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PR With 122 printed images hung or suspended in a single gallery, the exhibition Parallel of Life and Art (1953) used “space as one ally in the attempt to touch off as many and as varied associations as the responsiveness our audience allowed.”[1] This project devises a video version of that exhibition using projected and fragmented images. As in 1953, the images are positioned on the wall or on panels hung from the ceiling or obliquely from the wall as if floating in space. But these projections, which pass through a screen and into a corner, are as ephemeral and dematerialized as the space in which they appear. This new attempt to “use space as one ally” begins with a projected image of the original space and its printed images. This spatial montage of images produces a “reflexive self-distancing”[2] beyond the original effect. Viewers enter into the space of the corner and are immersed in a space of floating fragmented images, photographic ghosts cropped and reassembled in formats based on the Paul Klee paintings that inspired the vision of the creators of Parallel of Life and Art

AA In The Vision Machine (1988), Paul Virilio updated Paul Klee’s concept, “now objects perceive me,” by extending it to the interactive space of surveillance cameras and artificial eyes. This project operates as a vision machine that incorporates Virilio’s three kinds of logic. Formal logic appears as Paul Klee paintings on a tablet screen and cut-out shapes in a screen. Photographic and cinematic representations of the 1953 exhibition, Parallel of Life and Art, demonstrate the actuality of dialectic logic. The resulting space of floating images produces the virtualities of paradoxical logic.5 Standing in front of the small perforated screen, viewers are overwhelmed by the “as found” images. Behind the screen, mirrors fragment the images and simulate the real-time artificial vision of surveillance cameras. According to Virilio, this automation of perception delegates “the analysis of objective reality to a machine.” The immersive experience blends the interior and the exterior with an effect of objects perceiving us both inside and outside the space.  In this space, photographs are subjected to processes of fragmentation and recombination which creates a version of Jacques Rancière calls “relations between a whole and parts; between a visibility and a power of signification and affect associated with it; between expectations and what happens to meet them.”[3]

[1] Nigel Henderson, manuscript, 8pp., Tate Archive 9211.5.1.5.   [2] Ryan Johnston, "Not Quite Architecture... Cold War History, New Brutalist Ethics and Parallel of Life and Art," in Interspaces: Art Architectural Exchanges from East to West, A. White and F. Marcello, eds., 2012.   [3] Jacques Rancière, “The Future of the Image,” in The Future of the Image, London: Verso, 2009.

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