A playlist to accompany the exhibition 'Version' by Ain Bailey at Wysing Arts Centre, 10th July - 22nd August 2021, curated by Hannah Wallis.
Installed in three parts across Wysing’s site, the title 'Version' pays tribute to the ‘version’ of a vocal reggae track. Throughout the exhibition, Bailey brings together sound and sculpture as means to expand on ideas and techniques of ‘sonic biography’, a generative methodology of sound exploration that the artist has finessed over the years. Presented with the opportunity to occupy several spaces across the site, Bailey has produced a series of works that reflect on the artist’s Jamaican heritage, albeit from the position of someone who has not yet visited the island.
A rendition of “Linstead Market”, a traditional Jamaican folk song, sung by artist and composer Elaine Mitchener plays intermittently throughout reception upon arriving, a nod to songs held in memory and childhood. Moving through to the main gallery, an installation, including a sound composition capturing the cooking of a traditional Jamaican dish, ackee and saltfish, is accompanied by sculptures, exploring the interconnected roles of sound and food in forming biography. For the third and final part of the exhibition, Bailey has transformed Folke Kobberling and Martin Kaltwasser’s Amphis sculpture in the Wysing grounds into an homage to dub, the music genre which originated on the island.
The three sound pieces are accompanied by a translation, written by artist and writer Taylor Le Melle. Presented alongside the sound works as a textual ‘version’ of the compositions, these act as an experiment in sound translation, whereby sonic components are shared in alternative ways. This element is developed in partnership with exhibition curator Hannah Wallis, as part of an exploration of how sound works can be made more accessible for D/deaf audiences.
Ain Bailey’s exhibition is generously supported by Arts Council England, DASH and The Future Curators' Programme, The Henry Moore Foundation and The Elephant Trust.
With special thanks to Martha Todd from Studio1Ceramics.