colorfield variations

dvd in digipak
edition: 1000

“dark over light earth” (2007) was composed using electronics and harmonium played by Roden and violin played by Jacob Danzinger. Intended to act as a smaller ninth painting it was discreetly installed and created for the Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art’s exhibit of eight paintings by Mark Rothko. Roden, using the colors in the eight paintings to generate a score for his own parts asked Danzinger to listen to Morton Feldman’s Rothko Chapel on headphones and attempt to play along without a previous rehearsal.

The video version was created using the same score, with Roden finding each color in a catalog of 1940’s house paint samples. Each swatch was a single frame in sequence and layered through simple dissolves.”

label notes:

Colorfield Variations is a collection of audio/visual works reinterpreting the Color Field movement by an international array of critically acclaimed sound and new media artists and assembled by curator and sound artist Richard Chartier.

Color Field painting, an abstract style that emerged as a new direction in American painting in the 1950s following Abstract Expressionism, is characterized by canvases painted primarily with stripes, washes and fields of solid color. An alternate but less frequently encountered term for this style is chromatic abstraction. As the first critically acclaimed art movement to originate in the United States’s capital, the Washington Color School was key to the larger Color Field movement. As a reaction to the emotional energy and gestural surfaces of Abstract Expressionists, the Color Field artists broke away from the individual mark in favor of pure color itself becoming the main content of the work. By breaking painting down to its formal and fundamental elements, the Color Field artists created pure, simplified, large-format, color-dominated fields on often monumental scale utilizing the full psychological power of color.

Artists such as Clyfford Still, Mark Rothko, Barnett Newman, Morris Louis, Kenneth Noland, Helen Frankenthaler, Sam Gilliam, Larry Poons, Gene Davis, Jules Olitski, and others eliminated recognizable imagery from their canvas and presented abstraction as an end in itself with each work being a cohesive image. The Color Field movement can be seen as a precursor to the themes and aesthetics of the subsequent Minimalist movement.

STEVE RODEN (US) dark over light earth / 13:00
ALAN CALLANDER (US) cf01 / 04:52
FRANK BRETSCHNEIDER (DE) looping i-vi (excerpt) / 12:00
STEPHAN MATHIEU (DE) orange was the color of her dress / 10:00
SUE COSTABILE (US) + BEEQUEEN (NL) amp_swell / 03:49
TEZ (IT) CF #1-2n / 05:10
TINA FRANK + GENERAL MAGIC (AT) Chronomops / 02:00
CHRIS CARTER + COSEY FANNI TUTTI (UK) Chronomanic Redux / 10:00
RYOICHI KUROKAWA (JP) Scorch / 03:04
SAWAKO (JP) flirting 07121602 / 03:15
E.DOMNITCH + D.GELFAND (RU/US) 10,000 Peacock Feathers in Foaming Acid / 08:00
ERNEST EDMONDS (AU) + MARK FELL (UK) Broadway One (excerpt) / 02:00

This program in its original form with special live audio/visual performances by Ernest Edmonds + Mark Fell and Sawako at the Corcoran Gallery of Art was commissioned by Washington Project for the Arts as part of the citywide ColorField.Remix events which took place in April-June 2007 in Washington, DC, celebrating The Washington Color School. Since its creation, Colorfield Variations continues to be screened internationally.