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Guggenheim Museum Bilbao exhibits Amie Siegel’s work Winter (2013)
Amie Siegel, Winter, 2013. Super 16 mm film transferred to HD video, 33 min., color/sound, performance, objects. Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York. Purchased with funds contributed by the Young Collectors Council, 2015.

BILBAO.- The Guggenheim Museum Bilbao is presenting Amie Siegel’s work Winter (2013) for the first time in Europe from November 23 to March 11, 2018. The presentation of work, which is part of the collection of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, brings to a closure the 2017 Film & Video exhibitions program, an initiative launched by the Guggenehim Museum Bilbao to house key works of video art, video installation, and the moving image in a space that is exclusively devoted to them.

Reflecting on the essential elements of filmmaking, and the role of time in production as addressed in her work Winter , Siegel has declared: “ Winter is a film of multiple tenses – shot in the recent past, depicting an unknown future, unfolding and changing in the present of the exhibition, the film enacts various temporal and cultural conditions of un-fixity and instability, hinting at concerns of global warming and nuclear accidents, and unhinging the fixed nature of cinema and the photographic image.”

Winter is an open-ended work that changes in each location it is exhibited. Originally shot in 2013 in New Zealand, the film is alternately screened with live performance accompaniment and with a recorded soundtrack. This presentation of Winter allows visitors to experience, on a regular basis, the gallery as a space of active, creative production. Originally commissioned for the 2013 Auckland Triennial, the show at the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao will be Winter ’s European premiere.

Siegel collaborates with local performers for each exhibition of Winter , interrogating the work’s relation to its locus and resituating the viewing within a nomadic production set. Each loop of the absorbing, postapocalyptic film is thus reinterpreted through a shifting soundtrack produced live, where voice-over, sound effects, and music provide a different living score for each half-hour iteration of the film. Successively doubled, rather than dubbed, Winter alerts us to the fluid state of the filmic image as sound scripts modify the atmosphere and dramatic mood of each playback.

Shot on location in white-washed, biomorphic dwellings designed by the late architect Ian Athfield in remote areas of New Zealand, Winter depicts the life of a community that seems to exist as the last human settlement on Earth. Possible aftermaths of a nuclear war or an environmental catastrophe are evoked in the characters’ contemplation of their deserted surroundings or the relics of a disappeared society. Architecture and props appear simultaneously futuristic and relegated to the past. Birds, particularly, seem to play a special part in the survivors’ longing. As the familiarity of depicted places and objects reinforces their ambiguous eeriness, the film’s soundtrack emerges as the key to establishing their potential meaning.

Working variously across film, video, performance, photography, and sound, Amie Siegel (Chicago, b. 1974) exposes and connects multiple strata of meaning in her meticulously crafted installations. While narratives operate as sites, artifacts and documents emerge as material tokens of memory, desire, and fact, confronting film with the circumstances and protocols of its own making. Siegel has always understood that the language of film, in its general sense, consists of culturally codified practices, systems that are endlessly repeated. Challenging these perspectives, throughout her career the artist has always searched for different ways to approach this matter.

Amie Siegel (b. 1974, Chicago, USA) works variously between film, photography, performance and installation. Recent solo exhibitions include the South London Gallery; the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, Museum Villa Stuck, Munich; Kunstmuseum Stuttgart and the MAK, Vienna. Siegel has participated in group exhibitions at Witte de With, Rotterdam; the Whitney Museum of American Art, NY; Hayward Gallery, London; KW Institute for Contemporary Art, Berlin; CCA Wattis, San Francisco; MoMA PS1; MAXXI Museum, Rome; Swiss Institute, New York; Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin and the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis. Her work is in public collections including the Whitney Museum of American Art, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Tate Modern and the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum. Her films have been screened at the Cannes, Berlin, Toronto and New York Film Festivals, The Museum of Modern Art, New York and The National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C. She has been a fellow of the DAAD Berliner-Künstlerprogramm and the Guggenheim Foundation, the Fulton Fellow at The Film Study Center at Harvard University, a recipient of the ICA Boston's Foster Prize, Sundance Institute and Creative Capital Awards. She lives and works in New York City.

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