Monday 16 January 2012 | 6pm
Cinema, Bermondsey Square, SE1 3UN, London, UK

To accompany the Private View of ‘Point of Sale’, Vitrine Gallery presents a series of video works by Adrian Lee in Shortwave Cinema (6pm).

Twelve short videos from 2003 to 2011 will explore the trappings of a commercial culture, at times dark, at times humorous.




‘Love and trust loan Co.’ 1’00”. 2003.

Originally filmed for A-Clip and shown as advert-length shorts before the main feature in cinemas in Germany, USA and UK. This one-minute video plays investigates the darker side of financial requirement.

‘Hooked Cross’. 2’40”. 2004.

This very short film follows a similar path to that of Johnny Rotten in The Rock and Roll Swindle in which he walks through the Jewish Quarter of Paris wearing a swastika and causes upset to a great number of people. Here Adrian Lee follows a similar route, out of the Metro station, looks in a café etc, but the film is now set in Hamburg, Germany and what, at first glance, appears to be a vast, chrome swastika turns out to be clothes stand. The music highlights this anticlimax.

‘P.M.C.C.T.V (shoreline)’. 0’30”.

Part of a series of instalations, here a pack of feral cctv cameras are videoed in the no-mans-land between high tide and the sea.

‘please Come In, (performance)’. 2’00”. 2006.

Documentation of a performance piece for There is something I’ve been meaning to tell you at Space station 65. Low-end marketing techniques of the shopping centres were applied to the rarefied world of the white cube. The press release stated: Adrian Lee has kindly offered additional promotional support for the weekend’s exhibition. He has produced and will operate a congenial, anthropomorphic device that will highlight the purpose of the space and help attract visitors.

‘The End’. 2’00”. 2006.

There was a time when the sandwich board or hand-held sign was a tool of the individual to spread a message, used due to lack of finances. This message was often religious, sometimes advice but always personal. Over the last few years in central London the hand-held sign has been adopted by big businesses to advertise their products. This film depicts the meeting of these two schools of thought as ‘sandwich-board-man past’ encounters ‘sandwich-board-man present’. Black and white and cinemascope reference the past whereas garish, invasive adverts imply the future.

‘20-second Video’. 0’20”. 2007.

Scenario: In this totally self-referential video the narrator talks the viewer through the single, static shot that makes up the entirety of the piece. No extraneous information is given and nothing is left out. A closed loop: It is objective to the point of pointlessness.

‘Sinners and Winners’. 4’00”. 2006.

From a fixed vantage point we watch ghostly figures ascend and descend the shiny steps that lead in to a clothes shop. These steps are reminiscent of 20-century TV extravaganzas or film depictions of the journey to Heaven. Accompanying this image is a rock guitar soundtrack with two vocals. One of these voices is selling ‘not £15, not £10, just £5’, the other is pressuring us not to buy ‘you’re just a shopaholic robot’. The two unseen powers persuade and cajole and the subjects of this battle drift up and down unaware.

‘Fun Event (performance)’. 2’00”. 2007.

Documentation of a performance for You can lead a horse to water at Alma Enterprises: two hours of pathos edited to two minutes.

‘Nangarhar’. 2’00”. 2007.

Shot in Afghanistan on the drive through Nangarhar, from Kabul towards the Khyber Pass this film marries the furious driving of the local people with an equally furious driving game filmed in Kabul Zoo.

‘Craving’. 2’20”. 2008.

This two and a half minute karaoke video employs every cliché in the editor’s handbook. Birds flying away, roses falling in slow motion, reflections and soft focus. The viewer starts to question the material when it becomes obvious that the actress in the Japanese garden is a large, western man in drag. The tune of the song is taken from a hymn and the words, that initially sound like a teenage love song, contain veiled references to Bunny Cigarettes.

‘GrammarNasty’. 2’40”. 2011.

The DVD demonstrates the difference between transitive and intransitive verbs using clips from the 1978 film I spit on you grave. A voice-over and bright graphics assist in the explanation and over the four examples the complete plot is described.

‘Midlife Crisis’. 2’00”. 2011.

A man in his 40s strives to keep upright on a toddler’s plaything: desperate and doomed to failure.