Films by Douglas Gordon on show at The Gagosian, New York

NEW York art gallery, The Gagosian, are opening an exhibition entitled back and forth and forth and back which includes two film works by Douglas Gordon, a renowned Scottish artist. The two films exhibited are 24 Hours Psycho Back and Forth and To and Fro (2008) and 5 Year Drive-By (1995). Both films are adapted versions of classic American films.

Douglas Gordon exhibition at the Gagosian, NYC© Studio lost but found / VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2017
Photo Studio lost but found / Frederik Pedersen from Psycho. 1960. USA.
Directed and Produced by Alfred Hitchcock.
Distributed by Paramount Pictures.
© Universal City Studios. Courtesy Gagosian.

Gordon’s multi-discplinary work explores collective memory and selfhood. However, these themes and his manipulation of them is especially evident in his film work since he can distort time leading to feelings of disorientation and causing the audience to challenge.

The film entitled 5 year Drive-By is based upon the controversial American Western, The Searchers (1956). It is a slowed down version from 119 minutes to five years reflecting a section of the film’s plot where Ethan Edwards, played by John Wayne, a middle-aged Civil War veteran, spends five years searching for his lost niece. The original film is packed full of fast-paced scenes as Edwards travels across a barren American landscape, whereas 5 Year Drive-by moves so slowly that the frame only changes every 24 minutes so the moving image appears like a billboard still.

Inspired by Alfred Hitchcock’s thriller Psycho, 24 hour Psycho Back and Forth and To and Fro is, the film plays on two adjoining screens – on one the film starts at the beginning, on the other it starts from the end – for a very brief moment, approximately one twenty-forth of a second, after 12 hours, the scenes overlap.

Gordon’s aim is to re-define suspense and climax through these adaptations. Viewers slip into an almost hypnotic state waiting to see a frame change or the two directions of the film to overlap.

Gordon has previously exhibited at galleries and museums such as the Museum of Modern Art, New York, National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa, Royal Museums of Fine Arts of Belgium, Brussels and MUSAC, Spain. He has previously won the Turner Prize, Kunstpreis Nidersachsen, Premio 200 at 47th Biennale di Venezia, Commandeur dans l’ordre des Arts et es Lettres, an award from the French Republic, to name a few.

by Allie Nawrat 

A 24-hour screening of 24 hour psycho back and forth and to and fro will take place at The Gagosian on November 17 starting at 10am and finishing on November 18 at 10am

The exhibition will be open from November 14 until December 22, 2017

The Gagosian, 522 West 21st Street, New York, NY, 10011

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