The second installment of the Video 2005 program, No Convenient Subway Stops features videos that depict scenes from deserts, wastelands, or bleak suburban settings. Curated by Sofía Hernández Chong Cuy and Jeffrey Walkowlak, the exhibition includes work by artists Jennifer Allora and Guillermo Calzadilla (Puerto Rico); Sebastian Díaz Morales (Amsterdam); Mario García Torres (Los Angeles); Sabine Gruffat (NYC); MK 12 Studio (Kansas City); Randy Moore (NYC/San Francisco); and Lisi Raskin (NYC). From documentary style to science fiction, the videos in this exhibition depict or depart from activities in deserts, wastelands, or bleak suburban settings.
Returning a Sound is shot in the former U.S. Navy bomb–testing site of Vieques, Puerto Rico by Jennifer Allora and Guillermo Calzadilla. An activist youth known for acts of civil disobedience speeds a motorcycle around the island with a trumpet blaring like a military siren from his exhaust pipe. Lisi Raskin’s video is an amalgamation of a desert, an active nuclear power plant, and an Olympic pool that once served as the largest Jewish cemetery in Eastern Europe. Sabine Gruffat’s And So Sings Our Mechanical Bride, is filmed in an abandoned nuclear test site in the American Midwest.
In Abandoned and Forgotten Land Works That Are not Necessarily Meant to Be Seen as Art, Mario García Torres films unusual landing strips in the American Southwest that were once used for aviation military exercises and today presumably by drug–traffickers. Randy Moore documents his version of a 1970s performance by Chris Burden in which the artist bikes across California’s Death Valley National Park. On this occasion, however, the young artist wears a self–designed, professional racing outfit owing something to the costume of a medieval court jester, the spirit of futurism, and the colorful stripes of Paul Smith.
In Water, Box, Handkerchief and Force, Sebastian Díaz Morales presents a set of quiet, subtle videos shot against the vast backdrop of Argentina’s Patagonia, creating a simple action turned extraneous, a defiant struggle against the elements of nature. And MK 12 Studio, a 6–team collective of artists, designers, and filmmakers, employs motion design—a combination of animation, video, and music—in Overload, a mesmerizing portrait of one and a million familiar corporate landscapes.