Erik Morse

  • Dario Argento, Dark Glasses, 2022, DCP, color, sound, 90 minutes. Diana (Ilenia Pastorelli).
    interviews June 17, 2022

    Dario Argento

    Unfairly “demoted” to the status of genre filmmaking in America, Dario Argento’s half-century of aesthetically and narratively outlandish giallo films have managed to invent a new cinematic language written in images of blood, death, and desire. Argento’s emphasis on stylistic detail— characterized by an oscillation between baroque maximalism and the midcentury modern, and a disorienting penchant for the extreme close-up—has ensured the director’s oeuvre a place alongside those of Federico Fellini, Michelangelo Antonioni, and Sergio Leone, all of whom Argento counts as major influences. On

  • Warren Neidich, The Parthenon Marbles Recoded: The Phantom as Other, 2021, neon installation. Installation view, Kunstverein am Rosa–Luxemburg–Platz, Berlin. Photo: Ludger Paffrath.
    slant June 21, 2021

    Galaxy Brain

    TO INAUGURATE THE CHAOID GALLERY at the New York nonprofit Thread Waxing Space in 1999, curator and School of Visual Arts professor Warren Neidich organized “Conceptual Art as Neurobiological Practice,” convening a mix of phenomenological and brain-related works from relational-aesthetics superstars Douglas Gordon and Liam Gillick, installation artist Jason Rhoades, and post-Conceptualists Jonathan Horowitz and Rainer Ganahl, among others, under the recently minted category of “neuroaesthetics.” Neidich, an artist himself and a former physician, had coined the term in a series of lectures at

  • interviews April 13, 2021

    Lucy Raven

    Lucy Raven has dedicated much of her work to the revisualization of the American West, both in its literal, topographic emplacement and within a historical imaginary. Between film, light sculptures, installation, and stereoscopic animation, her examinations of terrestrial surveying and digital visualities, as well as the spectacular constructions and everyday mundanities of the built landscape, offer a fascinating peek into a postindustrial frontier and its extractive economies. Raven’s newest exhibition continues her work with light installation and includes the forty-five-minute film Ready

  • Christian Fennesz performing in Santiago de Chile, December 12, 2018. Photo: Ottavio Berbakow.
    music April 08, 2019

    Room and Cord

    There are few sumptuous descriptors that have not already been deployed to describe the sui generis music of Austrian composer Christian Fennesz: Equinoctial. Thalassic. Amniotic. His previous albums Endless Summer (2001), Venice (2004), and Bécs (2014) were duly iconoclastic experiments, marrying honeyed, guitar-based melodies and snippets of field recordings with tesseral permutations of post-techno algorithms. Along the way, Fennesz has become a lodestar of left-field pop, counting among his collaborators Ryuichi Sakamoto, David Sylvian, Peter Rehberg, and Keith Rowe. The sprawling four tracks

  • Josh Appignanesi, Female Human Animal, 2018, VHS, color, sound, 74 minutes.
    film February 11, 2019

    Stalk Footage

    EARLY ON in Female Human Animal, the docufiction by Josh Appignanesi, novelist Chloe Aridjis makes an observation that will echo throughout the film. “Well, this modern life and modern art and modern love—I don’t know, it all seems a bit soulless to me,” the author laments to an offscreen interlocutor. “I was probably born in the wrong century. But one just has to keep giving the century a chance: See what happens.” Dislocation and disenchantment are central tropes in Appignanesi’s cinematic portrait, which divides its attention between Aridjis and the late artist and writer Leonora Carrington,

  • Cosey Fanni Tutti, exhibition poster for “Prostitution,” 1976.
    interviews October 17, 2017

    Cosey Fanni Tutti

    In 1976, British performance artist and musician Cosey Fanni Tutti (Christine Newby) cofounded Throbbing Gristle from the art collective COUM Transmissions along with Chris Carter, Peter Christopherson, and Genesis Breyer P-Orridge. As she details in her autobiography Art Sex Music (Faber & Faber, 2017), their debut gig occurred, rather appropriately, on the opening night of COUM Transmissions’ “Prostitution” show at London’s Institute of Contemporary Arts. On the occasions of the fortieth-anniversary reissue of Throbbing Gristle’s album The Second Annual Report (Mute, 2017) and the COUM

  • Bertrand Bonello, Nocturama, 2016, 35 mm, color, sound, 130 minutes. Yacine (Hamza Meziani).
    interviews July 18, 2017

    Bertrand Bonello

    Released mere months after the series of terrorist attacks in Paris in November 2015, Bertrand Bonello’s provocative film Nocturama (2016) centers on a gang of French teenagers, played by actors and nonprofessionals, who conspire to blow up national and corporate landmarks throughout the city in a wave of coordinated bombings. It will be released from Grasshopper Film on August 11, 2017, and will play at theaters in New York before a larger US tour this September. The Film Society at Lincoln Center will also host “Deeper into Nocturama” from August 18 to August 24, 2017, a program featuring

  • Cover of Arca's Arca (2017).
    interviews April 11, 2017


    Like those IDM experimentalists who twiddled knobs and soft synths before him, millennial electronic prodigy Alejandro Ghersi (aka Arca) has succeeded in widening a sonic landscape and pushing it to its very digital limits. His skittering collages of pitched vocals, short piano phrases, and symphonic interludes reliably mesmerize fans and critics alike. On the occasion of Arca’s third album, the Venezuelan composer-producer and current Björk collaborator discusses the roots of his alias, childhood memories of life in Venezuela, and general ideas behind his music. XL Recordings released Arca on