Harry Dodge and Stanya Kahn
2005, 6:25 min, color, sound
Under a cloudless Los Angeles sky, Kahn—dressed in incongruous heels and a summery dress—runs an electric weed whacker through a hill of overgrown grass. During breaks, the whacker's annoying buzz gives way to the trill of birds and distant sirens, with Elvis Presley's In the Ghetto leaking from a passing car or a radio somewhere. Whacker conjures a tangible L.A. landscape, representing its distinctive mix of desultory glamour and urban hustle, cohabitating in the desert air. Kahn portrays a uniquely L.A. character: sporting Travis Bickle-style aviator sunglasses and chomping a wad of gum, she is disarmingly dedicated to her nonsensical task. According to Dodge, "It's about the feral - the persistence of the weeds, the wild grass that insists on growing," to which Kahn adds..."and a woman who is as tenacious as the weeds."
Writing in The New York Times, Jori Finkel observes, "Whacker falls somewhere between punk performance and theater of the absurd..." -- EAI
This title is available for exhibitions, screenings, and institutional use through Electronic Arts Intermix (EAI)
, NY. Please visit the EAI Online Catalogue
for further information about this artist and work. The EAI site offers extensive resources for curators, students, artists and educators, including: an in-depth guide to exhibiting, collecting, and preserving media art; A Kinetic History: The EAI Archives Online, a collection of essays, primary documents, and media charting EAI's 40-year history and the early years of the emergent video art scene; and expanded contextual and educational materials.