No Competition! is an off-site programme of artist projects exploring the relationship between art and non-competitive sport.
Three new commissions by Paul Farrington, Charlie Murphy and Ian Whittlesea will launch consecutively over the programme's three-month duration, and will coincide with celebrations leading up to the London 2012 Olympics as part of Go Kingston 2012. The artists' projects will be on display at various locations in Kingston and beyond - further information will be available at www.stanleypickergallery.org over the course of the programme.
Designer Paul Farrington's project Kingston Navigation Wheel commences No Competition! with a series of new cultural walking trails developed as part of a larger Royal Borough of Kingston initiative to create new ways for pedestrians to discover and enjoy Kingston town centre. Farrington's special ‘navigation-wheel' is a paper disc that has been designed to enable visitors to explore alternative routes around the town, discover individual and collective histories, and newly observe the details that make up their everyday surroundings.
Research for the project has been informed by the history of Surrey Walking Club, Victorian photographer Eadweard Muybridge, the sporting pursuits of orienteering and pedestrianism (popular in the late 1800s) and interviews with local residents.
The No Competition! Kingston Navigation Wheel will be launched at the Stanley Picker Gallery from 12pm to 4pm on Saturday 28 April. The navigation wheels will be available for sale at the Market House, Kingston Museum and other locations across Kingston. Guided tours following the routes mapped on the navigation wheel will take place throughout the No Competition! programme. For details, visit www.stanleypickergallery.org
In Ian Whittlesea‘s fi lm The Demonstration of Gentleness, commissioned for No Competition!, identical twins Helen and Kathryn Cartwright demonstrate the Ju-no-Kata, a choreographed pattern of judo movement. The fi lm references artist and judo devotee Yves Klein's Les Fondements du Judo (The Foundations of Judo), which was published in 1954 and translated into English by Whittlesea in 2009.
Whittlesea's second project for No Competition! relates to the exercises that Swiss artist and teacher Johannes Itten taught his students at the Bauhaus. A devout Mazdaznan, Itten derived these exercises from the book Mazdaznan Health & Breath Culture by Dr Otoman Zar-Adusht Ha'nish. Whittlesea is producing a newly illustrated and annotated edition of this book (published in collaboration with Open Editions, London) together with a set of posters depicting Kingston University Foundation Course students performing the Mazdaznan exercises.
The Demonstration of Gentleness will be screened in locations in Kingston and London and on the Stanley Picker Gallery website during May and June. The book and posters will be launched at the Barbican Centre bookshop on Saturday 23 June as part of a programme of events for their summer exhibition Bauhaus: Art as Life. Visit www.barbican.org.uk for details.
Artist Charlie Murphy's Kingston Big Wheel brings together 300 local gymnasts, dancers and athletes to form a spectacular chain of human locomotion in an inspiring and dynamic celebration of collective, creative and athletic endeavour. Incorporating a series of choreographed movements inspired by the iconic motion-sequence imagery of Kingston-born Victorian photographer Eadweard Muybridge, the piece responds to public performance and protest traditions, sporting events, music and dance spectaculars.
A special live performance of The Kingston Big Wheel will be staged publicly as part of the International Youth Arts Festival's fi nale weekend, taking place across key venues around Kingston Town Centre from 21-22 July. Visit www.iyafestival.org.uk for full programme details. Documentary images and fi lm footage of the event will also be shown at Kingston Museum to accompany the exhibition Olympic Celebration: Athletes in Motion, 28 July - 20 October.