Locks Gallery presents A Side Window, a video and photography exhibition by Simon Lee and Eve Sussman. The exhibition will be on view September 6th through October 12th, 2013. There will be a reception for the artists on September 6th, from 5:30 to 7:30pm.
The exhibition showcases four videos by Lee and Sussman and photographs created by Simon Lee during the production of Sussman's experimental film, whiteonwhite:algorythmicnoir, all shot over two and half years and multiple travels, primarily through Central Asia. The moving and still images result from an attentive observation of the way people inhabit given architectures and spaces. All videos are looped and use a single viewpoint on the world around. Being virtually silent, they bring the video format close to the photographic.
The video works reflect upon the humanity of a people's collective unconscious and shared history. Wintergarden, a video triptych produced in Bichkek, Kyrgyzstan, juxatposes three bricked-in balconies of typical Soviet-era apartment blocks slowly morphing into each each other. These open spaces, ill conceived for a hostile climate, were inevitably blocked in by each resident. The images slowly evolve through infinite modifications, transforming a standardization into a vernacular architecture marked with personal expression.
In How to Tell the Future from the Past v.2 (a video triptych made in collaboration with Angela Christlieb), sequences of landscapes slide behind the frames of six train windows, intermittently verging on the abstract. Shot during a 72 hour train journey across the Central Asian steppe, the video conceptualizes time as daily life runs backwards and forwards simultaneously with the manifestation of humanity as the constant.
Simon Lee's photographic series Where the Future Throws a Shadow Over the Land explores the same landscapes. His subdued snapshots of the open space were taken vehicles in motion and printed on large sheets of etching paper, bringing both the ghostly presence of its inhabitants and the veiled light of the region to the surface. The images all contain a sense of time speeding by, as the impending future—implied through a contradictory metaphor of darkness—throws "a shadow over the land".
In the dead of winter in Berlin, the artists trained their camera on the exterior of a generic apartment building as day slides into night to make Seitenflügel (Side Wing), a single screen video that captures glimpses of mundane fragments and implied narratives in the daily life of their neighbors. Channeling their previous works Balcony and Wintergarden, with and obvious nod to Hitchcock's Rear Window, Seitenflügel takes voyeurism ever present in urban life and delivers an unreal view of the lives across the courtyard, volleying it back forever changed by the act of the observer. Waiting for an Icon isolates a single window with a single protagonist, zeroing in on a circle of clear glass in an otherwise frosted surface, to create a quasi-pictorial portrait in motion.