In daylight, Klara Hobza’s installation Prequel, 2011, didn’t look like much: just a rectangle of slats, four of which were placed horizontally and provided a base for forty-eight lightbulbs, which were connected to three heavy switchesa strange bricolage of elements visible through the window of this storefront gallery. Yet at night the work lit up the neighborhood and put a glow on the street: It is a machine for sending out Morse code. Hobza repeatedly visited the gallery at night, put on industrial-grade sunglasses so as not to be blinded by the light, and sent out messages into the darkness. What messages? That’s hard to say, since few of us these days have the skill of interpreting Morse code. We were informed, however, that she sent out, for instance, the name of a friend living down the street from whose window the gallery is visible.
While Hobza had already set up
Artforum print subscribers have full access to this article. If you are a subscriber, sign in below.
Not registered for artforum.com?
SUBSCRIBE NOW for only $50 a year—65% off the newsstand price—and get the print magazine plus full online access to this issue and our archive.*
* This rate applies to U.S. domestic subscriptions.