Christian Marclay’s exhibition “Surround Sounds”

Christian Ernest Marclay, a visual artist and a composer, is on view at Paula Cooper Gallery from September 10- October 17, 2015. His new video installation, Surround Sounds,

consists of comic-book-style animated onomatopoeias projected onto the walls of a dark room. Using visual tools the artist attempts to recreate the sound effect of various words retaining their acoustic properties at the same time. Thus, “beep” is continuously blinking while “whizz” and “zoom” are rushing through the wall. The silent images evoke sounds which are then assembled into a musical composition by our imagination.

The exhibition also presents works using traditional media but also exploring the boundaries between sounds, visuals and written words. With a nod to Roy Lichtenstein and action painters there is a series of ink and acrylic paintings presenting similar onomatopoeias but this time with the ink and paint splashes as a visual memory of the sounds ephemeral existence.

The exhibition space and its layout is very well thought out. The entrance to the video installation space, located in the corner of the room, provides an easy access to the show without disturbing the viewers. Both the video room and the space allocated for Marclay’s paintings are connected to each other, strengthening the effect of the exhibition and reinforcing the message of the artist even further.

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