The Sun That Never Sets: Spectacle and Normalcy in Time

Thale Fastvold’s video Cyan was part of the show The Sun That Never Sets: Spectacle and Normalcy in Time

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Curated by Vanessa Albury and Rachel Rampleman for SPRING/BREAK 2014

“The tautological character of the spectacle stems from the fact that its means and ends are identical. It is the sun that never sets over the empire of modern passivity. It covers the entire surface of the globe, endlessly basking in its own glory.” – Guy Debord, The Society of the Spectacle

 Curators Vanessa Albury & Rachel Rampleman

 

The Sun That Never Sets: Spectacle and Normalcy in Time, curated by artists Vanessa Albury and Rachel Rampleman, presents film and video-based artworks exploring the transformation of the personal and mundane into the spectacular through the public sphere and time-based art. The show seeks degrees of personal content divulged to the public and the peripheral edges of where the public and private are blended. The Sun That Never Sets: Spectacle and Normalcy in Time also explores the bounds and outer limits of time-based mediums, blurring the lines between how all art mediums are defined. This exhibition locates film and media as they reach into and overlap with drawing, photography and sculpture, relating. The linear nature of counting time creates wormholes that link the experience of all art mediums. For example, works are selected that relate the duration of time that a viewer observes a drawing to watching still video footage or the unique path a viewer takes around a sculpture to a tracking shot in a film. Where does the idea of a film end and one’s private life begin?

 

The artists featured in The Sun That Never Sets: Spectacle and Normalcy in Time explore the spectacular and public in the mundane and personal through the use of art media and time. Inspired by the fantasy that Wilt Chamberlain has fathered unknown children based on the star basketball player’s boasts of sexual conquests, Paul Pfeiffer’s Locations for a Home Movie manipulates borrowed home movie footage and photographs from the 1970’s from an undisclosed friend. Displaying unpeopled and unremarkable interiors and landscapes, with banal details evoking an eerily unsettling and suggestive pathos, the Locations question the definition of family based in the boasts of an absent celebrity parent. With I’ll Replace You, Jennifer and Kevin McCoy recreate their private and public lives as a video with a twist: after putting out a casting call, they hired 50 actors to perform their roles as artists, parents, friends, professors, and spouses. Documenting these strangers engaging in their familial, personal, and professional interactions in their home, studio and workplaces, theMcCoy’s play with the idea of typecasting, the fragmentation of life, what defines who an individual is and how a person is perceived in the various roles he or she engages privately and publicly. Jen Gustavson creates sculptural landscapes from common consumer objects with Saggy Landscape and Domestic Landscape. Gustavson sarcastically personalizes the history of landscapes in art by shaping the great American landscape of the Rocky Mountains with hand etched Coors beer bottles. The Sun That Never Sets: Spectacle and Normalcy in Time comprises of works by Vanessa Albury, Stan Brakhage, Peter Clough, Jamie Diamond, Bradley Eros, Thale Fastvold, Tara Fracalossi, Jen Gustavson, Juliet Jacobson, Karsten Krejcarek, Jennifer and Kevin McCoy, Joe Namy, Paul Pfeiffer, Rachel Rampleman and Angela Washko.

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The Sun That Never Sets: Spectacle and Normalcy in Time explores what is hidden and what is revealed in private lives and projected into the public through time-based imagery. Loosening the dividing lines between how mediums are defined invites opportunity to experiment with public and private notions.

Artist statement about the video Cyan:

Thale Fastvold (b. 1978, Oslo) works with photography, video, text and installations. In the video Cyan she explores the liminal stage of sleep, the state of being in-between sleeping and awakening and how younger babies transgress these states with easy grace. The video is part of an ongoing research project where Fastvold focuses on liminality in time and space, through various medias.

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