Blog / Video Quartet

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By Sarah Weiner
Nasher marketing intern

If I had to pick one word to describe the feeling when I first walked into the “Video Quartet,” it would be overwhelmed. The screens were bigger, the sounds were louder, and room was darker than I had imagined. The four simultaneous projections took me by complete surprise.

But the more I watched it, the more it turned into a congruent whole. Rather than focusing on one screen and listening to one sound, it became one big picture and an orchestra of sounds. Selective attention worked against me; I had to take away focus from any one image or noise in order to absorb all that the quartet had to offer. This parallels how we see ourselves, as pieces of a whole or as an individual trying to be the loudest.

The quartet is definitely not an action film or a TV show where you watch it once and you know how it ends. It’s something that the more you times you watch it, the more you find in it. Every time you see or hear something just a little differently. So if you’ve seen it once, take a second look. If you haven’t seen it, come experience it. It’s definitely something you’ll not forget any time soon.

Sarah Weiner is a senior graduating from Durham Academy this spring.

IMAGE: Christian Marclay, Video Quartet, 2002. Four-channel DVD projection, with sounds, running time: 14 minutes each screen: 8 x 10 feet; overall installation: 8 x 40 feet. Edition 1 of 5, edition of 5, 2APs 1HC. copyright C. Marclay. Courtesy of Paula Cooper Gallery, New York. Photo by Stephen White. This exhibition is presented through the generosity of Bill and Ruth True, Western Bridge, Seattle, and Paula Cooper Gallery, N.Y.

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