Artist: Ari Marcopoulos
Venue: Frank Elbaz, Paris
Exhibition Title: Machine
Date: September 6 – October 15, 2017
Full gallery of images, video, press release, and link available after the jump.
Ari Marcopoulos, excerpts from The Machine, 2017, 8 screen video installation, 22 mins 33 secs
See more videos included in the show on the artist’s website.
Images and video courtesy of the artist and Frank Elbaz, Paris. Photos by Raphael Fanelli.
Andy Warhol said he wished he could be a machine but I’m not about all that, not exactly. I use a Machine, several in fact – sometimes a Leica, Canon, Contax, or Hasselblad – to take pictures with. Why? It’s hard to explain, it’s easier to just look and to find patterns, repetition is key. These days everyone has a camera in their pocket and in the Warhol sense they have become machines, empty recorders continually taking aim at the time, trying to capture the elusive and the mundane. The trouble is that time slips away and fades anyway. I make books, zines, and films as a way to extend the life of the photograph, to make it move.
For my show at galerie frank elbaz I am considering the filmic quality of still photographs, making fast photocopies and slower color pigment prints, with the intention of papering the walls with thousands of images. I have been selecting photos from my extensive archive, guided mostly by intuition, this allows me to regroup old and new and to see the patterns within my work. I have been taking wayward paths across time, in predominantly recent work with diversions. The range of places I’ve been and the people I have encountered are what guide me, those people include edge dwellers, skaters, rap gods, athletes, kids, trees, graffiti, faces, tangles, and cars.
Noise, exertion and rebellion and chaos have always been my métier and so for the first time I’m building an ambitious machine of my own, an 8-channel video contraption to show a randomized array of my rarely seen short films. The collection of works in view represents a broad range of images of the past and the present. The Machine adds the element of time and the cacophony of place to portraiture.
The Park is a 58-minute silent movie with one cut that fixes its gaze on an open basketball court in Brooklyn. I’m captivated by the everyday life of the park, the players challenging each other, the play of light and shadow in the physical but also the emotional sense. Situated across from the Walt Whitman housing projects, the basketball court becomes a site of freedom and expressivity. Its the only court I know of in New York that has no fence around it, so the court’s activity blends seamlessly with life around it. The New York Housing Authority has effectively cut off its denizens from the main street, and so, The Park is a microcosm of street life unbound.
Ari Marcopoulos (b. in 1957 in Amsterdam, The Netherlands; lives and works in Brooklyn, NY, USA) has had solo exhibitions at New Orleans Museum of Art, New Orleans, LA, USA; Berkeley Art Museum, Berkeley, CA, USA and Foam Fotografiemuseum Amsterdam, the Netherlands, among others. His work has been featured in The Whitney Biennal, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY, USA twice and in the Mercosul Biennial, Porto Alegre, Brazil along with group exhibitions at Camden Arts Centre, London, UK; Wattis Institute, San Francisco, CA, USA; Kunsthalle Wien, Vienna, Austria; Centre Culturel Suisse, Paris, France, among others. His videos have been screened at the Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY, USA; Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, TX, USA and San Francisco International Film Festival, San Francisco, CA, USA. Editorials by Marcopoulos appeared in magazines such as Kaleidoscope, Purple, Dazed and Confused and W.