Atmospheres & Accidental Ghosts is an episodic, multi-channel video and sound installation, which randomly reconfigures and activates a perpetually shifting selection of media drawn from the artists’ work and obsessions. Relying on chance and coincidence, this at times unruly and unpredictable piece generates elliptical narratives and enigmatic visual juxtapositions, as the computer continually scans for something elusive, scrambling restlessly through data in an attempt to search for patterns or meaning. Upturned sinking ships, flashes of color and light, a dancer’s looming face, fragments of text, and spectral mirages meld, collide, and shimmer, in a ghostly aura of moving image montage.
Atmospheres & Accidental Ghosts is an open-ended, self-generating work, which is controlled through an interactive, programming software called Isadora. In this piece, the software is programmed to randomly create sequences of moving images by shuffling through an assortment of our past and current projects. At arbitrary intervals, this shuffling lands on a pair of images, which the software recognizes as a match. As soon as these connected images play out, the computer once again cascades back into a restless shuffle, moving and morphing from one incarnation to the next, from moments of peaceful serenity to raucous energy. In this twin pairing of images, there is a flowing forward and backward at the same time with no clear beginning or end. Images repeat, synchronize and then just as easily fall apart and disperse, striking a balance between separation and convergence, simplicity and complexity.
Each iteration of Atmospheres & Accidental Ghosts is entirely unique and mutable.
Opening from May 22 through July 20
Nolan Park Building 5a5b, Governors Island, NY
Shaun Irons and Lauren Petty are Brooklyn based multi-platform artists who make interdisciplinary performances, multimedia installations, single-channel works, documentaries and interactive video scores for live performance. Recently, they created a multidisciplinary performance called Keep Your Electric Eye On Me, which was commissioned by HERE (NYC) through their Artist Residency Program. In addition, they are also completing a backstage documentary portrait of Elevator Repair Service’s acclaimed 8-hour theatrical event Gatz, as well as developing a self-generating, video/sound installation called Atmospheres & Accidental Ghosts.
Their work has been exhibited in diverse locations in New York and internationally including BAM’s Next Wave Festival (in collaboration with Phantom Limb Company), The Brooklyn Museum, Abrons Arts Center, The Chocolate Factory, Brooklyn BEAT Festival, Anthology Film Archives, REDCAT (Los Angeles), Z Space (San Francisco), the Center for Contemporary Art (Santa Fe), Rencontres Paris/Berlin, and the Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes (Havana, Cuba).
Shaun and Lauren have received numerous awards in support of their work including two NYFA Fellowships, multiple grants from the NEA, NYSCA, Jerome Foundation, Greenwall Foundation, Experimental Television Center, and the Asian Cultural Council, and residencies from MacDowell, Yaddo, Harvestworks, Brooklyn Arts Exchange, Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, The Tokyo Wonder Site and The Bogliasco Foundation. Their video design work has been seen at venues such as St. Ann’s Warehouse, The Public Theater, The Kitchen, HERE, PS 122, EMPAC, the Pompidou Center, Prototype Festival, Holland Dance Festival, the Venice Biennale, and the Brooklyn Academy of Music.
Shaun and Lauren both teach video and moving image production at the International Center of Photography and are visiting artists at The Kitchen, creating videos and performances with New York City high school students. Lauren is also an Associate Teaching Professor at The New School and Parsons and was a Visiting Artist at Sarah Lawrence College.