The latest artist to feature as part of Zabludowicz Collection's monthly solo presentation of emerging UK talent, Hannah Perry, follows up her recent show at Cell Projects with Wonderful While It Lasts. It marks the artist's first foray into two-dimensional mixed media, anchored by the familiar video installation format. Film is filtered through coloured acrylic, printed photographs and tabloid headlines, with the aim of extracting the moving image from its frame via an immersive cinematic environment.
The video itself, projected and beamed from monitors, fuses YouTube footage, news broadcasts and family recordings into a portrait of British youth and national identity, edited to samples of house music and distorted audio clips. What manifests is a vision both personal and universal, structured around theoretical excerpts from Slavoj Žižek, found statements, and Perry's own affirmations - these add thematic direction and serve to delineate the film's constituent moments. Cohesion is achieved by feeding digital footage through VHS mixers to arrive at a consistently glitchy whole; hypnotic loops are punctuated by jarring audio visual breaks, which quite literally navigate the textures and rhythms of adolescent experience.
The scratchy, grainy imperfection of Perry's work naturally lends itself to improvisation; found imagery and sound accrue new layers as they are re-sampled. The artist's recent presentation at Zabludowicz, Erotic Discourse, essentially constituted an edit of her installation, transposing its sound and visuals to live performance. A typical rhythmic structure was articulated by the performers' footsteps, providing an ostinato to offset the live drums, audio samples and projected flashes of light.
A visceral testament to the potential of youth, and witness to a destructiveness that accompanies limitless possibility, Wonderful While It Lasts plays out on screen as a kind of nihilistic burn-out into adulthood. Perry captures a point of conflict, the moment before youthful optimism yields to adult realism. This ambivalence translates into a sense of dislocation, an attempt on the part of the artist to reconcile or perhaps highlight the gulf between her own childhood and adult life.
Zabludowicz Collection Invites: Hannah Perry is on at Zabludowicz Collection until 01 April.