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  • Film Room: Smoke (1967-Present)

    Maria Nordman

    Shot on a beach in Malibu in 1967, this film features two professional actors, a man and a woman, who were asked to be present at the given location at a certain time. No script was provided to them but the artist gave them specific props: a cigarette lighter, a box of cigarettes, and a chair. “The Pacific ocean and the sun are also actors in the scene,” Nordman says. Two cameras—one static on a tripod, the other one following the movement of the actors—recorded the situation. The films are shown side by side with a wall in between that creates three defined spaces. The room to the left features the film shot with a handheld camera and the chair used as a prop in the film. The room to the right loops the film made with the fixed camera. There is a third room where the viewer is able to look at both screens, witnessing a situation that keeps unfolding in time and space.

    Photograph courtesy of the Fundacao de Serralves, Museu de Arte Contemporanea, Porto, Portugal

Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA)

Maria Nordman Filmroom: Smoke 1967-Present

A double projection in a silent room, Filmroom: Smoke incorporates a real chair with the films of two actors interacting with the same chair on the beach at the ocean's edge. The side-by-side projections, divided by a wall, describe two distinctly different camera compositions: one largely active and detailed, the other more still and general.  The actual presence of the real chair from the two films brings the moving image into the real space of the viewer and overlaps the original experience of actors with the viewer's experience in the room. For this installation, Maria Nordman created a new sculpture, entitled Yang Na, 2011-, placed on the museum's outdoor plaza near the entry to Filmroom: Smoke. As an extension of her sculpture and interests in public spaces, Nordman also assembled a vitrine of her books, including De Musica, in the anteroom to Filmroom:Smoke.
09/04/2011 05/20/2012
Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA)
5905 Wilshire Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90036