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Early Works

Andrew Kötting
1980

Early Works

Being Karnal came about through a collaboration with Heilco Van der Ploeug (Club Montepulciano) and Leila McMillan.

Under this guise we presented our 'performance-happening-carry-on-shenanigans' in venues across London, culminating in a support slot to the Weather Girls (It's raining men), at the Fridge, Brixton, where we were joined by a 'brass section'.

Super 8 films that I had made using cheap black and white MFA surveillance stock were projected over the top of us by Leila as we went about our business. Skinned Alive, Don't Shout, Dead Relatives, Cement the Land all featured. They invariably drew upon the words from the particular 'songs' and worked in an illustrative capacity. A Test Department inspired drumming piece by the both of us would invariably start the proceedings followed by a musical bricollage which included Porta-studio, Casio player, Fostex revox reel to reel and assorted noises. Heilco would sing or shout beautifully and I would join in accordingly.

All this eventually led to Klipperty Klopp which I performed on my own to a pre-recorded backing track. Leila would project, speeding up or slowing down the projector in an attempt to keep a semblance of sync.

The work came about through a process of drawings-paintings-prints or text that I would work on at the Art College in Bromley. It was a pretty ad hoc way of working. I would assimilate collate and then regurgitate ideas. This remains my modus operendi to the present day.

'Better to whisper something in to the ears of a dying man than to have said nothing at all' was the maxim.

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