Black Bile 84

Black Bile 84
Author: Rick Buckley, Andrew Hunt, Sophie Sleigh-Johnson
Publisher: Focal Point Gallery
Language: English
Pages: 112
Size: 23.7 x 17 cm
Weight: 408 g
Binding: Hardcover
ISBN: 9781907185250
Availability: In stock
Price: €17.00
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Product Description

The publication Black Bile 84, documents Rick Buckley’s 2015 exhibition and offsite project, Black Bile 84, presented at the end of the iconic Southend Pier and the Focal Point Gallery in the winter of 2015, which ruminates on the strange melancholia immanent to Southend-on-Sea and its outlying areas of the Thames Estuary. The Greek word for melancholy comes from that for black bile, ‘melas kholé’ – bad choler. The four humours were closely related to the idea of microcosm/macrocosm, patterning the four elements of the body to corresponding elements of the cosmos. Black bile corresponds to earth, which is notable given half of ‘Black Bile 84’ was out-posted into the deeply dredged Thames, the other half positioned safely in-land within a gallery, a microcosm and a macrocosm.
These intersections of reference to the artist’s youth in the 1980’s, where the realms of psychedelics and the mechanics of haunting via Gysin’s Dreamachine are revisited. Brion Gysin’s Dreamachine. attempted to recreate an ancient stroboscopic
technique which, by using a flickering light device, induced patterns on the closed eyelids. This machine, also a relic of a certain phase of twentieth-century counterculture, is in some ways a modern reversion to myth. Appropriately, of the Dreamachine, William Burroughs wrote: ‘We must storm the citadels of enlightenment. The means are at hand.’ Gysin had spoken of a visionary experience of flickering sunlight flashing sporadically through forest trees one afternoon, prevailing upon him to produce the machine. Again, light provides the means to ‘make the ghosts walk in public’. Through his materialisations, the artist hints at this chaos just beyond peripheral vision: a sunless sea and a flash of light on the eyelids that portend strange visions in the estuary. As Marlow says in Conrad’s ‘Heart of Darkness’ (1899), as their ship passes the Essex marshes, ‘we live in the flicker’.