Chronos Cosmos: Deep Time, Open Space
ABOUT THE EXHIBITION
Chronos Cosmos: Deep Time, Open Space transforms Socrates Sculpture Park into a gateway to the universe, presenting artworks that consider space, time, and matter in relationship to celestial entities and earth-bound processes. In the open-air environment of the Long Island City waterfront park, the exhibition uses scale to put the universe in context, creating connection points to space and time.
Chronos Cosmos: Deep Time, Open Space will be on view at Socrates Sculpture Park from May 5 – September 2, 2019. Participating artists include Radcliffe Bailey, Beatriz Cortez, Alicja Kwade, Eduardo Navarro, Heidi Neilson, and Oscar Santillán with new commissions by Miya Ando, William Lamson, and (MDR) Maria D. Rapicavoli.
Informed by Earth’s place amid a vast universe, Chronos Cosmos: Deep Time, Open Space zooms far out — featuring cosmic perspectives, various scales of time and space, and speculative gestures. Each artist’s own notions of time, history, space, and site challenge the reigning system regulated by technocratic and colonial standards.
Together the works reveal a coexistence of disjointed times in our contemporary world: clocked and measured time, rhythmic biological time, earthly time, the flowing time of human experience, anticipatory time, historical and anachronistic time, serial and simultaneous time, as well as technologically mediated time.
Situating a contemporary consciousness between the origins of the Earth and the expansion of the universe, these works each uniquely orient the viewer in time and space to produce a renewed sense of wonder toward our planet. This perspective creates potential for alternative modes of social relationships, sustainable human/planet co-existence, and political agency.
The works are informed by a variety of sources, including atomic physics, amateur astronomy, afro-futurist theory, and non-western histories and ancient perspectives and knowledge:
• Miya Ando’s ‘銀河 Ginga (Silver River),’ titled with the Japanese word for galaxy, draws on Japanese understanding of time as informed by and experienced through the natural world. Suspended along the Park’s East River shoreline, this new 180-linear-feet commission features the Milky Way printed on translucent textile floating in the sky, thereby connecting two natural phenomena associated with time: the flowing river and the alignment of the stars.
• Radcliffe Bailey’s ‘Vessel III’ suggests a fluid ordering of spacetime where past, present, and future mingle in memories and anticipation of lived experience. The steel and sonic sculpture blends the aesthetics of a space capsule with a bunker to evoke temporalities and histories with a soundscape.
• Beatriz Cortez’s ‘Tzolk’in,’ a two-part steel work, is inspired by and named after the 260-day Mayan calendar. Together, the sculptures embody the concept of simultaneity, each mounted with gears that mark both cyclical and linear time of Pre-Columbian America. This sculpture was originally commissioned by Clockshop for the Bowtie Project, with a sister sculpture installed at the Hammer Museum for Made In L.A. 2018.
• Alicja Kwade’s ‘REVOLUTION (Gravitas)’ is a stainless steel and stone work reminiscent both of planetary orbits in space and Niels Bohr’s diagram of the atom. The piece unites two fields of observation, in macro and micro, that inform our concepts of space and time.
• William Lamson’s ‘Sub Terra’ multiple platform installation performs the long percolation of geologic time through a series of water catchments, filters, and both accreted and eroded matter. Cast concrete elements resembling stalagmites and stalactites and fossils act as traces of aggregated and instantaneous time.
• Eduardo Navarro’s ‘Galactic Playground,’ a 42-foot wide hexagonal field of play and observation, operates like a lyrical sundial, with its gnomon’s shadow pointing to painted verses instead of numbers. These poetic texts suggest alternate modes of embodying space and time within the universe.
• Heidi Neilson’s ‘Moon Arrow – long duration’ glides around a wheel pointing to the direction of the moon, whether invisible in the sky or on the other side of the globe. The sculpture marks time through the movements of the moon, but also re-orients us to our position in the vastness of the galaxy, as small blips on an enormous orb spinning through space.
• MDR’s (Maria D. Rapicavoli) ‘A Starry Messenger’ new commission explores time and space through combining anachronistic and contemporary aerial telescopic technologies. Modeled after Galileo’s telescope, this alabaster-carved sculpture presents images taken by satellite surveillance systems, allowing the sky to look back at the Earth.
• Oscar Santillán’s ‘Solaris: The Desert Looking Back At Itself’ on the Park’s Broadway Billboard is an image of the Atacama Desert in Chile captured through a glass lens the artist made with sand gathered there.
Chronos Cosmos: Deep Time, Open Space is organized by Socrates Sculpture Park and curated by Jess Wilcox, Director of Exhibitions. The exhibition is made possible with generous support from the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Arts, Lily Auchincloss Foundation, and the Shelley & Donald Rubin Foundation.Socrates’s Exhibition Program is funded by Mark di Suvero, Sidney E. Frank Foundation, Maxine and Stuart Frankel Foundation, Agnes Gund, Lambent Foundation, Ivana Mestrovic, Mr. and Mrs. Thomas W. Smith, Plant Specialists, and Spacetime C.C. Chronos Cosmos is funded, in part, by public funds from the NYC Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, and the New York State Council on the Arts with support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature.