Flight Paths (Lidojumu Pédas) February 7-27, 1997 Latvian State Museum of Foreign Art (Latvijas Årzemju måkslas muzejs)
An installation designed for four consecutive Museum rooms.
Flight Paths is an investigation of various notions of flight, our human limitations thereof (as regards to gravity and time), and the technological and spiritual systems we have developed to overcome them. Common household patterns are used as maps for uncommon states of past or potential movement. As if the paths of swooping birds could be traced, like planes trailing smoke, and we began to see the complex invisible volumes they described.
The Spaces Entry Hallway
In a large glass, blackened case, a small television monitor with a plastic lens in front of it peeps through. Playing on the monitor are continuous black and white images of burning buildings. When standing close, one can faintly hear old dance music which comes in and out as a station might drift on a short wave radio.
The gallery floor is covered with a large red felt square. Onto the surface are painted dance footsteps from an instruction manual. To the side is a radar oscilloscope (the same sort used for naval and aviation purposes). The oscilloscope screen has been wired so that it reads those persons moving within the room as small green blips on the screen. Along the walls are chalkboards, mounted in gilt frames resembling rest of the museum’s permanent painting collection frames. On the chalkboards are drawings of migratory bird paths.
The space is very dark. Along the walls are a series of 12 small light boxes (25cm x 16cm). They are the only light sources in the room. The images illuminated upon them are static black and white images taken directly off of video monitors. They depict close-ups of hands from 12 different films. Each is taken from a scene involving tension, anguish or desperation.
The room is very bright. The floor is covered in white material, painted with black lines taken from hugely enlarged sewing patterns. The patterns suggest traces left behind by machines of flight. There is one glass case on the far side of the room. It contains a large suspended pair of grey wings. The wall opposite the wing case is covered with illuminated fluorescent light tubes.