Installation view of Ballroom Marfa from Giant, a three-channel film installation by Teresa Hubbard and Alexander Birchler. Photo: Frederik Nilsen
ART REVIEW: Teresa Hubbard / Alexander Birchler: Giant at the Blanton Museum of Art Austin, TX examines the social character of the cinematic experience and a film’s relationship to place and memory.
NEW YORK, NY- Presently at the Blanton Museum of Art Austin, Texas is Giant, a three-channel film installation by Teresa Hubbard and Alexander Birchler. Giant is the third part of a trilogy of films exploring the social character of the cinematic experience, with particular respect to film’s relationship to place and the kinds of traces movies leave behind.
In Giant, Hubbard/Birchler present a decaying movie set just outside Marfa, Texas. It was left behind after the 1956 filming of Giant starring Elizabeth Taylor, Rock Hudson, and James Dean. Weaving together the cinematic past and present, the film captures scenes from a Warner Bros. office in 1955 and the skeletal remains of the movie set today as seasons change, day turns to night, and parts of the structure swing and fall off.
The artists first exhibited Giant as part of Sound Speed Marker (2014–15), an international touring exhibition that included film installations, sculpture, and photographs.
Internationally recognized Austin- and Berlin-based artists Teresa Hubbard and Alexander Birchler have been working collaboratively in film, photography, and sculpture since 1990. Their expansive practice interweaves hybrid forms of storytelling and invites suggestive, open-ended reflections on place, history, and memory. Hubbard is the William and Bettye Nowlin Professor in Photography and Assistant Chair–Studio Division in the Department of Art and Art History at The University of Texas at Austin, and Birchler is an Affiliate Research Scholar at The University of Texas at Austin. Currently, Teresa Hubbard / Alexander Birchler are representing Switzerland in the Swiss Pavilion at the 57th Venice Biennale.
Bonus: Stills from Eight Eighteen by Teresa Hubbard and Alexander Birchler on display at Tanya Bonakdar Gallery