Breaking Media

Steve Jones, Sally Rodgers
Jukebox selection

Breaking Media shows the artists Sally Rodgers and Steve Jones destroying their back catalogue of analog and digital media.

In June 2013, Rodgers and Jones were moving from their recording studio in Cornwall. Over a period of twenty years they had built up a collection of fragile and obsolete recording material - multi-track tapes, floppy disks, DAT tapes, cassettes, Zip disks and 1/4" magnetic tapes. Like layers of geological strata, each storage media described the relentless shift of audio technologies. As neither had the space or inclination to continue storing this accumulated media archive, they decided to destroy it all, constructing a temporary installation from the wreckage.

To complete this cathartic process they also buried the ashes of their much loved friend and collaborator, Paul Lamb, thus expanding the destructive act in to a ceremony of death and renewal.

The ‘renewal’ takes the form of new creative practice that emphasises the mobile technologies - Smartphones and iPads – which they used to capture this process. These files were played back as a performance, processing image and sound with Max/MSP/Jitter and Ableton Live. The resulting document is projected via a Pico micro-projector onto miniature relief sculptures bearing representations of obsolete computer.

Artist Statement

Steve Jones, Sally Rodgers

We are musicians, sound designers and researchers, with our practice rooted in dance music and DJ culture. As the production duo A Man Called Adam we have released many recordings and together we run the independent label Other Records. Our DJing careers include residencies in the UK, Ibiza and touring worldwide, and our sound design commissions encompass gallery-enabling sound for exhibition spaces such as the British Museum, the BME, London and the Miraikan Museum, Tokyo. We continue to work together under the name Discrete Machines, composing and designing music and sound for installation, performance, film and radio.

Breaking Media represents not only the passing of old media, but functions as a Tabula Rasa. The scale and portability of the installation is designed to reflect the new media conditions and tensions that rise between musicians and the technologies they use.

Sally has recently gained a Doctorate at St Andrews University. Under the supervision of the poet Don Paterson, her research considers the historical interaction of technology and lyric forms. Steve is currently a PhD candidate at De Montfort University under the supervision of John Richards. His research is concerned with mobile technologies, applying the ‘Carry Principle’ to sound, image and performance.

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