1173 Subtleties / Gravity, 1971

A-Space Gallery, Toronto, ON Canada

This exhibition was composed of two events. The first event was a week long work called: "1173 Subtleties". It was responding to Av Isaacs, where I assured him I would put subtlety back into the art context. The second component was an installation comprised of various elements responding to gravity both in static and in motion.

The following text is an extract from "Art Up On Life" by Vanessa Paschakarnis:


“As the crow flies” 1971“This plumb-feather apparatus, attached to the ceiling by an elastic cord, is released by the sitter. The feather does a very organic dance and the viewer’s depth of focus is precisely controlled. Time: about 15min.” (John Greer)22 This work visualizes this process, or better makes the viewer/sitter active part of the experience of a projection and the repulse on the person. A chair is placed in proximity to a swinging plumb, fixed to an elastic cord. Two feathers are fastened like wings at the object. With the heavy up and down movement of the plumb, the feathers start to dance around the center. Sitting in the chair you are seduced by the movement and flow, “mentally flying” with the object, but the short distance to the swinging mass keeps oneself in a tension: you do not get used to the fact that the object does not hit you. You try to avert it, the fear occurs just for a very short moment, but it is consistent and that is the specific form of experience that keeps the viewer/sitter alert.


The elastic cord becomes a mirror for the elasticity of human potential for thinking; it defies gravity through its capability of avoiding any fixation. The string is increasing the potential of the weight of the plumb, yet is continuing and finally coming to a balance through a process of endurance/patience. This reflects on the viewer/sitter through his participation. He starts the encounter through an input of energy, is fixed through eye and thought and is in his position a part of the installation (you do have to stop the plumb to get out). So “As the crow flies” becomes a model for human mental capability as potential for construction and destruction in the world of things through balance and movement.


Please see also: Art Up On Life / Mental Devices - Physical Grounding

oder auf Deutsch: Kunst Auf Ueber Leben / Mentale Vorrichtungen - Materielle Grundlage

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Bus Shelter in Halifax with retroActive poster!
Thinking Back to Gertrude and Henrie, 2015
Installation View retroActive with Threshold, 2015; Civilization, 1990/91; PaperMoney, 2012
Wait of Water by John Greer, 2014 Bay of Fundy Detail of Wait of Water, October 9th, 2014; retroActive tied up, tide down, looking back across the bay where the piece was first realized in 1972
National Gallery of Canada : THE PROUST QUESTIONNAIRE
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