Culture Vulture: Ann Hamilton’s THE EVENT OF A THREAD at Park Avenue Armory

December 9, 2012
Ann Hamilton's art installation "the event of a thread" has taken over the Park Avenue Armory between now and January 6. A gigantic white curtain bisects the space, rising and falling and billowing in response to the movements of audience members swinging on 42 swings hung from the ceiling.

Ann Hamilton’s art installation “the event of a thread” has taken over the Park Avenue Armory between now and January 6. A gigantic white curtain bisects the space.

The curtain rises and falls and billows in response to the movements of audience members swinging on 42 swings hung from the ceiling.

The curtain rises and falls and billows in response to the movements of audience members swinging on 42 swings hung from the ceiling.

Just inside the entrance, two actors from Anne Bogart's SITI company sit at a table reading to carrier pigeons in cages.

Just inside the entrance, two actors from Anne Bogart’s SITI company sit at a table reading to carrier pigeons in cages.

The two performers are reading different philosophical Gertrude Steinian texts, both printed out on long scrolls. (click on the picture to enlarge and read it for yourself)

The two performers are reading different philosophical Gertrude Steinian texts, both printed out on long scrolls. (click on the picture to enlarge and read it for yourself)

What they're reading into the microphones is broadcast to 42 transistor radios inside paper bags that the audience can carry anywhere in the space.

What they’re reading into the microphones is broadcast to 42 transistor radios inside paper bags that the audience can carry anywhere in the space.

A popular activity is to lie on the floor looking up at the curtain with the murmuring radio/bag nearby. This is my friend David Haiman -- he's the one who suggested we check out the show between dress rehearsal and our gamelan concert at the Indonesian Consulate on E. 68th Street.

A popular activity is to lie on the floor looking up at the curtain with the murmuring radio/bag nearby. This is my friend David Haiman — he’s the one who suggested we check out the show between dress rehearsal and our gamelan concert at the Indonesian Consulate on E. 68th Street.

At the other end of the space, another performer is sitting with her back to the curtain writing nonstop, reflecting on what's happening and free-associating. The sound of her pencil scratching can also be heard over the radio broadcast.

At the other end of the space, another performer is sitting with her back to the curtain writing nonstop, reflecting on what’s happening and free-associating. The sound of her pencil scratching can also be heard over the radio broadcast.

No such thing as writer's block for her!

No such thing as writer’s block for her!

Of course I took a turn on a swing!

Of course I took a turn on a swing!

Twenty minutes before the show ends every day, a soprano comes out onto a balcony over the entrance and sings a song composed for the occasion by David Lang. Beautiful show! More fun that "Discovering Columbus" and right up there with the best audience-participation installations in MOMA's atrium.

Twenty minutes before the show ends every day, a soprano comes out onto a balcony over the entrance and sings a song composed for the occasion by David Lang. Beautiful show! More fun than “Discovering Columbus” and right up there with the best audience-participation installations in MOMA’s atrium.

One Response to “Culture Vulture: Ann Hamilton’s THE EVENT OF A THREAD at Park Avenue Armory”

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