Thursday, August 2, 2012

Dia del Padre: Window Installation

Here is the first full set of pictures of my new exhibition at Art on Armitage, 4125 W Armitage Avenue, Chicago. It's called Dia del Padre, and it consists of material that I've made relating to my father, who died on active duty in the British Army in 1967.

One thing I didn't anticipate is that putting the work in a window gallery, during an unusually strong heatwave, makes the pieces difficult to see because of the glaring side light -- particularly the video (I'm working on a solution to that). The exhibit is a work in progress, that I will add to during the course of the show, but so far this is what is displayed:

The 3 ft by 5 ft banner looks like this:

The photo is of my dad, taken when he was very young, some time in the late 1950s. The medal is his posthumous award for dying in the service of Her Majesty the Queen. The middle image is from the citation accompanying the medal. What I am always struck by is that the text is clearly something left over from well before my dad's demise in 1967, as shown by the use of terminology like Secretary of War, which has been partially (but not wholly) erased with a row of XXXXXXs. You have to ask: why on earth could they not have created new pieces of paper, more than twenty years after the end of WWII?

There is also another aspect to this assemblage which I'll let you figure out.

The video screen is showing these films, with Spanish subtitles for the benefit of the largely Latino population of this Chicago neighbourhood:

And then I've done a reprise of something I used in previous shows --  scattered plastic toy soldiers on the floor:

Well look at that: part of the gallery name is like "ARMY."

The reading and performance will be done from a small area at the left hand side of the window gallery.

I can probably take better pictures of this at night, which I will upload next Monday.

1 comment:

  1. I'm overwhelmed by my emotional reaction to this. Stunning, in the fullest sense, of the word,


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