Monday, March 24, 2008

Watch out for: Omer Fast @ The Whitney Biennial

You know, modern art has a tendency to be a real drag. With a vast amount of people all across the globe trying to make a name for themselves through art, pieces that truly catch your eye are very rare.

Last Wednesday, as I wandered The Whitney for their biennial exhibition, very few things were truly grabbing at me. I was bored, looking for something that felt note-worthy. I crept into every room I could find, before slipping into one densely-populated screening room tucked away in the corner of the second floor. Walking in, on its own, was a strange experience.
You hear an American man describing two different events while everything and everyone on the screen is frozen-- but you know the camera's still rolling. You'll see lights flashing and people blinking. Walking a little further in, you'll see that there is not one screen, but two, each with their own different frozen piece. There are even two more different "channels" on the other side of each screen, but they are just footage of the man as he speaks.
I sat in here and submersed myself in this, completely captivated.
The story, by film artist Omer Fast called "The Casting", follows the narrator's description of two different events: an evening with a masochistic German girl and the impulsive shooting of an Iraqi. These two events switch interchangeably as the narrator draws parallels throughout the 14-minute piece.
I had to sit there and watch. I was angry for not being able to finish it, as I worried that my mother and sister were probably unaware of my whereabouts, but the few minutes I did see of this mindblowing piece were not ones I'll forget.
Since that day, I've had a growing fascination with this political artist's work. I've seen two short works of his, and now I want to see more from this incredibly promising individual.

I highly recommend those in the New York area to head over to The Whitney and catch this magnificent piece while they still can-- you won't regret it, and you probably won't be able to see it anywhere else, either!
Fantastic work. Certainly want to see more from this one.

Omer Fast: CNN Concentrated (2002)


Vimal said...

I thought it was amazing too, wish I could find more information about the artist online...

lolitahazed said...

Yeah, I've looked all over, but absolutely nothing, which sucks.
Definitely one of the most promising pieces I saw at the Biennal though!


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