This work is part of the rewind archive.
Duration: 11 Mins
Year: 1980Original formats:
3/4" U-Matic Lo BandType of work:
A television newsreader recounts the minutiae of small-town life with due solemnity, but reveals a disturbing element of anarchic behaviour amongst the town’s old-age pensioners. Breakwell’s parodic take on television news is given gravitas by his use of the ‘real’ Border Television Newscaster, Eric Wallace.
ICA Gallery cinema events programme April 1982.pdf here.
Members Newsletter from ‘Kettle’s Yard’ including Ian Breakwell exhibition invitation. pdf here.
Description card for Ian Breakwell’s works including ‘The News’, ‘In The Home’ and ‘The Sermon’. pdf here.
Press clipping describing Ian Breakwell’s works ‘In The Home’ and ‘The News.’ pdf here.
Exhibition information for ‘Room with A View’ at The Photographers’ Gallery, London written by Chris Meigh-Andrews with information on Ian Breakwell’s The News.pdf here
Schedule for Ian Breakwell screenings at ‘The Fourth Hammersmith and Fulham Festival of Poetry.’ pdf here.
‘The national open art exhibition: Broadcast television and the visual arts’. Includes information on Breakwell’s ‘The News’.pdf here
Leaflet for the Arnolfini video library, Bristol, includes information on ‘The News’.pdf here
Informational booklet on the works of Ian Breakwell, inc. ‘In the Home’ and ‘The News’.pdf here
Letter to Stephen Partridge from Ian Breakwell, relating to the work ‘The News’.pdf here
“…Ian Breakwell, tackled the idiom of television news in a spoof bulletin and, by implication, raised questions about the veracity of new reporting. Where Orson Wells’ famous 1938 ‘Mars Invasion’ radio broadcast went for maximum dramatic impact, Breakwell’s ‘The News’ (1980) deliberately harnessed the banal. The work features a bland-looking newsreader framed in the usual head and shoulders shot, trapped behind a desk with relevant images keyed onto a screen above his head. The only difference here is that the news he reads consists of minute, fictional events occuring in the local community and becoming progressively more absurd as a group of pensioners persistently disrupt public events. The tape is slow and tedious and delivers its getle punch over an extended period. It is salutary to observe how Breakwell’s elevation of the banal to the status of art has been adopted as a governing principle of much reality TV. We sit through hours of domestic revelations, shopping trips and house renovations and few people now consider it a radical form of spectatorship.”
Catherine Elwes, Video Art, A Guided Tour, I.B. Taurus & Co Ltd, London, 2005