assume vivid astro focus’s exhibition use the architecture of the gallery to create a dialogue between three distinct environments featuring an installation of 3-D wallpaper, a dark subterranean corridor of music and flashing neon sculptures, and a cordoned multi-disciplinary room that will feature an ongoing series of music-related performances.
In the main gallery an installation of text-based wallpaper consisting of grids of four-letter words – BUSH, IRAQ, SPIT, HOMO, DYKE, ANAL, IRAN, AMEN, PRAY, EVIL, LOVE, EDEN, HOPE… – alludes to the iconic design of Robert Indiana’s LOVE emblem from the 60’s and General Idea’s AIDS insignia from the late 80’s. “Four-letter words” tend to have a special status in the English language and in most cases reflect the more crude, sexual subset of the lexicon. The virus-like dispersion of these terms throughout the walls of the gallery and their political tenor suggest how the public policies and decisions made by our governments indiscriminately contaminate and shape our private lives and futures. By inviting the viewer to don a special mask with custom 3-D glasses to view the wallpaper, the artists also encourage the viewer’s participation in activating the work from a two-dimensional static experience into a three-dimensional event that is both sculptural and temporal.
The gallery’s basement space, which is usually reserved for storage of artwork and tools, is transformed into a long dark corridor illuminated by a sequence of five animated abstract neon sculptures. The sculptures syncopate and flash along to a custom soundtrack featuring music by PolaroidHomoPhoto (an anonymous duo that looped a fragment of the song Zombi by French musician Sebastien Tellier). Furthering the multi-dimensional experience of the wallpaper installation upstairs, avaf’s corridor of light and sound combines the aural and visual into a visceral occurrence meant to stimulate both the mind and the body. The space itself – marginal, dark and intimate- reflects upon avaf’s interest in the multilayering of both structure and image and the generation of new platforms, vistas and vanishing points through architectural tools such as barricades and stairways.
In the JCP project room avaf has transplanted an installation from their 2006 solo show, absorb viral attack fantasy at Hiromi Yoshii, Tokyo comprised of wallpaper, sculptures, video, neons, and balloons. Here, the group continues to explore the fertile confluence between art, architecture, performance and entertainment by presenting an ongoing series of performances and events including Barr, Tobias Bernstrup, Julie Atlas Muz, Loconuts, Ann Magnuson, Japanther, Good Good and Frankie Martin (full schedule to be announced). However, the entrance to the project room has been sealed shut and the only given access to both the performances and installation is peering through portholes fitted with sheaths and wigs.
For the duration of the exhibition avaf has also invited UK artist Giles Round to take over the gallery’s Tunnel Room (known for it’s arched public display window that looks onto the former Tunnel nightclub). Round works in a variety of media including painting, sculpture, installation and video. He will present a new video installation addressing issues of public space, theatricality, reflection and formal/spatial orientation.