Sunday, January 22, 2012


When Liz, Sally and I went to the Tate Modern on Thursday, we watched an exhibited film by the British artist Tacita Dean in the museum's vast Turbine Hall. The film, simply called "Film" -- how's that for minimalism? -- feels, according to the museum, "like a surreal visual poem, including images from the natural world among others."

It's silent and includes black & white, color and hand-tinted images that have been cut and manipulated. It was interesting to watch, and seemed to me a melange of both the natural and industrial -- leaves, girders, volcanic cones, windows. I couldn't begin to say what it's supposed to "mean," though.

The film is projected onto a white monolith at the end of the Turbine Hall that's supposed to recall the monolith in "2001: A Space Odyssey," according to the museum website.

Seating was available many yards away from the screen. But when we were there, two guys were lying instead on the concrete floor beneath the monolith, watching the film close-up. One seemed to be recording it on his iPhone. (It's funny how people seem to automatically record or photograph things around them now, almost as if that's the only way they can really see them. I'm guilty of that too!) Anyway, I liked the way the huge film dwarfed the two guys on the floor.


Reya Mellicker said...

I like it that you noticed the two guys on the floor and that you aren't at all pretentious.

Art is challenging when you can't figure out what the hell you're supposed to get from it.

You received that insight about everything being videoed and photographed. We try to capture moments. While we're trying, the moments slip past.

You can't grasp the river! But we try anyway. You know I do! Oh yeah.

Gary said...

Is Sally THE sally?

Barbara said...

It would be interesting to know the thought process behind making the film. I think one reason why people are always capturing sound and image is they don't trust their memories any longer.

Ms.M said...

Can't begin to share how much I LOVE this picture.

I'd love to put it up on a wall, so fab.

Ms. M
Ms.M's Blog
A Teacher's Plan

Steve Reed said...

Reya: Indeed, you can't grasp the river! So true!

Gary: Yes, Sally is our Sally. :)

Barbara: I don't trust my memory, so I understand the feeling! (But then, do we remember less when we're distracted by our gadgets? Who knows.)

Ms. M: Thanks so much! Tacita Dean gets at least half the credit, though. :)