Collective is delighted to present a new immersive installation by Satellites Programme participant Becky Šik. Central to the exhibition is Mercury, a hypnotic moving image work that integrates an enveloping soundscape produced using instruments and sound machines of the artist’s own making.
In Mercury the voice-over was developed through cutting-up and collaging the text, prioritising rhythm and resonance over linearity. This unfolding narration presents twinned stories of an amateur and a hobbyist. Echoing but distinct. The amateur, a satellite tracker working from a cabin, listens to space, seeking to identify lost technologies-zombie satellites-orbiting high above us. The hobbyist, a teenager, in the liminal space of adolescence, is depicted alone on a canal bank magnet-fishing, dredging up fragments of past lives. Through these fragmentary portraits, Becky explores the philosophic and conceptual resonance of their occupations and peripheral spaces, in how we frame our lives, our truths through our relationships to information.
These narratives interlace with other visual, sonic, literary motifs within the work. All are concerned with that which sits just beyond a human’s everyday perception, where invisible forces become tangible. Bats use echolocation to navigate; solar winds interfere with radio communications; whirring magnets excite and resonate bass strings; a Theremin allows us to articulate music from magnetic fields.
Concepts of ‘Echo’ are central to this work, as metaphor and audio effect; as locating device and editing strategy. The echo works here in similar but distinct ways to repetition. Echo as something that is recalled - that recurs and repeats - but in slightly altered forms. This builds an immersive layering in Mercury where the rich and contrasting textures of moving image and sound echo through the work; creating a series of calls and responses, surfaces and reflections.
Becky Sik’s practice is rooted in sculpture, but has expanded over recent years producing an integrated dialogue between object, moving image and sound. Becky’s commitment to, and distinct pleasure in, the materiality and process of production are evident in the generous orchestration of elements which envelop the viewer and carry them away on eddies of sound, narrative and visual immersion.
Becky Šik is an artist based in Glasgow. whose practice moves between film, sculpture, sound , music and publishing. Recent projects include, Sharing a View, group exhibition, Luxun Academy of Fine Arts, Shenyang, China; Creative Lab residency with Sarah Forrest, CCA Glasgow; Next Top Model, group show, Govan Project Space; Fiducial Marker, solo exhibition, Project Rooms Glasgow; Human Machine Interface, group show at Hilbertraum Gallery, Berlin; A thought Becomes an Announcement solo exhibition, QPRC, Glasgow. Becky is part of the ongoing collaborative project Made by ME.
Satellites Programme is Collective’s development programme for emergent practitioners based in Scotland. Satellites aims to support diverse practitioners to produce a new commission and a critical development programme of critical of retreats, workshops, studio visits and group discussions, public exhibitions, events and publishing. Practitioners are selected from an open submission by a new panel each year. The 2020-21 participants are Alison Scott, Kirsty Hendry, Sulaïman Majali, Holly McLean and Becky Šik.