Our pick of this week’s art events: 22 – 28 July

Published 22 July 2016

From a ‘Dazzle’ ship that deceives the eye to an exploration of the War on Terror, we guide you through the best of this week’s art events and exhibitions.

  • Edmund Clark: War of Terror

    Imperial War Museum, London, 28 July–28 August
    “The guy had pushed his fingers inside my eyes and I could feel the coldness of his fingers. Then I realised he was trying to gouge out my eyes.” So recalls Omar Deghayes, who was detained for nearly six years in Guantánamo Bay before being released in December 2007 without charge. Photographer Edmund Clark uses photography and video footage to explore the British government’s involvement in the ‘War on Terror’. Guantánamo is presented as a sterile environment, completely devoid of human life, but objects of torture such as the force-feeding chair and shackles allude to the horror of what is going on beyond the camera’s gaze. By juxtaposing these images with photographs of the detainees’ homes, Clark encourages the viewer to contemplate not just the immediate horror of incarceration, but the ongoing psychological effects on terrorist suspects who are released but are left feeling adrift in the outside world.

  • Edmund Clark, Camp 6, Immediate Response Force equipment

    Edmund Clark, Camp 6, Immediate Response Force equipment.

    From the series Guantanamo: If the Light Goes Out.

    © Edmund Clark, courtesy of Flowers Gallery London and New York.

  • Edinburgh Art Festival

    Various locations, 28 July–28 August
    As night falls, a secret message, written in retro-reflective paint, shines out from the brightly painted ship. “EVERY WOMAN A SIGNAL TOWER”, it reveals to anyone savvy enough to decipher Morse code. Turner Prize nominee Ciara Phillips’ ‘Dazzle’ ship – a World War I innovation, which saw warships painted with zigzag designs to obscure their outline and confuse enemy gunners – is a celebration of women’s contribution to the war effort. The nautical piece forms a focal point for the Edinburgh Art Festival, the largest annual celebration of visual art in the UK. Now in its 12th year, this year’s festival explores the theme of ‘the monument’ with artist Barbara Rae RA’s collection of mixed media works, prints, paintings and drawings, which envelop the entirety of Open Eye Gallery, forming a monumental testimonial to the passing of time.

  • Ciara Phillips, Dazzle Ship Scotland Every Woman

    Ciara Phillips, Dazzle Ship Scotland Every Woman.

    Co-commissioned by Edinburgh Art Festival and 14-18 NOW, as part of EAF’s 2016 Commissions Programme.

    Photo: Ross McL.

  • Sicilian Splendour

    British Museum, London, 22 July (18.00–20.30)
    As we continue to bask in a Mediterranean-type heatwave, the British Museum serves up a smorgasbord of Sicilian culture to complement the sunshine outside. ‘Sicilian Splendour’ pays homage to the long and rich artistic history of the Italian island, with an evening of theatre, music, puppetry and poetry reading. Highlights include Le Tre Sorelle (The Three Sisters), an all-female ensemble with a repertoire of traditional songs ranging from ancient chants to lullabies and lively folk tarantellas. Another event of note is the enchanting performance by actor Luca Zingaretti, who retells Prince Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa’s story of a chance meeting between two Sicilians in the northern Italian city of Turin, during which the older of the two recounts a mysterious encounter with a mermaid.

  • , Le Tre Sorelle

    Le Tre Sorelle

    Photo: Gianfranco.

  • Behind the Sun: Prêmio Marcantonio Vilaça Cni Sesi Senai

    HOME, Manchester, 23 July–2 October
    As the Olympics fast approach, all eyes are fixed on this year’s host nation, Brazil. With a population of over 200 million, Brazil is the fifth largest country in the world, yet its collective narrative is often condensed down into “frivolous, carnivalesque stereotypes”. Behind the Sun introduces the five winners of Brazil’s most prestigious contemporary art prize, Prêmio Marcantonio Vilaça. The artists’ works provide an insight into the various regional cultures that make up the country’s vast landscape. A highlight is video footage of 12 performances by the ten-strong performance art group Grupo EmpreZa. The work sees them burning, dragging and lifting elemental materials such as fire and stone, materials that trigger recollections of traditions and folklores, to test the extent of their own physical endurance.

  • , Grupo EmpreZa

    Grupo EmpreZa

    Image by Victor Takayama.

  • Detroit: Techno City

    ICA, London, 27 July–25 September
    Techno DJ and producer Jeff Mills (aka The Wizard) is one of the founding fathers of techno music. Born and raised in Detroit, Mills established his musical collective ‘Underground Resistance’, a politically active strand of the musical genre, in the late 1980s. ICA’s exhibition Detroit: Techno City offers an expansive look at the influence that Mills and his peers – DJs such as Eddie Fowlkes and Derrick May –- had on the development of the techno scene during the eighties and nineties. Evolving from the disco and the post-disco periods of the seventies and early eighties, techno producers used cheap analogue technology to create the distinctive techno beat that we all know today.

  • , DJ Psycho by Marie Staggat from 313ONELOVE

    DJ Psycho by Marie Staggat from 313ONELOVE

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