Lauren Velvick is an artist, writer and member of Islington Mill Art Academy. Having studied history of art at Manchester University, graduating in 2010, Lauren joined Islington Mill Art Academy, working with the group on a range of projects including a collaboration with Dutch artists; Bik Van Der Pol She has also been actively involved in the alternative art school ‘movement’, writing for visual art publications and blogs whilst experimenting with, and developing a curating practice that explores her attempts to navigate everyday life from an ethical standpoint.
Having written the essay Sunk Costs and Incomplete Thinking, exploring the psychoanalytic and philosophical issues surrounding contemporary decision-making, Lauren is using the text as a ground from which to develop a collaborative and discursive project with visual artists Zak Hane and Daniel Fogarty.
Exploring bureaucracy, responsibility, games, doors and the rules we make for ourselves Lauren, Zak and Daniel will present an evening of discursive and playful encounters.
To read Lauren’s essay please visit her blog: http://slugsandteas.blogspot.com/
Some more on the exhibition
This exhibition is the result of a series of simplifications and expansions. We began with a capacious theme; the idea of decision making in contemporary society and began to discursively follow interesting strands and pathways leading outwards from this point. There are constellations of concepts linked to decision making, but drawing from our own life experiences and interests we have decided to pursue ‘games’ as an over-arching topic. Within our explorations of this wide and varied topic you will find references to those games by name with which we are familiar in pop-culture, but also economic game theory, and the psychological workings of jokes and surprises. There is an emphasis on the infinitesimal yet unavoidable gap between seriousness and fun, stemming from the unclear and changeable difference between big serious decisions, and those which are frivolous and seemingly inconsequential.
When utilizing a mathematical approach in sociology and biology a broad and complex issue is reduced to a simple, tractable point which embodies the fundaments
of the larger issue. The point can then be manipulated, represented in different ways and applied to different situations. It is, of course, dangerous to then expand the findings and results of such manipulations; applying them once more to a wide and complex issue which would have been impossible to play with in such a way. However, in this instance, with this exhibition we have decided that it is worth embracing the hazards of the method to explore our concerns.
We are using bold, oversized references to conspicuous, recognizable games, in order to create an immersive atmosphere. So much of the study and thought on
decision making is represented in dry, academic, theoretical format which may not be satisfactory for the exploration of such a personal, emotion driven, and above all human topic. Therefore we have utilized vastly simplified visual and physical
methods of representation, as a different way of looking at problems which would usually be found buried beneath layers of specialist vocabulary and convoluted equations. This isn’t to say that is it necessarily right to simplify complex ideas, we
are not making that argument, rather we are playing on the way in which systems such as ‘Game Theory’ grow to have a reputation for being indecipherable; “overprecision in sending a message creates imprecision when it is received because precision is not clarity”1.
1. Rasmusen, Eric. Games and information: 3rd Edition 2001: Blackwell, p.5