Life’s rhythms are magnified and everything around the psychotic character is at a hyper level. The everyday is intensified and the normal journey is taken to another world, another land – a new place. Birdsong, the sea, the wind is in communication with the psychotic character – a world in which people communicate telepathically.
James Paddock has been awarded Arts Council funding to develop PYLON, a new mixed media installation inspired by experiences of psychosis. The artwork will be exhibited at A-side B-side Gallery in London from 4 – 10 September 2019 as Paddock’s first London solo exhibition.
The installation takes the viewer on a journey of a psychotic young woman (performed by actress and performance artist, Amber Weyman) who travels on foot, as the psychotic experience unravels. The artwork uses moving image and special audio techniques (binaural sound) to convey the psychotic experience to audiences through an immersive installation.
PYLON is a continuation of Paddock’s enquiry into often-overlooked topics of contemporary society in this case mental health. Paddock says, “I wish to contribute to breaking down stigma surrounding mental illness. When people think of psychosis, they might imagine an unreality in their minds. By discussing such a difficult and often controversial topic through the medium of art I hope to offer an alternative route to understand the condition and help dispel the surrounding myths. I am pleased that Arts Council England recognised the importance of my work and the contribution it can make to tackling difficult subjects in society.”
For Paddock PYLON marks an important point in his artistic career. “I’ve relished the opportunity the solo exhibition has given me to push my practice and explore new audio techniques. I have worked site-specifically and developed the sculptural element of the installation in direct response to the characteristics of the gallery space, heightening the immersive experience for the audience.”
Phil Gibby, Area Director of South West Arts Council England, said: “We are really pleased to support PYLON through our National Lottery project grants programme. This investment allows James Paddock to develop his creative practice and find new ways to tell his story. At the Arts Council we believe that arts and culture can have a positive impact on wellbeing and this project opens the door to discussions around the experience of different types of mental health issues.”