'Two characters – The Follower and The Followed – explore Russia Dock Woodland one night through to sunrise.'
This film contains some adult content
Dream Season, Part One (2016) was inspired by Russia Dock Woodland, a public park in Rotherhithe in the London Borough of Southwark,which is relatively unknown. The park has been formed out of a former dock basin and is unusual for the forest-like planting it contains, which gives it an atmosphere of being in the countryside despite its proximity to the City of London on one side and Canary Wharf on the other.
The work explores this spatial paradox in episodes that move the two main characters through the range of spaces provided by the park and the housing that border it. The work is filmed on an iPhone, bringing to mind films such as Tangerine (2015) by Sean S. Baker and highlighting the role that smartphones play in how we relate to the city through experiences such as cruising. The effects of these developments are to shift the relationship between the figure and the landscape in Walter’s fiction and to emphasise the opulence of the costumes that his character’s wear as signifiers of melancholy.
Dream Season, Part One (2016) demonstrates several developments that have occurred in Walter’s work over the past five years, which are encapsulated in the artist’s conversation with longstanding collaborator Jamie Quantrill, whom he last worked with on EPITOME (2011).Conversations between Walter and Quantrill in preparation for shooting the video focused on the increased importance of linear narrative, of removing animation and post-production and prioritising pre-production elements such as location. The video builds on new possibilities for Walter’s work that grew out of Alien Sex Club (2015). It is the first of Walter’s videos to feature actors rather than the artist himself.
Artists Jamie Bradley and Joshua Way play the roles, allowing Walter to develop his role as director, costumier and prop-maker. The onesies that that characters wear are covered in trimmings that are hand-sewn by the artist. Several props and costume elements were acquired during a recent trip to Japan.
You have been travelling for four sunrises. Your flask is nearly empty and there are just scraps of dried fruit left in your pack. Your feet drag over ruptured chunks of tarmac and uneven paving slabs, through which tough and resourceful plants push their heads. Deserted grey buildings are your companions, their broken glass eyes lifeless under the midday sun. Your head hangs low with tiredness and heat.
You stop. Through a buckled gate you see the unusual sight of a flickering electric sign hanging from a post in the middle of a long stone courtyard. You clamber through the twisted metal turnstile to investigate. The sign points to an open doorway, through which you see a host of electric lights blinking in a pale rainbow of colour. You enter. The room is bare apart from the lights and a descending spiral staircase. Two doors lead off to the left and right of the room but they are locked shut. Through the small glass windows in their surface you can see only darkness beyond. The room is cool, a welcome respite from the searing weather outside. You decide to follow the stairs downwards. Wide stone steps cause your footsteps to echo upward. You hold the cool metal banister, its black turned surface guiding your descent. Debris litters the less trodden parts of the steps, scraps of fabric and browned paper nesting amongst piles of dust that have gathered in corners where the stone meets the flaking painted walls. You soon find yourself on a narrow landing. Doors to your left and right have been sealed up with scraps of wooden board. In front of you is a large metal door, onto which are scratched the letters ‘H R’. You gently push the door. It swings violently inward at your touch, causing you stumble through. The door closes again before you are able to regain your balance. You spin round and try it but it will not open. There is no visible lock or handle and the door is far too thick and sturdy to break open. You sigh with resignation. It is time to explore your new surroundings.
You are stood in a dimly lit reception area. The walls are black and covered in chalk glyphs. There is a set of double doors ahead of you. To your left is a market stall, bedecked with hundreds of hand-painted wooden necklaces. Each necklace features a symbol consisting of two circles, one on top of the other. The upper circle features a skull-like robotic face, the lower a pair of staring eyes. On top of the stall sits a small, brightly-coloured robot, surrounded by a cluster of electric candles. You step forward to look more closely at the robot.
“Welcome to Happy Redoubt, friend!” The robot turns to look directly at you. Lights flicker across its face as it speaks. “Please rest a while here in the marketplace. You can do jobs and earn currency. You can spend the currency on things you like. You can rest and do jobs. Please enter the market place. Be productive. Earn currency. We are watching. Welcome friend.” The robot gestures towards the doors ahead of you, its arms and head twitching constantly as it does so.
“Have been here before? You seem familiar. Each visit is different. The options are endless. Welcome.”
Restless traveller seeking adventure, knowledge, and happiness.
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Torridon Croft was born into a life of privilege and quickly developed an insatiable appetite for destruction. It is said that great power demands great responsibility ñ not for young Torridon. Last rumoured to be peddling the Dagger of Xian around Kensington's least reputable antiques dealers. The world turns on Torridon's wretched axis.
Follow nine players as they navigate their way through Happy Redoubt, a post disaster marketplace run by the remnants of the former technological age. They will be entering their moves in real time and will receive bespoke responses from Juneau Projects. Their game will form a unique story as they navigate the marketplace, using arts and crafts skills to survive in a new economy of making and creativity.
Three players will begin, followed by subsequent rounds of three players at a time, each making their own journey. The game will run from 19th May to 22nd July.