Gauge – Brighton Festival, Circus Street

2 - 24 May 2015.

Developed by Australian artists Madeleine Flynn and Tim Humphrey, and working with scientists to explore the water cycle and the challenges surrounding it, Gauge is described as a “playground of investigation”. Exciting eh?

Upon arriving one received a hasty introduction which introduced the idea that the pieces were interactive, but there is no clue given as to how to approach the pieces. Made up of seven mini installations, each presented a different way of using water. There were some entertaining contraptions, an open piano which played with dripping water and a clear water drum with water bubbling up the middle gave a certain amount of gratification. Each piece piqued interest from afar, and approaching each was with genuine excitement, but each afforded little satisfaction.

The installation as a whole seemed very muddled. Was it about finding sounds? Exploring science? A visual piece? There are few clues directing you, and no single avenue is sufficiently explored. If it’s about sound, then the impact is lost in this location. There’s not enough about the science to make sense; and even less in its justification as a visual arts piece.

There are some intriguing ideas, but it lacked focus and a little underwhelming.