Friday, April 07, 2006

Affair at TART

Thursday night I went to TART for the opening of a group show, “Affair.” On the landing near the entrance, Mark Orange had placed an English translation of Camus’s novel L’Étranger (The Stranger/The Outsider). Inside the gallery, on a stairway, photos of artist Matthew Barney climbed up toward a row of bright lights—stardom? This installation was an extension of Eric Doeringer’s pseudo fan site for the photogenic Barney. Arrayed on a nearby table were “100 Useful Things” provided by Frank Olive. They were free to take, although the artist would like to get email about how the objects are used. Which could get personal—two objects that disappeared were a condom and a roll of toilet paper. There was also one of those useless miniature notebooks for phone numbers (photo above right). Naturally, that’s what I took, thereby making it useful, at least to look at. Curator Anne Colvin kept an eye on the stock & pulled out new items to replace what was taken.

Further into the space, a video kiosk created by Seth Childs showed a split-screen image of a guy’s fist (photo above), which was fitfully interrupted by distorted images (taken from porn, he said). On headphones, you could hear footsteps and occasional words, including “I love you.” Nearby, on the floor in a corner, Kyle Mock sat behind a set of toy-like electronics and made weird sounds with them and his voice, while wearing a paper helmet (photo below). He also tossed colored origami balls into the middle of the room. Following the performance, he was as normal as you and me—honest! Several other works filled out the space in this informal exhibit.

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