1982’s Koyaanisqatsi: Life Out of Balance is a landmark documentary, a rare experimental work to cross over into mainstream appeal. Directed by Godfrey Reggio and featuring a now-legendary orchestral score by Philip Glass, the film is one extended montage, a collection of scenes from across planet Earth. Everything from shopping malls to rocket launches are used to depict modern life in all its complexity and often-disquieting environmental dislocation. (The title is a Hopi word meaning “unbalanced life.”) The frequent use of slow motion, time-lapse photography, and Glass’s supremely ominous score lend immense gravitas to even the most quotidian moments.
Anyway, what if you did the same thing, but using clips of people getting smacked in the face with water balloons?
As a lark, artist Rico Monkeon has created Gifaanisqatsi, “a random Koyaanisqatsi generator.” Click “Play,” and the tool will grab a selection of GIFs from Giphy’s voluminous library and set them to the soundtrack for the trailer for the film. The generator selects for any clips tagged as being slow motion or time-lapse (it also has a PG-13 filter to hopefully prevent anything explicit from getting in).
The results … work surprisingly well. The idea behind Koyaanisqatsi (as well as 1988’s Powaqqatsi and 2002’s Naqoyqatsi, the other two parts in Reggio’s trilogy) is to create a collage of life itself. This does the same thing, just through a sort of crowdsourcing, as well as some images that may have a bit less, uh, gravitas than anything Reggio would have selected. (In my various plays, I have seen multiple GIFs of fat dogs running in slow motion. I love it.) Sometimes there are clips you wouldn’t believe aren’t already in the documentary. (My favorite is a time-lapse of ants devouring sushi.) The results are at turns humorous and mesmerizing. I can’t stop clicking the button and watching it go. Give it a whirl yourself, and see what strange montage you create.
For the triennial’s eighth edition, work by more than 70 artists is featured in 12 exhibitions and a polyphonic program, installed at various locations throughout the German city.
Murch’s painted dust can be so tangible you feel compelled to wipe off the picture.
“As we grieve her loss, we call for full accountability for the perpetrators of this crime and everyone involved in authorizing it,” they wrote in an open letter.
This exhibition explores the work and short-but-impactful life of the groundbreaking ceramic artist. Now on view at the New Orleans Museum of Art.
The planned center will be named after Fred Rouse, a Black man who was lynched in the city of Fort Worth in 1921.
The researchers found that when eyes meet, certain areas of the brain start experiencing “neural firing.”
Curated by Clare Dolan, this solo exhibition in Frenchtown, NJ contains new and unearthed paintings, sculptures, and prints selected from the organization’s 60-year history.
From 1968 to 1973, the Nihon Documentarist Union did radical documentary work in Japan. They made two films in Okinawa before, during, and after its reversion.
Every corner and crevice of Columbia University’s MFA Thesis show feels lived in, reflecting not just artists’ experience quarantining with their work, but also that of re-entering society.
Sprawling across the Joshua Tree region, nine site-specific works consider the ways in which people have relocated to the desert, destroying what came before them, and cultivating new life.