Alibi For The 21st Century
In James White’s “If Only, Only If” two cars are connected by a chain and driving in opposite directions, no-one is driving. The two cars - a Red Ford Mondeo and a Blue Peugeot 406 - are seemingly locked in a tug of war, an eternal conflict from which they wish to escape. Any chance of release is curtailed first by the chains and then by the imposing barriers.
With this work and its’ unrealised twin “If Only, Only Then” concrete notions come to mind: the formal work of a tug of war, the ultimate failure between intentions and reality and the utopian fantasy of realising desire.
White’s work is concerned with uncertainty, risk, safety, tension, antagonism, illusion and control. It speaks to the ideology of risk aversion, responsibility and regulation and the gap between the illusion and reality of Disneyland in our daily lives.
About the work
The cars are remotely controlled by White from a distance and are enclosed at either end by concrete barriers whilst the whole work is cordoned off with fencing.
If Performance of "If Only, Only If" at Chelsea College of Fine Art, Parade Ground during Degree Show (17/06/11 - 25/06/11) . One of approximately 30 performances. In this work my continuing fascination with risk, safety, power, control, uncertainty and authority is played out . The formal work of the tug of war with all the tension and antagonism is the visible form that works within both visible and invisible boundaries. The unrealised twin "If Only, Only Then" where all boundaries and control are dispensed with is a future project. Note: The cars are remotely controlled with unpredictable results in every performance.
http://vimeo.com/user5142554/albums = All Performances