Flat Time House – Screening (John Latham and various)
Flat Time House Institute (FTHo) was initiated in 2008 in the house that John Latham (1921-2006) occupied until his death, the site of his decade long experiment with the idea of Flat Time. FTHo, led by curator, Claire Louise Staunton, commissions on-going artistic projects that come out of the Artists Placement Group tradition (itself an interesting experiment in the temporality of the commission and the artist as an ‘incidental person’), hosts an archive, artists’ residencies and an alternative education programme run by artist and educator John Hill.
For PARSE, FTHo presents a screening programme pairing moving image works from contemporary artists with films by John Latham, using his Time-Base Theory as a curatorial device. The selected works perform the various bands of Latham’s time-based spectrum – from Least Event (quantum) to the frequency of human perception, to human reproduction, to cosmos.
The screening of contemporary short film and video works, as well as a short presentation is an attempt to re-read Latham’s cosmology through the lens of contemporary art and theory to provide a renewed relevance.
For Latham, science and language worked on the assumption that space and object are primary and fundamental building blocks of the universe. Latham’s Time-Base Theory, on the other hand, assumes that time and event are primary, with objects existing as traces of events. Phenomena, matter and things from the smallest to the most epic are derivative of repeated events (or loops) of varying intensity. Latham’s Event Structure, is a spatial configuration of the Time-Base Theory as a spectrum along a horizontal axis represents the smallest possible Least Event represented as Band 1 (or A) of which its duration and impact is quantum, and the universe as event at Band 36 (or U). Between these two extremes, the spectrum allows for all cosmological, geological or spiritual phenomena, all physical, emotional or psychological states within the same system.
Claire Louise Staunton is Director/Curator at Flat Time House and at Inheritance Projects (London, UK). She will be taking up the position of Research Curator at MK Gallery, Milton Keynes in November 2015 where she will lead public programmes and research activities on New Town urban planning, communities and art in partnership with the Open University. She is a PhD research candidate in Curating Contemporary Art at Royal College of Art.
John Hill is Education Officer at Flat Time House where he runs the MFI Graduate programme. He maintains an independent writing and curatorial practice, as well as an artistic practice as part of the London based collective LuckyPDF. He has recently become a Graduate Researcher at Liverpool John Moores University contributing to the Uses of Art group, a partner of L’Internationale.