Shamanic verses

portrait of the artist

Marcus Coates making perfect sence

Before you start with the compliments: I didn’t take this pic. Its by Nick David and its part of artist Marcus Coates’ shamanic investigation into the colossal process of demolition and reconstruction of the Elephant and Castle which is underway at the moment – specifically the Heygate Estate. It was commissioned and entirely produced by NOMAD. Its a moving piece; beautiful for many reasons and in many ways. Coates has taken the conventional “vision” for the area and reinterpreted it in shamanic terms. In the process he creates a magical and insightful parallel world.

It also has a fantastic space for its two week screening: they’ve acquired an old shop premises which is actually in the mall at the Elephant and Castle. Those of you who know the Elephant will probably the agree with my view that the mall is a bit of a wrong’un. Its imminent destruction now seems to have accelerated it’s dilapidation. NOMAD has constructed a cinema in the centre of the shop space which sits as a monolithic black box – a work of art in itself. The depressing truth is that the shop space was previously a pound store which went out of business because of the opening of the 98p store further down the mall.

The noise of the shopping mall blends nicely into the intriguing narrative as Coates spiritual quests infects the broad range of people he encounters. Its reassuring that everyone he meets were open minded to some frankly weird shit! Maybe it’s way Coates himself presents it. His quiet but unquestionable self-belief is immensely reassuring.

The whole experience is an example of contemporary London art at its finest. If you miss this one you’ll miss out on a slice of history trust me.

Its only on till the 29th April so get ‘em while they’re hot. You can read more about it on the NOMAD website… HERE

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