David Noonan

A Dark and Quiet Place


September 2017
Paperback with blind embossed artwork to front cover
240 x 300 mm
224 pages
200+ b+w illustrations
Designed by A Practice For Everyday Life


In stock

A Dark and Quiet Place accompanies a new moving image work of the same name by David Noonan. Both the film and the book present a meditation on performance, its associated apparatus, and the physical and imaginary domains they inhabit.

That this is Noonan’s first film work in over a decade is significant, as his practice since has frequently referenced both the material qualities of film and projection, and an ongoing interest in the relationship between figuration and abstraction. For the book, the artist has worked closely with award-winning design studio A Practice for Everyday Life to disassemble the film work back into a rhythmic sequence of still images, employing both the language of design and Noonan’s characteristic strategies of layering and manipulation. More than a series of film stills, the images that make up this book acquire their own intrinsic quality, proposing new spatial configurations and performative actions. In his response to the work, celebrated author Brian Dillon presents a piece of fiction at once speculative and rigorously rational, in which geometric shapes become performers, diagrammatic grids become complex stage sets, and the supremacy of the body is thrown into doubt.

The film work A Dark and Quiet Place will be exhibited at Stuart Shave/Modern Art in Autumn 2017.

David Noonan (b.1969, Australia) is best known for his large-scale, collaged screen prints, which bring together diverse material to produce surreal narratives — merging histories, and blurring time and place. Noonan is a collector of images; he gathers photographs, historical documents and uncommon publications, synthesizing them into new configurations that evoke theatrical tableaux, dream states and the tension between mythology and memory.

Brian Dillon (b.1969, Ireland) is reader in critical writing at the Royal College of Art, and UK editor of Cabinet magazine. His books include Objects in This Mirror: Essays (Sternberg Press, 2014), Sanctuary (Sternberg Press, 2011), Ruins (MIT Press/ Whitechapel Gallery, 2011), Tormented Hope: Nine Hypochondriac Lives (Penguin, 2009) and In the Dark Room (Penguin 2005). His writing appears regularly in the Guardian, the London Review of Books, The Times Literary Supplement, Artforum and frieze.