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Guide

September/October 2021


Guide

September/October 2021


PHASE SHIFTING INDEX – Jeremy Shaw

Since the mid-2000s, Canadian artist Jeremy Shaw (born in 1977, based in Berlin) has established a multifaceted artistic practice that beliefs to neuroscience. His fascination with the mapping of the human mind and mechanisms of perception is coupled with an interest in belief systems, subculture, and transcendental experience. At the Centre Pompidou, Jeremy Shaw presents his first major museum exhibition in France with a new immersive installation, Phase Shifting Index.
At the entrance of the exhibition, a series of Shaw’s Towards Universal Pattern Recognition photographic sculptures are displayed. These objects contain archival images of people experiencing spiritual or hedonistic rapture and are framed under precisely crafted prismatic lenses that create a psychedelic fracturing of the image. Through a long ramped incline, the viewer then enters “Galerie 3” from a platform overlooking an immersive, seven-channel video installation. The seven videos presented in the space depict what appears to be documentary footage of subcultures of the future that engage movement-based belief systems as tools towards inducing parallel realities. Drawing from a wide cross-section of codi ed subcultural and spiritual movement styles, the seven groups of “Phase Shifting Index” incorporate gestural elements ranging from technical to somatic, from meditative to ecstatic.

Every 25 minutes, an additional soundtrack floods the room and the once independent films come together in a uni ed choreographic sync. An identical repetitive and cathartic dance is enacted by the subjects of all films, coupled with onscreen strobe lighting effects – uniting the seven screens into a pulsing, synchronised whole. This cohesive moment of dance spans across decades of time and media and engulfs the viewer in its immersive wake. Suddenly, all screens rupture into a meltdown of digital visual effects that consume the installation – devolving from para- fictional documentary compilation to immersive psychedelic art installation within seconds.

At the entrance, the photographs Towards Universal Pattern Recognition are framed under precisely faceted picture lenses, designed by the artist to create multiple refracted images of a specific element within the picture. This mediation of the presented image not only appears to approximate the altered state of consciousness of the photographic subject(s), it heightens an awareness of the perspectives of the camera, the beliefs or values of the original photographer and the viewer of the artwork; they are brought into relation around the very notion of capture, witnessing, authenticity and representability.

Phase Shifting Index appears to be comprised entirely of archival documentary material culled from a 30-year span of 20th century time-based media (from 16mm to VHS to Video8, from the 1960s to the 1990s). Though aesthetically precise to their period by design, the films are narrated as though a historical compilation set 50 – 200 years in the future, by a voice coming from another 200 years ahead in time. This backwards-glancing/ future-timeline details a series of unique cultures that forged their own movement and technology- based belief systems during a period of humanity when science had quantified ed faith and apathetic, addictive technologies had consumed the masses.

The Centre Pompidou has joined forces with the Swiss Institute, New York, the Museum of Old and New Art (Mona) and Dark Mofo, Hobart, Tasmania and the Frankfurter Kunstverein to co-produce the films presented in the exhibition and show it in three different forms, from February 2020 at the Centre Pompidou, then in April at the Swiss Institute (2 April-14 June 2020), and finally in June at Mona (6 June 2020-5 April 2021).

 

 

Phase Shifting Index 2020 Installation vidéo avec son 2 © KÖNIG GALERIE, Berlin

 

Phase Shifting Index 2020 Installation vidéo avec son 2 © KÖNIG GALERIE, Berlin

 

Phase Shifting Index 2020 Installation vidéo avec son 2 © KÖNIG GALERIE, Berlin

 

Phase Shifting Index 2020 Installation vidéo avec son 2 © KÖNIG GALERIE, Berlin

 

Phase Shifting Index 2020 Installation vidéo avec son 2 © KÖNIG GALERIE, Berlin

 

Phase Shifting Index 2020 Installation vidéo avec son 2 © KÖNIG GALERIE, Berlin

 

Phase Shifting Index 2020 Installation vidéo avec son 2 © KÖNIG GALERIE, Berlin

 

Phase Shifting Index 2020 Installation vidéo avec son 2 © KÖNIG GALERIE, Berlin

 

Phase Shifting Index 2020 Installation vidéo avec son 2 © KÖNIG GALERIE, Berlin

 

Towards Universal Pattern Recognition (Baptism Bayfront Center, 1982) © Timo Ohler

 

From 26 February to 20 April 2020, Centre Pompidou, Paris

 

Curatorial team
Christine Macel
Chief curator at the Centre Pompidou and Head of the Department of Contemporary Art and Prospective
Assisted by
Loïc Le Gall, Roxane Ilias and Aurélien Bernard
Conservation Managers, Department of Contemporary Art and Prospective