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online e-dition march 20


in the loop: on time and on the map

mca reopens, local positioning systems, performance space


Christian Marclay The Clock 2010, single channel video, duration: 24 hours Christian Marclay The Clock 2010, single channel video, duration: 24 hours
© the artist Courtesy White Cube, London and Paula Cooper Gallery, New York
The long awaited renovation and expansion of Sydney’s Museum of Contemporary Art is set to be unveiled on March 29, and the celebrations are suitably impressive. The opening exhibition references the long gestation of the museum’s development with the title Marking Time, featuring work by Australian artists such as Daniel Crooks, Tom Nicholson, Lindy Lee and Gulumbu Yunupingu as well as international guests such as John Gerrard (who will also be giving an opening lecture on March 29, 6.30pm; see RT102), Tatsuo Miyajima, Katie Paterson, Rivane Neuenschwender and Jim Campbell.

Coinciding with Marking Time will be the southern hemisphere debut of
Christian Marclay’s all encompassing epic, The Clock. Marclay has gathered excerpts from films across history that reference a particular moment in time, often using the image of a clock face, but also some with less literal means. These are then compiled to create a 24-hour installation that ticks away, minute by minute, in real-time. Of course, because the gallery is closed overnight, generally only half the work is ever seen. But on the opening night and each subsequent Thursday viewers will be able experience The Clock for its full 24-hour cycle—perfect for lovers of endurance art.

MCA has also teamed up with Performance Space who have curated Local Positioning Systems, a comprehensive live art program to celebrate the opening, The aim of the program is to blur “the threshold between the museum and its surrounding environment and communities” by creating participatory, site-specific works in spaces ranging from the first aid room, library and education facilities to the forecourt and surrounding landscape of Sydney Harbour and The Rocks.

Zoe Walker & Neil Bromwich Celestial Radio 2004-2012 mixed media dimensions variable Zoe Walker & Neil Bromwich Celestial Radio 2004-2012 mixed media dimensions variable
courtesy and © the artist
Bringing a little glitz to the event are UK artists Walker & Bromwich who will create Celestial Radio (March 29-April 15). A small sailing boat will be covered in mirror tiles and stationed on the harbour outside the MCA. The artists will work with local communities to create a soundscape to be transmitted from this sparkling floating radio station.

Julie-Anne Long, The Invisibility Project [performance documentation] 2010. Performance Space LiveWorks Festival, Sydney Julie-Anne Long, The Invisibility Project [performance documentation] 2010. Performance Space LiveWorks Festival, Sydney
photo Heidrun Löhr
Already attracting attention is Stuart Ringholt’s performative work which is elaborately titled: Preceded by a tour of the show by artist Stuart Ringholt 4-5pm (the artist will be naked. Those who wish to join the tour must also be naked. Adults only). That about says it all, although there are rumours of free cocktails as well (April 27, 28 & 29). On the opposite scale of exhibitionism will be Val, the Invisible (April 7-23) by Julie-Anne Long, a durational intervention in which performance and real life blur as Long indulges in "secret pleasures that are yours and yours alone, the illicit invisibilities that you get away with, while engaged in the business of everyday life” (website).

Also on an intimate scale, Jason Maling is offering to cure gallery goers of their art institution related anxieties—issues ranging from “mild conceptual perturbation to severe relational deficiency” (website). Physician (May 5–18), consists of private consultations with Maling guiding the viewer through a range of “pneumatic rituals designed to activate belief receptors.” Perhaps all museums will soon instigate such a program. (In April Maling will also be presenting another curious adventure - Fuguestate, in Melbourne, http://www.fuguestate.info.)

Lara Thoms, The Experts Project #32 Decorative Toilet Roll Holders, 2010 Lara Thoms, The Experts Project #32 Decorative Toilet Roll Holders, 2010
photo Shirley Robinson
Throughout May, Lara Thoms will be in residence at the MCA Library and around The Rocks area talking to people about their particular expertise, often in under-recognised fields. The Experts Project will culminate in presentations and documentation, including a series of portraits in which the ‘expert’ takes a photo of Thoms dressed as them (May 3, 5, 6, 10, 12 & 13). A version of the work presented at last year’s Tiny Stadiums proved this to be genuinely intriguing project.

Latai Taumoepeau’s i-Land X-isle (May 25-26) promises both visual beauty and a potent political message. In this installation and endurance work, Taumoepeau will perform under large blocks of ice suspended using traditional Tongan lashing techniques. Located in view of the harbour, the work references the effect of the melting of the polar icecaps on Small Island Developing States (SIDS).

Bennett Miller, Dachshund U.N. [performance documentation] 2010. Next Wave Festival, Melbourne Bennett Miller, Dachshund U.N. [performance documentation] 2010. Next Wave Festival, Melbourne
photo Tomasz Machnik
The program concludes with something for dog-lovers. Bennet Miller’s Dachsund UN (June 2-3) entails the construction of a four-tiered amphitheatre in the forecourt of the MCA to house 47 Dachsunds representing the member countries of the UN’s Human Rights Council. (See mention of this work in relation to ethics in RT104) The work seeks to explore “utopian aspirations of the United Nations, and our capacity as humans to imagine and achieve a universal system of justice” (website).


Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney, Marking Time; Christian Marclay, The Clock; Local Positioning Systems curated by Performance Space; Museum of Contemporary Art Sydney; March 29-June 3; http://www.mca.com.au/; http://www.performancespace.com.au/

RealTime issue #107 Feb-March 2012 pg. web

© RealTime ; for permission to reproduce apply to realtime@realtimearts.net

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