Welcome to the only official site for People Like Us and Vicki Bennett
Since 1991 British artist Vicki Bennett has been working across the field of audio-visual collage, and is recognised as an influential and pioneering figure in the still growing area of sampling, appropriation and cutting up of found footage and archives. Working under the name People Like Us, Vicki specialises in the manipulation and reworking of original sources from both the experimental and popular worlds of music, film and radio. People Like Us believe in open access to archives for creative use. In 2006 she was the first artist to be given unrestricted access to the entire BBC Archive. People Like Us have previously shown work at, amongst others, Tate Modern, Whitechapel Gallery, The Barbican, Centro de Cultura Digital, Maxxi and Sonar, and performed radio sessions for John Peel and Mixing It. She has an ongoing sound art radio show 'DO or DIY' on WFMU. The People Like Us back catalogue is available for free download hosted by UbuWeb.
In 2015 Vicki completed a new A/V performance CITATION CITY, a project using techniques of Walter Benjamin’s Arcades Project in relation to London-based feature films. This premiered at transmediale Berlin, and Flatpack Film Festival Birmingham UK. Nothing Can Turn Into A Void – a documentary film about People Like Us has been screening in cinemas and festivals since Autumn 2015. Currently, Vicki is focussing on expanding both audio and moving image work for a multiscreen and multi-speakered environment with Recombinant Media Labs, and the new Expanded Radio commission Optimized! broadcast on WFMU in June 2016. Her most recent commission No One Is An Island, for WDR, broadcast on 9 April 2016.
People Like Us have been working on a brand new live set entitled “Genre:Collage”, which will be given a world premiere at Vancouver New Music Festival 2009. Other dates are being lines up for Genre:Collage in these coming weeks, including WFMU Record Fair in October (which will be free once in the fair), BFI Southbank in London, and also Linz, Austria – both in December 2009.
VANCOUVER NEW MUSIC FESTIVAL 2009
A festival of sonic collagism, and the art of sampled and repurposed sounds and images.
21 – 24 October 2009
Show starts 8pm each night
Free Artist Chats at 7pm each night
Negative Landscapes: free symposium on 24 October 2009, 2:30pm
Scotiabank Dance Centre
677 Davie Street
Tickets $20 regular, $15 students/seniors each night; available at Zulu Records (1972 West 4th Avenue), Scratch Records (726 Richards Street), through Tickets Tonight (www.ticketstonight.ca; 604.684.2787; surcharges apply) and at the door.
Passes for all four nights $60 and $40, available only through Vancouver New Music (604.633.0861) and at the door.
Wednesday 21 October 2009
Andrew O’Connor and Doug Horne
Thursday 22 October 2009
People Like Us
Friday 23 October 2009
Saturday 24 October 2009
plus free symposium
A new large scale AV work by Vicki Bennett entitled “Parade” will be exhibited at Hit The Ground at the Hatton Gallery, Newcastle-Upon-Tyne. There will also be two photographic montages by Vicki Bennett exhibited as part of the exhibition.
While viewing and sourcing content from the Great North Run film archive, it occurred to me that the huge crowds that come to spectate this event are as important as the participator.
I arranged film frame layers across the screen so that they strayed outwards in the direction of the natural panning of the original shots – much more in accordance with the natural gaze of the spectator, revealing a unique panoramic view of the content. The irregular angles and shifting perspectives bring to mind Cubist photomontage and Cubist/Vorticist painting/collage, with the added dimension of the moving image naturally taking this to another level.
Given that this is a celebration of human achievement, and as a nod of appreciation to the Cubist influence within this work, it seemed appropriate to use “Parade” by Erik Satie as the musical backdrop.
Parade has been screened at:
March 2011 – Ambulante Festival, Mexico
July-Oct 2010 – In The Long Run: 30 Years of Great Running – Great North Museum: Hancock, UK
September–November 2009 – Hatton Gallery, Newcastle-Upon-Tyne, UK Hatton Gallery 16 September – 14 November 2009, 10am – 5pm (Sun 2pm – 5pm)
The Hatton Gallery is based within the grounds of Newcastle University. The nearest Metro station is Haymarket. The Hatton Gallery, The Quadrangle, Newcastle University, Newcastle Upon Tyne. NE1 1RU Telephone 0191 222 6059
Background on the project – commission announcement from 2008:
To celebrate the silver anniversary of the BUPA Great North Run in 2005, the Great North Run Cultural Programme was established, which featured the film broken time by Jane and Louise Wilson. As part of the legacy of this film and part of an ongoing commitment to exploring the relationship between sport and art through, an annual award – Great North Run Moving Image Commission – was born.
Supported by Arts Council England, this major commission awards an experienced artist or film-maker £30,000 to create a new work which responds to and captures the spirit of one of the world’s top sporting events and we’re delighted to be able to announce the winner of Moving Image Commission for 2009 is British Artist Vicki Bennett.
Vicki will be working with archive footage of the Bupa Great North Run to create a new vision of the landscape and the route of the world’s largest half-marathon to be screened as part of the 2009 Bupa Great North Run Cultural Programme.
A: Part One – 17m12s
B: Part Two – 15m07s
Jean Baudrillard’s “Le Xerox et l’Infini” – originally published in Paris, 1987 – as read by Patricia and Ellen. Recorded on 12 July 2009 by Vicki Bennett in Hersham, England. Translation: Agitac, London, November 1988.
“Jean Baudrillard is perhaps the most important theorist of the ‘after modern’. Though he says himself he has ‘nothing to do with postmodernism’, many interpret him (along with Jean-François Lyotard) as among the most important prophets of a truly postmodern era. His works have attracted high praise and derision all over the world.”
Patricia and Ellen were born in Reims, north-eastern France, on July 29, 1929. They told interviewers that their grandparents were peasants and their parents were civil servants. They became the first of their family to attend university when they moved to the Sorbonne in Paris. There they studied German, which led to them to begin teaching the subject at a provincial lycée, where they remained from 1958 until their departure in 1966. While teaching Patricia and Ellen began to publish reviews of literature, and translated the works of such authors as Peter Weiss, Bertolt Brecht and Wilhelm Mühlmann.
Later on, with the development of the magnetic tape recorder, Patricia and Ellen used these new means in order to manipulate their performances and expand the possibilities of language sound transformations. Patricia and Ellen continue to actively perform their work, the contextual quality of which is enhanced by their idiosyncratic delivery.