June 20: Doug Aitken’s Black Mirror

Doug Aitken's architectural and multichannel video installation at Deste Foundation’s Slaughterhouse space on the Greek island of Hydra.


There may be few artists working today with more sensitivity to place than Doug Aitken. In “Patterns & Repetition,” a series of video interviews that aired earlier this year, Aitken (best known for his 2007 film Sleepwalkers) deconstructed James Murphy’s electro-pop into the sounds of the musician’s childhood, and explored how Mike Kelley’s art was shaped by the industrial landscape of Detroit. “I started to question the validity of geographic borders,” Aitken says of his architectural and multichannel video installation, Black Mirror, which he’s staging June 20 to September 25 at Deste Foundation’s Slaughterhouse space on the Greek island of Hydra. “There’s a different kind of geography that’s being created as we speak, a cloud of communication coming and going”—namely, the innumerable short-burst messages encountered daily via the likes of Twitter and Facebook. Aitken’s latest work will be shown on five screens reflected “into infinity” across black mirrors, and stars Chloë Sevigny (above) as a protagonist with wanderlust. In such disparate locales as Mexico, Greece, and Central America, she’s tethered only by brief conversations over the phone and through voiceover. In the end, she’s everywhere, but not really anywhere. Or, as Aitken calls them, “places that are no places at all.”

Photo: Courtesy Of Doug Aitken And 303 Gallery, NY