Some projects begin and end in their incarnation as installations. For Pedro Lasch, the project lives on through its documentation, first as photographs and then as book.
Lasch is releasing a bilingual edited volume through Duke Press as the culmination of his three-part project Black Mirror/Espejo Negro, first installed in the Nasher Museum in May 2008. (Full disclosure: Pedro Lasch, assistant research professor in Duke’s Department of Art, Art History & Visual Studies, is one of my professors.) For the installation, which coincided with the Nasher Museum’s El Greco to Velazquez and Escultura Social exhibitions, Lasch explored the so-called “darker side of the Renaissance.” Lasch installed black, rectangular mirrors, each with an image of a reproduction Renaissance painting barely visible behind it, on the museum walls. On pedestals, he placed Pre-Colombian objects facing the mirrors, inviting museum visitors to reflect on and in the colonial and the spectatorial.
Lasch edited the bilingual book, which includes 39 full-color installation photos and Lasch’s writing on the project. The book also includes essays on the project from Duke professors Srinivas Aravamudan (a member of the Nasher Museum’s Faculty Advisory Committee), Walter Mignolo (Full Disclosure: Mignolo is also one of my professors) and Pete Sigal. Jennifer A. González, a professor of the history of art and visual culture at UC-Santa Cruz, and art historian Arnaud Maillet also contributed essays.
Book release parties will take place around the world, from Marseilles to Bogota. Those in Durham can attend the book release party on Wednesday, Nov. 10, from 6 to 8 p.m. in the East Duke Building on Duke’s East Campus where images from the installation will also be on view.
IMAGE: Pedro Lasch, “Black Mirror/Espejo Negro,” 2008. Installation with dark glass sheets and works from the Nasher Museum’s permanent collection. Image courtesy of the artist.