Nicola Singh & Helen Collard: 'Power Grab'

Still from a film by Nicola Singh & Helen Collard, 'Power Grab'

Power Grab problematises traditional representations and locations of power in cinema. Referencing the figure Kendo Nagasaki, a masked British wrestler who famously maintained a powerful presence by never revealing his face or speaking in public, it plays on notions of power in relation to voice and image.

For Power Grab, Collard and Singh have created a training process inspired by Nagasaki, devising a series of game-like, combative and reparative exercises that explore the notion and acquisition of power. A performance to film, the camera captures a series of physical, emotional and intuitive exchanges that distil archetypal modes of power in cinema—and those that exist between viewer and screen.

Nicola Singh & Helen Collard
Video, colour, sound

About the artists

Nicola Singh is an artist and researcher whose practice is rooted in performance. She extends ideas of performance to her practice, alongside a critical engagement with contemporary art’s relationship to race and feminism. Selected previous projects include selection for Jerwood Visual Arts’ 3-Phase Award (2016–18), Eastside Projects and Workplace Gallery; and the UK/KOREA Artist Exchange Residency (2018) with BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art and The British Council; (2017). Singh is Teaching Fellow in Fine Art for Leeds University and holds a practice-based PhD.

Helen Collard is an artist interested in the relationships between mind and body, sound and technology. Through the creative use of technology, biofeedback, and sound, she generates and explores listening environments and experiences via performance, interactive installations and sound works. She has shown work at The Cistern; Bòlit Centre for Contemporary Art; BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art; and Barbican.

Further resources

Still from a film by Nicola Singh & Helen Collard, 'Power Grab'

Yeah, I’m a Tough Guy

'The locus of the film lies in its tension, between support – carrying one another in each other’s arms, leaning one’s weight on the other – and often teetering on the brink of collapse.' —Amy Charlesworth on 'Power Grab' Read more...