Have you always collected?
In terms of the photographs, yes. But I don’t think of myself as a collector, as I don’t collect anything valuable or even particularly rare — just things on certain themes or with a particular appeal. The pleasure comes in sharing them with other people. A lot of the things and films I’ve put in the show are not necessarily ‘art’, and I like that!
Where do you find inspiration for your videos?
One inspiration is early cinema — hence the video of shadow puppets and the restoration of the Marcel Duchamp film. Early cinema and their tricks have always fascinated me. I tried to show films that fit in with Nick Pankhurst’s installation, which itself seems to have something dark about it, like a set from the expressionist silent horror film The Cabinet of Dr Caligari.
I also find inspiration from chance and alchemy. For example, in the room with the table, the projection is of a new edit of a film I made with the Icelandic band Sigur Ros. When I was on tour with them, I would pick up discarded cigarette butts the band had smoked, volcanic ash from Iceland, even a champagne cork from a post-gig party — things that related to the band — and add them to the chemicals I developed the Super 8 film in. The colours and textures of the film are slightly haphazard and mysterious thanks to these secret additions.
In line with the Marcel Duchamp-inspired title of the exhibition, what would you have written on your gravestone?
There’s a great gravestone in Highgate cemetery where it just says ‘DEAD.’ Have you seen that one? I think it’s Patrick Caulfield. These are the things you have to think about. Just going to have to try to think of something witty. On one of the fortune cookies it just says ‘Meh’ – that’s my favourite one, it would be good on a gravestone.