Friday, December 20, 2019

Patricia L. Boyd at Christian Andersen & Front Desk Apparatus

"in 2013, Boyd produced Carl dis/assembling w/ self, [...] She instructed one of EMPAC’s technicians to put together the engine of a Dodge truck while holding in one hand a camera that both documents and impedes his labor. His performance, which Boyd edited down to a three-minute piece, is a bleak metaphor for the ways in which we conceive of and perform work in a post-Fordist, image-driven culture: There is an imperative not only to produce but to spectacularize production. Driving the point home, the man’s labor has an absurd character: After he finishes assembling the engine, Boyd directs him to break it down again, thus rendering his actions irrelevant, Sisyphean; value derives from the image of his labor, not the labor itself. In a winking moment halfway through the video, when the engine is briefly shown in its assembled state, text appears, spelling out the work’s sponsors: Frieze Foundation, EMPAC, and British broadcaster Channel 4." 
"But what does this system produce? Nothing except an image of itself. The artist refers to the work as an “exhaustion engine.” It simultaneously represents and realizes the use and expenditure of her artistic resources: a commission fee and a studio at the NASA-grade production facilities" -Annie Godfrey Larmon Artforum
Someone once said that Sports were simply an advanced random number generator for creating stories. Sometimes art seems a similarly tangential means for the same.