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‘It’s a Poor Sort of Memory That Only Works Backwards’ – Johan Grimonprez at the SVA Chelsea Gallery

Belgian filmmaker and artist Johan Grimonprez caused an international stir with his first feature, Dial H-I-S-T-O-R-Y, after its premiere at documenta X (1997). An exploration into media’s mutating collusion with mass perception, this dizzying chronicle of airplane hijacking eerily foreshadowed the events of 9/11.

Still from “Dial H-I-S-T-O-R-Y” (1997) by Johan Grimonprez, three hijacked jets on desert Airstrip, Amman, Jordan 12 September 1970

Belgian filmmaker and artist Johan Grimonprez caused an international stir with his first feature, Dial H-I-S-T-O-R-Y, after its premiere at documenta X (1997). An exploration into media’s mutating collusion with mass perception, this dizzying chronicle of airplane hijacking eerily foreshadowed the events of 9/11. Ever since he has created various works that deal with conflicting layers of “reality” as well as the mediatization of politics. MFA Fine Arts at the School of Visual Arts presents an exhibition of several works by the multimedia artist, who is an SVA alumnus and faculty member.

The exhibition brings together four works: “Looking for Alfred” (2004), an homage to Hitchcock’s cameo appearances in his films, with a cast of look-alikes; “Hitchcock didn’t have a Belly Button: Interview with Karen Black” (2010), a recorded interview of the actress recounting her experiences with the legendary filmmaker; “You Tube Me and I Tube You,” a two-channel interaction installation and web project initiated in 2010; and “I may have forever lost my umbrella” (2011), a color short with a narration based on Fernando Pessoa’s Book of Disquiet underneath the images of YouTube videos of the 2011 earthquake and tsunami in Japan, which will be shown in New York for the first time in this exhibition.

Curated by MFA Fine Arts faculty member Gianni Jetzer, the exhibition will be on view Saturday, January 17–Saturday, January 31, 2015 at the SVA Chelsea Gallery (601 West 26th Street, 15th floor, Chelsea, Manhattan).

A reception will take place between 6–8pm on Wednesday, January 21. An artist talk will be held between 6–8pm on Tuesday, January 27, 2015.

Find out more at sva.edu/events.