Mark Jacobs and Sam Clayton

choragic monument CV | Workshop

Sam Clayton and Mark Jacobs - Statement

The oneplace residency scheme presented us with the opportunity to continue our ongoing investigations into a shared set of interests that seemed to be encapsulated by Tatton Park.

These investigations we hoped would include; the historical and the (un)natural, the social and the spatial, folly and ruin, the geological and the aeronautical, the cups of tea and the sandwiches.

Through strolling and discussion followed by research and more discussion our collaborative technique is well honed - though approaching any residency with no real idea of how or if work will become manifest is always odd.
The Pleasure grounds and their enduring presence in the 21st century reveal a complex palimpsest of meanings; layers of (dis)order and folly accumulate with myth and history in one location where we find ourselves in the present day charged with the task of making art(work).

The work made was a result of several recurring points of interest/annoyance that our perambulations seemed always to lead back to. Namely the strange location, home of the choragic monument that is the truncation of the Beech avenue. The Choragic monument itself that had survived to this point with a greatness we both enjoyed and the troposphere overhead where the incessant movement of aircraft rooted every romantic fancy firmly in the present.

It was researching the monument and its kind that pointed us again to the avenue. A street lined with monuments that lead to the greek chorus; one such lantern made for the patron Lysicrates the only example left standing in Athens. A reworking of an ancient ruin, built in Cheshire to act as exclamation mark to a garden.
We wanted to experiment with an avenue of lights but it was impossible to compete against such a monumental ornament in sculptural terms. We admitted defeat and leaving Repton behind, went to B&Q for our garden ornaments. Our Choragic copies would be made in China.

Negotiations with Manchester Airport followed and they allowed us to experiment with our ‘runway’ though we knew its attempts at being either a runway seen by the ever present planes or as a new addition to the grandiose follies of the pleasure grounds would both fail.

Aiming more for the flying gramophones of William Egerton, the daft and changeable installation of Choragic ornaments feebly try to make their presence felt and add another layer of oddity.