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Ian Skedd: Sign Singing

Western Front Gallery
Vancouver BC – May 23-Jun 27, 2009

Ian Skedd, Sign Singing: Love Will Tear Us Apart, Joy Division, 1979, Deaf Choir

Ian Skedd, Sign Singing: Love Will Tear Us Apart, Joy Division, 1979, Deaf Choir (2009), production still [Western Front Gallery, Vancouver BC, May 23-Jun 27]

A new project by Vancouver-based artist Ian Skedd captures a deaf choir sign-singing Love Will Tear Us Apart. The well-known song was originally written by British post-punk band Joy Division in 1979. Skedd's large-scale three-channel video installation depicts the rhythm and emotion of the pop song translated into sign language – a silent, visual and gestural form of communication. The hands, body and facial movements of the choir members become the only "readable" aspects of the song. The words and music are not only in the minds and imagination of the viewers but in their bodies as they follow the rhythm of the signing.

His work explores relationships between the public and private, with a recent focus on the psychological process of decoding information. At the Charles H. Scott Gallery in 2008, he presented a silent video piece entitled A Brief Account of the History of Recorded Music, Re-interpreted (Au Clair de la Lune). It was based on his research into the phonautogram, a 19th century invention designed to record sound visually rather than aurally.

Skedd is a Vancouver-based artist currently residing in London, England. He was recently awarded a Cecil Lewis Sculpture Scholarship to pursue a MA in Fine Arts at Chelsea College of Art and Design (London, UK). Since graduating from Emily Carr Institute of Art and Design in 2001, Skedd has had solo exhibitions at the Contemporary Art Gallery and the Trylowsky Gallery, Vancouver. His work has been included in group exhibitions at the Charles H. Scott Gallery and Atelier Gallery in Vancouver, and at Antechamber, Regina.


Mia Johnson

 Sat, Jun 6, 2009