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Moving Pictures, Part 2

Eve Sussman, 89 Seconds at Alcazar, detail

Eve Sussman‘s “89 Seconds at Alcazar” is now playing at the Main Line Arts Center. Run and see it. The piece, a slow motion and atmospheric re-imagining of the painter Velazquez‘s “Las Meninas” is full of so much grace, beauty, swishing petticoats and implied court intrigue that I sat through it twice and almost couldn’t drag myself out of the room after that, so hypnotic and wonderful is the work.

Diego Velazquez, Las Meninas 1656-57

“89 seconds” appeared in the 2004 Whitney Biennial but I, for one, slept through it at that time. Luckily, the ever-alert Paige West and her West Collection of emerging art snapped it up for the West Collection, and because the West sends little theme shows from its vast holdings on the road occasionally, we have a chance to see the Sussman work — projected large in a dark room with a bench!

Eve Sussman, 89 Seconds at Alcazar which debuted at the 2004 Whitney Biennial. More here.

Bill Viola did something similar in his Jacopo da Pontormo re-enactment The Greeting, also a new imagining of an old master for a modern audience. Sussman’s is more cinematic and Viola’s is more arty –it’s the apples and oranges of old master’s re-working.

Bill Viola, The Greeting, 1995, based on Italian mannerist Jacopo da Pontormo’s painting (1528-1529). More on Viola here.

Sussman’s piece is surrounded by other marvelous works in the group show, titled Transformer. Other artists, all riffing on other peoples’ art are Long-Bin Chen, Sharon Core, Luis Gispert, James Hyde, Robert Lazzarini, Rauf Mamedov and Vik Muniz. The show looks great in the beautiful galleries at MLAC.

Jacopo da Pontormo, Visitation

MLAC has organized a tour of the West Collection for Tuesday, April 25, at 9:15 am. It’s a carpool (no bus) and I highly recommend going if you haven’t been out to see the art at its corporate home at SEI Investments in Oaks, PA. The tour costs $15. 610.525.0272 for more information. See my flickr set for more images from the show.