Constant Dullaart

Epizeuxis, Conduplicatio, Mesodiplosis

Residency

2015

http://epizeuxis.otdac.org/http://conduplicatio.otdac.org/http://mesodiplosis.otdac.org/

For his residency, Constant Dullaart has made a series of three website pieces. Each site is a container for an external page (Google Images, Apple and Wikipedia) which is split into different shaped parts inside moving frames. These dynamic frames re-draw the content into relationships with other parts, producing a collaged cut-out of the browser content in different shapes and layers.

For an interview with the artist about his residency, please click here.

Artist
Category
Residency
Tags
, , , , , , , ,
Year
2015
Dates
June 2015 - September 2015

Megan Rooney

Tilia americana

Commission

2014

http://tiliaamericana.otdac.org

For her artwork commission, Megan Rooney has created Tilia americana, a set of five sequential, multi-framed videos with an accompanying narrated text. The videos incorporate elements of drawing, sculpture and performance, portraying women obscured by water-coloured pillow cases in different suburban situations. The audio track accompanying the videos is a voiceover of the artist reading a fractured and dreamlike prose poem.

For an interview with the artist about her commission, please click here. For a transcript of the narrative, please click here.

Artist
Category
Commission
Tags
, , , , ,
Year
2014

CLUI

Center for Land Use Interpretation

Organization

2014

http://www.clui.org

The Center for Land Use Interpretation (CLUI) is a research and educational institution established in the 1990s to explore the “nature and extent of human interaction with the earth’s surface”, although its activities focus only on the United States. In addition to a superb online archive of images and other research detailing the abandoned manmade edgelands of the U.S. and the great social and material changes that are traced within them, the CLUI publishes books and field guides, leads public tours to and is the central institution in the American Land Museum, a network of landscape exhibition sites across the United States. They run a small museum with a bookstore and library based in Los Angeles and public research centres in the Mojave Desert, Kansas and Utah. Although it evokes something of the ‘land art’ of the 1960s and 1970s, and the hallowed position it holds in the narrative of postwar American art, and has resonances with aspects of the environmental movement the CLUI operates with a much broader and experimental conception of land use. Much of their work engages with the hybrid socio-natural landscapes produced by industry, energy production, agriculture, military activity, waste disposal and infrastructure projects. Although their lens is perhaps overly saturated with a sort of depopulated post-industrial aesthetic that fetishizes the remains of social processes at the expense of those processes themselves, they provide an invaluable resource for those interested in the relationship between social and environmental processes and the material manifestation of industrial and state planning in the twentieth century. Echoes of their work can be found in Smudge Studios and Trevor Paglen, artists whose research-based projects have likewise explored the relationship between landscape, technology and power, from both political and ecological perspectives.

Werner Herzog

Ten Thousand Years Older

Documentary

2014

This short 2002 documentary sees Herzog return to the Amazon basin, where he had shot some of his defining feature films Aguirre: The Wrath of God and Fitzcarraldo, although this time to Brazil rather than Peru. As in those earlier films Herzog reflects upon people facing extreme natural environments, one of his enduring themes (indeed Herzog’s monolog on the jungle in The Burden of Dreams, Les Blank’s documentary about the making of Fitzcarraldo, is perhaps his greatest work), and returns once again to the more subterranean question of colonization and the conflicted processes of modernization that ran through them. Although Herzog might be accused of harboring something of the same Amazonian orientalism that typifies some of his characters, the dark currents of romanticism that ran through those earlier ‘Amazon’ films is absent here. Instead Herzog presents a more sober, indeed melancholic, reflection on the effects of colonization – or more recently ‘contact’ – on one tribal people living in the Brazilian jungle, the Amondauas. The increasing contact between the Amondauas and the ‘modern world’ of the state and expanded patterns of trade not only establishes new channels of communications and networks of relations but sees older ones, those that have been integral to the community and culture of the Amondauas for centuries if not millennia, rapidly unravel in a matter of years. Herzog quietly probes the ways in which communication with the ‘outside world’ comes at the expense of communication across generations, as a gulf – perhaps even a ‘civilizational’ gulf – opens between the younger members of the Amondauas, born into and embracing of the changes that ‘contact’ brings, and older members who are seeing long-stable relations dissolve with the intrusion of the ‘outside world’. One of the most powerful aspects of the film is the attention given to language as both a medium for and barrier to communication, especially in the poignant scene where one of the elder members of the tribe enacts a ritual which has largely lost its cultural power, seeming instead to take the form of a desperate attempt to hold on to a language and an entire way of life in the face of a seemingly irresistible tide of change. This reflection on the death of a language and the eclipse of a culture by the forces of modernization perhaps has its counter-point in Herzog’s ambiguous reflection upon the ‘new language’ of capitalism that he saw emerging in the impressive high-speed cattle trading at Pennsylvania livestock auctions, the subject of an earlier documentary short, 1976’s How Much Wood Would a Woodchuck Chuck.