Fire & Ice: “we are inseparable there is no time” at Honor Fraser Gallery

A Mini Review of Rebecca Bruno’s “we are inseparable there is no time” at Honor Fraser Gallery, June 21 — June 24, 2016. Reviewed June 18, 2016.

Rebecca Bruno | Photo courtesy of the artist

Rebecca Bruno’s “we are inseparable there is no time” moves at a slow, deliberate, even glacial pace, but it is a welcome respite from the city’s current heat wave.

In Honor Fraser’s cavernous and cool rooms, hunks of ice melt onto shattered glass, water drips from a hypothermic hand in a film projected on the wall, the AC buzzes, and Bruno sedately massages her body against the chilled floor like a bathing beauty luxuriating in hot sand. But perhaps it is more than heat that has tuckered her out.

Her languid rubs and rolls call to mind cold mornings spent clinging to warm sheets and grasping at last night’s reveries, unwilling to let go of delightful dreams. Then a gong-like clash echoes from a set of giant chimes in the other room, almost like an ominous alarm striking 6 a.m.

Still, Bruno barely stirs. If she appears like a deliciously exhausted dreamer, then her counterpart, dancer Samantha Mohr, acts like an angsty insomniac. A restless ennui emanates from her every move. She sticks her head into a stool’s cage-like legs, scuttles on her back like a crab, slides across the floor like a penguin surfing on its stomach and flings her hair over her face like the little demon from “The Ring,” before finally settling into a split. She does all this at an unhurried clip, as if filling every minute past bedtime with as much physical distraction as possible.

A 16-hour durational work, “we are inseparable there is no time” lives and dies by its own circadian rhythm, a gradual speed which may bore some and fascinate others. But it also casts a meditative spell. Onlookers, dazed by dance, the heat or both, sit entranced. I join them, hypnotized by the calm interaction of fire and ice.

— Christina Campodonico

Samantha Mohr in “we are inseparable there is no time” | Photo by Christina Campodonico
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