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Date created
Fri, Feb 24, 2012
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Performance & Public Art Festival at Pacific Standard Time, Los Angeles

Photo James Turrell, Burning Bridges, Pomona College performance, 2012

Photo by Siebe Tettero

The Performance & Public Art Festival, held as part of the program of the Pacific Standard Time exhibition series, ran from January 19 through 29, 2012. A very good survey of all performance and happening-based forms of artistic expressions that were held in the greater Los Angeles region in the 1960s and 1970s. Impossible to visit them all, I made a choice of artists that were close to or involved with the Light and Space movement. Most impressive of these was the Burning Bridges performance by James Turrell (US, 1943). The performance was a recreation of his 1971 performance at the Bridges Auditorium at Pomona College in California. In this work, Turell beautifully emphasized one’s awareness of visual perception by lighting up the arcade of the Colleges Performance Space, known as Big Bridges, with ordinary orange flair lights. The unassuming shimmer of the light, steadily growing in intensity before starting to slowly die out, proved too much for most of the audience, partially because they had just feasted on the fireworks of Judy Chicago‘s (US, 1939) piece A Butterfly for Pomona (2012). But, for those with stamina and a willingness to perceive, what was offered with this simple performance was a true feast. Other great performances were indeed Judy Chicago’s A Butterfly for Pomona , as well as her Sublime Environment (2012), and Eric Orr‘s (US, 1939–1998) Wall Shadow (1970), recreated by John Speed Orr for this occasion. Also see the original work. For the entire program see the website of the Pacific Standard Time Festival.