Shanghai Biennial 2006
Jonathan has been working with e-space lab on a project that connects the twin sities of Liverpool & Shanghai. Some of the recent work he has been involved in is included in the exhbition 'Walk On' curated by Bryan Biggs, Artistic Director of Bluecoat Arts Centre, Liverpool.
Jonathan will return to Shanghai on early November to host the China end of a live link between the 2 cities.
Here is an extract from the exhibition catalogue:
'Liverpool and Shanghai are twin cities. Both stage concurrent international art biennials, and this exhibition by UK artists, being shown during the 2006 Shanghai Biennale, is expected to be the start of an ongoing process of dialogue and exchange between the visual arts in the two cities.
The exhibition also reflects particularities of Liverpool itself, a city presently undergoing transformation, both physically through a comprehensive city centre regeneration programme, and culturally, as reflected in the city’s designation as European Capital of Culture in 2008.
Some of the artists engage directly with the city and its culture, whilst others strike a more oblique chord with Liverpool’s particular histories, those for instance with an architectural or social dimension. The rituals of popular entertainment are also the subject of several artists.
In his book Liverpool 1907 Walter Dixon Scott described the River Mersey landing stage as a ‘democratic promenade’, through which human traffic passed during the city’s heyday a century ago. No longer a symbol of the seaport described as Britain’s ‘gateway to Empire’, the site’s historic combination of commerce and recreation, a place where – in the words of a popular local anthem – people from all walks of life walk on - is still however pertinent. For today the extent and nature of participation in civic life and in economic growth continue to be critical factors in shaping and defining our cities in transition.
e-space lab (Philip Courtenay, Peter Hatton, Peter Hagerty, and joined for this project by Jonathan Kearney, a China based artist from Liverpool) take as their subject the city in transition and the relationship its inhabitants have to the process of regeneration. Through technology they are developing an exchange of ideas between artists and others in the twin cities of Liverpool and Shanghai. The hybrid space thus created acts as a sort of virtual laboratory within which people, places, spaces, identity, history, urban design and change are examined. The most recent manifestation of this project, staged over three days in February 2006, involved mobile phone cameras and live video streaming between the two cities.'
for directions to the exhibition space in Shanghai, click on the image above