Doug Aitken

Underwater Pavilions, 2017

Video/Film
video installation with 3 channels of video, color, sound
Basel 2017

The video installation Underwater Pavilions explores three remarkable sculptures of the same name. In December 2016, Doug Aitken moored these geometric mirrored forms to the ocean floor off Catalina Island, California. Their environments reflect light through kaleidoscopic interiors and even harbor ocean life on their rock-like surfaces, opening a portal that physically connects viewers to the expanse of the ocean while simultaneously disrupting preconceived visual ideas of the aquatic world. The three-screen video installation furthers the otherworldly experience by immersing viewers in the underwater realm. Chronicling the artworks – from installation to their encounters with divers and aquatic life – the installation tunes viewers into the rhythm of the ocean and its life cycles, as the structures adjust with the currents and time of day. Viewers experience a variety of converging perceptual encounters that play with the fluidity of time and space, where the language of contemporary architecture, land art, and ocean research merge.

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