Gregory Bennett

Panopticon

9 July – 8 August 2015

Panopticon I (2015)
HD video with audio
Duration: 14 minutes 33 seconds looped

Panopticon I (2015) continues Bennett’s exploration of conceptions of the utopian and dystopian, with this work presenting an endlessly rotating point-of-view of a circular panoptic structure. This construction is populated by an ever-expanding taxonomy of animated figures, plants, objects, and architecture which interact, assemble and re-assemble, simultaneously fixed and unstable, trapped in ceaseless loops and cycles in a form of animated stasis.

The Panopticon was an institutional design concept created by 18th century English philosopher Jeremy Bentham, wherein a single watcher is able to observe all the inmates of an institution simultaneously. Inmate knowledge of this surveillance would be an effective means of self-monitored behaviour control. Originally considered a progressive and enlightened solution to societal problems, the Panopticon has come to be read as a metaphor for modern “disciplinary” societies and their pervasive inclination to observe and normalise, most notably by French philosopher Michel Foucault in his work Discipline and Punish (1975).

Excerpts from ‘Panopticon’ (2015)

Ectomorphia I (2015)
HD video with audio
Duration: 7 minutes 27 seconds looped

Ectomorphia I (2015) takes a rotating circular form as a staging ground for a series of psychological vignettes. Using 3D animation and motion capture (whereby live performers movements are recorded in 3D and applied directly to digital figures) this work takes as its starting point themes of transfiguration and metamorphosis, referencing and reconfiguring the Greek myth of the flaying of Marsyas, from Ovid’s Metamorphoses.

Excerpts from ‘Ectomorphia I'(2015)