|Foul-up on Afghan footage brings Tacita Dean back to blackboard in exhibition at Marian Goodman|
"The Friar's Doodle" by Tacita Dean is shown in this undated handout photo released to the media on Feb. 25, 2013. The artist used a doodle she received as a young girl from a Franciscan friar, for the 2010 film. Source: Marian Goodman via Bloomberg.
By: Lili Rosboch
NEW YORK (BLOOMBERG).- After more than a decade away from blackboard drawings, British artist Tacita Dean returned to the form with last years Fatigues series.
First shown at the Documenta exhibition outside Kassel, Germany, the works are now at the Marian Goodman Gallery, along with Deans 2010 film The Friars Doodle.
Fatigues comprises immense drawings in white chalk on blackboard that depict Afghanistans Hindu Kush peaks, the source of the Kabul River in the mountains and another view of the river descending toward Kabul.
Dean, 47, planned and created the drawings for Documentas tall vertical space, with the peaks shown on top, the flowing river on the bottom.
At Marian Goodman, she had to adapt her vision to a single floor of two rooms. She sees a long corridor between them helping the viewer make the spatial transition.
We met at the Manhattan gallery just a few days before the opening of the show.
Rosboch: Your main medium is film. I understand there was a foul-up with a film project that more or less forced you back to blackboard drawing after so many years.
Dean: I went down to Kassel and the curator told me that she would have part of Documenta happening in Kabul. So I decided to make a blind film there.
I found a cameraman, got a little Bolex wind-up camera and some film, and sent everything by diplomatic bag to Afghanistan.
Then I was very involved with the Turbine Hall and when I eventually looked at the footage, I realized that most of it was unusable. Also, the space that I was supposed to have was given to someone else and in its place I was offered a three-story tax office with a very ornate staircase in the middle.
Thats when I realized that I would have to work with things on the wall and, given the little time, go back to something I trusted -- blackboard drawing.
Rosboch: Tell me about the drawings.
Dean: I bought some albumen prints of Kabul from 1875 off the Internet that depicted an incident in the second Anglo- Afghan war. I started researching into that and was led to a horribly jingoistic poem by Rudyard Kipling called Ford O Kabul River, about a platoon of soldiers trying to cross the Kabul River and drowning.
It was the combination of that and the memory of a brief moment in my failed faulty footage when a flash flood was going through the streets of Kabul.
So I started doing the Hindu Kush and the passage of the Kabul River and got quite into the whole geography of it. The war receded and it became just about the general rising of the waters and the melting of the ice every year, that brings some sort of catharsis, the washing of the streets, but is also a disaster and kills people.
Rosboch: Have you been to Afghanistan?
Dean: No, the blind film I did in the beginning was because I didnt want to go. The drawings came from my head, to some extent. I used some pictures of mountains, like the Himalayas, but then I kind of made it up. That is always what happens to me, I find a way of doing things and then drawing takes over.
But I had to not make it look like Switzerland because there are no trees there. So the moment of breakthrough was working out how to do those bare rocks. It was pretty hard.
Rosboch: Do you keep any of your work?
Dean: No, but I keep proofs of all my films. Not that thats going to be of any use when film doesnt exist anymore.
The art world knows the difference but the cinemas, which have all the money and control the medium, think film and digital are the same thing.
Rosboch: What are the main differences?
Dean: Everything. Film is for me a medium of time, and you never know what you have, so all the energy goes into the making. With digital its all in post-production and everything can be changed.
Theres a potential to have two different mediums, which is exciting, but they have to be so absolutist.
Rosboch: Can you talk about The Friars Doodle, the film now at Marian Goodman?
Dean: When I was at boarding school -- I was a Catholic in a Methodist school -- I received dispensation from attending chapel and was allowed to go across the road to a study center for young Franciscans.
One of them gave me a photocopy of this doodle that hed made, which I kept, amazingly enough, for 30 years.
When I was invited to do something in a monastery in Silos, Spain, I immediately thought of the friars doodle. Its quite strange, with swirls and ducts, stairs and passageways, crosses and stars, and no kind of exit. It always fascinated me.
So I filmed it the old way, with an old rostrum camera -- probably the last place you could find one in England is gone now.
It goes round and round and you cant ever find a way out. You never see the doodle in the film, youre lost in it.
The show is on view through March 9th at the Marian Goodman Gallery, 24 W. 57th St.
February 27, 2013
Exhibition of paintings, sculptures and installations by Julio Le Parc opens at Palais de Tokyo
Foul-up on Afghan footage brings Tacita Dean back to blackboard in exhibition at Marian Goodman
The "Secret of Life' letter, written by DNA co-discoverer, to be sold at Christie's on April 10
"At War with the Obvious: Photographs by William Eggleston" opens at Metropolitan Museum
From a unique Gentileschi to a rediscovered Reynolds, the Weiss Gallery at TEFAF Maastricht
Oil heirs discover old vases are million dollar czarist relics to be sold by the Dallas Auction Gallery
Australian tycoon Clive Palmer unveils plan for new Titanic, plans to launch in 2016
Philadelphia Museum of Art appoints Dirk H. Breiding The J.J. Medveckis Associate Curator of Arms and Armor
The Question of Classicism: Jeu de Paume exhibits photographs by Laure Albin Guillot
Antique advertising and general store antiques line up for Morphy's March 30 auction
Color Rush at the Milwaukee Art Museum exposes color in American photography
Largest number of full armours to be offered at a London auction in a century
More than 30 international artists and collectives of the 5th Auckland Triennial announced
"Scratching the Surface: Contemporary Wood Sculpture" opens at The Craft and Folk Art Museum
Paris Chagall show bewitches with flying horses, brides
Solo exhibition by Syrian artist, Mohannad Orabi opens at Ayyam Gallery Jeddah
Spectacular sculptures by Contemporary Cambodian artist go on view at Met Museum
Roland Hick's lates works on view at Eleven in London
Art Show shake-up near Armory
Artsy raises $5 million as EarthLink founder Sky Dayton joins
Most Popular Last Seven Days
1.- 'Feeling Van Gogh' makes art accessible for visually impaired visitors
2.- Art lovers get naked for new exhibition tours at the National Gallery of Australia
3.- Broken in life, Billie Holiday enjoys revival on the 100th anniversary of her birth
4.- Research reveals significantly different composition in Jean-Honoré Fragonard's Young Girl Reading
5.- Retrospective exhibition of photographs by Luke Smalley opens at ClampArt
6.- Jewish teenager Anne Frank died at least a month earlier than thought, new study says
7.- Archaeologists find items that attest to the existence of an Egyptian administrative centre
8.- 'All the Rage in Paris: Diaghilev's Ballets Russes' on view at the McNay Art Museum
9.- Exhibition illustrates the fascinating creativity of Gustave Doré in an era of great changes
10.- Cynthia Lennon, British first wife of John Lennon, dies aged 75: Julian Lennon
Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .
|Royalville Communications, Inc|