Until August 25, 2014, the Walker Art Center
is presenting The Clock, a major cinematic work by artist Christian Marclay screened in the Burnet Gallery. Winner of the Golden Lion award at the 2011 Venice Biennale, The Clock samples thousands of film excerpts from the history of cinema that indicate the passage of timefrom clock towers to wristwatches to buzzing alarm clocksthat edited together unfold on the screen in real time as a 24-hour montage. Called an abundant, magnificent work (The Financial Times) relentless and compelling (The Guardian) and utterly transfixing (The Huffington Post), The Clock has garnered rave reviews from art critics and the public alike since its premiere in 2010, and has traveled to a host of venues worldwide, including the Museum of Modern Art, New York; the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; the Los Angeles County Museum of Art; the Wexner Center for the Arts, Columbus; the Garage Center for Contemporary Art, Moscow; the Kunsthaus, Zurich; the Israel Museum, Jerusalem; Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris; the Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney; and the National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa.
Throughout his career, Marclay has worked with a wide range of media, including sculpture, photography, collage, painting, and performance. His video work often takes the form of collaged images and sound made from filmed fragments. Telephones (1995), is a rhythmic montage of clips from Hollywood films showing characters engaged in phone conversations; Video Quartet (2002) is a multi-screen work that samples hundreds of films featuring images of hands on keyboards, horns and violins, as well as characters singing, dancing and making other noises. Crossfire (2007) similarly mines Hollywood source material, stringing together fragments of footage from gun shootout scenes.
The Clock is the artists most ambitious moving-image project to date, drawing upon over a century of cinematic history. Though it is constructed from a dizzying variety of periods, contexts and film genres whose storylines have been reduced to fragments, The Clock proceeds at a unified pace as if re-ordered by the underlying narrative of time itself. The artist intends for the work to be synchronized with the local time of the exhibition space, so that the work conflates cinematic and actual time, giving each passing minute the potential for alternately suspenseful, tragic, or romantic narrative possibilities.
Christian Marclay has exhibited his work for more than three decades in museums around the world. His 2003 retrospective, which originated at the UCLA Hammer Museum in Los Angeles, traveled to other North American institutions as well as venues in France, Switzerland and Great Britain. The touring exhibition Replay, focusing on his video work, originated at the Cité de la Musique, Paris, in 2007 and was presented at DHC/ART in Montreal (2008). In 2010, the Whitney Museum of American Art organized Festival, a one-person exhibition organized around Marclays graphic scoresvisual works to be interpreted by musicians. As a pioneering turntablist, performing and recording music since 1979, Marclay made a significant impact on the new music scene. He has performed internationally, alone or in collaboration with musicians John Zorn, Zeena Parkins, Lawrence Butch Morris, Christian Wolff, Shelley Hirsch, Günter Müller, the Kronos Quartet, Sonic Youth, and many others.
Christian Marclay was Artist in Residence at the Walker Art Center in 2004, where he collaborated with the departments of Performing Arts, Film/Video, and Visual Arts in a series of programs. He additionally produced an original commission, the video installation Shake Rattle and Roll (Fluxmix), which emerged from the artists curiosity about the Walkers important collection of objects related to the international Fluxus movementsome 500 works by artists including George Maciunas, Nam June Paik, Ben Vautier, and Yoko Onoand its significant collection of multiples by the German artist Joseph Beuys. Marclay also created a site-specific sound installation Museum with the Sound of Its Own Making (2005), a composition utilizing construction sounds from Walkers 20032005 expansion.