After the Curtain

Modified led laptop screens, power supplies, cables, nails
8100 x 2450 x 750 mm
Shown during 'Illusionarium 2021' at the former Debenhams store, Romford, London
‘After the Curtain’ is a light installation consisting of 242 screens from broken laptops, sourced from computer shops around the artist’s studio in South East London. Each screen has been painstakingly cleaned and connected to a power supply, creating a wall of translucency that emit light but no information.

The work is part of a wider series of site-specific installations using modified LED screens that has seen the artist exhibit outside—where the screens were powered by the sun—in art galleries and the front window of a phone shop in Peckham. In this installation, the formation of the screens responds to the 1960s architecture of the former Debenhams store in which it is installed, mirroring the symmetry, functional lines and grid-like organisation of the facade. Reminiscent of an advertising billboard, or phone or television window displays, the work points at the hidden prevalence of screen-based devices— objects we regularly look through and into, but rarely at.

The title ‘After the Curtain’ refers to the temporary emptiness of the Debenhams building, which the artist likens to the time between plays, when the stage is cleared and reset. In itself a large, electronic curtain, the work makes a feature of the swinging cables, plugs and sockets that power it, finding them not unlike a draped piece of fabric.

Supported by the Arts Council England and Havering Changing.
Photos @Katrin Hanusch