Curated by Goat Island
In homage to the irrepressible American desire to conquer distance, and with a nod towards the comic delights of vaudeville, the technological feat of the transcontinental railroad, and the inventive lens of Buster Keaton, Chicago-based experimental performance group, Cupola Bobber’s (artists Tyler Myers and Stephen Fiehn) premier performance of The Man Who Pictured Space From His Apartment at CUE will chronicle the duo’s struggle to build a railroad to the sky. In an effort to further convey the experience of pinpointing massive space through examinations of scale, distance, and discovery, Cupola Bobber will transform aspects of their performance set into a stand-alone installation at CUE.
As part of the exhibition, Myers and Fiehn will convert a portion of the gallery’s interior into a transition point for witnessing a star-filled universe through deceptively low tech means, by creating a room in the gallery defined by a cardboard ceiling and matching floor, in forced perspective, and occupied by a used drill, a ladder, and some toy cardboard bricks. Upon climbing the ladder, and placing an eye to the small hole cut into the cardboard ceiling, the viewer will see a very dim starry night being projected onto the inside surface of a box placed atop of the ceiling. The installation will be accompanied by a framed, wallmounted, extremely lengthy letter written in very small handwriting by the occupant of the room, and addressed to the astronomers at the Mt. Wilson Observatory.
Also growing out of a sequence in the performance, a series of approximately 200, two inch by two inch black-profiled silhouette heads (study pictured) will be installed as a horizon line along three gallery walls. When viewed up close, drawings of symbols placed within the empty space of the heads will form an elaborate show and tell of a conversation absurdly failing to create mutual understanding, thus chronicling how the incomprehensible may instantly feel profound, but ultimately proves illusory.
The Man Who Pictured Space From His Apartment performances: Friday, Feb. 2 at 8:00pm and Saturday, Feb. 3 at 6:00pm