Wednesday, February 4
it's all around you
I attended a panel at USC on Monday night that is part of the series "Art in the Public Sphere" (I think it's a forum lecture series class for their arts grads.) At any rate, I was very excited to have the opportunity to hear Doug Aitken talk about his work, which he did in the way that someone whose tools for communication are visual as opposed to verbal (uh, read: somewhat tangental and very poetic; if words were too specific of a way to relate the slippery ideas he is trying to impress on the viewer.) I'll admit that my art crush has now been transferred from Sam Durant (sorry man) to Doug Aitken. The thing that seemed strange to me was the lack of video that he showed during his talk. I first saw his "Electric Earth" piece installed at the Whitney biennial and the thing that made it stand out from other emerging video work at the time was his fantastic sense of marrying the visual image to the audio, as well as a sensitivity to how the viewer experiences a projected work (thankfully, not on a monitor.) Aitken never seems to use the audio as a secondary sense, but as something that works in tandem with the visual experience (I think I've gushed about this before after seeing his "Migration" piece when I was still living in NYC.) At any rate, I really enjoyed hearing him talk about creating experiential work in his mystical and dry-humored way, and I've included the trailer for "Sleepwalkers" in case you've missed seeing how he works his magic in the past....
p.s. I also loved loved loved Ann Pasternack (of Creative Time); her enthusiasm and finesse for creating public art that was always a required see and opened up a community conversation has been one of my fondest memories of living back east and completely romanticized all my memories, making me want to get on a plane and go back there.