Preview: Friday 25 January, 6 – 9pm
Exhibition Open: 25 January – 28 February 2019 (Wed – Fri, 12 – 6pm)
The NewBridge Project : Gateshead
TOT-TOT-TOTALALAZOLA! Is a war cry akin to the Ancient Greek battle cry Alalazo! or Hip Hip Hurray! A clarion call to join collective action, an invitation to be part of something bigger than yourselves.
Eleven artists have been brought together and initiated into the mythos of Newcastle/Sheffield based collective TOTALLER. Their initiation took place over several months and included a field-trip, experimental guided meditations and the injunction to produce artworks/weapons to be absorbed into the arsenal of TOTALLER.
The arsenal is a depositary for the resulting artworks/weapons built for The NewBridge Project Gateshead space by TOTALLER. It is a structure that will grow through TOTALLER, informed by the newly initiated Zealots. From within the belly of the structure emanate the sounds of the shamanic meditations that were used to initiate the eleven Zealots, modified into a post initiation call to arms, as well as an audio tour of the ready-made artwork, Segedunum, based in Wallsend. To accompany the exhibition, TOTALLER have produced an unlimited edition of their Field Guide a publication that explores the TOTALLER reality using a range of experimental writing forms.
TOTALLER is composed of four members – Lesley Guy, Dale Holmes, Lea Torp Nielsen and Chris Fielder. Based in Newcastle and Sheffield, the group is ad-hoc and changes in its make-up depending on the nature of the labour to be carried out. They have a shared belief around the aesthetic as a destructive, progressively utopian and totalising force. TOTALLER’s methodology is an expansive, destructive-creative process that draws in mythologies, historical narratives, aesthetics, fantasies, play and existing art works in order to activate new narratives and create agency within the practice. () Fictioning, hyperstition, layering and dis-identification are attempted, tested and analysed. The group is keen to disrupt the power dynamic inherent in the curatorial process and was therefore not interested in curating or selecting works for the sole purpose of exhibition. They aimed to create a collaboratively grown artwork evolving out of a shared belief in the power of collective making.
The contributing artists are temporary Zealots for the duration of the project: Daniel Bradwell, Sophie Buxton, Grace Denton, Lucas Ferguson Sharp, Mark Jackson, Motsonian, Tom O’Sullivan, Dan Russell, Nicola Singh, Hope Stebbing and Sarah Stamp. Others may join or take part as the project unfolds.
They will be de-initiated on Friday 22 February, 6-8pm at the De-initiation Ritual and Talk with TOTALLER and Reactor in the gallery that will include a presentation given by Susie Henderson, Niki Russell from the art collective, Reactor.
TOT-TOT-TOTALALAZOLA! has been curated by NewBridge Programme Committee member Lesley Guy. The Programme Committee is a hands-on, curatorial learning and development opportunity, enabling members to produce an exhibition or commission alongside The NewBridge Project, and gain valuable experience through a programme of professional development and peer-to-peer learning. The Committee represents many voices, enabling new narratives, methodologies and approaches to emerge across our programme, diversifying the curatorial voice.