“Tantalum Memorial” is a series of telephony based memorials to the people who have died in the “Coltan Wars”. The installation is constructed out of electromagnetic Strowger switches – the basis of the first automatic telephone exchange invented in 1888. The title of the work refers to the metal tantalum, an essential component of mobile phones. The movements and sounds of the switches are triggered by the phone calls of London's Congolese community as they participate in “Telephone Trottoire” – a concurrent project also built by the artists in collaboration with the Congolese radio program “Nostalgie Ya Mboka”.
TANTALUM MEMORIAL - WINCH ROOM
22nd July - 14th August 2009
BASE: The thing on which something rests, a place to stay, the main ingredient in paint or a centre of operations?
The artists in BASE: have transformed ordinary functional materials into provocative pieces of work. Playing with the mundane, and hinting at human presence (or absence), these works appear familiar and yet strangely foreign. They are ambiguous and left open to the interpretation of the viewer.
Selected works by Michael Bowdidge, Stuart Blackmore,Lisa Temple-Cox, Alice Mahoney and Beth Shapeero