AUTO ITALIA LIVE, which starts this Saturday, will be a series of three weekly one-hour transmissions. Teams of directors, designers, camera crews, technicians and artists will all collaborate towards producing a series of events, actions and performances which will be filmed at the gallery in front of an audience and broadcast live on their website.
“Covering ideas of ‘edutainment’, to permacultures and ecology that surround the idea of live television the project will engage with how live TV has changed our understanding of culture and public space.”
In a time when mainstream broadcasting is mostly confined to homogenous, risk-free programming, Auto Italia will be taking the format of live Television into the gallery and on the Web, to engage with the history of broadcasting and explore the possibilities that digital technology and the Internet have to offer artists.
Chris Rawcliffe: Can you tell us how Auto Italia came to commission a TV series but also how AUTO ITALIA LIVE may differ from last year’s broadcasting project?
Auto Italia: The project is a part of the continued work that Auto Italia has been developing over the last 4 years. Last year’s project was an experiment that followed on from Proh-soh’pa-peer in 2009 about what capacity we had to produce these kinds of projects. This year we have a gone a step further to work with artist’s in a far more intensive way, developing three episodes that will be performed live in a large scale set. We are collaborating with people on production design, live editing, lighting, writing scripts, working with performers and producing new music for the episodes. We have assembled a much larger production team from a wide variety of different skills and expertise.
Auto Italia LIVE comes from a group of artists investigating the role of TV within a wider cultural framework. We think that artists should have the opportunity to question the role of film and television commissioners who make decisions on what culture we digest and this year really takes that on. It will hopefully challenge what we have access to and what we are able to view and be engaged with through TV.
The project comes from our concerns and research about the various ways in which we can distribute work, linking it to live performance and also the ways artists can work together. After our previous project which really used online platforms and networks we have developed a large contact base which allows for new possibilities in building audiences and conversation around the work we do. In this sense, the project is trying to reposition artist’s moving-image and performance work within a digital framework that responds directly to its distribution.
CR: How many participants are you working with? Are all the artists experienced performers or broadcasters or will there be attempts to encompass other forms of art? I imagine this project will be a time for collaborations to develop and skills to be shared.
AA: There are a lot of core artists and crew working on the project and many episodes also include a large number of other participants. It is really exciting to have a huge number of people working together to produce this, bringing together many different skills and backgrounds.
We aim to forge a new way to navigate the process of commissioning artists and developing an online platform to distribute that. With Auto Italia, artists are working together, funding, producing and redefining the terms of how art is framed. We hope this will create a lasting legacy within the arts by creating a reference point for future commissions of artists work.
CR: Most conventional TV shows, including those with a live audience are pre-recorded. What do the risks associated with broadcasting live bring to the project?
AA: There are huge risks but for us performance and the link to the experience of work within a space is one of the most interesting elements of the project. I think combining the production of live work with the format of TV is a really provocative challenge and we find that it produces some really unexpected and exciting responses.
We have always been fascinated with how video and artists moving image work can take on the idea of an event, and that is what this series aims to be. There is also the layers of the live performance that happens within the space, the whole spectacle of that is part of it and something we wanted to open up and allow the audience to be involved with.
CR: What are the themes or questions that will be addressed in these events?
AA: Artists are not merely making films and video or organising performances they are taking an innovative role in how these works are broadcast and using creative approaches towards how they are distributed. Each week will be taking on different ideas of what TV is or how we deal with ‘liveness’ and performance within the space. There is a broad range of interests from ideas around television creation of a ‘public’ space to live soap opera formats and narrative programming.
AUTO ITALIA LIVE will take place on Saturdays 24th September, 1st and 8th of October. For more information please visit www.autoitaliasoutheast.org