PearlDamour + Shawn Hall: How to Build a Forest
Friday-Sunday, June 17-19 and 24-26, 2-10pm
Known for transforming narrative into something richer, stranger, and ineluctably feminine, OBIE Award-winning PearlDamour (Katie Pearl and Lisa D’Amour) join forces with New Orleans-based visual artist Shawn Hall for a hybrid project: part visual art installation, part theater performance that unfolds over an extended eight-hour interval. Beginning with an empty stage, PearlDamour, Hall, and a team of performer-workers transforms The Kitchen’s theater from floor to ceiling, constructing and then dismantling an elaborate evolving environment evocative of an old growth forest at one moment and a spectacular deep-sea landscape the next.
Audience members are invited to enter the mutating installation throughout the process to get a closer look, or they can choose to take a self-guided tour* that leads them through the installation and out on to the High Line. Furthermore, new short texts by Lisa D’Amour weave through each hour of the build. An extensive “source guide” tracks the lineage of every material used to build the forest: where it came from in the earth, where it will go once the artists are finished using it. Inspired by Hurricane Katrina and further informed by the BP oil spill, How to Build a Forest invites contemplation about our relationship with the natural world: how we live in it, rely on it, use it, and use it up. The work also features sound design by composers and sound artists Brendan Connelly and Christopher DeLaurenti and lighting design by Peter Ksander and Miranda Hardy.
Join us for a panel discussion
Wednesday, June 22, 7pm
The panel discussion will focus on aspects of our urban landscape and the nature of time. The panel will be composed of artists and professionals who focus on the natural environment, and during this discussion we'll be asking panelists to discuss their work and how the concept of time informs their work. Questions about the relationship between “city time” and “tree time” as well as about the earth's resources and human interference will weave their way through our conversation and will help to inform the proceeding performances of How to Build a Forest.
The panelists are:
Jerome Chou: Director of Programs, Design Trust for Public Space
Diane Fraher: Filmmaker and Writer
Max Litt: Forestry Manager, Million Trees NYC
Jonathan Van Dyke: Visual Artist
Katie Pearl, Lisa Damour, and Shawn Hall: Creators of How to Build a Forest
A reception will follow.
The High Line is an extraordinary public park built on an historic freight rail line elevated above the streets on Manhattan’s West Side. For more information visit: http://www.thehighline.org/
*Once each day, Todd Shalom of the conceptual walks organization Elastic City will lead a small group through the forest. These walks will be approximately forty-five minutes each and occur daily at a different, to-be-determined time. For more information visit: http://elastic-city.com/walks/how-build-forest-walk
How to Build a Forest is funded by The MAP Fund, a program of Creative Capital, and the Moore Family Fund for the Arts of the Minneapolis Foundation. This program is made possible with support from The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts and with public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs and the New York State Council on the Arts, a state agency.
Photo: Greg Williams
June 17–June 26, 2011
–The Brooklyn Rail
–The Wall Street Journal