Jan 8, 2012 to Mar 1, 2012

Ruth Eckland’s video installation “Hive” opens on Sunday, Jan. 8, in the Museum’s main gallery. Eckland projects video onto a succession of scrims to the accompaniment of music composed by Matt DiFonzo. Eckland’s most recent exhibitions were in Nakkas Cistern Gallery in Istanbul, Turkey, and the Stir Art Gallery in Shanghai, China. Matt DiFonzo is a composer/producer living in Los Angeles, CA. His work can be heard on the TV shows Survivor (CBS), Fear Factor (NBC), Average Joe (NBC), The Restaurant (NBC), and The Assistant (MTV).

Eckland’s explanation of “Hive”:

Walking into a darkened room, the viewer encounters a three-dimensional installation of staggered scrims hanging from ceiling to floor, alive with projected, frenetic tracings of abstract geometric drawings that form, dissolve, and morph organically into hive-like cells and patterns. Emerging from this maze of activity are more subtle, figurative images that form a counterpoint of slow, deliberate motion and intent. Music fills the space, an original score by Matt DiFonzo, echoing, informing, guiding the visuals and contributing to the immersive experience. A buzzing hive is a dynamic construct representing both connection with others and retreat into private worlds. Urban life, in particular, can feel chaotic, with the excitement of traffic, commerce, and people, the bombardment of light and movement, the medley of noise 24/7. We thrive on the stimulation and the constant incidental and intentional social contact with others. But we also need relief from this onslaught, a protected space where we can relax, contemplate, and regenerate, by ourselves or with a chosen few. Hive is a metaphorical representation of some of the dichotomies and fragmentation that characterize the realities of modern existence. In an ebb and flow of activities, we connect with and expand into the world around us, then retreat into inner worlds to relax and recharge. But whether we are alone or with others, in public or in private, we are connected through our technology, our possessions, and our thoughts and memories to a wider social fabric. In form and content, this installation attempts to provide a visceral experience of the excitement and interconnectivity of contemporary life, and the attempt to find some sort of portal to tranquility within the context of constant stimulation and information overload.

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