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Ragnar Kjartansson premieres "Figures in Landscape"

Ragnar Kjartansson, still from Figures in Landscape, 2018, video. Duration: 168 hours. Commissioned by the Danish Building and Property Agency for the Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, University of Copenhagen.

Ragnar Kjartansson’s latest work, “Figures in Landscape,” premieres @i8gallery this coming Friday, January 31st.

 

Figures in Landscape consists of seven distinct 24-hour scenes, each a silent, single-channel video work, filmed on a set hand-painted as an archetypal landscape: a forest, a desert, barren mountains, a beach, a jungle, snow-covered mountains, and a meadow. The seven scenes will be played simultaneously and repeat continuously throughout the duration of the show.

 

As Kjartansson describes the work: “There is no narrative, nothing happens, simply the movement of people in white lab coats walking around in the landscape. Figures in Landscape is a nod to heroic murals of science and prosperity, with a modern, mundane twist.”

 

When repeated continuously, however, each scene in Figures in Landscape functions as a timepiece of sorts – the figures’ familiar movements marking the fixed moments of an individual day, or if the scenes are played in sequence, an entire week.