Mike Collier - A Dawn Chorus. Singing the World: Mimesis and Birdsong will be on show at Drawing Projects UK from 26 October to 24 November 2018.
Imitating with the mouth the fluid voices of birds
came long before
men were able to sing together in melody and please the ear.
Lucretius (94-55BC): De Rerum Natura
This exhibition by Mike Collier was initially inspired by listening to a dawn chorus at Cheeseburn in Northumberland – a choir of sixteen birds heard early one morning in May. Together their songs, represented variously as digitally manipulated sonograms and musical transcriptions, form the basis of this show of screen prints, music and digital prints.
Mike has approached the experience of the dawn chorus in a number of different ways, collaborating with printmaker Alex Charrington (Charrington Editions), composer and musician Bennett Hogg and natural history sound recordist Geoff Sample on the project.
He has looked at the relationship between the natural world, its specific cultures and cultural ecologies, and our own sense of culture/s. The work attempts to loosely describe how individual bird species interact through song in the dawn chorus - exploring ways of visually and musically re-invoking these patterns of cultural interaction in a more-than-human world.
Mike wants to explore ways of showing how we might better understand our complex relationship to a more-than-human world, enabling us to value the whole world (birds, plants, animals, peoples etc) as a living ecology of cultural differences.
The exhibition has been supported by a number of organisations including Arts Council England, University of Sunderland and Newcastle University.
Please see the Community page for details of events during the exhibition, which will include a Drawing Discussion with the artist on 24 November, and a workshop on 18 November with Fritz Horstman of the Josef and Anni Albers Foundation on Josef' Albers' Interaction of Color.