July 15, 2008, 3:42 am
Filed under: Art, Photography, Video

Mat Collishaw
June 19th – July 31st
Tanya Bonakdar Gallery (Gallery 1)
521 West 21st St. New York, NY

Mat Collishaw’s exhibition, Deliverance, immerses the viewer into a large dark room, accompanied only by the whir of rotating overhead projectors, delivering frequent lightning like flashes. The flashes create eerie greenish white images on the walls; bright at first, then slowly fading. The images are of people in turmoil; dirty and disheveled, running, holding one another, and crying (Video).

The gallery walls are covered in phosphorescent paint. Where the projectors shine light, the paint glows in the dark, then slowly fades. Collishaw likens this to how the mind perceives images of tragedy in the media; striking one’s perception, then quickly fading from memory (Video).

This clever use of images, space, and materials was very effective. The viewer is consistently bombarded by images. No character can be studied in depth; images of real people in real danger transform into a fantastical dreamscape. As in the media, because of the constant bombardment, and the glamorization of content, what we see does not seem real… even though it is.


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