jennifer west on the high line

Today I was in Chelsea for an interview, and I had time to kill before work in the West Village. So what’s a girl to do? I wandered around Chelsea Market for a bit and was kind of annoyed that Privé (the store that has designer sample sales) only had bedding today. Eh. But I stopped by Tuck Shop (an Australian meat pie place) for a sausage roll, so that was yummy! And then, because I was in the area, I headed over and up to the High Line.

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And whaddaya know … there was a piece of art by Jennifer West! In 2010 she had an exhibition at the CAMH and this summer when I was an intern there, I digitized the catalogue, so I recognized the name immediately. You can see the catalogue here. There was this long strip of film taped to the High Line, and this was some kind of performance art – or at least part one of it. The film was only here for today (Thursday) for people to walk across and mark it up with their shoes. Part two of the deal will be when the film is treated and then shown sometime in October.

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It’s kind of an interesting concept and it’ll be neat to see how it looks in the end. I had no idea that they were doing this today, so I was really confused at first. But for the most part it seemed pretty vanilla and most people avoided stepping on it … because they didn’t realize they were supposed to walk on it.

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In a few places there were gaps in the film (oh the horror!) probably from when someone tripped and took out parts. For the most part I didn’t walk on the film itself because it was actually kinda slippery and not the easiest to walk on. But it will be interesting since the film was on a few different textures, from the rough concrete to the smooth railroad, to the regular grate.

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I don’t really have an opinion of Jennifer West’s work because I’ve never actually seen it. Yes I’ve seen the catalogue, but since she works in moving image, I’ve never seen any of her actual work. The High Line piece is called “One Mile Parkour Film” and you can find more information about it here. I’m intrigued and will definitely be seeing the resulting film when it gets shown in October! It was kinda cool, like a New York-ified yellow brick road.

[UPDATE: I didn’t manage to attend the screening due to work, but the resulting film can be viewed online here.]