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Tapescape Catford | The Intervention I 

Intervention exploring the politics of the videocassette in a disused Blockbuster video store in Catford, closed following looting during London riots.

Film by Kai Clear

From March 2012  |  3 weeks

​Using art installations, soundscapes, spoken word, discussions, talks, screenings, and dance,  Tapescape Catford | The Intervention I took over a disused blockbuster videostore, ransacked during the 2011 London riots.  The intervention questioned the impact video has made on all our lives, how it affected our behaviour and the huge environmental cost of our short lived innovations    We held a 'video amnesty' allowing London borough of Lewisham residents to donate old videocassettes and see them returned to the shelves before being completely recycled to re-emerge as something new.  The amnesty resulted in 2,000 videocassettes being returned and Lewisham council rolling out videocassette recycling to all 265,000 borough households for the first time.​


Artworks and installations by Nathan Harmer, Terry Duffy, Rimini Protocol, Paul Halliday, Jonathan Pigram and Fae Harmer.


Live performances included, film director Hugh Stoddart and Julian Jacobson discussing music in film, Roanna Mitchell's Jane Fonda provocation around women's body image. Work that explored London riots included, Sculpture, Alex Fitch, 'Riot Act' performance by Tom Bresolin and Alexis Milne, Kai Clear's Cassettiquette, Exploding Cinema, Isabel White poet in residence, GJ Genne (from Japan) and Flipside youth film festival. To read accompanying blog posts click here.


Curator’s Note

There was no attempt to curate the space; artists were challenged to take command of their work, exposing them slightly.   Somewhat unnerved by the free reign allowed the event to mutated in ways no one could have predicted and drew in local people, young and old, of all backgrounds to enquire of the odd goings on taking place in their old video store.  The conversations grew and interest in all aspects of videocassette began from the tape itself to how it changed the way moving image is perceived.  A one day symposium was convened by Goldsmiths, University of London.  John McKiernan

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