Saturday, March 14, 2009

Franz West Goes Westside


Hmm...I wish I could have thought of a better title....

The other night I saw Franz West 'in conversation' at USC. It was the worst thing I've ever seen and maybe the best at the same time. Actually, Rirkrit Travanjia's (I don't care enough to spell it right) lecture was the worst of all time. That was like watching a child on ludes performing a book report.

You cannot get it from the pics obviously but the room was doused in noise, blips, and reverberations. I had arrived a tad late and as result, I had to sit in the back. I thought this might have been the reason why I did not hear a coherent sentence for the entire 'conversation', but I talked to someone who was in the middle and they didn't make out anything either. We both heard the sentence "Do you like Music?", though; we heard that and them playing a warped old record of a man talking about what to do in case of Nuclear fallout. The conversation was most likely inane anyway due to the fact that West had only a moderate command of English.

(West in the between two guys I've never heard of, writers or friends of West. Sun woman who just stood there on the right.)

West had apparently flown out an electronic noise musician to play during the 'conversation', a performer at West's local biergarten in Austria or Germany or wherever there are krauty people. A number of USC MFA's made West-like paper mache sculptures, appointed a girl to be in a sun suit, and framed the whole thing like a gameshow, at least in the beginning, with a cue-card tossing presenter. I don't think all the parties who had anything to do with this event talked to each other beforehand about what they were going to do. Probably knowing that this might be a problem, one of the parties came up with a brilliant idea: hire a Bono impersonator to finish the event with U2's hit single "One Love"!


It was like watching a train wreck that didn't care that it was a train wreck. For that reason I'm glad I went.

1 comment:

erica said...

what night was this on? i saw a trainwreck myself this week - alex bag and david rimanelli at EAI. bag's videos are still really funny and solid to me but the conversation portions of the evening were just awful and i felt kind of insulted. she clearly did not want to be there. which is funny because at one point she and rimanelli were reminiscing about an artist talk she had seen at SVA that was really terrible. at least you had the bono impersonator and the girl in the sun suit.