An audio/visual presentation which outlines four recent projects by Nigel Helyer. “Big Bell Beta”, “Semi-Automatic Writing”, “An UnRequited Space” and “La Zonu del Silencio”.
This paper discusses the conceptual and pragmatic developments of a ‘pluri-discipline’ which combines sitespecific sculptural installation, performance and live radio broadcast in a synthesis of Hybrid Cultural Forms. This enquiry enters the paradoxical zone between our experience of Materiality and Virtuality with a critique which initially addresses the sonic domain from a Sculptor’s perspective. Here the emphasis is on the experiential and phenomenological nature of sound and ‘sound-events’ are indexically linked to the material, dynamic systems which generate them, as well as to the architectures and environments which contain and propagate them. These concepts are subsequently developed as multi-site works which critique and manifest the enigma of describing tangible (phenomenal events) via the organs of transmission (an enigma which has become the central feature of the paradoxical logic that we ‘accept’ on a daily basis, eg. Radio/TV!!!). My interest as an artist is to explore this ‘suspension of disbelief’ with research which inverts and parallels this enigma by pursuing the
definition and manifestation of various forms of cultural ‘silence’ (not the “Silence” of John Cage). Within the works discussed silence has both a physiological and metaphorical weight – the silence (silencing) created by political and economic processes lies in concert with the qualitative silence(s) of physical locations, or the incommensurability which exists between
languages (cultural silences). In contra-distinction to the accepted role of the broadcast media – to turn the tangible into ethereal signs, my intention is to materialise those interstitial spaces which are overlooked or resistant to definition.
- Nigel Helyer Born in 1951 in Hampshire, UK, 1883 arrived in Australia.1974 B.A., Liverpool College of Fine Art, 1979 M.A., Royal College of Art. Since 1979 solo and group exhibitions throughout the world. Performances, sound texts and commissions on radio, symposia and exhibitions. Critique and essays in several publications.