02 August 2007

Passionate about Perspectives in the Crowd

Art Forum's influential web section "Critics' Picks" is currently featuring a review of Perspectives in the Crowd, the video installation piece by recent MFA grad Tucker Neel. Drawn from video shot by audience members at Daft Punk's 2006 Coachella Music Festival performance, Neel created a compilation video, presented in an endless loop along with sound from the performance. On view at Otis' Bolsky Gallery through August 29, it has received high praise from Christopher Bedford-

"The effect of this unlikely project is mesmerizing and variously suggestive. Like much of the best performance documentation—think of Chris Burden’s early performance photographs or the Viennese Actionists’ fastidiously composed performance stills—this video compilation immediately establishes itself as ontologically distinct from the live source event."

Bedford goes on to compliment Neel's curatorial efforts- (his) "work has a presentness entirely absent from most performance documentation. This presentness derives chiefly from that fact that Neel accepts the formal limitations of the medium he is working with, as well as the serendipities of novice camerawork, and exploits those characteristics to create a shimmering, largely abstract audiovisual spectacle that offers the viewer an entirely self-contained, entirely gripping experience."

Having seen and enjoyed the installation myself, I wonder if Neel will consider returning to the piece's origins and place it on YouTube after the exhibition closes (of course most of the source video resides there already). Some of the sensory experience would certainly be lost but it seems a fitting way to close the loop on the project.

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