This is the final part of a trilogy of works by Karen Mirza and Ruth Beale made in collaboration across two Biennales (2008/2010). The Voyage of Nonsuch is a single channel video installation that analyses how film and film archives influence our view of cultural history, social space and everyday life. Constructed as a film essay, with a script composed almost entirely of citations, it observes and participates in the social and political spaces of the archive. Shot on 16mm film and colour digital HD, mostly behind the scenes of the British Film Institute Archive, the images and voiceover frame a poetic voyage through unfamiliar scenes of the interior and exterior landscape of the archive as a space, site and meta-structure.
The artistic practice of Karen Mirza is based on collaboration and dialogue. This manifests itself in a multi-layered practice of filmmaking, drawing, installation, photography, performance, publishing and curating. Karen Mirza co-founded no.w.here in London with Brad Butler, which plays an extensive part in curating new film work in the UK, expanding technical support for artists and hosting regular critical debates. Her current projects include an Artangel Interaction commission, The Museum of Non Participation.
An artist working across the formats of curating, publishing, performance and fine arts, Ruth Beale has shown work independently, collaboratively and as part of group projects at, Space Gallery (London), Talbot Rice Gallery (Edinburgh), SE8 Gallery (London). Her ongoing programme of thematic discussions, Miss Bs Salons, was part of the ICA Nought to Sixty programme, and since 2008 the salons have been situated in various private and public sites across Europe and the UK.
The Voyage of Nonsuch has been supported by Arts Council England South East, the British Film Institute, and Whitstable Museum & Gallery.