[-empyre-] Response to artwork #14: Ian Giles - On The Way To Language

Helena Haimes hhaimes at gmail.com
Mon Jul 30 09:29:50 AEST 2018

- As it gradually becomes clear that all five participants are speaking
different languages, I wonder just how staged/acted/improvised/genuine
these interactions are.

- Some participants seem to understand each other, while others look more
nonplussed when others are speaking. I know Ian's work reasonably well, and
that he often explores this space between the improvised, the set up and
the 'real'...

- As a native English speaker who speaks some French, I enjoy the varying
levels of comprehension I have over what is being said. My lack of
understanding of Mandarin and Portuguese, for example, means I listen to
them as I would, say, a piece of music. I more open to their cadence, their
pitch, repeated words or turns of phrase start to resemble structural
supports that punctuate the swathes of speech that I can't comprehend.

- What are the parallels between Brutalist/Modernist architecture and
language? Architectural styles are often described in terms of their
distinct 'languages'... these images seem to depict flourishes – i.e: the
visually unique elements of Brutalist buildings – rather than the purely
functional or more prosaically designed sections. A comment on the
utility/functionality (or lack of) of certain words or phrases?

- His zooming in on hand gestures/radio mics brings yet another mode of
communication to the fore

Journalist and Critical Writer
*www.helenahaimes.co.uk <http://www.helenahaimes.co.uk>*
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