Sunday, September 21, 2008

Day 93: Benning Pilgrimage

my ode to James Benning, I am working toward 10 skies of my own

I have been anticipating the arrival of today since we got the postcard invitation in the mail last summer. It is with great bliss that we head to DIA Beacon today to see two James Benning films for the first time- and James Benning himself. After what has felt like two weeks of non-stop intensity, today will most certainly be a departure into another kind of energy. It is the equinox after all, and equilibrium must be restored.

Experiencing a James Benning film is not "like" anything, but simply is a tapping into the change that makes the world. His 10 minute shots provide a structure that sets free all that unfolds within. The duration is something foreign to contemporary address, a feeling surfaces that is oddly familiar - a real-time sense of "being with" something (really it is many things). The films are transformative, otherworldly, deeply patient, alive.

I am grateful to have an entire day as experience with his work.

"This program presents three recent works foregrounding issues of temporality by veteran filmmaker James Benning, whose roots lie in Structuralist idioms. Based on footage shot over some four years during intermittent visits to the Spiral Jetty, casting a glance (2007) eschews a documentary approach in favor of one that engages notions of duration and entropy fundamental to Robert Smithson's aesthetic. TEN SKIES (2004) is comprised of ten skyscapes of ten minutes each; 13 LAKES (2004) depicts, also in ten-minute static shot segments, thirteen large lakes from across the United States." - from the DIA

No comments: