Everything is coded—nothing is really explained. That’s why you have to watch it a second time. But the underlying theme is the battle between history and the fleeting beauty of music.
Gagosian is pleased to present k.364, an exhibition by Douglas Gordon.
Gordon is a conjurer of collective memory and perceptual surprise whose tools include the everyday commodities of popular culture: Hollywood films, found scientific footage, photographs of rock stars, and poetic and ambiguous phrases. Into a diverse body of work—which spans video and film, sound, photographic objects, and texts both as installation and printed matter—he infuses a combination of humor and trepidation to manipulate reactions to the familiar. An early work, 24 Hour Psycho (1993), slowed down Alfred Hitchcock’s legendary 1960 film into a full day’s duration, drawing out the horror until any sensation of suspense ceased to exist. In 2006, he collaborated with Philippe Parreno on the feature film Zidane: A 21st Century Portrait, which used multiple cameras to follow every movement of the international soccer star.
Gordon’s new film k.364 involves two Israeli musicians of Polish descent (Avri Levitan and Roi Shiloah) traveling to Poland from Berlin by train. Shown on multiple screens and with layered sound, the film follows the two men through a desolate landscape in a country whose tragic and violent history is barely resolved for them. Gordon films the musicians on this personal journey, isolating intimate moments at which their passionate love of music seems to move between them.
Leaving Berlin, they travel through Poznan, home of the celebrated Amadeus chamber orchestra, where the former synagogue is still used as a swimming pool. The journey concludes with the musicians’ performance, at the Warsaw Philharmonic concert hall, of Mozart’s Sinfonia Concertante in E flat major (also known as Mozart’s Köchel Composition k.364, from which the title of Gordon’s film is derived). Against the subtly drawn backdrop of a dark and unresolved social history, The film is an intimate document of the relationship between individuals and the power of music.
A series of wooden flat files topped with glass vitrines will also be on view. Gordon has filled the mirrored displays with ephemera such as playing cards, books, and photographs. Part sketchbook, part time capsule, the cabinets present a glimpse of his experiences and diverse network of sources.
Katrina Brown discusses the importance of Douglas Gordon’s 24 Hour Psycho (1993) and some of the films that followed, touching on threads that run throughout the artist’s career.
Douglas Gordon: I had nowhere to go
Featuring an extensive interview with Douglas Gordon on the process of making his 2016 film I had nowhere to go: Portrait of a displaced person, this video, produced by Berlin Art Link, includes clips of Jonas Mekas and revealing anecdotes about the creation of the film.
Douglas Gordon and Morgane Tschiember
Douglas Gordon and Morgane Tschiember’s installation As close as you can for as long as it lasts, presented during Elevation 1049: Avalanche in Gstaad, Switzerland.
Making Eyes: Douglas Gordon
Douglas Gordon and Rufus Wainwright collaborated to produce afflictive, slow-motion projections to accompany Wainwright’s performances during his 2010 All Days Are Nights: Songs for Lulu tour.
Extended through February 3, 2018
November 14, 2017–February 3, 2018
West 21st Street, New York
I had nowhere to go: Portrait of a displaced person
October 3–7, 2017
Britannia Street, London
Douglas Gordon | Lawrence Weiner
April 5–May 20, 2017
November 11–December 23, 2016