ARTIST STATEMENT

A former Database Administrator, since 2017, Forrest-Beckett’s practice has been pushing at the boundaries of the grid systems that she felt confined working within.

During the past 5 years (while working as a part-time Change Coordinator to support her practice), she started to look through a {psycho, technological} lens to explore the transformative power of change and what it means to consciously evolve (while not forgetting where you have evolved from), and developing practice-based processes to consider the constraints and privilege that can prohibit or facilitate change, and the belief and commitment required to sustain it.

Making a trade-off between time spent processing elements of her parent’s work {building, cleaning, decorating}, her academic studies {Contemporary Art}, and work undertaken to support her practice {FinTech}, it was after she pushed Microsoft’s automation tools aside that she began to manually map her processes and form a working relationship between these disparate, but equally impactful roles, by building-in time to slowly-process work matters, as matter.

Taking theoretical observations into practical effect through forms of assemblage built to expose the process of losing cohesion and strength between the different forms of work she has been exposed to, she goes to great lengths to look at things anew. Her practice-based processes have become the epitome of the word ‘jiggered’ [a phrase she recalls her father uttering when returning from sustaining long days of backbreaking work] and inheriting an ingrained ability to exhaust matter, on mass, when matter starts to breakdown and content begins to fall out of context, she takes a {psycho, techno, archaeological} approach to unearth the {dis, ordered}, {ill, disciplined}, {mal, formed}, and {mis, informed} that falls apart along the way.

No amount of commitment transfiguring ‘Windows’ technology into architectural environments was ever going to add-up or result in a logical explanation, but by 2020, her practice caught the attention of the South West Creative Technology Network who awarded her a prestigious Data Fellowship, during which, she took a Frankenstein-like approach to the mattering of human-data communication, to summon a new form of data voice. Sourcing mashups of text spoken using an AI text to speech tool, it was while referencing her different information sources compiled from colour codes and a play on words, when a symbiotic relationship started to form between herself and machine learning, in the form of a pattern language.

In the works ‘Labour of Love’, 2020-ongoing, presented as ‘Data Voice’, at ‘Care/Dare/Share’, in 2021, at the Society Artistic Research 12th International conference, University of Bergen, Norway, and ‘Mummy: Stratified Relationship Series’, 2022-ongoing, published that year, in Issue 12: ‘Recording & Documentation’, Soanyway Magazine, both works incorporated laboriously drawn-out, thought processes that were not made with the intent of figuring things out, what remained was a form of open conversation. While the freedom to express thoughts was playfully explored through a bricolage of found texts, her extensive use of ellipses suggested she has a tendency to dance around what may be at the heart of the matter.

In her most recent work [which incorporates her love of film alongside her more familiar found objects], she has started to introduce cinematic split screens to rupture the illusion of a frame as a seamless view of reality, accompanied by tracks that are laid [not set in sequence to a moving image], but can be ‘shuffled’ to fall out of sync. Her ‘Playlists for a Practice’ have become the means, in which, she can work with whatever life throws at her {a broken heart, family disruption, financial insecurity, inequality, diversity, the threat of artificial intelligence, the state of the world}. Maintaining momentum, she attunes herself to the matter in hand and gets into the groove, to process adverse life events while working with the rhythm and musicality of voice.

If Forrest-Beckett’s practice is not film making, but a form of worldmaking or perhaps, more so, a multiverse, which lacks order or a single ruling and guiding power, it could be considered the overarching principle centres around what could be termed ‘a mattering of incoherence’, wherein, she curates constellations within installations, as a manifestation of an inconclusive language.