An art installation based on the ‘Stephen Lawrence’ murder case looks to challenge audiences 20 years on through sound.
[re]locate is a sound installation by London-based artist Tahera Aziz, responding to the tragic events surrounding the racially motivated murder of the black teenager Stephen Lawrence near a bus stop in southeast London in 1993.
Taking the notion of the daily routine of waiting at the bus stop as its starting point, the artwork explores the disruption of the everyday to foreground the murder once again, highlighting detailed elements that have particular resonance. The work examines the processes involved with struggling to preserve the memory of the case, which has had a deep impact in public life, whilst offering new insights.
Utilising transcripts from the Stephen Lawrence Inquiry report to build up a picture of what happened, Aziz worked with a group of actors to develop the dialogue, a field-recording artist and sound engineer to experiment with simultaneous multi-channel recording and audio compositional techniques, and a computer programmer to introduce elements of responsiveness into sonic environment.
Motivated by a desire to explore the potential of sound and documentary practices to re- examine events associated with the Lawrence case, Aziz has developed this thought- provoking and poignant installation in which the audience is encouraged to generate their own mental images of events. This unique approach offers a mechanism for deepening audience engagement with the complex and multi-layered narratives associated with the murder. Twenty years on, [re]locate compels the audience to reconsider evolving definitions of contemporary urban experience.
[re]locate has been produced with funding from the Arts Council of England and the Arts and Humanities Research Council (research and development), in partnership with London South Bank University and PVA MediaLab.
Tahera Aziz has had a longstanding creative and political interest in identity, migration and racism. Over years she has produced photo-based and installation work that explores how wider socio-political issues or events can impact on the individual to shape their experiences, and their sense of self and belonging.
The artwork was previewed at 198 Contemporary Arts and Learning (London), and has been exhibited at Axis Arts Centre (formerly Alsager Arts Centre), East Street Arts’ Union 105 (Leeds), New Art Exchange (Nottingham), and the Santorini Biennale of Arts.
Exhibition Dates: 19 April – 12 May 2013
Private View: Thursday 18 April, 6-9pm
[re]locate: Talks and Events
Developed with curator Alexa Jeanne Kusber to further engage with topics and issues surrounding the case.
Wednesday 24 April – 6.30pm On Screen – Artist’s Choice Tahera Aziz selects a film for screening that resonates with contemporary urban experience and issues raised by the artwork and the Lawrence case.
Friday 26 April – 6pm to 8pm Meet the Artist – South London Arts Map, Last Fridays Tahera Aziz will be welcoming visitors to the exhibition.
Wednesday 1 May — 6.30pm Artist In Conversation: Expanding the Documentary Form Outside the Field of Vision
Wednesday 8 May — 6.30pm Panel Discussion: Artistic Practices – Utilising the Substance of Real Life
‘never [to] take the tedious task of waiting for a bus for granted.’