SPRING/BREAK Has Sprung in BKLYN
SPRING/BREAK BKLYN IMMERSIVE May 6-14, 12-7pm. 300 Flatbush Avenue Extension. Free admission.
In a rare appearance outside of its traditional Armory Week schedule, SPRING/BREAK has expanded both chronologically and territorially with a new show in downtown Brooklyn, aptly titled the BKLYN IMMERSIVE. Installed in an arts and event space on the ground floor of the “City Point BKLYN” development, this iteration is focused on a small selection of large-scale immersive installations rather than the endless rooms and corridors of art fair fare characteristic of SPRING/BREAK’s previous outings.
One work of note is Takashi Horisaki’s Social Dress New Orleans – 10 Years After, an architectural installation created in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. Horisaki coated the walls of a flood-ravaged building with latex rubber and let it set, undisturbed, for two years. Upon its removal, these latex casts held an archaeological record of the building’s history in layer upon layer of flaked paint, plaster, lathe, and even a fish skeleton that somehow got embedded in a wall. Suspended from the ceiling according to the house’s original floor plan, the floppy rubbery walls present a ghostly yet physical memory of a space that would otherwise be forgotten.
Another installation inhabiting a place between physicality and ephemerality is Material World, a selection of works by the “Material Girl” collective, a group of female-identified artists working at the intersections of sculpture and digital media. Their installation references the Vaporwave aesthetic, an online subculture that utilizes (and fetishizes) obsolete technology in the creation of digital works that are shared across social media platforms. The collection of thirteen works contains some standout pieces, such as Claire Lachow’s ludditemeet.space, a digital video (shown on a vintage CRT computer monitor) that explores themes of digital plasticity and the malleability of online identity. One particular scene is a documentation of a digital performance in which a body, rendered in 3D through the open-source “MakeHuman” program and embellished with text taken from bank slogans, is variously transformed and deformed as the music from the video game The Sims plays, slowed down to a dirge. In the center of the space is Devra Freelander’s Venusian Alpenglow, a puddle of polystyrene and exoxy resin that visually references Lynda Benglis’s floor works from the 1960s and 70s. The puddle is painted with a retina-searing fluorescent enamel that gradually shifts from yellow to red-orange, unnaturally intense colors that should only exist in the additive colorspace of a computer monitor rather than in the physical world.