Interview: Yasmin Paris Love

Glasgow-based Event Producer Yasmin Paris Love is currently working on an exciting new project in collaboration with international director and visual artist, Drew John Barnes. I.AM attempts to explore creatives from various disciplines in order to discover what makes them an individual via a program that will combine performance and projection. The exhibition will feature live performances by musicians Drew has previously collaborated with including Saint PHNX, Love Sick and KVASIR. Utilising the latest projection mapping and time coding technology, the exhibition takes place at Glasgow’s Drygate on 6th September.

We caught up with Yasmin to find out more about what she does and this innovative new project…

Hi Yasmin, welcome to Get In Her Ears! Please introduce yourself and tell us a bit about yourself. How long have you been doing what you do, and how did you initially get involved in the role of Event Producer?
I’m Yasmin Paris Love and I have been working in the event industry for ten years. I had a great opportunity whilst studying to work as an Event Coordinator at SAUWS and from there really discovered that I enjoyed technical production more than event management. I have been producing events for 8 years now. The first production I worked on we sold out within 3 days (we enticed 750 people to my hometown Paisley and had a great time doing so!), and I think thats what really motivated me to continue down this route.

Your upcoming ‘I.AM’ exhibition with Drew John Barnes at Glasgow’s Drygate sounds extremely interesting. Can you tell us a bit about what the night will entail?
When Drew first approached me with the idea of working on this project he wanted to discuss releasing his work online. Knowing how much inspiration Drew takes from live concerts I knew that a live exhibition was the best way forward. The night is designed to really visually stimulate the audience. Every second has been pre-programmed. The artists and Drew have worked really hard to create something special. Behind the scenes our amazing technical team have been designing the lighting, video and audio around the performances and Drew’s work. We are using time coding technology so everything will be synchronised along with projection mapping, live animation and of course ultra high resolution. The best way to describe this in short is imagine you got to watch your favourite movie at the cinema with your favourite bands playing live at the same time!

Combining visual art with musical performances from the likes of Kvasir, Saint PHNX and Love Sick is a great idea – what inspired this, and how did the musicians get involved with the project?
Both Drew and I are both huge music fans and advocates for creatives. We wanted to create something that showcased visual art and music simultaneously, that relationship to us is so important. I think one of my favourite earliest memories is taking the bus to my local record store and buying an album, reading all the album credits and just appreciating the artwork on the album cover. When I listen to music I always have a visual in my mind of either that album artwork or the production of the show. Drew is particularly selective on who he works with and so are the artists. Each have their own individual visual signature and, if you have watched the music videos that Drew has directed, for them it is quite apparent why they work together. When Drew worked on the music video ‘King’ for Saint PHNX he was so inspired by the song, and I think it really shows in the detail of the video they produced. Music and video should be emotive, it should make you feel something. We approached KVASIR, Love Sick and Saint PHNX not only because they have a great working relationship with Drew, but also because their music really makes us feel something and we wanted that to translate with the audience.

The exhibition will utilise the latest projection mapping and time coding technology, how do you feel this will enhance the viewers’ experience?
I worked on a project with Kevin Steele (Production Manager who is also working on this project) – it was a live orchestra accompanying the silent film “IT”, composed and conducted by Patrick Doyle in Glasgow Royal Concert Hall and it was performed by the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland Junior Orchestra as part of the ISME conference in 2016. I left that experience changed on how I viewed the relationship between visual art and music, and I really want viewers to share that experience. When you synchronise visual and audio it’s really amazing the effect that has on your senses. I think the best way to describe that is the feeling you get when you watch a classic Disney movie or more recently Guardians Of The Galaxy, or anything which Hans Zimmer has worked on. I think Drew and I both like to escape reality, and hope the work we have put into creating an emotive experience using technology, visual art and music will really enhance the viewers’ experience.

What challenges have you faced in your role as Event Producer throughout your career? Have you ever come across any barriers due to being a woman in the industry?
I was working as a production assistant in London to Jo MacKay and Ian Greenway and up until that point I had never personally experienced any barriers, as Scotland has a beautiful small network of production colleagues who I have always found to offer complete respect. Working on a production in Oxford we arrived and the Production Manager (who I won’t name but she is incredible) arrived to be welcomed with a “Can I speak to your boss?”. Unfortunately, the security person had just assumed that the person in charge had to be male. The production manager handled it perfectly and afterwards we didn’t encounter any further issues but it left an impression on me. I think sadly the only real issues I have ever encountered has actually been with working with suppliers, making similar assumptions. You get the occasional “I have been doing this since you were in nappies” comment working on site, and even though you communicate you are producing the event there is still often the assumption to ask questions to my male colleagues, even though they may not be working on that part of the event! I have found just politely correcting and educating is the best way to deal with this, and I am thankful that when starting out I got to watch that incredible Production Manager handle a situation like that.

How do you feel the art world is for new artists at the moment, do you think it’s difficult for them to get their work noticed?
I think with the advancement of technology and communication there is so much noise. It is really difficult to get your work noticed or for traditional art spaces to let you host your work in their space because potentially it’s not the typical audience they might expect and this makes them very nervous. For new artists I would love to see them teaming up more with other colleagues trying to progress in their own field and build up small teams. I think “collectives” are a great way to approach organising events now, or building online platforms to show your work. Not being afraid to reach out and collaborate with other people can really make the difference to your project.

And are there any upcoming artists you’d recommend we’d check out?
I really have to give some appreciation to some amazing women in the creative industry right now. Not sure I would be able to call them upcoming, but if you are looking for some exciting visual and music work check out Theresa Kaindl, Emily Wylde, Kiiara Shee and Liana Banks.


Finally, as we are primarily a new music website, are there any Glasgow-based bands/musicians that you’re a particular fan of at the moment?
Absolutely love Lewis Capaldi. I have been on a bit of a journey recently professionally and have been physically travelling a lot internationally for work, so Lewis Capaldi and Fatherson have been the perfect soundtrack for this.

Huge thanks to Yasmin for answering our questions!

The ‘I.AM’ exhibition in collaboration with Drew John Barnes is on tomorrow 6th September at Drygate Glasgow. Tickets here.

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