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China Miéville, New Death, 2014.

New Death (2014)

China Miéville award-winning British science fiction author (Perdido Street Station, Iron Council, The City & the City) has produced a new series of short texts which will have a presence in the galleries, including an audio interpretation of his piece New Death. These texts have inspired the narrative of the exhibition, which is presented as a deconstructed movie set, with the curator as director, artists as actors, Miéville as scriptwriter and acclaimed artist collective The Kazimier as set-designers.

Taking it’s title from the newly commissioned piece of writing by China Mieville for this exhibition, New Death is an audio interpretation of Mieville’s thoughts of what the future of death might be; his imaginings of how our bodies may die differently.

The work looks to draw out the uncanny implications for time, physics and digitality in the qualities of this New Death. Working with sound designer Carl Brown, to carefully rearticulate Mievelle’s narrative, Jones’ presents an ambiguous, complex and contradictory interpretation of the original story.

The audio work is an extension of Jones’ own practice, which looks to explore the notion of error in writing and language, and how this relates to technology. With New Death, he has introduced a variety of linguistic and para-linguistic quirks to the computer voice - for example adding 'accent' and 'breath', at the expense of clarity.

This has an effect of degenerating the normally slick communication of the computer voice into something which is more human and affecting. The dialogue is situated even more ambiguously by the addition of filters and performative gestures which make the artist’s own voice less recognisably human.

This is a new commission for FACT, and the world premiere of the piece.