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synopsis and background In the vacated downtown of a metropolis a storm approaches and envelops––but this is no ordinary meteorological phenomenon. A digital wind blows the debris from an overflow of information. The city becomes occupied by a rushing whirlwind that carries a tangled mass of communication. Devices of technology––satellite dishes, remote TV trucks, helicopters––hover in the enclaves between skyscrapers while beginning to squawk, beep, hum and chatter amongst themselves in a growing deluge of paper. The presence of these devices becomes ominous and prevalent; they seem to monitor or even propel the storm as the city is consumed, erased by a blanket of information.
Shot during the 2000 Yankees ticker-tape parade, Current documents a space between truth and fiction. Through careful camera work that transformed crowded parade routes into empty streets and an evocative soundscape that simulates an information overload, a reality present during the parade, but largely unobserved that day, comes alive. Shot and edited nearly one year before the catastrophic events of 9-11-01, Current has become a prescient and eerily accurate vision. In retrospect, it seems like an unwitting dress rehearsal or fantasy of destruction, a glimpse of the future that was to come. Few would have suspected the thin line between mass jubilation and mass horror.
Current was created for both the theater and gallery. In the linear format of theater viewing, the audience can follow the clear narrative arc of the encroaching storm, the furious climax, and wistful collapse into smoke. An equally strong device is the constant transformation of imagery, at once representational and abstract, which allows the gallery viewer to enter and leave the experience at anytime. In the installation, Current plays on encased monitors suspended from the ceiling. The viewer is encouraged to climb a small stepladder onto a metal grate and watch the video from a fold-down chair, as if climbing inside the video through a minimalist version of a remote-TV satellite truck.

production notes
by the artist

I’ve been making quasi-fictionalized documentaries and video installations for several years now – efforts to expose the forces and mechanisms of realities just out of the scope of our perception. With that methodology in mind, I became interested in the idea of the ticker tape parade.
For some time I had been eager to film a ticker tape parade from its epicenter. In the fall of 2000, the famous Subway Series occurred. I knew that a mass of debris floating down the “Canyon of Heroes” was certain, and I wanted to be there to film it. I didn’t know exactly what I wanted to shoot, but I knew the debris would be the central focus.
When the day came in October of 2000, I grabbed my HI-8 camcorder, a lightweight tripod and headed in. Once I managed to get across a few police lines I found some interesting spots and began to tape as much as I could. I covered various angles but ended up favoring those without people – the floating debris was so amazing on its own -- all the varieties, and speeds of it whirling around. I was also fascinated by all the media coverage – the helicopters, TV trucks, radio towers – I knew this should be a component as well.
It turned out to be an excessively windy day, so the paper really got going at times, whirling around in giant torrents as the wind was trapped between the buildings. At one point, some of these funnels of trash caught on fire – it happened to be right in front of the World Trade Center. I moved toward the smoke and ended up next to a free form tower of fire.
Later, in post-production, I realized this would become the drive of the film – the implied destruction of downtown. So I started with an event a lot of people experienced in some form or another – the ticker tape parade. I then wanted to draw out some existent but little realized realities or sub-contexts from the experience. A storm happened that day – it was a storm of communication and it overwhelmed us – you just had to look at it the right way.

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