Saturday, March 26, 2011

Song ("The Weight of The World..")

We forgot to mention yesterday that Ragnar Kjartansson continues, indeed is close to concluding, his site-specific performance(s) of “Song”, which opened, earlier this month, at Pittsburgh’s Carnegie Museum of Art. “For “Song”, the museum tells us, Kjartansson “wished to abandon the brutal masculinity of Viking landscapes and suits of armor for the peacefulness of family and femininity embodied by his (three) nieces, their voices echoing in the Hall of Sculpture as they sing the central lyric: The weight of the world/is love..” Those words repeated over and over. Here’s Allen reading the poem in its entirety (Kjartansson, intentionally, “misremembers” some of the words). For a recent Arabic translation of the poem see here.

1 comment:

  1. I saw this! It was on video, a six-hour presentation at 21c art gallery/hotel in Louisville, Kentucky. I stayed at the hotel overnight and took in the variety of art there. All of the pieces were breathtaking and incredible, but "Song" was the one that really captivated me most. I was taken by the beauty of the simple, yet elegant set-up. It felt very Greek to me. The hotel management had it in a room with a projector. It was showing there on Christmas Day and they had giant bean bags on the floor. I laid on the bean bags for about two and a half hours listening to the continuous song and drifting in and out of sleep. I left for a while and when I came back, it was after the sun had set in the video and the only light hitting the girls was a spotlight on the second floor balcony. I stayed for another forty or so minutes and watched the conclusion. The effect of the camera moving constantly around these three beautiful girls, who were tirelessly repeating the same song, was both beautiful and hypnotizing. It was as if I was outside the world, watching it rotate and seeing only its beauty. The song still comes to me every now and then, and when it does, I feel peaceful.