Contemporary artists working in a heritage context

Jack-the-lad, audiovisual installation, Jill Impey, from re:collect’s An Undertaking, St. Chads Church, Shrewsbury
Anthem, war no more, audiovisual installation, Jill Impey, from The First Casualty of War is Truth, a re:collect touring exhibition.

Jill Impey’s installation stands in contradiction to The Old Lie – the propaganda, call to arms “Sweet and fitting it is to die for one’s country.” referenced in Wilfred Owen’s poem Dulce et decorum est, Pro patria mori. The waste of young lives in WW1, is represented using the metaphor of trees as both witnesses and participants; witnesses that can out live humans by hundreds of years; and that have been present through all the squabbles over land and shifts of power engendering wars before and since 1914-18; whose limbs, have historically been put to service made into ships for trade and war. Cut sections of various trees are exhibited to show a timeline of 100 years of British engagement in conflict since WW1, the war to end all… a Heart of Oak, references ideas of heritage, reverence and longevity. Bringing the piece into the present, voices of contemporary youth deliver the message of loss in a specially commissioned arrangement of Anthem for Doomed Youth by Wilfred Owen; devised and performed by Mollie Grant and Jack Clorey, Music students from Shrewsbury College, sung to film of a lone oak in an empty wood, while webcam footage of Galipoli, and other ‘surveillance’ views draw attention to the notion of bearing witness, being conscious, singing out; the truth about war is that one begets another.