(installation view at Menil Collection, Houston)
Bookshelf is a dual-channel installation film tracking the construction of a wall-sized bookshelf. Like my other films, which portray usually unseen landscapes, Bookshelf is also an engagement with landscape. Yet this landscape is private, intimate, and interior.
In one sense the film is formally conservative. The building of a bookshelf is covered from a variety of angles, including a master shot, editing is used to compress time, and the shelf starts deconstructed and ends completed, books stacked. But that is only one channel. The second channel plays the same film, but in reverse. The reverse action reveals, in the opening minutes, what the shelf will look like when complete. With the end of the film already given away, process is emphasized. The process, which is the film, is an exercise in love, communication and fatigue. It reveals a certain landscape of domesticity - banal, quiet, durational.
Director CUYLER BALLENGER
Sound Design SUSAN ROSENMAN
Featuring RACHEL BALLENGER, CUYLER BALLENGER
HD Video, BW, 2018
Aurora Picture Show / Menil Collection collaboration. Houston, TX