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Caithness News Bulletins November 2004

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CAVE ART CELEBRATED 20TH CENTURY STYLE - Something Unusual On Friday Night
New Dynamics, Sutherland - Durness Studio

A new media event mixing Highland art with sounds from London DJs will take place this Friday 17th December (7pm till late), in the very unusual ancient setting of Smoo Cave at Durness in Sutherland.

This is an event of cave architecture and contemporary video and will feature work created by the young people of Durness working with Beverley Carpenter, artist in residence for New Dynamics.

The Sutherland New Dynamics Residencies project is one of seven in the highlands funded through the Scottish arts council’s scheme to promote inclusion through public art and also by the social inclusion partnerships.

Managed by Highland council art officers, the Durness New Media Production & Projection kit has been funded by Caithness and Sutherland Enterprise, the European Community Economic Development Programme and The Highland Council Social Inclusion Partnership.

Artist, Beverly Carpenter said: “I see the work with the young people as being the community element of the residency that had two separate strands to it: firstly, continuation of my own work as artist, and second, working with young people here. Work produced with the young people, and largely by them will also be shown on the night.

“This is in many ways separate to my concept of the use of the cave and is largely a learning project for them. They have the opportunity after I have left to go on to produce art films now that they have the necessary skills & equipment. They have also provided me with a rich source of interaction and research material to work with during my time here and we have enjoyed learning from each other in professional and social terms.”

There will be film projections onto the cave walls and sound works provided by London DJs, Gabe Norland and Richard Searle. They will be mixing and improvising soundscapes in addition to providing some funky house dance rhythms.

Highland Council arts development officer for Sutherland, Roxana Meechan, said: “Rhiannon Van Muysen & George Miller, the two trainees selected to work alongside the artist in Durness have learned new skills in Art & Technology. They also had the opportunity to travel to London & Cambridge to visit Art Galleries & Museums and see electronic art exhibitions. This experience will give them the edge in their future career development.

“There is perhaps a link here between the past (cave paintings) and the future (cave projections). Beverley's area of research 'Moving Image and Architecture' explores the architecture of Durness, which is predominantly the natural architecture of the landscape including the amazing Smoo Cave.”

Additional attractions include: local bagpiper, James Mather, poi show by Rhiannon Van Muysen. Under the supervision of the local fire-fighters there will be a bonfire in the mouth of the cave and hot food by the Durness hospitality team.

The event is free of charge. Further information can be obtained from Roxana Meechan on 01408 635211, Beverley Carpenter on 07950 656799, or Yvonne Mackay on 01971 511748.