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Death metal and knitting at Norwich Castle

PUBLISHED: 12:30 01 February 2020

 Oreet Ashery, Passing through Metal (2018) Photography: Josh Murfitt � Courtesy the Artist

Oreet Ashery, Passing through Metal (2018) Photography: Josh Murfitt � Courtesy the Artist

Oreet Ashery, Passing through Metal (2018) Photography: Josh Murfitt � Courtesy the Artist

Forty knitters and a death metal band are part of a sound-and-picture art piece on show at Norwich Castle

 Oreet Ashery, Passing through Metal (2018) Photography: Josh Murfitt � Courtesy the Artist Oreet Ashery, Passing through Metal (2018) Photography: Josh Murfitt � Courtesy the Artist

The February object of the month from Norwich Castle is a soundtrack and series of photographs of a performance by artist Oreet Ashery. Called Passing Through Metal, it is introduced by curator of modern and contemporary art Dr Rosy Gray:

"Oreet Ashery's performance Passing through Metal was staged at Kettle's Yard, Cambridge as part of the exhibition fig futures on 17 September 2018, the first time the work had been presented in the UK. Featuring the death metal band Anoxide and their lead singer Omar Swaby, the performance involved 40 local knitters using metal knitting needles. The resulting sound work, alongside a series of photographic prints that document the performance, have now entered Norwich Castle's contemporary art collection.

Producing a rain-like sound, the knitters work together to create black woollen snake-like forms, a continuation of the forms begun in a previous presentation of the work. The rhythm established by the knitters is interspersed with the explosive and unexpected sound of Anoxide, producing a sense of collective anticipation. The shared endeavour of the knitters emphasises the impact and value of communal experience in a society increasingly characterised by isolation.

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Ashery's work is on show until the end of February at Norwich Castle as part of the exhibition SPOTLIGHT: Works from the Modern and Contemporary Art Collection (until December 2020). Each month for 10 months, the central space in the gallery will showcase a work by a different artist that has recently entered the collection.

Passing through Metal was presented to Norwich Castle Museum and Art Gallery by the artist and made possible by Art Fund, Outset and Arts Council England, and in collaboration with Kettle's Yard, University of Cambridge."

Find out more about Oreet Ashery and her work at a talk on Friday February 7, 2.30-3.15pm.

Oreet Ashery: How We Die is How We Live Only More So will be presented by Wellcome Collection writer and curator George Vasey.


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