The moths romp home

Moth Theatre image © Graeme Miller 2010

Latitude Festival is proud to reveal that the winner of the first Latitude Contemporary Art Award is Graeme Miller for his visually stunning Moth Theatre installation which was announced at the ceremony on Saturday 17th July at 4pm in the Lavish Lounge, in the beautiful setting of Henham Park Estate on Suffolk’s Sunrise Coast. Miller’s was one of Latitude’s first four commissioned works; Tim Etchells, Chosil Kil and Graham Hudson also made new works.

Miller received the prize of £10,000 after the LCA judges – founder and creator of Latitude Festival and managing director of Festival Republic Melvin Benn, broadcaster, journalist and Radio 4’s World At One presenter Martha Kearney and young British artist Gavin Turk – took an onsite tour of the exhibits of all participating artists.

The piece, which can only be seen at night, is “theatre for moths, by moths”. It uses video feedback triggering monochrome pattern from the shadows of insects, which are drawn to the bright lights within the installation at dusk.

Miller said: “By night the moths are drawn from the woods by the bright lights of a miniature theatre whose stage is saturated with the irresistible pleasure of ultra-violet illumination. They settle to bask in the limelight of a white screen – drawn to a kind of shared stardom of silhouetted insects. In this world the human observer is a guest. What they are drawn to is the intense bluish radiance and in the quiet auditorium of the trees they can eavesdrop on this unwitting performance.”

Graeme Miller is a London-based theatre maker, performer, composer and artist. On winning the prize, Miller was overjoyed and commented how he would now begin the process of creating his installation piece for Latitude 2011.

Melvin Benn has always intended contemporary art to be an integral part of Latitude Festival. Speaking on Saturday he said:

“It was always my intention that contemporary art would be a key element of the programme at Latitude and that art would be given the same platform as the music, theatre, literature and poetry. We have always had spectacular works displayed throughout the site and in the woods and this year, working with the team involved in the LCA, has given me the confidence to take art at Latitude to a new level. I’m really thrilled Graeme Miller’s installation was chosen as the winner and I look forward to seeing what his next piece will be for Latitude 2011.”

The LCA comprises Melvin Benn, independent arts writer Louise Gray, Tate Modern curator Ben Borthwick, curator/deputy editor of ‘The Wire’ Anne-Hilde Neset and managing director of Lavish Ami Jade Cadillac.