8 Jul 2005
Art and Science meet in StoryRooms 
A cutting-edge and innovative art exhibition will complement The Museum of Science and Industry's new Communications Gallery when it opens in the autumn. Vini Reilly provides a specially written soundtrack to Andrea Zapp's installation.

StoryRooms will use modern technology including the Internet to create a unique and challenging art experience for visitors to the new gallery. Seven artists from around the world are contributing to the exhibition, each examining a different aspect of human exchange and social interaction. The large-scale, networked installations invite the audience to actively participate in the exhibition.

The exhibit will sit alongside the Museum's new gallery, which tells the story of human communication from signs and gestures right through to modern mass media applications.

StoryRooms Curator and Artist Andrea Zapp said of the new show: "StoryRooms brings to Manchester a group of international media artists that have produced groundbreaking work in this field. Over the last few years, the Internet has drastically changed the format of human communication and StoryRooms will use art to examine the ways in which we now interact with each other and with technology.

In the exhibition, the computer is mostly invisible to the audience, who are asked to play with various kinds of scenarios, objects and visual experiments. It's a vibrant, striking, even surreal installation environment and I'm sure that visitors to the new Communications Gallery will not only enjoy it, but find it thought-provoking."

The Museum's Head of Galleries and New Developments, Seán Gaffaney, added: "We're excited about the new gallery, which will look at developments in communication from early man right up to the present day. The significant contribution that the people of Manchester and the North West of England have made to the story will be celebrated as well.

"StoryRooms will provide an interesting add-on to the gallery which will offer our visitors something a little bit different."

Artists contributing to the StoryRooms exhibition are: Susan Collins (UK), Paul DeMarinis (USA), Ken Goldberg (USA), Paul Sermon (UK), Cornelia Sollfrank (Germany), Tan Teck Weng (Malaysia), and Andrea Zapp (Germany/UK).

The new gallery will be located in the Museum's grade one listed 1830 warehouse and is due to open in October.

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Biting Tongues

In the grey days of late 1970s post-punk Manchester, youth culture was a serious affair: every musical performance was measured mostly by the conviction of its delivery. The term 'New Wave' opened up free vistas where acquired skills could once again be exercised after punk's monochrome blur. It could be applied to anything from a James 'Blood' Ulmer record to the latest Throbbing Gristle release, Magazine to Swell Maps. Move outside that terrain into Sun Ra, Parliament, Frank Sinatra and Martin Denny, and your options were suddenly without limit...

Then came Tony Wilson's Factory Club (at the Russell Club in Hulme) offering an open invitation to experiment that was taken up when Ken Hollings, Howard Walmsley, Eddie Sherwood and a few others decided to make some noise to accompany their 16mm silent epic Biting Tongues. A further performance followed a few weeks later, when Colin Seddon and Graham Massey disbanded their Post Natals project and joined up. The film itself, a flashing series of negative images, became a memory; the name remained.

- extract from the LTM Biting Tongues biography

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