Doug Aitken Interiors 2002

  • Not on view

In this video installation, eleven large translucent screens are arranged to form a Greek cross around a space containing a circular bench. Projections appear at the far ends of three of the rooms created by the screens: in alternating narratives a young woman walks through a city, plays handball, and stands in front of open water; a man works in a helicopter factory and at one point begins to tap dance; a different man strolls through a city and stands near the water; a younger man walks through a city; a seated older man chants loudly; and a couple with a baby walks near a harbor.

The work draws out the compositional similarities between four urban areas, using city nightscapes, street and traffic lights, and architectural settings to make them seem to be parts of one heterogeneous megalopolis.The broken narrative creates a logic that is not based on a recognizable pattern; three different screens each show fragments of four narratives that are constantly recombined with no visible loop, pattern, or repetitive plot. Because the screens are made of translucent material, the images are visible inside and outside the structure, allowing the viewer to move freely in the environment while experiencing the work. This arrangement suits the installation, which is less about duration than it is about simultaneity, symmetry, lack of hierarchy, and the validity of any given scene at any given time.

Publication excerpt from The Museum of Modern Art, MoMA Highlights since 1980, New York: The Museum of Modern Art, 2007, p. 214.
Three-channel video (color, sound) and eleven screens
Overall dimensions 7.9m x 7.9m x 2.4m (three projection screens, each 300 cm x 225 cm; and eight translucent silkscreen dividers, each 250 cm x 225 cm)
Fractional and promised gift of the Julia Stoschek Foundation, Düsseldorf
Object number
Produced in collaboration with The Fabric Workshop and Museum, Philadelphia © 2019 Doug Aitken
Media and Performance

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