Spot 1998

Lynn Cazabon
Factory Installed: October 18, 1998 – July 31, 1999
Materials
audio, video, monitors, steel, clothing, table, curtains, spotlight

This installation was designed with triptych forms to address issues of human communication under ideal physical and psychological conditions.

Description

Cazabon’s installation dismantles our perceptions of gender identity as the viewer maneuvers through a multimedia, theatrical environment. A woman’s voice narrates a verbal transcription of the beginning of a pornographic film that relates to the objects on the table in the first room. Proceeding through the curtain, a spotlight disorients the viewer’s sense of space and, in effect, transports the viewer onstage. Floating squares of light show moving images of body parts– breathing, fragmented, and hovering. To return to what was once the entrance becomes a step backstage, blurring the boundary between the viewer’s body and the “viewed” body of the piece.

Artist Statement

This installation was designed with triptych forms to address issues of human communication under ideal physical and psychological conditions. This triadic form is based on the geometric shapes of a circle and a triangle.  More specifically, I have named this shape “Terminal.” It is a shape in which perfect communication must take place between three individuals. As such, neither a one-dimensional nor a binary relationship is possible.

This installation comprises a series of photographic images depicting the human body, places, objects and symbols with which viewers can identify as they journey through the installed space. The places photographed share common factors: either they do not exist, are places that have been destroyed, or are sites under construction. Time, as rendered in the image, includes a past and a future; the present is formless. The photographs were taken in my place of residence and the location where I have found myself displaced—the location of images indiscernible from each other. I’ve identified the images of the human body, egg-shapes and fire as “agencies of mediation” because they do not relate to a specific time or place. These are ideas that emerge during nomadic times, within virtual societies composed of individuals unable to physically communicate with each other.

About the Artist

Lynn Cazabon holds a BFA in Photography and a BA in Arts and Ideas from the University of Michigan. She received a MFA in Photography from the Cranbrook Academy of Art in 1990. She is currently Associate Professor of Art at University of Maryland, Baltimore County. Her work combines photography, video and film within the three-dimensional format of installation. The physical configurations of her work often blur the boundaries between the art and the viewer, dismantling our association of viewer passivity in relation to art and especially video.

Cazabon’s work has been exhibited nationally and internationally in museums and galleries, as public art, and in solo and group exhibitions including, The Point, Bronx, NY; WRO Art Center, Wroclaw, Poland; Govett-Brewster Art Gallery, New Plymouth, New Zealand;  Artists Space, New York; Hallwalls Contemporary Art Center, Buffalo, NY; Anthology Film Archives, New York; Atlanta Contemporary Art Center, and many more.

She has received grants and fellowships from the Puffin Foundation, Maryland State Arts Council, Fulbright Fellowship, Greater Baltimore Cultural Alliance, Franklin Furnace Archive, Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, and a Smithsonian Graduate Fellowship.