Saturday, January 20, 2007

Inside the music; Being Ann Cummings

In the movie "Being John Malkovich" one enters a small square tunnel and ends up in JM's head.
In Ann Cummings' latest performance-installation, one enters a box Approx 7'x7' and ends up in Ann's mind.
The box is in a large similarly shaped box, a warehouse like building.
Inside the smaller box Ann has placed several artworks, drawings and paintings.
The art itself is not profound, ranging from simple geometrical patterns through daubed paintings to some sophisticated portraits of her own hands.
When the lights are turned off, one enters the box and examines the art with a flashlight as a 20 minute program of music plays.
The overall theme of the piece is dichotomy, ways in which opposite seeming concepts are connected; light-dark, up-down, order-chaos, etc.
The music consists of two pieces by local composers which either illuminate the art or add to the confusion, another dichotomy.
The first image is a wall sized diptych of the pathways of the optic nerves from the eyes to the back of the brain. The left eye's nerves connect to the right side of the brain and vice-versa. Leftbrain-Rightbrain.
The drawing that inspired this blog was a portrait of the artist holding a camera. It was titled Me-You. Or, was it a mirror? Was it me BEING You? Is this what it is like to BE Ann Cummings?
At least I wasn't dropped from a dangerous height along the New Jersey freeway.
The genesis of the piece is/are the two short sentances; "Is doubt an honest question" and "Doubt is an honest question"
Neither one of these sentances parse as proper english to me.
However this enigmatical juxtaposition opens the door to the rest of the piece.
One is allowed-encouraged to buy the art, which will-wont be used in a future showing
if you want-don't want.
This is the second year for this annual project.
For more information;
Inside the Music

The music for "Is Doubt" is by Christopher DeLaurenti

The music for "Doubt is" is by Tom Baker
Tom Baker

From what I can tell, being Ann Cummings is a good thing.

Tonight, Saturday Jan 20 8;00 PM is the end of this year's run.

P.S. Mr. deLaurenti's piece was based on Ravel's "Bolero", a piece about which even Ravel had his doubts.


Blogger Robin said...

Fabulous review... I bet Ann Cummings, if she read it, was pleased to be compared to the Malkovich movie. And your writing is a little like that too. Thanks.

10:31 PM  
Blogger Lane Savant said...

Ann has played piano for a couple of Salons. I got an appreciative e-mail from her. She also made some very insightful comments abour "A Story"

9:52 AM  

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