Jenny Hogarth’s work contributes to the genre of domestic ambivalence. She uses an auto-fictive approach to moving image, capturing unexpected interruptions to routines and relationships.
In my work I use an auto-fictive and unscripted approach to making moving image. I capture experiences that open up social conventions to scrutiny and offer different ways to look at the world. My work responds to the theory-memoir genre ‘domestic ambivalence’ that examines the relationships between domestic life and creative work, exploring the dichotomy of being both a mother and an artist and how these roles can often be at odds.
By fixing cameras to a range of people, creatures and objects I aim to explore multiple and diverse subjectivities, shifting standard adult-human points of perception and self-centric perspectives. Mine is often a synergetic practice. By inviting participants into an immersive platform for exchange, I orchestrate semi-directed situations where interruptions are close to hand to rupture the flow zone of somatic practices. I aim to immerse the viewer in semi-fictitious situations, heightening and highlighting the entanglement of life’s responsibilities whilst also suggesting the performative nature of daily realities.
Jenny Hogarth (b.1979, Scotland, UK) gained a BA at Edinburgh College of Art (2000) and an MFA at Glasgow School of Art (2009). Between 2019-2022 she was a Talbot Rice Gallery Artist in Residence, Jenny recently exhibited a new moving image installation ‘Flow Co Motion’ (2022) at the Talbot Rice Gallery and video ‘When You Talk About The Volcano Will You Talk About Yourself’ at the Freelands Foundation. Other recent moving image works ‘Wild Thing’ (2019) and ‘Channelling’ (2020) were shown at Threshold Arts, Perth in March 2020.
Between 2003 and 2013 Jenny created numerous co-authored moving image and live works with Kim Coleman including ‘If You Can’t See My Mirrors I Can’t See You’ (2010) commissioned for the Serpentine Gallery’s CINACT programme London; ‘Getting down to a nice expression’ (2011) for Radar, Loughborough; ‘Staged’ (2010) produced by the Collective Gallery for Edinburgh Art Festival; ‘An Infusion of the Evening Air’ (2010) for Glasgow International Open Glasgow commission; ‘Players’ (2009) for Frieze Projects; ‘Glare’ (2009) for S1Artspace, Sheffield; and ‘Kim Coleman & Jenny Hogarth with the Boyle family’ (2008) for the ICA. Their work has also been shown at Tate Britain (London); Phillips De Pury NY (US); Picture This (Bristol); Talbot Rice Gallery (Edinburgh); Catalyst Arts (Belfast), Minneapolis St-Paul Film Festival (2011) and Circa Projects’, Newcastle (2012). The artists recently rekindled their collaboration during a digital residency with Axisweb, producing a new video work, ’The Mechanics of Love’ (2021) which acts as a prequel and sequel to ‘If You Can’t See My Mirrors I Can’t See You’ (2010).
Jenny is the recipient of a number of grants and awards, most recently Elephant Trust (2021) and City of Edinburgh Visual Artists Award (2019). She was Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art Fellowship Artist (2010–12) and LUX Associate Artist (2009–10).
When You Talk About The Volcano Will You Talk About Yourself
HD Video / 33:00 min / 2022
04:56 min excerpt
The film takes place on a single day, centring upon the artist, appearing as herself on a run around Arthur’s Seat (an extinct volcano). The film’s auto-fictive narrative unfolds as she chances upon three of her female friends. Conversations ensue on subjects that revolve around the women’s maternal and domestic ambivalence, their own journeys and capacity for love, anger and abandonment. Parallel to this, as if the runner is listening to an audiobook, a recording of a specially commissioned text by Lara Feigel unpicks the notion of a ‘good mother’.
Body mounted cameras – Alexa Hare, Peter Boggon, Francesca Nobilucci, Charlotte Wilson and Electra (bald headed eagle)
Additional Camerawork – Shu Lorimer and Casey Miller
Sound Design – Keith Duncan
Colour Grading – Duncan Marquiss
Audiobook text – Lara Feigel
Voice Actor – Laura Pyper
Flow Co Motion
HD Video / 24:00 min / 2022
04:54 min excerpt
Jenny Hogarth’s Flow Co Motion is an intimate, diaristic portrait of her relationship with her eldest child Bo, who has been a collaborator throughout the project. Shot over several years, the viewer is invited to accompany them on trips to the bookshop, cycling, getting lost in a maze and practicing yoga; they share philosophical, fantastical and everyday insights into how Bo’s autism shapes his encounters with the world and the dynamics of their relationship.
Within the original installation, on the wall, both Jenny and Bo’s points of view are presented in bouncing motion, produced using a video editing filter known as Warp Stabilisation, ordinarily used to counter camera shake. This effect could be understood as an opportunity to “normalise” footage according to neurotypical perceptions. The work stresses accessibility, with the captions, timer and transitions produced to both aid and refer to sensory differences. On a downward projection, a series of fragmented videos are seen from Bo’s perspective. Intersecting and interrupting, these unpredictable snapshots of life through his eyes create a dialogue with foam bricks designed to soften or support, to provide balance and comfort.
The Mechanics of Love
HD Video / 22:00 min / 2021
05:18 min excerpt
‘The Mechanics of Love’ by Kim Coleman and Jenny Hogarth is a split screen video in which the two artists record themselves separately as they rise and prepare for a video call with one-another, each filming themselves on multiple cameras as they move through a series of morning routines. In the work, mobile video devices are employed for their ability to create intimate self portraits – an iPhone camera held in the hand when waking; a GoPro strapped to a chest whilst showering and dressing; a digital camera placed on a bath edge, bed, or bureau. A landscape warped to centre the body. Virtuosity is not the goal – mistakes, interruptions and imperfections are intrinsic.
Although a stand-alone work, The Mechanics of Love ends where an older video by the artists begins. If You Can’t See My Mirrors I Can’t See You (2010) was made in the early days of Skype and used multiple cameras to record a video call about the making of the work. Using a video call as the basis of a work is pertinent in new ways today. They are used to create rhythm, structure, and accountability. The two routines portrayed – although separate – intersect, and seem to synchronise and speak to one another, allowing for chance encounters. The video depicts life lived alongside and enabled by technology. A world in which we bring others close to us – and us to them – through multiple devices as if in a dream.
If You Can’t See My Mirrors I Can’t See You
HD Video / 16:00 min / 2010
‘If You Can’t See My Mirrors I Can’t See You’ by Kim Coleman and Jenny Hogarth invites the audience to eavesdrop upon the artists’ Skype conversation. The dynamics of the dialogue are recorded and reassembled, to reveal spaces between and around objects and subjects. The computer screen operates as both a mirror and lamp, whilst acting as a frame into another world and a mimetic means of duplicating information.
Commissioned by Serpentine Cinema for ‘Agnes Varda and Kim Coleman & Jenny Hogarth’, CINACT, London (2010)
HD Video / 22:00 min / 2019
‘Wild Thing’ fuses the structures of evening classes and somatic practices, focusing on the meditative flow-zone induced through practice. Filmed on five ‘point of view’ body-mounted cameras and set in one room, the structure of the video is fixed on a life-drawing yoga class. The cameras reveal ‘plants’ – people, drugs, dogs, alcohol, children, mobile phones… – designed to thwart habitual flow. Interruptions facilitate unpredictable outcomes and provoke uncertainty regarding what is, and is not, ‘scripted’.
Filmed at Basic Mountain with the generous support and assistance of Naomi Garriock and Alex Hetherington.