Saturday, January 13, 2007

Matt Stokes 'Lost In The Rhthym" Temple Bar Gallery, Dublin

Matt Stokes - Lost in the Rhythm

Preview: Tuesday, January 16th , 6-8pm
With Old Skool DJ Colm Connolly on decks 7pm until late
Exhibition continues until February 24 th 2007
Temple Bar Gallery and Studios' first exhibition of the New Year is a solo show by British artist Matt Stokes, recipient of Beck's Futures 2006. Lost in the Rhythm , Stoke's first exhibition in Ireland , opens at Temple Bar Gallery and Studios on January 17 th and continues until February 24 th 2007.

Matt Stokes' practice is marked by anthropological enquiry and his abiding interest in how social events and informal movements bind people together. Music subcultures have been central to the development of his recent projects, which focus on music's propensity to influence and affect the way people live. Research plays an essential role in Stokes' work, as he actively engages with his immediate surroundings and explores participatory elements.

This distinct approach has partly evolved from Real Arcadia , an ongoing project begun in 2003 during a residency in the Lake District , documenting a series of illegal “cave raves” held in the area in the early 1990's. Stokes has archived and interpreted the clandestine experience of those who attended these parties, amassing paraphernalia associated with the now defunct acid house organisation “Out House Promotions”, some of which will be re-contextualised for the gallery exhibition. With assistance from an eclectic network of participants, Stokes' project aims to push the perception of rave culture beyond the prevailing media hype to probe the real impact of its lost ideals on the survivors.

In addition to Real Arcadia at Temple Bar Gallery and Studios, Stokes presents Long After Tonight (2005); this outstanding film contributed significantly to Stokes being awarded Beck's Futures 2006 . Stokes recreates the magic of the Northern Soul scene on Super 16mm film by uniting original “soulies” inside a Scottish Episcopalian church in Dundee, parts which were used during the 1970's for some of the city's first “Northern” nights. The camera work is carefully choreographed to match the pounding beats, flitting from the sweat drenched bodies and trances of the dancers to the surrounding religious imagery. By staging the event in the unique gilded interior of the church nave, Stokes creates a connection between the location and activity, as expressions of faith, commitment and shared purpose.

Matt Stokes has exhibited widely in the UK and beyond, most recently with a solo show at Collective Gallery ( Edinburgh ), group shows at Witte de With ( Rotterdam , Netherlands ), East international 06 ( Norwich ) and was the winner of Beck's Futures 2006 . He lives and works in Newcastle upon Tyne , UK .

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