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Arlo Mountford | The Folly 2007-09 | Three-channel digital animation with four-channel audio (uncompressed AVI file and uncompressed WAV file on hard drive): 9:00 minutes, colour, sound | Purchased 2009. The Queensland Government's Queensland Art Gallery Acquisitions Fund | Image courtesy the artist and GRANTPIRRIE

Arlo Mountford on the influence of Aldous Huxley

Naomi Cass: The central panel revolves around a monologue given by a figure facing away from the viewer, sitting amongst workers or country visitors picnicking in the fields. What is this text and why have you used this voice?

Arlo Mountford: The monologue is taken from a book I was reading whilst I was animating, Aldous Huxley’s Eyeless in Gaza, first published in 1936.The extract is from a diary entry by one of the characters. It essentially describes the virtues of living as a ‘Higher Lifer’, someone who spends their time moving thoughts and ideas around in their head free of the commitment of ever actually producing something. This resonated with me at the time because I felt it described a form of art practice similar to my own.

Arlo Mountford in conversation with Naomi Cass, ‘Artists as Higher Lifer’ in Flash, Centre for Contemporary Photography, June 2009.

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