Monday, June 11

et al: the fundamental practice at Artspace

Sneaked into Artspace on the final day for Et Al's repurposed Venice exhibition, the Fundamental Practice, and thought I'd mention a couple quick thoughts on the digital aspects.

While it has been shown before, the Artspace version has been "reordered, regrouped, restored". This was evident in aspects like the sound - the curatorial intern was kind enough to play a CD of recorded sound from the previous incarnation, which seemed much more solitary and quiet. The expansive concrete rooms of the current space meant that the sound channels boomed and echoed, mixed and collided. CNN style news headlines shifted with white noise and more melodic elements as you moved between areas.

Photographs by Jennifer French provided courtesy of Artspace

The Fundamental Practice also utilised a Google Earth element - playing back a series of waypoints and camera angles generated with the mapping tool. Strangely the locative element didn't anchor the work in a greater spatial context, instead zooming and panning around a collection of tiny village names in an (for myself unknown) Middle Eastern country (Iran, Iraq?). Overlaid in a circular pattern over 5 of these were obelisks, lending the whole thing a totemic, conspiracy theory quality which focused on a single village in the middle. This was reinforced by a second screen constantly scrolling through propoganda text - a mixture of military jargon and religious commands displayed in a raw code (think notepad) type format. As p. mule states, "Fundamentalism was rife throughout the process from all sectors. Is humour important (in the work)? p.mule: Yes. (or) It’s fundamental."

No comments: