Gordon Schmidt’s practice is concerned with relationships between cultural, historical and technological occurrences. Using contemporary mechanisms and methods to present and re-present cultural documents from previous eras, Schmidt’s works are ultimately his own subjective renderings of the largely second hand experience of these occurrences. The artists' source material includes found objects or pre-existing documents in the form of books, TV shows or films from which Schmidt creates subtle treatments, reflecting on and acknowledging his subjective relationship to the historical narratives and subjects that he draws from. Previous works have included documentary footage of the Mai 68 demonstrations in Paris, Elvis televised Comeback Special and a forged Pollok painting.
Schmidt's work demonstrates an ongoing engagement with notions of group mentality and collaborative activities. More recently the artist has broadened this enquiry to include notions of individual experience and the subjective rather than the objective encounter, focusing on the role of the individual within the context of the current preoccupation towards group focused experience, visible in all aspects of life from the social and cultural to the political and economic.
The made for television ‘Wednesday Play’ dramatisation of Satre’s play Huis Clos is a cultural document which considers both the individual and the group. In this new work the soul is easier to know than the body’ Schmidt represents footage originally made for single channel, TV broadcast as an immersive installation, customised to heighten the experience of the individual viewer. Presented on free standing screens, the three synchronised video projections create a phenomenological, rather than a purely visual experience.