BITD film still magic trick06

The Belief In Things Disappearing

MIR­ROR presents The Belief in Things Dis­ap­pear­ing, a solo exhi­bi­tion by Jo Lathwood

06/09/23 – 15/12/23
Opening Times
Sunday, Closed
Mon–Fri, 09:00 – 17:00
Saturday, 09:00 – 13:00
The starting point for this exhibition comes as a self directed challenge, set by the artist to make a show that disappears.

Already deeply concerned with the environmental impact of her practice, this challenge has shaped every aspect of how the work has been made, shown and the idea of its disappearance once the exhibition closes.

Disappearance underpins every aspect of the work presented, explored through two key interconnecting, perhaps seemingly incongruous themes: waste and magic.

We are all engaged in the action of waste disposal, but our understanding of what happens to our rubbish is less commonly known. Our shifting relationship with the status of objects from once personal items to trash are transactions that are sometimes quick and other times difficult. As objects leave our personal domain and are thrown away - they ‘disappear’. Yet the scientific theory of ‘the conservation of mass’ tells us that nothing can really disappear - matter can only transform into different elements, whether they be gas, liquid or a solid. We can create or destroy objects but the resources on the earth are finite.

Traditionally magic held a space between art and science that used to be a much bigger part of our understanding of the world. Magic resides in the realm of the unknown and as technology has advanced there is less space for grey areas, deception or pure belief. We watch as items vanish in the magician’s sleight of hand trick, knowing it for what it is.

This exhibition includes film, time lapse video, drawings and sculpture made in response to Plymouth’s history and cityscape. During an extended period of research, Lathwood visited an Energy from Waste Plant, had meetings with the University's staff driving forward approaches to sustainability; and time spent at The Box‘s archives exploring the history of magic within the city.
BITD film still magic trick06