Olivia Lory Kay

opacity

09 Jun — 20 Jun 1999

Visually and aurally rich with information, Olivia Lory Kay's installation opacity encourages us to seek out local stories amid the hype of of the homogenising global media, to map new ways to live in an image saturated world. 'Sampling' from both local and distant environments, Lory Kay has created a series of stories or vignettes that are are told using sound and moving image. In her densely layered installation the world is seen through the multi-faceted lens of the video camera, bounced and refracted by the hanging mirrors, glass, and water until it takes on an otherworldly translucency. Combining footage sourced in Rome, Berlin Sydney and New York with images of Christchurch seen from the windows and roof of The Physics Room, opacity implodes our sense of space and time, generating within the confines of the gallery a new mythical cityscape that is at once strange and familiar: the dizzying view from a train coursing it's way through a foreign city; a panoramic view of the Christchurch skyline; a screaming car alarm recorded on the street outside; an animalistic roar like the sound of a rising storm. By subjecting us to a dizzying abundance of shared images and experiences, opacity foregrounds the importance of conserving the imaginary in an age when the tools of mass communication create their own architecture and sense of the Real.

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