1 Oozells Square, Brindleyplace, Birmingham B1 2HS

Materials:  VR Headsets with headphones, wall paintings, shadow lamps, medical swivel stools, 6 drawings and sunflower heads.

You could enter a low lit space either in a castle dungeon in Lincoln, a deconsecrated church in Brighton or in a hidden room in Birmingham. Inside these rooms there is a shadow play of silhouettes that are blown around the walls, looming and shrinking like a phantasmagoria or Plato’s cave. Some medical swivelling stools are placed around an abstract geometric form. The viewers occupy these stools and are immersed in a 360 world that leads them through past, present and future
This work addresses neurodiversity, hallucination and embodied viewing in relation to our current social and economic constructs regarding attitudes to the elderly and social care in Britain. It is also concerned with the hallucinatory condition of filmic mediums (here specifically Virtual Reality) which feel closer to how the mind itself works rather than how this is conveyed in historic film mediums. Alongside the medium the work questions the dubious cultural conventions/constructs we live by and their incoherence. As an editing method it follows the fragmentation of consciousness as opposed to the usual narrative constructs derived from literature/main stream cinema. Care(less) steps back into what underpins identity politics to address its true substrate – human consciousness in this case struggling to make sense of a subject that is almost impossible to conceive of – death. In the 360° perspective the journey through the work will inevitably change each time for each person, as the mind finds differing narratives embedded in the visual perspectives. The embodiment that comes with VR (a potentially dangerous medium which has been aligned with addiction) evokes an odd sense of reality that makes real the virtual.  This will may be like nothing you have seen in VR before…

Artist’s Personal Statement

I am writing this on the last day of my show Care(less) at Ikon Gallery Birmingham.  The work features an asymmetric geometric form from Durer that seems to be the geometry of melancholy. The etching was made after Durer watched the painful death of his mother in 1514, about which he said he could find no words to express his grief. Somehow I share that grief having watch my father die and my struggles just to get him a hoist so he could sit in a a chair (I failed) – but more semantically my despair is at the neo-liberal system that England has chosen, which takes no accountability for the individual’s experience of life but collects abstract data – box ticking and number crunching with no accountability to what these massaged figures actually mean in terms of a human life – a system perfectly willing to erode our social mechanisms for economic imperatives and letting people face their deaths without any support what so ever, (I am only hi-lighting one issue here from a catalogue of monstrous policies but I see the elderly as the most vulnerable marginalised group, invisible and isolated). England lives under a myth that the health service will support them when they can’t feed themselves anymore. The funded support is limited to 6 weeks. The government has no plans in place for funding for those unable to support themselves.

Gallery Statement

Fabrica is premiering Care(less), an immersive virtual reality experience by Lindsay Seers. In this 360° film work, Seers explores the hallucinatory effect of VR. We are drawn into a state of the aged: a state in which we can quickly become invisible.
Lindsay Seers is best known for the hundreds of images she produced using her own body as a camera and her video installations. These explore complex ideas and situations through elliptical narratives that are shaped by an evolving set of connections and coincidences that the act of making the work evokes.
This method of making: through a stream of thought, is an attempt to align filmic construction to the way in which the mind itself works rather than cinematic tropes and the storytelling methods that have developed in relation to theatre. Each development in her practice has been characterised by engaging with embodiment, consciousness and the hallucinatory quality of the media that absorb and influence us. Her work is not fictional but a search for truth into how the mind produces our reality. It is always arrived at through intensive periods of research and considerable time spent mastering new developments in photographic technology.
The artwork and its accompanying texts and programme of talks, film screenings and activities investigate prevalent attitudes to ageing, the nature of care relationships and ways in which the social care system meets care needs.
The artwork and its accompanying texts and programme of talks, film screenings and activities investigate prevalent attitudes to ageing, the nature of care relationships and ways in which the social care system meets care needs.