Andrew Stones’ new installation for Chisenhale Gallery is based on video and audio material recorded at CERN (Conseil Européen pour la Recherche Nucléaire) in France. This vast organisation houses some of the world’s largest machines that are deployed in the search for matter’s smallest particles. Using seven projection screens and multi-channel sound, Atlas depicts three zones of the CERN nuclear research complex: the underground 'Atlas' detector chamber, an underground particle accelerator (the ‘Super Positron Synchrotron’) and the offices of two CERN-based physicists.
CERN's Atlas detector chamber is a large collective civil engineering project, revealed in Stones' installation as a frieze-like triptych whose images crawl continuously across three large screens. For Stones, this gargantuan concrete chamber is reminiscent of other historically fabulous building projects, such as Noah's Ark or the Tower of Babel, which scholars and artists of earlier centuries attempted to reimagine and reengineer.
Atlas explores how we can be seduced and awed by aspects of science while simultaneously excluded from its processes. Stones' video and audio projects are concerned with how scientific knowledge appears to offer deep understandings which often challenge the value of subjective experience, leaving the individual in an unsettled 'insider/outside' state.
Andrew Stones was born in Sheffield, England, and completed his BA in Fine Art at Sheffield City Polytechnic, 1983. He was a NESTA Fellow from 2001-2004. Stones writes on subjects related to the core concerns of his work: the untidy collisions of art, science, nature and technology which occur in everyday life.
Atlas is commissioned by Film and Video Umbrella and Chisenhale Gallery, supported by Arts Council England. Project research has been supported by a Fellowship from NESTA (the National Endowment for Science, Technology and the Arts, UK)