Carnegie International 2008-9


I finally managed to get down to Oakland to see the Carnegie International today. It's good stuff, I'm still composing my thoughts about it and will probably have more of them later.

Anway, the exhibiton has a pleasant surprise for comic book fans — a room filled with replicas of the bottle city of Kandor by artist Mike Kelley. Here's a video of an earlier installation that features some of the same pieces on display at the Carnegie:

From the catalog:

Kandors (2007) is the artist's most polished and fantastical realization of these ideas. Stemming from Kelley's observation of a persistent lack of continuity in the depiction of Kandor in Superman comics, this installation reenvisions that fictive capital city through miniaturized Atlantis-like cityscapes. Covered by glass domes, these sculptural landscapes are bathed in the glow of luminescent lights and connected to other minimalist-inspired objects and arhitectural elements via respiratory tubing. Each of ten assemblages corresponds to a slightly ominous, tornado-like video projection on the wall. Sound (synthesized ambient and new-age music composed by the artist as well as "emotive" sounds), light, and motion envelop viewers of this spectacle. Here Kelley narrates a surrealistic topography through an all-encompassing sensory experience, suggesting through his numerous imaginative reinterpretations of a single motif the infinite variations of personal history. In this way, he is faithful to both the virtues and the shortcomings of memory.

The Kandors on display have an immediate sensuous and tactile appeal, regardless of their position re: memory, and are among the most memorable works on display.

Also, one of the collage/paintings by artist Mark Bradford seems to feature a few pages from an issue of Crisis on Infinite Earths (or some other comic where you'd find Dr. Light II and Nightwing on the same page — I'm not a DC geek so I couldn't tell you).

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