THE LONG NOW
DAVID MICHALEK - DANNY HILLIS
October 5, 2017 - December 16, 2017
THIS EXHIBITION INVOLVES NUDITY: VIEWER DISCRETION IS ADVISED
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The Long Now is the 25th experiment of Le Laboratoire.
The Long Now explores the elasticity of time, and particularly the aesthetics of stretched time. The opportunity for this show came by way of Le Lab founder, David Edwards, who saw that a prior work of mine, Figure Studies, which he commissioned in 2012, and elements of a new work by the artist/inventor Danny Hillis, might be placed in dynamic relationship to each other.
Years ago, Hillis expressed his dream of a clock that would last 10,000 years. This dream eventually became The Clock of the Long Now. Through philanthropic support, including a generous gift from Jeff Bezos, The Long Now Foundation has over the last decade been building with Hillis this massive clock into a mountain in Western Texas.
The Art Science Café features some traces of the Clock, records of its construction, fragments of mythologically-tinged clock stories by Hillis, and a reference to one of the Clock’s early inspirations, the great labyrinth at Chartres. Each of Hillis’ stories begin in much the same way: “There are those who say that the Clock is…” but finally end in the description of something not the Clock—an apt metaphor for a work which most of us will never lay eyes on in actual fact, but which nonetheless, acts as a catalyst for all of us to lift our sights from the immediate to the distant future.
Inside the Lab exhibition space, time stretches in a different way. Figure Studies features what was originally five second basic human movements slowed down to a glacially paced ten minutes. The movement sequences and patterns seen in this work are basic to who we are as humans: running, walking, lifting, throwing. As a whole, the work is a meditation on the nature of life in the body. Also included is another work in video repurposed for this show and retitled The Long Now. It features a momento mori with an hourglass that never empties.
Throughout the exhibition plays the music of Brian Eno, which condenses a potential sequence of bells that will tone from the Clock of The Long Now for the next 10,000 years.
- David Michalek, Artist/Curator
Le Laboratoire Cambridge proposes 5 unique screenings of Restless Creatures this fall.[Oct 5, 19, Nov 2, 16, 30]