MARCO BRAMBILLA: APOLLO
Stockholm: March 20 – May 30, 2015
Following the world premier of Marco Brambilla's Apollo XVIII played across scores of video billboards in Times Square (a collaboration with NASA and Times Square Arts Alliance), McCabe Fine Art is pleased to present a series of related works by the acclaimed video artist.
The multi-channel video installation Apollo XVIII uses never before published images from NASA’s own archives and computer animation to imagine a contemporary launch of an actual NASA rocket from the 1960s, which was never sent into space. Vintage clips of Frank Borman (Commander of Apollo 8, the first mission to fly around the moon) are intercut with state-of-the-art digital simulations of a majestic Saturn V rocket. Debuting this work in Times Square on March 3, 2015, Brambilla turned the site of the world-famous New Year’s Eve countdown into a virtual launch pad. Frenetic, like a stock-ticker gone awry (as opposed to the straightforward ball-drop) Apollo XVIII’s flurry of non-sequential numbers builds up dramatic tension, but does not culminate in climactic release. Conceived as a communal public event, this adrenalin-inducing work compresses the epic idea of manned space exploration into the feverish moments of anticipation just before liftoff.
With his presentation in Stockholm, which marks the artist’s first solo show in Sweden, Brambilla reiterates images and themes from Apollo XVIII by creating an immersive installation designed specifically for the gallery setting. Displayed on a square liquid crystal screen housed inside a human-sized steel column, Transmission - Frank Borman (Apollo VIII) features a rare video transmission of Commander Borman (of the first successful moon mission), accessed by Brambilla at NASA headquarters in Cape Canaveral. The blue-tinged imagery that flickers in and out of focus emphasizes the original material's vintage analog quality. Meanwhile, a circular overhead projection depicts an astounding view from underneath the thrusters of a Saturn V rocket (Ignition (Apollo XIII)). This fiery footage of the ill-fated mission that was aborted before reaching the moon casts a warm glow over the entire gallery space, whose walls Brambilla has adorned with custom lunar crater wallpaper (Reconnaissance (Apollo VIII)). The eerie high contrast black-and-white landscape is based on scouting photographs taken by the crew of Apollo 8, who were charged with finding a viable landing site for a subsequent moon mission. In conjunction with the exhibition at McCabe Fine Art, Brambilla's Countdown (Apollo XVIII) will be screened during the exhibition on the outdoor screen at nearby Stureplan Square.
This is not the first time that Brambilla has turned his attention to space exploration. His three-minute time-lapse video Sea of Tranquility (2006) shows the gradual decay of the American flag planted on the moon's surface in 1969 by the crew of Apollo 11. More recently, Atlantis (OV-104) (2012) is a nostalgic ode to NASA's last manned shuttle. Whereas Sea of Tranquility evokes the erosion of American idealism and Atlantis (OV-104) acts as a somber farewell to man-on-the-moon adventures, Apollo XVIII and the related works on view at McCabe Fine Art are more anticipative. Coinciding with NASA's 100th anniversary, Brambilla's latest works describe the space program's shift from manned missions to surrogate modes of survey and investigation. Mixing fading memories of the golden age of space travel with fresh optimism inspired by the promises of today's technology, the artist leaves the viewer to decide the value of contemporary space exploration.
The countdown has begun.
Marco Brambilla is a Milan-born, New York-based installation artist, known for his elaborate re-contextualization of popular and found imagery. Brambilla’s work has exhibited extensively at institutions in the United States and abroad; including the Corcoran Gallery in Washington, D.C., New Museum of Contemporary Art in New York, Kunsthalle Bern in Switzerland, Alcalá 31 in Spain, the 2000 Seoul Biennial, Borusan Contemporary in Istanbul, and Fondation Beyeler in Basel, Switzerland. A selection of major site-specific installations have been presented by the Art Production Fund at the Time Warner Center in NYC, New Museum and Nuit Blanche at Saint Patrick’s Old Cathedral in NYC and Toronto, and Creative Time in Anchorage. Brambilla’s video installations have been featured at the 2011 Venice Film Festival and 2012 Sundance Film Festival, and in May 2011 Brambilla's first major retrospective opened at the Santa Monica Museum of Art. His work belongs to the permanent collections of the Guggenheim Museum in New York, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art in California, the Arco Foundation in Madrid and he has been awarded the Tiffany Foundation and Colbert Foundation awards. Currently Brambilla’s work is on public view in Times Square New York as a collaboration with NASA and the Times Square Alliance, and he has a forthcoming solo exhibition at McCabe Fine Art in Stockholm.
McCabe Fine Art
Noted art advisor, dealer and collector, Paul Frank McCabe, opened McCabe Fine Art in Stockholm, Sweden in 2013. An extension of his eighteen years of art market experience and connoisseurship, the beautifully renovated showroom in central Östermalm presents works by modern and contemporary masters as well as emerging talents. Through a program of curated, thematic and monographic exhibitions, McCabe Fine Art brings new voices to Scandinavia’s dynamic international art scene.
For more information, please contact Paul Frank McCabe at firstname.lastname@example.org or +46 (0) 709 99 77 46.