Co-Conspirators (New Artists Commissions) + Intro

2008 | The 2nd Fashion in Film Festival in Bristol

Exploring a range of subjects such as cursed clothing, obsessive gestures and desires, and the history of the cinematic slap, eight artists have collaborated with the Festival to create new films that explore the themes of “If Looks Could Kill” . Weaving together the work of photographers, performers, designers, artists and film-makers, the programme takes a long hard look at the fixations, joys and fears that can become attached to garments and styles of dress. The Co-conspirators artists are: Paulette Philips, Eloise Fornieles, Elizabeth McAlpine, Dino Dinco, Shannon Plumb, Wendy Bevan, Derrick Santini and Boudicca.

The diverse approaches include artist Paulette Phillips’ re-sequencing of Hollywood film clips, emphasising the viewer’s pleasure in watching female criminals and the visual codes that mark them as seductive deviants; photographer Derrick Santini’s tracing of a pair of gloves that encourage their wearers to commit the criminal act of frottage; and artist Shannon Plumb’s focusing on New York street corners and the identification of criminals through their appearance. Performance artist Eloise Fornieles has collaborated with cameramen in an interactive gallery performance, which examines the relationship between wasteful consumption and violence , and artist Elizabeth McAlpine has choreographed sequences of slaps from the history of cinema, identifying them as a particularly female form of violence.

Co-conspirators generates a dialogue between several different art forms and creative industries, including film, art, photography, performance and design, and encourages experimentation by artists for whom the moving image is not a primary medium.

Co-conspirators is guest-curated by editor and curator Louise Clarke and writer and curator Laura McLean-Ferris.