Jonathan Horowitz: And/Or at P.S.1, NYC
Jonathan Horowitz: And/Or at P.S.1
The connection between Micheal Jackson and America’s ill-fated military interventions might seem tenuous, but after viewing Jonathan Horowitz’s sculptures and video installation the link becomes obvious and uncomfortable. For his solo show P.S.1, NYC, Chief Curator Klaus Biesenbach has grouped pieces that date back to the 90s, but form a cohesive body of work that echoes Marshal McLuhan’s reflections on media and Andy Warhol’s eye for mundane aesthetics.
From found video footage, Horowitz visually and spatially juxtaposes elements from film, television, and the media to reveal connections and breakdowns between these overlapping modes of communication. In his video projection Maxell (1990), the image of the well-known videocassette brand logo plays from a tape copied many times over; the word gradually deteriorates as image becomes a copy of the generation before steadily turning into a blur of static as the information on the tape erodes. Horowitz has physically enacted its demise by copying the logo repeatedly on tape until, like generations-old photocopies, it dissolves into a blur.
Obsolescence, often in the form of death, is a theme that runs through the show. In another room one monitor plays a 1967 tape of this pop singer, who died of a brain tumor at 24 three years later (according to the didactic information provided by P.S.1), performing her hit “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” with Marvin Gaye; the other monitor shows Susan Sarandon and Julia Roberts singing the same song in the 1998 movie Stepmom, in which Ms. Sarandon played a character dying of cancer.