Screen Walk with Alan Butler
Alan Butler will lead a tour of the game environment of Grand Theft Auto V, focusing on topics of representation and simulation and the role of the in-game photographer. Viewers will be able to follow the artist in his critical analysis of the game logics, and their social, political and economic implications.
In Screen Walks, a series of live-streamed explorations of digital spaces, selected artists and researchers investigate artistic strategies taking place online. The project gives an insight into practices using the screen as a medium. From re-contextualising pictures found on online marketplaces and uncovering data brokers’ invisible circulation of images to analysing in-game photography and the social, political and economic implications of games – Screen Walks examines various approaches, offers a behind-the-scenes look at artists’ work and uncovers new, current and forgotten digital spaces. Screen Walks is a collaboration between The Photographers’ Gallery in London and Fotomuseum Winterthur.
Alan Butler is a visual artist and lecturer, focusing on the material and philosophical implications that digital environments and new media technologies pose to the evolution of visual culture, politics, ecologies and social structures. Since 2005, part of this practice has involved an exploration of video game worlds and their potential to act as 'real' spaces of creativity beyond traditional game-play. Significant works in this series include Down and Out in Los Santos, a quasi-documentary photography series about homelessness and poverty in the video game Grand Theft Auto V, Virtual Cyanotype Botany, a series that uses the 19th century photo-chemical process to document plant-life from video games of the last 45 years and On Exactitude in Science, a two-screen feature film comprising Godfrey Reggio's Koyaanisqatsi and Butler's shot-for-shot remake KoyanisGTAV, which was produced entirely in Grand Theft Auto V. Since 2017, his works have been featured in galleries and museums across the globe, including The Akron Museum, USA, BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art, England, Muzeum Sztuki, Poland, Fotomuseum Winterthur, Switzerland, C/O Berlin, Germany, ZKM, Germany, Les Rencontres d’Arles, France, The Hammer Museum, USA, Transfer Gallery, USA, FACT, England, Kasteel Wijlre, The Netherlands, Lismore Castle, Ireland, Irish Museum of Modern Art, Ireland, Perth International Film Festival 2019, Australia, Biel/Bienne Festival of Photography, Switzerland and Espace Multimédia Gantner, France.