sat 18/01/2020

Tacita Dean: Craneway Event, Frith Street Gallery | reviews, news & interviews

Tacita Dean: Craneway Event, Frith Street Gallery

Tacita Dean: Craneway Event, Frith Street Gallery

The late Merce Cunningham rehearses his dancers one last time in Dean's elegiac film

'Against the light, the dancers appear like marionettes framed within grids of glass and steel'

Silhouetted against the sparkling waters of San Francisco Bay, a pelican surveys the scene from a quayside bollard, then takes flight. The beautiful opening shot of Tacita Dean’s Craneway Event establishes a mood of elegiac tranquility. We are at Ford Point, on the east shore of the bay, in a magnificent building – a Ford factory that made military vehicles in World War Two, but closed down in 1955. Floor to ceiling windows afford breathtaking views across the water and allow the California light to flood in, transforming the floor into a liquid sheen of shadows and reflections.

As they leap and spin through space, one begins to think of the building as a container or vessel and the performers as ephemeral beings briefly passing through

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