press release

The first solo presentation in the UK of work by artist duo AL and AL, including a new FACT commission INTRODUCTION

This exhibition is the first UK solo presentation of work by artist duo AL and AL. Forming a central part of Liverpool’s European Capital of Culture celebrations and FACT’s Human Futures programme, the exhibition features a new video installation Eternal Youth (2008) commissioned by FACT which is shown alongside two existing works and a blue screen interactive studio.

UK artists AL and AL make spectacular computer generated videos which radically re-appropriate contemporary pop culture through an inventive use of celebrity icons, live action performance and animation special effects. The artists have been working together since 1997, when they met through a chance encounter in Derek Jarman’s garden in Dungeness. This uncovered some remarkable coincidences: their shared three first names, Alan James Edward, and that their fathers had the same name and died on the same date. These and many other intriguing parallels formed the basis of AL and AL’s interest in the notion of doubling, which has since broadened to explore the role of technology in creating simulated experiences.

The works in this exhibition, Eternal Youth (2008), Interstellar Stella (2006) and Perpetual Motion in the Land of Milk and Honey (2004) all investigate the power of mediation and popular culture. Composed in stunning computer generated imagery, these works remind us of the promises and perils of technological seduction and our increasing desire to control our identities through media intervention. Through their use of CGI, live performance and animation as well as their direct references to history of art, film and culture, AL and AL are true pioneers in their ability to render the harsh reality of synthetic times and a digital world in flux.

Karen Allen, Curator

Exhibition Publication A fully illustrated publication to accompany the exhibition, featuring a Q&A with Grant Morrison and an essay by Marina Warner, produced by FACT and distributed by Liverpool University Press, will be available to buy from the FACT shop and online.