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Ed Atkins Exhibition

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by Bryony Harrison (subscribe)
Freelance writer and poet from London; if you would like to read my poetry, please check out my book, 'Poems on the Page', available from
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Meet Dave, the Talking Head

In 2012, artist, Ed Atkins, presented an exhibition called Us Dead Talk Love at the Chisenhale Gallery. It was a video work featuring a disembodied head called Dave. Atkins used his own face as a template to create the digital image, which talked to its audience about love.

Atkins has now adapted the site specific installation for the Serpentine Sackler Gallery, having now augmented and added to the original piece. In Ribbons Dave is now a full-bodied, living avatar - perhaps it is a prequel to his death? - who is a rude, crude smoker and drinker. By the way his head deflates, it seems to suggests he does drugs as well.

The entire exhibition is a multi-sensory experience. Not only do you view disconcerting scenes on multiple screens, but get a surround sound mesh of incoherent noises, interrupted conversations, and songs. These include Bach's Erbarme Dich and Randy Newman's I Think It's Going To Rain Today.

Although not technically a film, it falls into several such genres, such as horror, melodrama, and musical. Ribbons explores the relationship between the physical and virtual world, and shows how the two meld to a point where they are difficult to distinguish.
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Why? Fun for art lovers
When: Until 25th Aug
Phone: 020 7402 6075
Where: Serpentine Sackler Gallery
Cost: Free
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