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Outpost 13: The Atrocity ExhibitionAuthor: Ballardian • Oct 3rd, 2011 •
Eurydice in a Used Car Lot. Margaret Travis paused in the empty foyer of the cinema, looking at the photographs in the display frames. In the dim light beyond the curtains she saw the dark-suited figure of Captain Webster, the muffled velvet veiling his handsome eyes. The last few weeks had been a nightmare – Webster with his long-range camera and obscene questions. He seemed to take a certain sardonic pleasure in compiling this one-man Kinsey Report on her . . . positions, planes, where and when Travis placed his hands on her body – why didn’t he ask Catherine Austin? As for wanting to magnify the photographs and paste them up on enormous billboards, ostensibly to save her from Travis . . . She glanced at the stills in the display frames, of this elegant and poetic film in which Cocteau had brought together all the myths of his own journey of return. On an impulse, to annoy Webster, she stepped through the side exit and walked past a small yard of cars with numbered windshields. Perhaps she would make her descent here. Eurydice in a used car lot?
The Concentration City. In the night air they passed the shells of concrete towers, blockhouses half buried in rubble, giant conduits filled with tyres, overhead causeways crossing broken roads. Travis followed the bomber pilot and the young woman along the faded gravel. They walked across the foundation of a guard-house into the weapons range. The concrete aisles stretched into the darkness across the airfield. In the suburbs of Hell Travis walked in the flaring light of the petrochemical plants. The ruins of abandoned cinemas stood at the street corners, faded billboards facing them across the empty streets. In a waste lot of wrecked cars he found the burnt body of the white Pontiac. He wandered through the deserted suburbs. The crashed bombers lay under the trees, grass growing through their wings. The bomber pilot helped the young woman into one of the cockpits. Travis began to mark out a circle on the concrete target area.
J.G. Ballard, Chapter One: ‘The Atrocity Exhibition’, The Atrocity Exhibition.
Presenting ‘Outpost 13: The Atrocity Exhibition’, a video directed by Mark C and produced by Outpost 13: Stuart Argabright, Mark C and Kent Heine. The full 35-minute film is based on J.G. Ballard’s The Atrocity Exhibition, and is part of a performance piece that debuted in Porto, Portugal at the Serralves Museum of Contemporary Art, with o13 performing the soundtrack live.
The excerpt here features narration from Ballard’s text by David Silver with Jen Jaffe and Esther Ahn, and images by Robert Longo, Adrienne Altenhaus and others. o13 have also completed a 10-minute video, soundtrack and narration for ‘Time, Memory And Inner Space’, Ballard’s 1967 essay, with narration by Judy Nylon, once of the group Snatch and a former collaborator of Brian Eno’s, plus a CG video by Austrian artist Patrick Quick.
Recently, 013 have been performing The Atrocity Exhibition and ‘Time, Memory And Inner Space’ in New York with a live soundtrack and sound design.
Mark C: guitar, synthesizers, vocals
Stuart Argabright: synthesizers, laptop, vocals
Kent Heine: bass
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