new-york

Barbara Hammer, Double Strength, 1978, 16 mm transferred to digital video, color, sound, 14 minutes 38 seconds.

Barbara Hammer

Leslie-Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art

Barbara Hammer, Double Strength, 1978, 16 mm transferred to digital video, color, sound, 14 minutes 38 seconds.

“How are you feeling?” asks the clear, sweet voice, almost certainly from behind a broad smile. I heard the question from across the room just as I was about to touch a silicone model of a breast, my fingers searching for a node that would activate a video on the monitor before me. Barbara Hammer’s question was, of course, not directed at me but at the character in Double Strength, her 1978 film tracing the arc of a relationship. It was nonetheless apposite, seeming to evoke a doctor/patient relationship as I began my figurative search for a cancerous lump. This iteration of 8 in 8, a modified installation of the original eight-channel piece from 1994, consists of two breast models and two Sony Trinitrons; instructions direct the visitor to “gently locate a node in breast model. Firmly press down to activate video.” In each of eight videos, a woman speaks (or signs) directly to

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