Showing posts with label touch. Show all posts
Showing posts with label touch. Show all posts

17 Mar 2011

Ballet- The Most Incredible Thing

Javier De Frutos

Javier called me, had I heard of Hans Christian Anderson’s ‘The Most Incredible Thing’? Incredibly, I hadn’t - a quick Google and, incredibly I had! Javier had been commissioned by Sadler's Wells to create the choreography for a new ballet with original music scored by the Pet Shop Boys and would I come up with an image to front it?
 Anderson’s obsession with cutting shapes out of paper was my starting point. Look away now if you don’t want to know the ending; a clock turns out to be the ‘Thing’. My idea was straight forward; replace the hands of a clock with a cut out of the principal dancer. Javier had one request- it should have the feel of a Constructivist poster. 
 The idea is often the easy part, the trick is to turn concept into surreality. 3D software was the only tool in the box to do the job. My 3D skills were rusty and in need of some serious polishing. I based the structure of the clock loosely on the workings of a19th Century lighthouse time piece. Clemmie Sveaas, performing the role of the Princess, would be the hands.
  In a tight rehearsal room at Sadlers, Clemmie contorted her body into every shape I threw at her.

Clemmie Sveaas
Working with Clemmie is always creatively rewarding. There’s no pretense, no tantrums or tiaras, even though she is the Princess- just  passion and talent.

 Katrina Lindsay

The incredible costumes were provided by Katrina Lindsay who’s considerable talent is equaled only by the accolades stuffed into her trophy cabinet.

 
 Poster image

Press/ programme image

So much is resting on Javier’s shoulders. The hype and the pressure is on - incredible things are expected. Javier is not an extension of the pop duo or the third member- he’s a one off. 



 Article on Javier in the Royal Academy of Dance’s publication 'Dance Gazette' featuring images by yours - truly.


The Independent
 
The Times

Final poster
The Guardian Guide



Sadler's Wells site


The Pet Shop Boys site

12 Mar 2011

Therapeutic touch


Prof. Dr.Phil. Ruth Hampe

Laura Heraty and Claudine Albert, regional coordinators of The British Association of Art Therapists, invited me to 'touch' those present at a lecture given by eminent art therapist Prof. Dr.Phil. Ruth Hampe from the Catholic University, Freiburg. Twenty five art therapists participated in the experiment and the results make for interesting reading. Here is a selection, view the rest at www.gavinevans.com


Laura Heraty


Isabella Halm


Yvonne Austen


Georgina Ruth


Paul Flemming


Francis Mezzetti

Claudine Albert

Dr.Margaret Hills De Zarate

Andrea Spink

4 Mar 2011

Count Me In...


Gary McNair
Gary (McNair) was locked in a blackened cell - a creative flotation tank where his maverick ideas percolated. So far he’d come up with a title ‘Count Me In’. The thread started with the conundrum- we vote in a system we didn’t vote for. What came after that was anyone’s guess. I admire the 26 year old’s hutzpa - he goes out on a limb.
A fortnight later and he was performing ‘Count Me In’ at the Traverse Theatre. Gary compelled a captivated audience to react and interact. The play was high octane and provocative. His uniquely humourous and succinct approach beautifully illustrated the inequities and absurdities of the voting system. Gary ran into the audience, thrust his microphone to the mouths of unsuspecting victims and got them to read from a cue card. The guy sat next to me got one- I was safe. 20 seconds later and Gary returned to me, giving me what felt like a 4 line soliloquy to read- with instructions! The audience picked up on this anomaly- bastardo!




  Later, in the Traverse bar, Gary confessed that he saw me and thought “there’s Gavin”. His natural reflex was to thrust the card into my hand. Gary is a talented director, playwright and explosive actor- the consummate theatremaker. Just one bit of advice for those of a shy or nervous disposition- stay clear of his line of sight.

9 Feb 2011

Smile for the Camera

Q: When is a smile not a smile?
 

Photograph©Gavin Evans
 There is one thing that would significantly improve the quality of Barrie’s life. Every time he looks in the mirror he is reminded of the moment his world was condemned to scrutiny. His perma-grin was the result of a random attack and society won't let him forget. At that moment his anonymity was annulled and he became guilty of crimes he never committed. Disfigurement at the hands of a stranger has scarred him inside and out. Whether the attack is random or gang related, the scarred are scarred. All bearers of Glasgow Smiles are victims- society is the victim too. Barrie wishes his scar could be removed to erase the psychological pain and stigma. 
 The ‘Glasgow Smile’ is the slashing from mouth to ear resulting in a crescent shaped scar. It’s a cultural thing, unique to Glasgow, you can’t help noticing them- they’re everywhere. In a world obsessed with cosmetic and aesthetic perfection this act of deliberate disfigurement and defilement flies in the face of cultural norms. The prevalence and persistence of this ‘culture’ perpetuates a state of underlying fear- reinforcing the hard-man stereotype. The consequences for the victim are; imposed vilification and demonisation resulting in simultaneous social imprisonment and exile. The ‘Glasgow Smile’ is synonymous with gang culture but is also an act randomly inflicted on innocent bystanders- like Barrie. This practice has existed for at least 60 years and is sustained by the turning of the cheek.

Dr.Christine Goodall
In an attempt to comprehend why this cultural anomaly persists I arranged to meet Dr.Christine Goodall- consultant oral surgeon and founder of Glasgow based charity Medics Against Violence. Christine is at the sharp end of this practice as she treats victims of knife crime from as young as 13 years old. She candidly tells me that these explosive attacks are expressions of the emotionally inarticulate Glaswegian man. Unsurprisingly alcohol is one factor that often facilitates these outbursts. The ‘Glasgow Effect’ coupled with psychological morbidity is a powerful contributing force- difficult to define yet impossible to deny.
  Dr.Goodall introduced me to a member of Strathclyde’s Violence Reduction Unit who assures me that I can be introduced to many victims and perpetrators if I want to turn this line of inquiry into a photographic project. With Medics Against Violence’s support I am seriously considering exposing this cultural malaise- if I can make a positive contribution to their goals.


A: When it’s a Glasgow Smile.


2 Feb 2011

Girl X

There's a new round of upcoming productions at the National Theatre of Scotland. Today I'm sniffing around the Glue Factory where the cast and crew of Girl X are assembled. Director Pol Heyvaert is putting 12 members of the Citizens Theatre's choir, gently but assuredly through their paces. The choir are getting to grips with the daunting task of synchronous speaking- speaking as one and memorising 43 pages of script. The play, concept of lead actor and disabled rights activist Robert Softley, is based on the controversial issues surrounding the 'treatment' of Ashley X. Although this play is certain to challenge the audience it is in no way didactic
 The show is premiering at the Traverse Theatre on the 4th March and runs 'till the 13th March.


Pol Heyvaert

Robert Softley






It was a battle to get home; through gale force winds, past dead dumpsters and umbrella mortuaries.

27 Jan 2011

Triumphantly

William, The Maxwells front man.

William was mid band-practice at the Maxwell-Collins household. He broke the flow to welcome me and announce that in a fortnight he'd be supporting his father at the Shepherds Bush Empire. His band, The Maxwells (named in honour of his mother's side of the family), will be performing their first gig in front of a crowd of over 1000 but he ain't fazed.

Grace

It has been a long while since I've felt the warmth of this fiercely matriarchal household. The volume still reaches fever pitch and there's no room for the sentimental or superficial. Under Grace's stewardship the Maxwell-Collins juggernaut careers ever onward and upward with more laughter and less falling. If ever there was a motivation guru in the making then Grace is it.

Edwyn

Edwyn had been busy producing bands in his studio and working on his upcoming exhibition 'Nature Punk' showing at the Idea Generation Gallery. It's great to see Ed being creative on all fronts, giving as good as he gets and receiving the critical praise deserves.





This intimate image is one of triumph over adversity. Being with Grace and Edwyn puts things into perspective- money isn't the be all.

24 Sep 2010

Showmen

The showmen have pitched-up on the Meadows. These fairground folk are fair folk- don't call them travellers- they are showmen. Under the stewardship of father and son team, John and Jordan Evans (no relation to me) are bringing all the fun of the fair to the Edinburgh locals.


John Evans

 
Jordan Evans


Sheldon Evans


Sheldon Evans Jnr


Greg Hickey


Tanya Hickey
 
Nyla Hickey



The world of the showman is a family affair.

30 Apr 2010

The Plaid Truth


Terry (Gilliam) gave my kid a pearl of wisdom, he warned him to “stay away from men in plaid.” Mindful of Terry’s caveat we (the Afro-Celt contingency of the family and me) set course for the Kingdom of Fife. Cousin Kate was getting hitched and the Kirkaldy clans would be on parade.


 Sure enough, the picture-perfect setting overlooking the Firth of Forth was awash with plaid. Here plaid is ‘tartan,’ skirts are called ‘kilts’ and furry fanny-packs are ‘sporrans’. This brazen contravention of norms doesn’t emasculate or feminise the wearer. Scots aren’t tough, they’re hardened - tempered by the squalls that gnaw beneath the hemline. It is on these occasions that I’m reminded of my Anglo-Saxon roots - to be in the pants-wearing minority still feels curiously alien.
  This was the perfect opportunity for some recreational ‘touch.’ For months I have been focusing on the gated comfort zones of the homeless and the vulnerable. Today could see my hand penetrating personal space and making contact – touching.


Kate and Isobel bride and mother


Brian and Bill groom and father


Julie and Dawn handmaidens

Darren and Ross


Liz and Molly


Margaret and Ruth sisters


Sulaima and Omar siblings


Chantalle and Natasha


Finlay and Skye




The contents of their sporrans.














Now I come to think of it, when Terry gave his advice he was wearing a poncho- a plaid poncho.