Slater Bradley’s Doppelganger Trilogy

Slater Bradley’s Doppelganger Trilogy

Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum

March 25, 2005

Slater Bradley: Doppelganger Trilogy
March 11-May 22, 2005

Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum
Fifth Avenue at 89th Street,
New York, NY 10128
Sat.-Wed. 10 am-5:45 pm; Fri. 10 am-8pm;
Closed Thurs.
T 212 423 3500

Slater Bradley’s Doppelganger Trilogy (2001-04) will be on view at the Guggenheim Museum as part of its “Recent Acquisitions” exhibition series. This video installation features “restagings” of imagined performances by three fallen music icons–Kurt Cobain, Ian Curtis, and Michael Jackson–performed by Bradley’s double Benjamin Brock in the guise of the artist. Each of the videos uses a technique reminiscent of what would have been employed to capture the event when it purportedly took place. Factory Archives imagines Curtis, lead singer of the short-lived punk band Joy Division (1977-80) through the grainy haze of aging video stock. As if retrieved from the vaults of Factory Records, this fragment depicts an elusive performer just before the dawn of MTV, when the choreographed music video would forever change how culture consumes its rock ‘n’ roll. Phantom Release rehearses this cultural phenomenon as well as the ubiquitousness of the personal camcorder, offering an ersatz, “amateur” recording of Kurt Cobain playing the guitar. Its raw ambience evokes the countless bootleg videos that can be downloaded from any number of Web sites devoted to all things Nirvana. In Recorded Yesterday, Michael Jackson is seen performing his signature dance moves on an otherwise empty stage. The black-and-white, Super-8 film footage of this lone figure appears to be disintegrating as it plays, creating a ghostly, retro atmosphere that reflects the melancholic reality of a once brilliant career spiraling out of control. Each chapter of the trilogy appears worn and overexposed, as if distorted by age or only dimly recalled as a fading memory.

Bradley’s Doppelganger Trilogy is part of an ongoing performance project begun in 1999, in which the artist has been exploring the psychologically charged space between self and one’s mirror image. In addition to the three videos, this exhibition includes a selection of photographs and drawings.

Experience Slater Bradley’s Doppelganger Trilogy after hours during First Fridays. April 1, May 6, and June 3 from 9 pm to 1 am.
Also on view at the Guggenheim:
The Hugo Boss Prize 2004: Rirkrit Tiravanija
March 8-May 11, 2005
The Eye of the Storm: Works in situ by Daniel Buren
March 25-June 8, 2005

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Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum
March 25, 2005

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