Logical Song

4 Feb-3 Mar 2024

Castlefield Gallery
Manchester M15 4GB


Castlefield Gallery presents Logical Song, Rowland Hill’s first major solo exhibition.

Exploring the aesthetics of 1990s Eurodance music, club culture and local fairgrounds, Hill will transform the gallery into an immersive installation which sits between an attraction and an exhibition. Visitors will be invited to enter spaces that move them from the private and domestic to the theatrical and communal, embarking them upon a destabilising  journey through a fantasised past to a darker, speculative future.

A new multi-screen audio-visual work Holy Prototype will present a constellation of fairground signs which have visited the artist’s hometown every year since the early 2000s. These totemic images will be set against the echoing voices of fairground operators and Elgar’s Memorial Chimes (1923), composed in memory of the First World War.

Logical Song will also house an adaptation of Hill’s Fluchtpunkt, an audio landscape of extreme weather sounds — a recurring metaphor for conflict and resolution in 90s dance music — which, today, take on a stark significance. Underpinned by an ominously thudding beat, the exhibition prompts visitors to question the dreamworld of Eurodance and its disquieting rhetoric of utopia and emergency.

Rowland Hill (b.1989) creates experiences that play with the artifice, tension and vulnerability inherent to live performance and its stagecraft, sometimes with an unsettling or ambivalent outcome.

She frequently works collaboratively and across a range of media, especially film and video, live performance, installation, sound, collage and experimental event formats. Much of her work deals with absence and presence, and relies upon audiences to engage in processes of speculation and imaginative projection, often within an interdisciplinary environment that draws on her background studying and working in theatre, film and music contexts.

In recent years Rowland Hill’s work has been commissioned by Turner Contemporary (Margate), The Royal Standard (Liverpool), Holden Gallery (Manchester) and Ambit publication. She has performed and presented her work at spaces including Raven Row (London), ICA (London), The Koppel Project (London), Splendor (Amsterdam), Videographé (Montreal), and Flux Factory (New York). In 2018 she received the Clare Winsten Memorial Award from the Slade School of Art in London where she completed her MA, and in subsequent years has been awarded a Jerwood Bursary and a Manchester Culture Award.