, Patrick Goodall, Barry Griffiths, Jaime Jackson, Sian Macfarlane, David Poole, Kate Spence and Sarah Walden.

I’ve been running Black Hole Club since 2015 and have organised events for it including I Am A Strange Loop, a Dirty Video Mixer workshop, a visit to Interact Labs at Phoenix in Leicester, various Crit Clubs, and more!

There’s still time to join this year. Contact antonio@vividprojects.org.uk for more information.