DAN SHIPSIDES - Swammerdam Groove


CV & contact





video stillvideo still

Swammerdam Groove

DVD 12mins.

This was one of two projects developed for the Smart Project Space. (www.smartprojectspace.net)

They comprise of a video work entitled Swammerdam Groove which documents a series of climbs throughout the Swammerdam building in Amsterdam and Blood Cell Sequence a bouldering ( a form of rock climbing ) construction designed to be used by local climbers as a training facility. Both works embrace the metaphor of research and pushing ones’ limits.

The Swammerdam building is squatted by the Smart Project Space and houses a major artist studio complex a bar, a club and a number of other culture related organisations. It is under threat from developers and a battle is being fougt to save the building for the local community and arts community. Previously a medical research college named after Jan Swammerdam ( the scientist who discovered the Red Blood Cell ) the building now continues to be active dynamic space for expeimental new thinking, research, cultural exploration and production.

This video work Swammerdam Groove develops an exploratry climbing route rising from the buildings’ basement up through the six floors and out onto the rooftop to gain a city-wide view of Amsterdam. The route reveals and reclaims the building by exploring its spaces many of which have become derelict through disuse. The challenge of the explorative path finding, evident in the climbers’ movements as he solves particular move sequences, reflects the original purpose of the building which housed medical research and teaching. In that it seeks new knowledge the project embodies a metaphorical notion of research. The spatial disorientation within the work presents a new narrative in and of the building suggesting the potential for new ways of concieving the space whilst complementing the current innovative ways in which the building is being inhabited.

No topless bathing
- Belfast has suffered enough. Sala Naranja, Valencia, Spain. 2005
Solo exhibition. GtGallery. Belfast. 2004
Endure Smart Project Space, Amsterdam.Blood Cell Sequence / Swammerdam groove. 2002