North Circular & After (Made for TV)
Mark Lewis
March 3 — March 31, 2001

North Circular [2000] will be projected in the Or, and consists of a single 4-minute shot lasting precisely the length of one 400ft roll of 35mm film. The shot opens on an abandoned and partially ruined modernist office/warehouse building that sits in a giant empty car park alongside London’s North Circular Road. Through the broken windows of the building we can barely make out figures that run across the second floor, occasionally hurling objects to the ground. After a few minutes the camera begins a slow and steady movement in and up towards the building, and we finally realize the figures are a group of young adolescent boys. The video climaxes on an extreme close up of a child’s spinning top that has been found and discarded by one of the boys. The top begins to lose its momentum and at the moment that it falls over, the film ends.

Shot in real time, “North Circular” uses the minimal narrativity of one single reel of film to explore a sense of duration and place. It also attempts, with these cinematic vocabularies, to examine boredom,stagnation and decay.

Accompanying North Circular will be the another of Lewis’ recent video works, After (Made for TV) [1999]. After is a compilation of scenes which supposedly take place after the action in a movie is completed, and features banal and confusing moments of inactivity, obviously contrived special effects, and histrionic acting.

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