Landscape and weather have long shared an intimate connection with the arts.
Now, thanks to a new exhibition at the New Westminster New Media Gallery, that connection is being interpreted and presented through technology.
WINDS opens Friday, June 21 at the gallery and runs until Sunday, Sept. 29.
The exhibition features four works by international artists, interpreting the movement of wind through physical space and time. A press release notes that each work looks at how our perception and understanding of landscape can be interpreted and presented through technology.
The works incorporate and measure such things as motion, pressure, sound and pattern.
“The artists then take us in other directions; allowing technology to render visible that which is invisible, creating and focusing on peculiar qualities of sound, light or movement in ways that seem to influence emotion or suggest memory, dwelling on iconic places or events, or revealing in subtle ways the subjective nature of time,” says the release. “In each of the works, questions around the nature of illusive experience and how to capture it brings inevitable connections to authorship, loss, memory and memento mori.”
It includes Wind Vane, by Chris Welsby; tele-present wind, by David Bowen; 2 hours, 2 minutes, 2 seconds, by Spencer Finch; and Hurricane Noel, by Nathalie Miebach.
WINDS is suitable for all ages.
The opening reception will feature artist talks by Bowen and Welsby, talking about their practice and their works in the exhibition, from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. The reception includes a wine bar (cash only), open from 6 to 6:30 p.m. and 7:30 to 8:45 p.m.
The New Media Gallery is on the third floor of the Anvil Centre, 777 Columbia St. It’s open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesdays through Sundays, with late-evening openings until 8 p.m. on Thursdays. See www.newmediagallery.ca.
WHAT’S IN THE EXHIBITION?
Here’s an overview of the four works:
Wind Vane, 1972: This film-based work by Chris Welsby (U.K./Canada) is the earliest work that’s been shown in the gallery. Originally shot in 16mm film, it is now installed in galleries in digital format. In 1972, Welsby mounted two cameras on tripods with wind vane attachments and positioned them 50 feet apart along an axis of 45 degrees to the direction of the wind. Both cameras were then free to spin and pan a full 360 degrees over Hampstead Heath; the movement of the cameras and what was captured were controlled by wind speed and direction.
tele-present wind, 2013-2019: This work by American artist David Bowen features 84 natural tansy stalks, anchored on tiny mechanized prosthetics. They follow the movement of a single tansy stalk with an accelerometer as it is buffeted by winds on the shores of Lake Superior.
“The movement of that tansy stalk thousands of kilometres away is streamed into the gallery in real time, resulting in an uncanny compression of time and place and sound,” says the release.
2 hours, 2 minutes, 2 seconds (Wind at Walden Pond March 12, 2007): This 2007 work by U.K. artist Spencer Finch recreates the changing breeze experienced by philosopher Henry Thoreau during his 1845/46 stay on the shores of Walden Pond, when he made scientific and poetic observations of the natural phenomena around him. The work uses programmed movement of air from a series of common industrial fans, celebrating and questioning the nature of perception and received experience.
Hurricane Noel, 2007: American artist Nathalie Miebach used collected scientific data from the destructive 2007 Hurricane Noel, which moved along the Eastern Seaboard of the U.S. into the Canadian Maritimes. Miebach assigned weather values to create musical notations and a score, and from that created a sculptural basket. Two versions of her score will play in the gallery on directional speakers – one by Nineteen Thirteen (a cello and percussion ensemble featuring Janet Schiff, Scott Johnson and Victor DeLorenzo), and one by the Axis Ensemble (violin, piano, cello, clarinet and bass, with Elliot Cless, Philip Acimovic, Glenn Dickson, Jason Coleman and Sid Richardson).