Not only do slugs understand the value of humour...

A woman can be seen communicating with, or performing strange tricks to an audience of giant slugs. Comfortable in their company, she strays into the psychological territory of animals. There is a feeling of ambiguity, of the supernatural, which supports the idea of things in transformative states. The context is stripped of conventional indicators. The film runs with a throbbing visceral soundtrack. Abstracted sounds of nature are interwoven with human sounds creating a disordered and nonsensical language. The slug experience is felt and embodied – the aim is for the viewer to loose self awareness and go into ‘slug time’ and ‘mode’. Slow motion contributes to the abstract and under-the-surface mood, revealing mysterious qualities of movement and unconscious impulses of the animal.

  • Karen Piddington
    Producer
  • Karen Piddington
    Director
  • Karen Piddington
    Key Cast
  • Project Type:
    Experimental
  • Runtime:
    11 minutes 46 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    January 3, 2018
  • Production Budget:
    1,000 GBP
  • Country of Origin:
    United Kingdom
  • Country of Filming:
    United Kingdom
  • Shooting Format:
    Digital
  • Aspect Ratio:
    16.9
  • Film Color:
    Color
  • First-time Filmmaker:
    No
  • Student Project:
    Yes
Director Biography - Karen Piddington

Born and based in London
Lives in Brighton UK

Education:
2015 to 2017 MA Fine Art (distinction). Chelsea College of Art and Design.
2008 to 2013 BA (Hons) Fine Art (2:1). Central Saint Martins College of Arts and Design.
2006 to 2008 BTec Foundation Diploma in Art and Design (Distinction). Brighton City College
2005 to 2006 Art and Its Histories Certificate (Merit) Open University

Solo Exhibition:
2017 Animality, Folkestone Triennial, Space Gallery, Folkestone UK
Selected Group Exhibitions:
2017 On the rocks, Folkestone Triennial, Space Gallery, Folkestone
2017 The Lovely Gallery, London SE26
My Place, Brixton East Gallery, London SW9
Make Up, Mills Centre Gallery, Highgate, London N6
Video Art Trash, Chelsea Theatre, London SW1
Nasty Women, Chelsea MAFA, London SW1
Trans-it. Interim Show, Chelsea Triangle Space, London SW1
Art Disasters, BBG Gallery, London SW1
2016 Pillow Talk, BBC 100 Women, London W1
Tempest Inn, Brighton
Drawing Utopias, Iklectik Art Lab, London SE1
BBG Gallery, Chelsea, London SW1
Counterpractice, Chelsea Cookhouse, London SW1
Olefactory MA Collaboration, Chelsea, London SW1
Brighton Digital Festival, Brighton Dome and Corn Exchange
The Lovely Gallery, London SE26
Susak Expo Art Biennale, Susak, Croatia
For Animal Eyes Only (Decommissioned), Sussex UK
Brixton East Gallery, London SW9
Janette Beckman Punk Rock Hip Hop Mash-up, Punctum Gallery, London SE1
Staying In, Mills Centre Gallery, Highgate, London N6
2015 Art Maze, Bargehouse, Oxo Tower Wharf, London SE1
Counterpractice, Chelsea Triangle, London SW1
Exhibit Here, Menier Gallery, London SE1
Nesta, London EC4
Muses, Monsters & Mannequins, 5th Base Gallery, London E1
2014 Crepuscular, The Crypt Gallery, Euston Road, London NW1
Outsider Exhibition, Candid Gallery, London EC1
Colourswatch, Espacio Gallery, Bethnal Green, London E2
Museums At Night, London Canal Museum, London N1
Hiscox Art, London EC3
ArtFix, Oxford Street, London W1
Art For Life, Cultivate Gallery, London E2
2013 Brighton Digital Festival, Brighton Dome, Concert Hall, Brighton
From the Archive, Hide Gallery, London SE1
Wherehouse, Bermondsey Project Space, London SE1
Oh!, Oxford House, London E2
Degree Show, Central Saint Martins, The Street, London N1
2012 Museums At Night, The London Canal Museum, London N1
2011 Subtle, Wayward Gallery, London E2
Valentines Mansion, Ilford
In The Raw, The Mill Co Project, London E2
Camden Arts Centre, London NW3
For What its Worth Whitechapel, London E1
2010 Trinity Buoy Wharf, London E14
Bare Knuckles, Xuma Gallery, Brighton
2008 Pelham Tower, Brighton UK

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Director Statement

My fascination is with awkward conjunctions and contradictions between people and animals. I use ambiguity, absurdity and humour to blur boundaries, and to question ways in which we relate to other species. We cannot escape our humanness but the point of my work is to consider the possibility of becoming something other.

I find a position of sameness with animals. I step into their world to explore it not from a separate human position but from a position of animality. Our similarities are juxtaposed, magnified and exaggerated to create paradoxical scenes, re-presenting definitions of humanness.

I work with film, video performance and photography. I also draw, and make sculptures and installations. My video performances are an exploration of animality as a psychological space in which to communicate differently; to behave, move and even see differently. My performances are unplanned and unscripted, and feature slow, subconscious movements, as if outside human time and space. Narrative and reality appear dislocated. Using a playful and serious intent, my aim is for the viewer to lose self awareness.

Animals feature as the protagonists in my work. Like a wildlife documentary film maker, I film animals in their natural habitat. Slow motion is prevalent, taking the film out of documentary mode and turning it into the medium of the animal. I hold open a space of ambiguity and position myself in that space with the animal. I like the power of the living animal’s role as itself in art as it inadvertently suppresses the human.