Saturday, May 23, 2009

Press for "White on White: The Pilot (just like being there)"

Jonathan T. D. Neil has offered a stunningly insightful response to our current exhibition on ArtReview.com. Here's an excerpt:
The kind of art that Eve Sussman and Rufus Corporation make often requires a bit of explanation, so bear with me: their current project, ongoing at this point, is titled White on White: A Film Noir. Devotees of art history will quickly recognise that Sussman and Rufus are once again drawing upon a significant work of past art, and in particular of past painting, as – how to describe it? Let’s call them 'datums': facts of orientation that can serve as a reference point with which to find one’s way. For 89 Seconds at Alcazar (2004), the datum was Valesquez’s Las Meninas (1648); for The Rape of the Sabine Women (2007), it was David’s 1799 masterpiece of (roughly) the same name; now the datum is Kasimir Malevich’s Suprematist Composition: White on White from 1918.

The cartography in which Sussman and Rufus engaged for their own White on White involved a kind of nomadic travel through central Asia. As Jeff Wood of Rufus describes it at one point in a dispatch from the Caspian Sea: “This is a research trip. For an art film about extreme combinations. Architectures. Economies. Landscapes. Personalities.” The Rufus Corporation website has been given over to a blog that details some of the travelers’ more bizarre and enchanting experiences, from sharing vodka in the early morning with a pair of freelance hydro-geologic archaeologists in Almaty, Kazakhstan, to bribing their way onto a train heading for Turitam, the rail stop for Baikonur, the former Soviet settlement and location of the Cosmodrome, birthplace of the world’s first space program.
Read the whole thing...it's a critique that members of Rufus Corporation say is among the best responses ever written to their project.

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