New York

Max Neuhaus

The Clocktower

There is no doubt that the many alternative spaces that opened in the ’70s were crucial to redefining given forms of painting and sculpture. Unlike museums and galleries, these spaces are not neutral; they insinuate themselves into the work. As a result, they have abetted art that is indexical in nature as well as art based on performance.

The tower of the Clocktower is not as insistent as many such spaces: nevertheless, it does inflect work shown there. In Five Russians (A Tuned Room) Max Neuhaus has made it the very medium of the work. There are four high windows in the tower. In the one to the south Neuhaus hid a speaker that emitted four pitches—two high and two low. These combined in bizarre ways: near the source they had a density that hit the body; elsewhere the effect was much more rare; and there were even nodal spots where the waves seemed to cancel. One felt at once very fine

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