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'Bad Year Blimp'


June 6th - July 6th 2008
Preview Thursday June 5th 6pm-9pm


'Bad Year Blimp' is a presentation of film and video at Alma Enterprises and a series of newly commissioned performative works.

The show includes a special performance by Belgian Fluxus artist Ludo Mich and a weekend inhabitation of the space by Matthew Stone.

The title refers to the ‘Goodyear Blimp’ - the advertising balloon which was based on the design of a First World War Zepplin and utilised as a floating marketing tool. It was also used as a surveillance device in the Second World War and then afterwards returned to advertising tyres.

It’s this switching of identity and its ease of adapting to the political climate that is relevant to the show - the idea of the harmless balloon providing both aid as well as spying on the enemy. The constant weight of the surveillance device overshadowing sporting arenas whilst remaining unchanged in design since its war time use and now a seemingly redundant tool of advertising as it can only shout one word, one logo.

There are comparisons in the neo-repetitions of histories and the overlapping of ideas that merge horrors of conflict and mundanity. Not so much the reactionary conservatism of Colonel Blimp, but still aware of the complex distance between different ages and conscious of ‘Inconvenience’.

Film and Video Works

Suzanne Treister’s film ‘Crossing’ consists of continuous footage shot on Walpurgisnacht at the Hexentanzplatz (witches dancefloor), a high peak above the Harz Mountain town of Thale in Germany. On Walpurgisnacht, an old pagan festival, witches are believed to ride on broomsticks to places of old pagan sacrifices in the Harz Mountains.

Anne-Marie Creamer’s film ‘Meeting The Pied Piper in Brasov’ records a chance encounter of Transylvanian children dancing in traditional dress in the town square of Brasov. The tale of the Pied Piper this is where the spirited-away children emerged and ended their days after being coaxed into the mountain near Hamelin.

Jon Fawcett’s film, ‘Observation Project 04-05’, is a scrolling text describing the observations of several individuals searching the planet for non-physical phenomena. “…On the 21st May 2005, 180 kilometres west of Albuquerque, USA, Mary encountered a sheet form, fragmented at its edges, measuring 16 kilometres across and over 38 kilometres in length…”

Paul Wiersbinski’s film ‘King Nothing’ is a terrifying and hilarious indictment of the pressures put upon artists by their collectors whilst transforming the exhibition space into a rogue safari playground.

Ludo Mich’s film Lysistrata (1976), is a re-imaging of the classic Aristophanes satire. Based in Ancient Greece the story centres on the Athenian women’s anti-war stance by their refusal of sex to their soldier husbands. Ludo Mich’s version uses an all-nude cast with dialogue in Flemish and English.


14th June 5am - 9pm: boyleANDshaw will perform ‘16 Hours with Sister Corita’; a durational performance piece that will encompass film, drawing, painting that reflects and expands on the continually looped 35 minute segment of film ‘On Teaching and Celebration’, by Baylis Glascock.

3rd July 7.30pm: Ludo Mich will be performing a newly commissioned piece based on ‘singularity’. Ludo Mich has been performing and making film since the 1960’s. As part of the Belgian Fluxus movement his work is an important source of inspiration for the new Antwerp art scene.

5th and 6th July: Matthew Stone - The Opposition Aspect

Dilated in time throughout the weekend between the 5th and 6th of July, Matthew Stone will occupy the gallery.

The programme is to include an art salon from 3pm on Saturday and a Sunday Disco at 11am. Stone's performance will be the inhabitation of the space with a stage as an architectural device allowing different situations to take place.

In the end, it will be a re-enactment of what the space states for itself, with the scene it is part of - becoming its own sceneography. The traditional play transforms into a playful experimenting of performing and being, it allows for a broader grasp on the subject of production and reproduction of an event, its results open to chance.

The main concern of this project is to identify and blur the expectations of real, the fictional and the performative event via time displacement, specifically questioning how the interweaving of action and re-enactment can influence the formation and authenticity of a community.

For further information contact Sara Watkins at or 07973 272543


'Crossing' (video still) Suzanne Treister

'Lysistrata' (film still) Ludo Mich

'Meeting The Pied Piper in Brasov' (video still) Anne-Marie Creamer




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