ArtxHistory Archive

Coursework, Creative Arts 1.1 Experience Creative Arts, Creative Arts BA (Hons), Project 2: Encountering Time - A Critical Analysis, Research & Reflection

ArtxHistory is “a space facilitated by institutions, historians, curators, artists, faculty and students who are committed to deliver quality scholarship that is accessible, inclusive and open. Co-facilitators are encouraged to reach us to share content or assist in the growth of this framework.”

After looking at Katie Paterson’s Future Library I spent some time looking at recent works also on the theme of climate change. One artist that stood out to me is Doug Aitken and in particular his Mirror (Aitken, 2013).

Mirror is a large outdoor installation on the Seattle Art Museum that consists of a 12-story LED display that wraps around the facade. The video shows a mixture of video and stills all taken by Aitken in and around Seattle that shows the landscapes, cityscapes around the museum. “The imagery you see moves at a slow, thoughtful pace. But what really matters is that Mirror’s imagery is dynamic, to the point of being spontaneous. This is because the content shown on the screens and LED strips is selected by the installation’s software in response to sensor data regarding the weather, pedestrian traffic and other events unfolding in and around SAM” (Careless, 2013).

The mirror doesn’t just show a planned slideshow, it responds to its environment. In some ways, it is the modern equivalent of The Spiral Jetty (Smithson, 1970) in that the artist constructs it but then passes it over the other elements. to evolve it and the finished product is left to nature.


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