A Room Behind A Room: Recent Trends In Video Art
Curated by Lenore Malen
Opening Reception: Sunday, February 12, 2017, 6-8pm
Panel Discussion: Making Art in a Time of Political Anxiety, Saturday, February 25, 2017, 2:30pm
“A Room Behind A Room: these windowless spaces or theaters which have for a century been portals to an expansive real world beyond or behind the room. But now such portals lead us elsewhere
. The ease in making motion graphics and visual effects allows many artists to move into realms of total fantasy circumventing the camera as a recording device, mixing animation with documentary footage. Even glossy images from mainstream media can be refit to poke holes at the stable and conventional images of the characters they seem to portray.
The four film and video artists in this exhibition all explore the ways our sense of sight — and our bodies — have served in this new media environment.
Kiss a statue (05:19) by Alona Weiss is a video about a neglected public monument repossessed as a platform for Acro-Yoga practitioners who act to balance themselves using the monument as the third body or person. It’s a dynamic power balance based on trust. The monument itself, built in l968 on the outskirts of Arad, Israel, originally served both as a commemorative statue and a Brutalist, abstract, public artwork. The commemorative story attached to the monument is lost to most visitors who see the sculpture as a place to engage in the simplest activities without knowing anything more. To most people it’s simply a real place in real time between two deserts.
In the video the monument fills the frame like a cinematic set
, its crooked angles enhanced by the angular movements of the performers. Weiss describes this as “a fourth dimension created through the camera lens that confuses the structure’s size and flattens its appearance”.
A more complex reading of this mid 20th-century Brutalist sculpture also alludes to the impossible modernist dreams of utopian architecture.”