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No Ball Games - Four Corners

Preview by Lizzie Guilfoyle

No Ball Games, an exhibition which sees four female artists using film and photography to investigate role reversal, sexual ambiguities and voyeurism, is on display at Four Corners until December 15, 2007.

Empty Porn Sets by Jo Broughton.

The soundtrack of a porn photo shoot, with the photographer at times resembling a trainer telling a dog to do tricks, is juxtaposed against projected images of the empty sets. At points the dialogue is disturbing, banal and humorous, but never sexy. Little is given away in the images themselves, only the occasional sex toy or stiletto breaks up interiors that swing between the vapid and the surreal.

The underlying messages, however, are clear and graphic. Women are a ghostly presence in these pictures – the rest is left to the imagination.

Burlesque Boyz by Julie Cook.

With the aim of reversing traditional male stereotypes in live erotic
entertainment and engaging a new audience, Julie Cook organised a series of male performance evenings that gave men the opportunity to perform burlesque. The work was photographed at the Working Men’s Cub in Bethnal Green, East London – a venue that still exists as a Working Men’s Club but has been recently rejuvenated by a fresh and fashionable audience.

Playing the Field (working title) by Moira Lovell.

Working within the genres of (documentary) portraiture and
documentary photography, Lovell’s practice draws attention to debates surrounding the third wave of feminism confronting issues of control, femininity and power. Her work here looks at female footballers. Photographing the players in the changing rooms directly after matches, Lovell investigates the passion that the players hold for the game and the relationships between team members.

Traditionally the sport has always been played, watched and run by men. With women now involved in professional football at all levels, Lovell investigates new boundaries of femininity and masculinity, and how playing the sport and competing is expressed within a female context.

Ras al Jinz by Charlotte Prodger.

Through 16mm stop frame animation, the viewer is pulled through a dreamlike journey. A miniature prehistoric realm gradually unfolds. Fragile hybrid creatures composed of animal bones can be seen hidden among forests, behind rocks. As the camera glides, subjects are lost from view. Others emerge within its journey.

Beaks and proboscises grate and peck, preen and caress. Rituals of oblique tenderness create ambiguity between copulation and feeding, predator and victim. A tension emerges on the threshold of transgression and innocence. In this undifferentiated hinterland, death has altered these beings relationship to purposeful action, desire and time.

Four Corners, 121 Roman Road, Bethnal Green, London, E2 0QN.

Times: Wednesday to Saturday – 1pm to 6pm.

Admission: Free.

Artist talk: Thursday, November 29, from 7pm to 8.30pm.