Outside the Box
An exhibition of new video works by
Paul Holmes
June 19 - July 3, 2015

Opening June 19, 6 p.m
Saturday, July 4, 2015
An interactive discussion with the artist
Time: 5.30 pm - 7 pm

Looking forward to your active participation.

Manas Acharya

Studio 21
17L, Dover Terrace, Kolkata 700 019, Tel:2486 6735

Paul Holmes (b.1966) spent two decades as a director, making dozens of hours of programmes for the BBC and the other major British TV channels, and films that were distributed around the world in festivals, on DVD and on television. In 2012 he redirected his practice towards visual art.

By manipulating the duration and rhythm of the moving image, his work exposes structures of movement and meaning that are unseen in standard time frames.  He uses still images, film, graphics and sound to transform our understanding of modes of expression and viewing, and of narrative and performance.

Paul Holmes also teaches at the School of Arts and Creative Industries, Edinburgh Napier University.

Outside the Box
An exhibition of new video work by Paul Holmes. 

This solo exhibition for Studio 21 gallery, Kolkata contains four video works developed over the last three years:

Outside the Box, the exhibition’s eponymous work, is a study of the facial ticks and tells of guitarist Haftor Medbøe's Scandinavian jazz band as they navigate the half-rehearsed landscape of a jazz set. Over the course of an hour's performance, the unflinching gaze of the camera gives a tantalising glimpse of the agonies and triumphs of creative inspiration.  

True to the long-standing relationship between performance and video art, two of the works involve Paul Holmes himself as the model.  In “Time Machine”, a high speed camera is trained on the artist's face as he subjects it to the most punishing of facial workouts.  The result is a study of facial movement in super-slow-motion and a commentary on our desire to slow the process of ageing. He also features in “These Measures are for Your Protection”, a film that responds to the function of stress positions in history and the role of the photobooth in contemporary society.  It uses editing and sound to create a form of static choreography in which the artist is confined by the cell-like space of the booth that is capturing his image. 

Inspired by the pe-eminence of text in contemporary communications, the final film, “The Persistence of Vision” tells its story direct from the script in a text-ticker rather than through images and action.  This post-cinema format couples with the script's preoccupations with speaking and looking to raise issues of the self, the other and language. 

Paul Holmes said of the exhibition: “I am thrilled to be showing this work, some of it for the first time, at Studio 21 in Kolkata.  I have been a regular visitor to the city for several years and have always been impressed by the vibrant cultural scene here.”

Paul Holmes has published an artist’s book, “Outside the Box”, to coincide with the exhibition.  It contains a new essay by critic Louise Milne, written passages by composer and band-leader Haftor Medbøe, and discussions between the artist and psychologist Rory Maclean about the work’s research implications.  It will be available for sale from Studio 21 gallery.

Paul is grateful for the support of the ICCR, Rabindra Bharati University and the British Council during his stay in India.

UPDATE:  Opening night, Friday 19th June 2015.  The exhibition was inaugurated by British Deputy High Commissioner Scott Furssedonn-Wood (pictured below top).  He said in his speech that "We are lucky to be able to welcome to Kolkata a British artist like Paul Holmes whose innovative work makes us see things in a different light, and changes the way we think about the world around us."

Pictures courtesy of Studio 21 curator Manas Acharya.