new-york

Matt Stokes

ZieherSmith

Matt Stokes’s six-minute forty-five-second Super-16 film Long After Tonight, 2005, may have won him the now-defunct Beck’s Futures Prize last year in Britain, but it doesn’t follow any of the current trends in American contemporary art. There’s no conceptual code to crack, no extreme or particularly innovative formal gestures, no wry political critique. And as if to evince the artist’s own sincere unselfconsciousness, there’s even a shirtless man with a braided ponytail, whirling to music like a dervish.

All reason enough, perhaps, to like the work, which was shown at Stokes’s recent New York solo debut. Long After Tonight was shot at a Gothic Revival church in Dundee, Scotland, where the artist staged an homage to and a re-creation of a famous weekly northern-soul night that ran for years in the adjoining social hall during the ’70s. The film (presumably named after Jimmy Radcliffe’s

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