Comfort Station, Chicago
Curated by Michael Green
Featuring Magritte Nankin. 6 min./13 min./30 min., silent, 2012
In order to view Chicago artist/filmmaker Melika Bass’ new site-specific installation, you must circumambulate the odd, contained Comfort Station Logan Station, enduring minor bushwhacking and the associative feelings of peering into windows that aren’t your own. The issues Bass deals with seem as simple and elegant as her compositions: interiority, domesticity, the performance of gender, the quiet moments of preparation for one’s day, the solitude and vulnerability of lonely slumber, voyeurism. The figures move slowly and deliberately, like they are caught in a dream. Each projection-there are three-is a portrait of a single action. Part of the joy of experiencing this piece is in the small ways it reveals itself. Watch it from across the street, watch watchers watching, bend back branches if you must, match the car sounds to their own incursive light. The three videos loop, but at such different speeds that every intersection and juxtaposition is unique and ephemeral, if only subtly. I thought of specters and spectators. (Jesse Malmed, Cine-file)
“The videos’ quiet tone and their unusual setting creates a mood like that of a musical nocturne: meditative, gloomy and haunted by the shadows of half-formed dreams.” (Phillip Hartigan, Time Out Chicago)
On view from sundown to sunup in locked building. Projections visible through windows from outside.
Installation photos by Joseph Carr.