The McManus: Dundee’s Art Gallery & Museum has released two videos revealing preparations contemporary artist Duncan Marquiss and musician Jonnie Common have been making, in the run-up to a large-scale video installation and soundtrack, Drawn to Light. The event will take place on the evening of Saturday 25 November and will provide a stunning finale to the museum’s 150th anniversary programme of year-long celebrations. The spectacle of art, light and sound will virtually turn the museum building inside out to expose its contents.
Leading contemporary artist Duncan Marquiss has been invited to delve into the city’s extraordinary collection of objects and artworks to create a new large-scale video installation that will light up the exterior of the museum building. In the videos, Duncan Marquiss shares some surprising objects in The McManus Collections that he's incorporating into his installation. While, Jonnie Common takes you behind the scenes and talks about some of the sounds he’s recorded to make a new series of songs for the event.
Duncan Marquiss: Drawn to Light. Produced by Rapid Media
Over the past six months, Duncan has worked with curators and staff at The McManus to draw together images and stories triggered by objects in the collection. From this source material, he will create a video that will be a projection mapped onto the façade of architect Sir George Gilbert Scott’s extraordinary Gothic Revival-style building. Marquiss will be joined for a special live performance by musician and composer Jonnie Common, who will perform a new composition on the museum steps, similarly inspired by the spaces, sounds and stories of The McManus.
Jonnie Common: Drawn to Light. Produced by Rapid Media
Over several visits to the museum out-of-hours, Common recorded the electronic tones of swipe card access doors, the sounds of office printers, internet servers, dehumidifiers, the rumble of huge moving storage units as well as the reverberant frequencies of every gallery space, stairwell and corridor across the museum’s three floors. From these recordings, he will build up tones, rhythms and melodies for his new composition.
Billy Gartley, Head of Cultural Services at Leisure & Culture Dundee
“We have been enjoying a real celebration at The McManus this year and Drawn to Light is going to be the final spectacular. We’re absolutely delighted to have Duncan Marquiss, one of the country’s leading contemporary visual artists creating this installation alongside top musician and composer Jonnie Common. The McManus is all about the building, the City’s collections and the people who visit and have shaped it. It is apt then, that Duncan and Jonnie have been drawing inspiration from all those elements including visitors, volunteers and staff to create a piece that will reflect The McManus’ position as the people’s museum.”
Drawn to Light is curated by independent creative producer Siôn Parkinson and will take place on Saturday 25 November 2017 between 7pm and 8.30pm. The project is supported by Creative Scotland and the Northwood Trust. A programme of public heritage events, talks and tours is supported by Heritage Lottery Fund as part of the initiative Stories, Stones & Bones.