Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Kristen Lucas

Kristen Lucas

Work from her oeuvre.

If you look at nothing else today, look at Refresh (and read the transcript).

"In my mind, I am in a shopping mall parking lot. I am framing a scene that I will fill with a cast of zombies. People and family vehicles move through the space of my palms. I am psyched. The temperature is ideal. There is no breeze, so it feels like indoors. It will be a night scene set in daylight. The location is any small or medium-sized city in the US or Canada. The location is a shopping mall parking lot. The location is the space between my palms. The location is the illusionary landscape of my mind.

She pulls back from the shot, the lot, the city, in her mind, tucks away her palm camera and calls it a night. The day is young. She is modest about her day’s ac-complishments, which comes easy because they don’t amount to much, at least not in the tangible sense. In the pursuit of locating her subject, she yields that form is not what she is looking for. She must sacrifice form for experience. Loss of form, in a tangible sense, is a necessary condition.

“Out of sight!” she broadcasts with approval. What she witnessed in the frame, before pulling back, was never exactly in the shot.

She looks through the frame, past the shot until she sees potential everywhere, in everything, all at once around her, like a radioactive material. To devise a method for its capture is preposterous. It has no fixed location. It emanates from no particular source as far as eyes can perceive, even with the aid of a special framing device like a palm camera. She unloads her daypack and begins swiping its contents through the air: a comb, a credit card, a protein bar, a pre-paid tran-sit pass. She has no idea what to expect. And, although the test amuses her, she finds that she can only experience what she imagines.

The act of framing is an indispensable tool in my practice. I am framing experi-ence. I am framing the space of discourse. The act of framing can give rise to a situation, an experience or a set of relations. I once used a vegetable steamer to scan the electromagnetic spectrum of a city block. I assumed the role of a spe-cialist, taking measurements and jotting down notes. By way of framing this situation, my performance not only created new entry points for conversation with my environment and with my audience, but it also activated the potential for col-lective experience and the transference of energy. It was like a magic trick, full of possibility. To perform with recognizable tools would not have produced these re-sults. To engage the public imagination, my performance had to appear effortless and the task had to seem impossible at the same time..." - Kristin Lucas

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