20 Farringdon Street

The expanded cinema of Karolina Raczynski, such as Skype Call and Signals II, has really enlightened my perception of film over the past year. On invitation to the 5th floor of a disused office block, to see a new performance piece of Karolina’s – my mind was buzzing with anticipation. The gutted L-shaped room conjured up it’s only after we’ve lost everything that we’re free to do anything…

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To an outsider 20 Farringdon Street appears to be out-of-service. An unregulated and unlit building whose surfaces have lost their gleam; an out-of-date monument to the not-so-distant past. Situated in the City of London, the surrounding architecture is permanently illuminated as the bulk of multinational corporations forms the backdrop to the labours of a workforce that operates into the night. 20 Farringdon Street is a seven-story building that has been stripped back to its skeletal structure. It is a hermetically sealed space formed of a series of cavernous L-shaped rooms which each encompass an entire floor of the building. Between the 25 November and 18 December, this empty space operates as the Farringdon Factory, an open studio complex for live events, screenings and installations, performances and talks. 

Karolina’s piece ’20 Farringdon Street’ bases itself within the title’s address. This low-lit 5th floor, via Karolina, became 20 Farringdon Street’s eyes and ears. We were immersed into a voyeuristic city landscape created by live video feed and mobile phone calls,

 Volunteers called from various workplaces around London as well as following commuters making their journeys home towards Farringdon Station and the local pubs.

Earlier that day I had been installing the Wildermenn exhibition at House Gallery, Peckham. After the performance, walking home through the city, my thoughts really led me to feel that Wildermenn was battling being of the city – whereas ’20 Farringdon Street’ truly carried the bigger stick, took a vantage point and listened to the city’s noise,  empathising with this beast.

…and some other interesting works part of Farringdon Factory:

http://www.emmamcgarry.com/farringdonfactory

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