Movie Protocol, 2010 - Pen on acetate New Commission


Harald Smykla presents a newly commissioned performance and durational drawing of Nick Roeg's film Insignificance, which adds to his ongoing Movie Protocol series.


Movie Protocols are pictographic shorthand notations of films, created in real time as the artist watches them. Sequences of swift line drawings chase one another like words across a page, while he makes a graphic record of every take. Capturing film through live drawing turns the usually passive process of watching a movie into an active one that generates its own visual language.


By using overhead projection he turns Movie Protocols into publicly performed parallel screenings. Each lasts exactly as long as the film, so signs of exhaustion, stress, despair and relief can be observed in both the artist and the drawing.


Harald Smykla was born 1961 in Germany, and has lived and worked in London since 1988. He studied painting and printmaking at Karlsruhe in the 1980s, and pictorial concerns continue to inform and explore site, time and context specific, mostly ephemeral and frequently collaborative live art practice he has pursued since the late 1990s.


He has exhibited and performed throughout Britain and Europe. Recent projects include MAP Live 2007 Performance Art Exchange in Israel and Croatia, TRIPARKS (Exmoor National Park residency) in 2008, East Wing Collection VIII at the Courtauld Institute, London, in 2008/09, and Profusion at Calke Abbey, Derbyshire (a Beacon Art Project with The National Trust).


His ongoing series of Movie Protocol performances and drawings were presented by England & Co, London, as part of their 2009 City X exhibition, at Zoo Art Fair 2009 and at his one-person show at the gallery.