Sarah Cole and Annis Joslin
Sarah and Annis work collaboratively, their approach is to make work through conversation and workshops with others, exploring lived experiences within a supportive, experimental framework. These social arts encounters lead to producing co-authored video, drawings, sculpture, texts and performance. Over the past four years they have made Messy Business, (six shorts) a nine-screen installation, an exhibition and most recently a 360 film, STATIC.
Messy Business was co-commissioned by People United and came out of year-long project working domestic abuse support charity Joining Hands Joining Hearts.
STATIC, uses 360 technology to explore ways to position the audience’s experience of empathy and emotional engagement. Soundtrack by Isa Suarez, funded by Arts Council England, People United, an artists bursary from a-n The Artists Information Company, supported by Ideas Test, Fusebox, Wired Sussex and their ongoing relationship with Joining Hearts, Joining Hands.
This online portfolio shows work we have made together.
If you would like to make contact with us please do so via Annis' website here
For further information and examples of work, please see our individual websites.
Sarah Cole Website
(10 mins 360 video 2021)
STATIC is a 360 film, made during 2020/21. It is a 10-minute immersive experience, navigated by the viewer that you can watch on your phone, tablet, computer or VR headset. See the trailer here
The viewer is placed into an uncanny domestic home, a looming suburban emptiness and intense dream-state environments where the actions of the characters resonate with frustration, desire, routine and an uncertain sense of agency. STATIC plays with scale, emotional instability, your sense of responsibility and our everyday failures in communication. It is darkly funny and a bit disturbing, but ultimately offers up some hope from the limited fractious scraps of what seems possible in this characters world.
Funded by an Arts Council England Research & Development project award, STATIC is a development of Cole & Joslin’s on-going research in to the lived experiences of people who have survived domestic abuse. Their interest was in using 360 to explore ways to create a more embodied and empathic engagement with the subject matter, drawing upon the conversations they have had with DA support groups since 2017, and their previous work Messy Business. Coinciding with the challenges of 2020, and the major increase in reports of domestic abuse nationwide, STATIC also became a work about isolation, mental health, loneliness, the struggle to communicate and the thwarted impetus for change or release.
As artists and film-makers, Cole and Joslin are interested in making work that invites discussion and conversation and are keen to facilitate these opportunities both within the work and in the form of live events and online dialogues.
Annis and Sarah created STATIC during a residency at Fusebox, Wired Sussex from October 2021 to May 2021 where they had access to a green screen, 360 cameras and technical support from 360 production consultant Michael Danks.
To test user experience and gain feedback on this new work they hosted online screenings with invited and public audiences, including staff from Safe in Sussex and deaf professionals working across the arts. Read more about their process on their
Trailer (52 secs) for the 20-minute video
Journeying through six passages of time, this video was made with women who have experienced domestic violence and/or sexual abuse. Playful, insistent, dark yet uplifting, Messy Business is an elegy to their wisdom, resilience and pain, giving a voice to those who kept quiet but now want to shout off the rooftops.
Messy Business has been presented at the Social Art Network in Sheffield (Nov 2018, as work-in-progress), Sittingbourne’s Avenue Theatre (December 2018, for an audience of participants and their families), and as a multi-screen installation at Fabrica, Brighton (Feb 2019, as part of their Making Spaces residency) further screening include CINECITY, Courage Film Festival, Berlin (semi-finalists) and Tate Exchange, as part of the Social Art Network.
Sarah and Annis in conversation with Leap then look
The Light & The Load
installation at Fabrica, Brighton, made during a residency (Feb 2019) to reconfigure the work in a physical context, with additional material (audio, objects, texts and drawings)