July 12—August 24, 2013
Similar to the sound of a band or symphony warming up, the house lights going down in a theatre trigger a learned neuro-chemical response that readies the body for a dark, reverie-laden space where spectators slip into their seats as though slipping into bed. The slow extinguishment of light performs an act of transformation in which the everyday is temporarily suspended in preference of another reality. When the lights come up it is as though a hypnotist has snapped his fingers, bringing the long moment of restful, augmented attentiveness to an end. Staging features the mesmerizing video installation Chase, a collaborative video installation by Blaine Campbell and Megan Wilson. The video’s subject is the 1000 lb Czechoslovakian crystal chandelier hanging above the balcony at the centre of Vancouver’s Orpheum Theatre. The chandelier’s lights slowly progress through an endless on-off cycle, a glowing, pulsing beacon, the crystals’ multitude of facets catching and refracting light. Often ambiguous, the result appears to transform back and forth between some alien, night-time cityscape and an ornate, gothic behemoth. Chase was featured in the 2012 edition of Toronto’s Nuit Blanche—attended by over 1 million people—and is currently on view at The New Gallery, Calgary. It has also been exhibited at Ed Video Media Arts Centre, Guelph, Ontario; Art Souterrain / Nuit Blanche, Montreal, QC; and the Nordart Festival, Büdelsdorf, Germany.
Staging also includes Blaine Campbell’s sumptuous and highly detailed photographic works Staging 2 and untitled (chandelier, B&W) and the engaging new mixed media sculpture deconstruction study 1.