In his definitive study of shamanism the Romanian historian Mircea Eliade writes “any cultural moment whatever can provide the fullest revelation of the sacred to which the human condition is capable of acceding.”
Golden Parachutes is pleased to present Total Vivid Presence, a group exhibition exploring representations of ritual, magic, and ecstatic experience in art, technology, and popular media. Total Vivid Presence will include works by Michelle Blade and Christopher Kline, a computer program created by the composer Jeffrey Treviño, and a loop of the Youtube sensation Giant Double Rainbow 1-8-10.
The sacred and the banal meet in “rainbow hunter” Paul Vasquez’s video, which served as the inspiration for the exhibition. Before the American comedian Jimmy Kimmel discovered his video Giant Double Rainbow 1-8-10, in which Vasquez breaks down in tears while recording a rainbow in his backyard, he had been posting hundreds of amateur nature videos on his Youtube page in obscurity. While the video is admittedly funny, it treatment in popular media reduces Vasquez’s ecstatic encounter to a poorly socialized overreaction. Indeed, Vasquez’s video shows us the distance between representation and experience, between what is seen and what is felt. In a classic encounter with the sublime, Vasquez experiences the limits of sensibility, sharing with his viewers the pleasure and terror that accompanies this experience.
Michelle Blade will present an iteration of her ongoing Painting as a Vehicle series, immersive multi-paneled paintings which derive their imagery from mythology, literature, and esoteric thought. The works are installed on both the wall and floor of the exhibition space, creating an immersive optical experience.
Christopher Kline’s body of individual and collaborative works offer complex and personal redefinitions of the sacred. Kline creates elaborate ritualistic costumes, objects, and environments that combine elements from forgotten and misremembered traditions to create a microcosmic world with its own symbology. Kline will create a site specific work for Total Vivid Presence, including an offsite performance or installation. Snakebraid will perform at the vernissage.
As a tool of spiritual teaching, the mandala has been used in many traditions to aid in creating sacred space. Composer Jeffrey Treviño created a pattern generating program he using MIT’s experimental coding program Field. Mandalas created with the program will be projected in a window installation.
A small catalog will be produced for the exhibition featuring artworks and found images selected by Golden Parachutes and the participating artists responding to the theme of Total Vivid Presence.