Études for the 21st Century
Departing from, in John Conomos’s words, “the whirlwind of the last century’s aesthetic, cultural, political and technological revolutions, a century of manifestos and paradigm-shifting creativity of art, culture and knowledge,” how do we move forward from “art for art’s sake” to “art for the sake of life”?
Through art, how do we learn about life and living? How do we learn to look, reflect on, and manifest attentiveness? How do we learn from the impulses of man and nature? How do we sustain our impulses? How do we process them, and ultimately register them as memories? And how does memory in turn affect our ways of seeing and acting?
Reflecting on this series of questions, Étude for the 21st Century is a large-scale multi-channel video installation, articulated on a 30-meter long oscillating string. With moving images filmed by Robert Cahen and John Conomos over the last 40 years, the work is a glimpse of the world through the artists’ eyes.
The flickering, fleeting projection traces a kind of human process. Moments of impulses – as light, as energy, as an image – are intercepted. How does one conceive, contemplate, rationalize and distil these moments? How can one capture them, and resist their disappearance in time?
In a world of excessive images, only a few remain. The work is a tribute to artists whom have preserved these intense moments of life, and whose unwavering energy sustains these images through eternality.
Please Note: Gallery closed 25th – 26th December 2013 and 1st January 2014.