Friday, October 22, 2010

Art + Culture: Jenny Holzer's TOP SECRET at Yvon Lambert, Paris

One of our favorites, currently on view until December 1st in Paris:

screen capture and description from

In the major LED installation, Purple, Holzer uses an array of signs (the shape of each evocative of a human rib or a shackle) to reveal facts, contradictions, and harrowing information. The piece streams text from a series of policy documents regarding the treatment of enemy combatants, autopsy reports of detainees who died in custody, documents detailing events and conditions at Guantánamo Bay, as well as pages concerning a case in which a fleeing Iraqi non-combatant was killed by American forces. Standing in the crossfire of this light and text, one feels the language to be immediate and physical. The distance that separates us from these events is belied. Keeping these latest wars and their ramifications present and palpable, Holzer urges us to attend to our recent past and our present before going blindly into what comes next.