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  SUSAN BLACK I will take you there…
Susan Black
Oct. Thursday 11 - Nov. 11
Opening: Friday October 11th from 8-10pm  

335 Grand Street
Brooklyn NY 11211

Fri, Sat, Sun, Mon, 12-6pm
and by appointment
Map & Directions

Susan Black Susan Black Susan Black


BELLWETHER is proud to present SUSAN BLACK I will take you there…

Susan Black was recently featured in the 2002 Whitney Biennial. Her video work is concerned with neighborhoods and architecture. Using a documentary style of filming, matter-of-fact imagery of neighborhoods in America, Germany, and the Netherlands are the focus of these works. Human portraits without humans, these landscapes present a hyper-realistic examination of the concept of neighborhood and how people live.

I WILL TAKE YOU THERE was filmed in the suburbs of Fritzlar, a small medieval town just south of Kassel, Germany. Hyper realistic footage of houses with a variety of ornamentation present a typical suburban picture, one not so different from other suburbs around the world. The footage of houses waltz past using wipe transitions - this editing ends up slicing several houses apart a la Gordon Matta Clark and re-architecting them with parts of other houses sliding in and out of each other. Harry Nillson's idealistic song entitled "I will take you there" lends a sunny utopian escapist promise to take us to a place "where smiling strangers knew our
faces" ...the "if only" in the lyrics suggest that it is not possible to find such a place; this is reinforced in the video by a girl standing outside her house with an unwelcome stare. The song is re-mixed with the airy interruption of a Kate Moss sample singing about dragonflies and daffodils which lends a dreamy promise to the mix. I will take you there is a portrait of the concept of "neighborhood"; a meditation on the dreams of the suburban promise; as well as a documentary cataloguing of the architecture of a typical suburban German town.

AMERICAN CLASSIC is a very typical idealized American landscape with houses and trees. The footage is inverted, with the sky at ground level. The soundtrack is a remix of two iconic songs -- Jimi Hendrix's "Star Spangled Banner" and Aaron Copland's "Appalachian Spring". Many of the houses are flying American flags. The color has been slightly altered: it makes one think of a creepy cake. This work is an update on the painting "American Gothic"; it presents an America that is a little bit proud, a little bit like a nice cake, and a little bit creepy.

FLAT, 2002
FLAT was filmed in Amsterdam. Breaking down cliche expectations about a place, this portrayal of neighborhoods in Amsterdam does not feature quaint old canal houses, but instead reveals a more typical architecture found in and around the city. Apartment flat after apartment flat bring a geometric framework of color across the screen, spotlighting an architecture which reflects the high density population of the Netherlands. This grid patterned footage builds a rhythm which is echoed in the soundtrack: a remix of Iggy Pop, Fischer Spooner, "Suicide", Dot Allison's "Substance" and Fleetwood Mac's "Tusk".

Susan Black lives in Glasgow, Scotland. She studied Cognitive Science at Hampshire College in Massachusetts and was a fellow at the Skowhegan School of Art in Maine. Born in the United States, Susan Black moved from New York City to Scotland just after September 11th.

BELLWETHER is an artist-run space in support of emerging artists.