LIGHT OVER TIME
July 30, 2014 – May 29, 2015
July 11, 2014, NEW YORK, NY—Public Art Fund and Forest City Ratner Companies (FCRC) announce Sam Falls: Light Over Time, an exhibition at MetroTech Commons featuring five new artworks that encourage the participation of visitors and explore the effects of
the natural environment and time on the materials and forms of the work. Several of the pieces on view—like a seesaw, wind chimes, and bench—will seem familiar to any park visitor, however, Falls has transformed the function and form of these traditional objects: the
temperature-sensitive surface of the bench changes color under the body heat of a seated visitor, while Falls’ oversized wind chimes can be activated by visitors or tinkle brightly on a gusty day. These experiential works invite visitors to see the sculptures both as works of art and usable objects, inspiring a sense of curiosity, discovery, and exploration in a familiar space. Sam Falls: Light Over Time will be on view at MetroTech Commons, Downtown Brooklyn, July 30, 2014 – May 29, 2015.
“As a place that revolves around thinking, working, and having fun, MetroTech is the ideal venue for Sam Falls’ new work,” said Nicholas Baume, Public Art Fund Director & Chief Curator. “Falls takes on big questions about art, culture, and the environment with a lightness of touch that will leave visitors both delighted and engaged with the world around them.”
FCRC, the developer of MetroTech Center, has been Public Art Fund’s partner in presenting exhibitions at this site for more than twenty years. “Downtown Brooklyn is already home to many important cultural destinations including the Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn Academy of Music, Brooklyn Botanic Garden, Brooklyn Bridge Park, and Barclays Center,” said David L.
Berliner, FCRC’s Chief Operating Officer and the executive responsible for overseeing the Company’s various art programs. “This exhibition will provide yet another draw for visitors and an opportunity for residents to interact with culture in the borough.”
Falls works in diverse mediums from sculpture and fabric, to photography and painting. While his work is often in dialogue with the photographic process, he has more recently addressed the processes of organic change, such as the long-term effects of sunlight, rain, and time on various materials. This focus, as well as his interest in the history of minimalist sculpture, is especially evident in the five new works for MetroTech Commons. At the entrance to the exhibition (Jay
Street and Myrtle Avenue), visitors can leave a personal, if temporary, imprint on a one-of-a kind
bench designed by the artist. The work utilizes temperature-sensitive glass tiles that change color in a range of bright hues in response to the heat of visitors’ bodies. Echoing the appearance of this Technicolor glass are two “light rooms”—small, single-person, white
aluminum structures with marbled glass “roofs.” As the sun moves across the sky, an ever changing stream of light will pass through the glass bathing visitors and the interior space with light. As heat and light affect these two works, so does sound play a role in Falls’ colorful,
human-scale wind chimes. Every chime represents a specific note, allowing each visitor to create a unique melody that blends with the ambient sounds of the plaza. Drawing on conventional playground elements, the artist’s take on the seesaw looks to the weather, in
addition to visitors, to activate it. Over the course of the show, rain and snow will collect in buckets at each end of the long central plank, transforming the function of the object into that of a scale with the balance depending on the weight at each end. And at the center of the exhibition, installed among the trees of the Commons, is Falls’ large-scale modular sculpture in the form of a maze that encourages visitors to leave Myrtle Promenade’s sidewalks behind and explore the plaza’s treed, central space. Created from vibrant aluminum panels that are alternately painted with UV protectant or simply powder-coated, the colors of
the panels will continue to change as the work is exposed to the sun and the panels cast shadows
on one another.
“By combining forms that utilize the geometry of minimalist sculpture with a similarly systematic approach to color and process, Falls’ work invites audiences to physically engage with it, while considering the conceptual underpinnings of its making,” said Public Art Fund Associate Curator Andria Hickey, who curated the exhibition. “There is an element of time and temporality inherent in Falls’ work that he has expanded on through these new commissions; the appearance and experience of the work will change as each object reacts to the
elements over time.”
With a focus on exhibitions featuring new commissions, past exhibitions at MetroTech Commons have included artists like Vito Acconci, Martin Basher, Chakaia Booker, Matthew Day Jackson, Esther Kläs, Ryan McGinness, Dave McKenzie, Jason Middlebrook, Adam Pendleton, Erin Shirreff, Valeska Soares, Do-Ho Suh, and most recently, Katharina Grosse—many of whom were presenting their first work in the public sphere. Falls continues this tradition with Light Over Time, his first major commission in New York as well as his first outdoor exhibition in the city.
ABOUT THE ARTIST
Sam Falls (b. 1984, San Diego, CA) lives and works in Los Angeles. His work has recently been shown at LAXART (Los Angeles), Museo MADRE (Naples), International Center of Photography (New York), American Academy in Rome, Fotografiska (Stockholm), and the Woodstock Center for Photography (New York). Forthcoming exhibitions of his work will be presented in 2014 by the Zabludowicz Collection (London) and the Pomona College Museum of Art (California), and in 2015 at the Guiliani Foundation (Rome), Ballroom Marfa (Texas), and the Hammer Museum (Los Angeles). His work is in the collections of the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles,
and the International Center for Photography, New York, among others. He received his BA from Reed College and his MFA from ICP-Bard. He has self-published more than ten books, including Color Dying Light (Hassla, 2009), Dans la Chambre Verte (JSBJ, 2010), Light Work (Gottlund Verlag, 2010) and Visible Library (Lay Flat, 2011). Falls is represented by Galerie Eva Presenhuber, Zurich, and Hannah Hoffman Gallery, Los Angeles.
VISITING THE EXHIBITION
MetroTech Commons is located in Downtown Brooklyn between Jay Street and Flatbush Avenue at Myrtle Avenue. Viewing hours are dawn to dusk daily.
Subways: A, C, F, R to Jay Street – MetroTech, exit at Myrtle Promenade.
Sam Falls: Light Over Time at MetroTech Commons is part of an ongoing program organized by the Public Art Fund, and sponsored by MetroTech Commons Associates and MetroTech companies including Forest City Ratner Companies, JPMorganChase, National Grid, WellChoice, and Polytechnic Institute of New York University. Special thanks to Forest City Ratner Companies and First New York Partners.
Additional support is provided by Hannah Hoffman Gallery and Galerie Eva Presenhuber.
Special assistance with Untitled (Thermochromic bench, 1) has been provided by Moving Color Studios.
Public Art Fund exhibitions are supported in part by the National Endowment for the Arts and the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council.
ABOUT PUBLIC ART FUND
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