Vox pops on First Friday


Vox Populi, as usual, left me feeling full of energy and delight. They’ve got some of their staple members up and showing–Clint Takeda (shown, Takeda’s “Spitting Lines”), Matthew Suib and Katie Abercrombie. Plus they’ve got some funky video that had some little kids enthralled and laughing out loud. And held over for a second month, the “Ultra-L” installation by ON Megumi Akiyoshi and Huang Shih Chieh (see Feb. 9 post for review).

Katie Abercrombie’s beautiful gouache on paper imagined underwater worlds (right) draws from Persian miniatures, with intense overall patterning. The work includes some collage, harder to detect at first glance than the patterning, and even the wall painting she did, which didn’t measure up to the works on paper, offered unexpected pleasures up close.

Matthew Suib’s appropriately noisy installation in honor of the never-say-die Voyager spacecrafts (number 2 now reaching the edge of our solar system) has the feel of a boy’s den or bedroom discotheque, with flashing images of formulas, heiroglyphic people and the iconic earth maps, reflected from a projector by a spinning half of a mirror ball while radio soundtracks and transmissions rumble and screech.

Much of Suib’s source material is either taken directly from or inspired by real scientists’ efforts to communicate with whatever’s out there, but the alcove-in-the-wall diorama — a collaboration between Suib and Takeda — offers a video animation that only looks like it’s from outer space, projected and reflected in a kid-like milieu.

Suib’s sweet, boyish takes on space communicate loud and clear with Takeda’s array of creatures from his inner space, at once fierce and vulnerable, and in the case of “Black Flame,” making Takeda’s original weird noises.

(At this point I feel the need to remind you there’s a link in Roberta’s previous post to an article by Roberta Smith about sound art in The New York Times.)

Takeda’s show, called “Demiurge Noeyes” is highlighted by “Bluey” (shown), a fragile, eyeless critter with an enormous head. I could almost hear his little heart beating.

Also showing were some nice paintings on panel of nowhere or nothing I could name (one shown at top).

I stood still long enough to view most of two of the video lounge movies and bits of the third, all by Guy Ben-Ner, and this guy’s sensibility of telling fantasy stories with the lowest tech means possible spoke directly to Suib’s installation. “Moby Dick” was pretty funny, with shark fins sailing across the livingroom rug/ocean. The apartment was the barely modified set, cabinets and all, and Ahab’s pegleg had a door in it.

“House Hold” didn’t hold my interest, but “Elia–A Story of an Ostrich Chick” (shown) was worth the costumes and method of walking. Check it out.


features & interviews, reviews



Sign up to receive Artblog’s weekly newsletter and updates sent directly to your inbox.

Subscribe Today!