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Everything is better when it's walk-in 07 October 2016

For an exhibition that doesn’t seem to take itself too seriously, my response to Mould Map 6 — Terraformers follows in the same vein. Not to say I haven’t found the work intellectually valuable (I actually found a lot to take from it), but the aspect of Terraformers I have found myself contemplating most is the description of the exhibition. Or really just one line of it; that for this show the Gallery contains a “group exhibition / walk-in magazine”.

There was once a time, before I came to Nottingham and began studying Fine Art, when I thought a publication had to be on paper. I thought it had to have lines of words. I thought it had to be carried in hands and found soggy in the rain. I thought it had to fit a category. Soon after my arrival in the city, and upon crawling out from the rock I had apparently been living under, I discovered zines. This opened up my world to self-publication and all the practicalities of the printed word that is no longer essential there. Ever since, for me, the confines of “a publication” have ebbed away in to the peripheral. Still, Mould Map 6- Terraformers, has once again been a revelation.

I never thought a publication could BE an exhibition. I never thought it could be this colourful, have a film piece, and a computer game. But the thing that stuck is I never thought a publication could be walk-in.

I was left considering the words “walk-in” above all else. To me, “walk-in” is a domestic term. You get walk-in showers, walk-in pantries. As a girl growing up having a walk-in wardrobe was a thing of envy. But never a walk-in magazine. The bright colours of the exhibition against the stark white walls of the gallery space remind me of the early 1990’s computer graphics, of the episode of Goosebumps when the protagonist was sucked in to the computer, and the stretching 3D shapes of early screensavers. It is as if a magazine was sucked in to a void and dissected but then frozen, suspended for us to encounter. As I walk around the exhibition and traverse the different surfaces of visual information I agree with those wardrobe ready preteens, everything is better when it’s walk-in.

Dominique Phizacklea

Fine Art, Year 3

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