I am writing to announce my new substack newsletter titled Water Stories by Melissa McGill and to invite you to subscribe.
I will be sharing news from my studio, visuals, field notes, process, ideas, and explorations all on the subject of water.
I hope you will sign up for this free newsletter as I have so much I am looking forward to sharing with you!
I’m honored that my recent work, Sea Saga, is featured on the cover of Tracy K. Smith’s new book, To Free the Captives: A Plea for the American Soul, published by Alfred A. Knopf on November 7, 2023.
Tracy K. Smith, winner of the Pulitzer Prize and 22nd Poet Laureate of the United States writes:
“I’m overjoyed to share the book jacket of TO FREE THE CAPTIVES: A PLEA FOR THE AMERICAN SOUL, featuring the beautiful and enthralling indigo diptych Sea Saga by Melissa McGill .
This is a book about what it has long felt like to live with and within America’s official and unofficial institutions: universities, the military, Jim Crow, and especially the collective American imagination. It’s also an ode to the ingenious resourcefulness of Black Love, which insists, in the face of so many annihilating forces, upon its-and our-continuance.”
Thanks to Brainard Carey for the interview with Yale Radio WYBCX!
You can listen here:
October 19, 2022
2pm EST, 7pm BST
Presented in conjunction with the current exhibition on view at The Lightbox in Woking, UK titled “Canaletto and Melissa McGill: Performance and Panorama”
In this online talk Melissa McGill will discuss her highly acclaimed Venice-based collaborative public art project Red Regatta, 2019, her personal connection with Venice and its citizens, the city’s challenges with climate change and will offer her artistic reflections on what she and Canaletto share in their visions of the City of Water.
Melissa McGill is a New York based interdisciplinary artist known for ambitious, collaborative, site specific public art projects. At the heart of her work is a focus on community, meaningful shared experiences, and lasting impact. Melissa has presented both independent public art projects and solo exhibitions nationally and internationally.
Sarah Brown is Director of The Lightbox, and until December 2021 she led Leeds Art Gallery. She was responsible for the capital refurbishment and relaunching of the gallery in 2017 and is a founding member of Yorkshire Sculpture International. With over 20 years of experience Sarah has curated significant exhibitions, commissioned new work and has brought together major acquisitions for museum collections.
Tickets and more information available here.
Photo. credit: Peter Fleissig
TOTAH presents Melissa McGill in conversation with Lenape Center’s Hadrien Coumans, to discuss her ongoing link with land, sea, and waterways. Melissa’s solo exhibition CURRENTS opened on September 8th, and invites the viewer to consider our symbiotic relationship with water, particularly the Muhheacanituk/Hudson River, as a vital but threatened life-force. Lenape Center and Melissa have a longstanding relationship of mutual respect and support, having provided guidance and collaboration on programming for her public project Constellation (2015-17). Join us as they examine the importance of respecting the spirit of water in and around us, and how Melissa’s work addresses these issues.
Wednesday, October 12th, 6:00 pm
TOTAH, 183 Stanton Street, New York, NY
Hadrien Coumans is co-founder and co-director of Lenape Center. A published author, editor, and educator, his work is centered in collective and individual well-being, empowerment, cultural continuance, genocide prevention and healing. He is an adopted member of the WhiteTurkey-Fugate family (Lenape).
Lenape Center is based in Manhattan and has the mission of continuing Lenapehoking, the Lenape homeland through community, culture, and the arts.
See the conversation here.
Opening September 8th, from 6-8pm
TOTAH presents CURRENTS, an exhibition of recent works by artist Melissa McGill, on view from September 8th, 2022 through October 15th, 2022. This is McGill’s second solo exhibition with the gallery.
Melissa McGill’s understanding of our symbiotic relationship with water and the environment runs through her collaborative public art works: Constellation, Red Regatta, and In the Waves. In the more intimate works on view in CURRENTS, water is as much a vital substance as an expressive language—be this articulated through wind, waves, shifting light and shadow, or the flow of time itself.
Throughout CURRENTS, water’s various gestures are expressed using a range of materials. McGill draws us into water’s inclinations, engaging them by way of sight, sound, reflections, and movement. Her sculptural glass installation transmutes a series of 2-dimensional, photographic surfaces into an immersive environment, where the subtle play of light and translucency recalls the changing yet constant nature of the tides. Similarly, McGill’s Box of Waves series transmits movements in time across different elements, expressing our ongoing dialogue with nature. To open the box is like opening a portal into a moment-in-process—one marked by the perpetual reciprocity of wind and water.
McGill describes the world on its own terms, showing how the water inside us speaks to the water surrounding us. The calligraphic evidence she observes in nature reminds us how our primordial mode of being is without “edges,” without definite separateness between things, but exists in a non-linear, circular time that pervades the planet. Inviting us to become more porous—to move within and like water—McGill recreates an environing script that doesn’t rely on traditional language so much as it ciphers the essence of translation, conversation, collaboration, and symbiosis.
On Tuesday July 19, 2022, I had the wonderful opportunity to have a very inspiring conversation at The Lightbox with Bożena Anna Kowalczyk, curator and preeminent scholar of Canaletto, in which we discussed the weather as protagonist in Canaletto’s paintings, capricci, our admiration for Carlo Scarpa’s terrazzo floor at the Olivetti Showroom in Piazzo San Marco, the role of red in Canaletto’s work as accent to lead the eye, what we can learn from the water levels and algae depicted in Canaletto’s paintings of the Venetian Lagoon, Venice’s environmental challenges, and the inspiration for Red Regatta.
This program was presented in conjunction with the current exhibition at The Lightbox, Canaletto and Melissa McGill: Performance and Panorama, on view through November 13, 2022. The Lightbox is located in Woking, about 20 minutes outside of London.
PRESS RELEASE FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Canaletto and Melissa McGill: Performance and Panorama
16 July – 13 November 2022
An unprecedented new exhibition at The Lightbox gallery and museum will bring together the work of Italian master Canaletto (1697-1768) and contemporary interdisciplinary artist Melissa McGill (b.1969). These two renowned international artists share a profound connection and dedication to Venice, born 250 years apart.
Melissa McGill (b.1969), ‘Red Regatta (Coppa del Presidente della Repubblica, San Giorgio Maggiore)’, 2019. Archival pigment print. © Melissa McGill/ Mazzoleni, London – Torino.
The display will feature Canaletto’s highly detailed depictions of both Italy and England alongside Melissa McGill’s major independent public art project Red Regatta presented in Venice in collaboration with Associazione Vela al Terzo Venezia in 2019, co-organized by Magazzino Italian Art, curated by Chiara Spangaro with project manager Marcella Ferrari and with support from Mazzoleni, London – Torino.
The Lightbox is featuring these two artists’ reflective relationship with Venice and its unique qualities, sights, sounds, traditions and individuality. The exhibition will combine 20 paintings, prints and drawings by Canaletto and 16 works from Melissa McGill’s highly acclaimed Venice-based public art project Red Regatta. It will feature a documentary film, hand-painted photographic artist renderings, sound work, a glass installation and watercolours. A highlight is the installation of McGill’s Campo Box (Santa Maria Nova) from 2017, a sculptural sound work based on the iconic square Campo Santa Maria Nova. Taking the shape of the architectural footprint of this public space, the work activates the interplay between sound and visual memory, public and private space, visceral and physical experience, releasing a world of ambient sounds recorded there: snippets of conversation between neighbors, calls from passing working boats and gondoliers, children playing, footsteps. Set in a room surrounded by Canaletto works, it evokes the sound of Venice through time.
Whereas Canaletto is famed for his scenes that combine real and imagined spaces, and was collected by eighteenth century aristocrats, McGill is recognised through her ambitiously staged collaborative art projects that address environmental issues and are designed to spur real change. Red Regatta celebrates the city’s maritime history and calls attention to the forces of climate change and mass tourism that threaten its future. The body of work on view was created during different phases of Red Regatta’s timeline, as McGill considered the delicate and liminal relationship between Venice’s built and natural environments, between land and sea and between humanity and nature. Both artists engage intimately with the landscape of Venice, seemingly unchanged over hundreds of years, yet their distinctly different perspectives inspire new conversations about the city’s past, present and future.
Melissa McGill says “Canaletto is known for blending the real and imagined seamlessly. Red Regatta also blended the real and imagined, in the spirit of healing and collectively envisioning a more sustainable future for Venice…Canaletto’s vedute ideate (idealized views) are imbued with sunlight, shadows and atmospheric effects, creating a distinctive sense of site-specificity. To create my project renderings, I use a combination of painting and photography to center the connection between the artwork and the specificity of its environment–its colours, reflections and details- all in their own dialogue.”
“Canaletto gives us his vision of 18th century Italy and England, with an eye for compositional balance and a feel for dramatic effects. One of the most endearing qualities of Canaletto’s work is that he draws the viewer into the scene. Like Melissa McGill, the way Canaletto frames his work makes you feel part of the scene and you become a participant. It is one of the key elements of his style and has made him one of the most popular artists of the 18th century.” – Curator Michael Regan.
Canaletto and Melissa McGill: Performance and Panorama is on display at The Lightbox gallery and museum from 16 July – 13 November 2022. Find out more and pre-book tickets at thelightbox.org.uk
The 18th century painter and printmaker Giovanni Antonio Canal, known as Canaletto, was born in Venice, the son of a theatrical scene painter. He was very influential, famed for his precisely depicted and evocative views (vedute) of Venice, London and the English countryside. Canaletto’s early pictures for local patrons are his most accomplished. Canaletto was favoured by English collectors, he visited England repeatedly between 1746-56. He may have used a ‘camera obscura’ for topographical accuracy in creating some of his designs, but he always remained concerned with satisfying compositional design, not simply lavishly recording views.
About Melissa McGill
Melissa McGill is a New York based interdisciplinary artist known for ambitious, collaborative, site specific public art projects. They take the form of site-specific, immersive experiences that explore nuanced conversations between land, water, sustainable traditions, and the interconnectedness of all living things. At the heart of her work is a focus on community, meaningful shared experiences, and lasting impact. Spanning a variety of media including performance, photography, painting, drawing, sculpture, sound, light, video and immersive installation, McGill has presented both independent public art projects and solo exhibitions nationally and internationally since 1991.
McGill lived in Venice from 1991-93 and returns regularly for inspiration and work. Her project Red Regatta (2019) was inspired by her observations over more than two decades of the challenges Venice is facing given the impact of climate change and intense tourism. Melissa’s intimate knowledge of Venice and her deep personal and professional relationships in the city have made it possible for her to develop this ambitious project. She is particularly passionate about the collaborative aspect and the fact that Red Regatta involved many members of the local community. The project was intentionally designed to welcome the participation and enjoyment of local citizens and to honour their abiding love for their city. Her previous sculptural sound work, The Campi (2017) invoked daily life in the Venetian Campo and was presented at Carlo Scarpa’s Casa/Studio Scatturin, Università Iuav di Venezia and Giorgio Mastinu Fine Art in Venice, Italy. Constellation (2015-2017) installed on an island in the Hudson River, New York, lit each night creating a new constellation transforming Bannerman castle ruin. McGill has exhibited her artwork nationally and internationally since 1991, including solo and groups exhibitions at Mazzoleni, London – Torino; Magazzino Italian Art, Cold Spring (NY); The Permanent Mission of Italy at the United Nations, New York; TOTAH, New York; White Cube, London; Power House, Memphis; Palazzo Capello, Venice; CRG Gallery, New York, Zabludowicz Collection, London; Norrtalje Konsthall, Norrtalje (Sweden); Museum van Hedendaagse Kunst, Ghent (Belgium). Mazzoleni, London – Torino officially represents Melissa McGill in Europe and Asia.
The Lightbox gallery and museum
Contact Details: For all press enquiries and high resolution images please contact Aisling Bradley, email Aisling.firstname.lastname@example.org phone 01483 737800
Visitor Information: The Lightbox is situated in Woking (25 minutes from London Waterloo by train) and the galleries are open Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday*, Friday, Saturday 10.30am – 5.00pm, *Last
Thursday of the month 10.30am – 8.30pm and Sunday 11.00am – 4.00pm. For more information and Café opening hours please visit www.thelightbox.org.uk or call 01483 737800.
Free entry, entrance to temporary exhibitions only with a Day Pass. Lightbox Members and under 21s visit free. Tickets available to pre-book online thelightbox.org.uk
The Lightbox is a registered charity no. 1073543. The work of the charity sustains our high-quality programme of exhibitions, learning activities and community engagement programmes.
All events can be booked via thelightbox.org.uk
Behind the Scenes Tours
20 July and 14 September, 9:45-10:30am
Join a Member of the Exhibitions Team for a private tour of Canaletto and Melissa McGill: Performance and Panorama, discussing artworks on display and how the exhibition was curated. Advance booking required.
£10 Adults ● £8 Lightbox Members
Canaletto at the National Gallery
21 July, 7.00pm – 8.00pm. Doors open at 6.30pm
More than 250 years after his death, the mention of Canaletto’s name immediately evokes the image of grand Venetian palaces and dazzling canals. Thanks in part to the Grand Tourists who brought so many of them back to Britain, the National Gallery holds one of the world’s great collections of Canaletto’s paintings. Looking closely at these iconic depictions of Venice, this talk will explore the artist’s life and work through the prism of our national collection. Dr Francesca Whitlum-Cooper is The Myojin-Nadar Associate Curator of Paintings at The National Gallery, London, where she works on 17th and 18th -century paintings and has curated the exhibitions Poussin and the Dance (2021), Boilly: Scenes of Parisian Life (2019) and Cagnacci’s Repentant Magdalene: A Baroque Masterpiece from the Norton Simon Museum (2017).
£12 Adults • £10 Lightbox Members
“Nestled in a vestibule in Midtown Manhattan is an oasis of glistening waters: five glass panels of varied heights are printed with images of rippling water and overlaid atop one another. Light pours through the panes and projects a glowing blue tint on the walls behind them that they lean on, subtly pulling the space into the artwork.
“I wanted the work to engulf you and act as a portal, transforming the space it’s installed in,” the artist, Melissa McGill, told Artnet News. The piece, titled These Waters, is a commission for the show “Anatomy of Beauty,” which is open through September at the Vacheron Constantin flagship. “The viewer is both reflected in the work and swept into it. The size and placement of each glass panel evokes the rise and fall of the tides.”
Although it may look primordial and mystical, the waters depicted here are images of the Hudson River, near the upstate New York town where McGill resides.
Her scope ranges from hyperlocal to interstellar. “These Waves has a cosmic dimension,” she explained, “connecting to the way waves ripple with starlight in the sun connecting heaven and earth.”
Read the full article here
In The Waves by Melissa McGill is an admission-free public art project curated by Dodie Kazanjian created with an ensemble of local community members led by the artist and choreographer Davalois Fearon and Melanie George, dramaturg and producer.
Meaningful community engagement is at the heart of this vibrant movement based public art work, aiming to spark conversations and raise awareness about our relationship to water, sea level rise and our changing climate.
Performances are Aug 18-21 and 24-28 at 3pm and 4pm. Visitors are invited to interact with the artist, choreographer and ensemble between performances.
In the Waves is presented by Art&Newport and the Newport Restoration Foundation.
Registration not required but suggested at Newport Restoration’s website.
Please email email@example.com with questions.
A few weeks ago, Decora asked me to collaborate on this great project. The timeline was really really short but the energy around the whole project was so good and so strong and that’s all we need!So on Sunday, an audience walked with us through the breathtaking landscape of The Garrison Institute, listening to his powerful new album as we went. Memorial candles were lit, a gospel singer sang out to the river from a high rocky cliff, amazing dancers danced atop rock outcroppings and among apple trees, and we walked a garden labyrinth in the dark, with Decora’s words and music filling our heads and hearts.
My project was a kind of “sketch” for a developing project called Here and Now (Lenapehoking). Sited here among the trees and rocks along a beautiful rocky river ledge trail, it was in conversation with its surroundings and the ever changing ambient light. Approximately 50 mirrored triangular forms glinted in the sun, catching the light and reflecting fragments of the landscape around it–yellow leaves, the sky, the river, those passing by. These mirrored fragments were nestled in the spaces between tree trunks, branches and ancient glacial rock croppings–like a game of hide and seek, look carefully and find more. The environment and the artwork were inseparable, here and now.
And I can’t resist sharing this photo I took after. Deinstallation leads to inspiration. Stay tuned…
Last night the breathtaking floating film festival in Venice called “Cinema Galleggiante” conceived by Microclima – Paolo Rosso and Edoardo Aruta included Red Regatta’s short film made by Jones Pellegrini Ginko Film produced by Magazzino Italian Art (co-organizers of Red Regatta). Both screen and audience were on the water, floating in the lagoon to view a thoughtful program with themes of “instability, the unexpected, resistance, technological solutions, and the water’s potential for creating routes for transport and communication” – a truly inspiring initiative. I was so very sorry to not be able to be there to see it in person, but today many friends shared photos and videos today and I was certainly with them in spirit. I was honored that Red Regatta was included!
I’m sending love and gratitude to my amazing friends and Red Regatta project collaborators AVT Associazione Vela al Terzo Venezia and Righetti Giorgio! And to Red Red Regatta curator Chiara Spangaro project manager Marcella Ferrari and all of our Venetian partners–Università Iuav di Venezia, Classic Boats Venice,, Certosa Vento di Venezia, Spazio Thetis, Ocean Space, The Peggy Guggenheim and Mazzoleni! Grazie mille to Marco Valmarana for the videos you see in this post!
It was a real gift to get this glimpse.
Call and Response
It is a time of great change, and it is a time of listening deeply—to each other and to the sounds around us. In our suddenly quieter world, the sound of the birds can now be heard more clearly.
This project invites you to stop and listen. Call and Response refers to the actual format of this project—my call and received responses from around the world—as well as themes of community, connection and conversation.
I called on friends from around the world, inviting them to send one minute videos of local bird sounds. The 100 video contributions create unique sound compositions, combining a wide range of species and dialogues with videos from Africa, Australia, Brazil, Canada, France, Germany, Iceland, Italy, Japan, Lebanon, New Zealand, Scotland, Spain, Switzerland, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, and the United States.
Birds are environmental indicators. For this reason, humans have always been attracted to birdsong and bird sounds. A diverse bird community signals a healthy environment. We are reminded how essential it is and has always been to live in harmonious balance. Call-and-response patterns are found in every culture’s communication and music and in all forms of sharing and democracy around the globe.
Collected here https://www.callandresponseproject.org/, the video contributions create unique sound compositions combining a wide range of species and conversations not heard together anywhere else in the world. Each time the project site is refreshed, a new composition is created.
In Call and Response, each collaborator’s video submission allows us as viewers to share in the precise moment it was recorded. What they were hearing, letting us be virtually side by side for a moment, listening together. My warm thanks to all who submitted videos! Special thanks to William van Roden, collaborating consultant and to Tom J. Hole for web development. Call and Response was created with generous support from TOTAH.
Back to London. A journey through image, time, word and space
Mazzoleni is delighted to reopen its London gallery following the lockdown with the group show Back to London. A journey through image, time, word and space. The exhibition title also suggests the physical return to the gallery of a selection of artworks recently exhibited in international museums and fairs. Historical and contemporary artists are brought together in this show, allowing a number of visual, material or conceptual affinities to emerge.
The artwork by Giacomo Balla (1871-1958) establishes a visual dialogue with the photographic works of Red Regatta by the American artist Melissa McGill (b. 1969).
Go here for more information!
Artists in this exhibition include Vincenzo Agnetti, Giacomo Balla, Mel Bochner, Alighiero Boetti, Andrea Francolino, Melissa McGill, Rebecca Moccia, David Reimondo, Giuseppe Uncini.
On May 9, 2020 Magazzino Italian Art hosted an Instagram Live session with artist Melissa McGill and journalist Julia Felsenthal, in celebration of the release of Giovanni Pellegrini’s film “Melissa McGill: Red Regatta.” The pair discussed the artist’s public art project called ‘Red Regatta,’ which activated Venice’s lagoon and canals with large-scale regattas of traditional vela al terzo sailboats hoisted with hand-painted red sails from May–September 2019. Presented in collaboration with Associazione Vela al Terzo, curated by Chiara Spangaro, with project manager Marcella Ferrari, the project was co-organized by Magazzino Italian Art, with support from Mazzoleni.
In Melissa McGill’s ‘Red Regatta’ attention was drawn to the delicate and liminal relationship between Venice’s built and natural environments, between land and sea, and between humanity and nature itself.
A new film by Giovanni Pellegrini on McGill’s public art project Red Regatta premiered on Magazzino Da Casa on May 9, 2020. The screening was followed by a Q+A with the artist Melissa McGill and journalist Julia Felsenthal on Instagram Live for the project’s one year anniversary.
Hanging out with NY’s bravest at The Armory show with Mazzoleni.
TOTAH presented exhibiting artist Melissa McGill in conversation with Oceana’s Brian Langloss to discuss the precarious state of our oceans’ ecosystem and the threat of rising water levels. The event will take place at TOTAH, within the context of Melissa’s solo exhibition Red Regatta: riflessi, an immersive photography show that places viewers in the afterglow of the Venetian lagoon following Melissa’s large-scale, unprecedented 2019 public art project Red Regatta. Red Regatta is the first artwork to be registered as a Clean Regatta, receiving a Gold Level certification from Sailors for the Sea Powered by Oceana program, that mobilizes sailors to protect the ocean through education and activism.
Watch the video here.
Oceana is a dedicated to protecting and restoring the world’s oceans on a global scale.
Brian Langloss is the Campaign Organizer for Oceana in New York City.
Oval Lingotto Fiere | Booth Purple 13 Green 14
Via Giacomo Mattè Trucco, 70
Mazzoleni is pleased to announce its participation at Artissima 2019 with an exhibition entirely dedicated to Melissa McGill and her public art project Red Regatta. This solo project will be displayed in the Main Section of the fair.
The monographic show presented by Mazzoleni will display works by the artist created during three phases of the project’s timeline: artist renderings, red colour studies for the hand-painted sails, and photographs taken by the artist of the red sails reflected in the lagoon waters during the Red Regatta performances.
Red Regatta, an unprecedented series of four large-scale site-specific performances, activated Venice’s lagoon and waterways between May and September 2019. Fifty-two traditional vela al terzo boats sailed in unison in choreographed regattas, each with sails hand-painted in distinct shades of red, developed by McGill. The public artwork united Venetians and visitors to celebrate the cultural and maritime history of the city and call attention to the forces of climate change and mass tourism that threaten its future.
Melissa McGill will also take part in a talk titled Make a Better World Now! with fellow American artist Christian Holstad and Vittorio Calabrese (director of Magazzino Italian Art), which will take place on Friday 1st November at 2.30pm at the Meeting Point of the Oval. The discussion will be dedicated to the relationship between art and environmental sustainability as well as their Venetian projects.
Red Regatta by Melissa McGill was presented in collaboration with Associazione Vela al Terzo Venezia, co-organized by Magazzino Italian Art Foundation, and curated by Chiara Spangaro with project management by Marcella Ferrari
For more information and press links, please click here
On Thursday, March 28th, the Permanent Mission of Italy to the United Nations, in collaboration with Magazzino Italian Art Foundation and artist Melissa McGill,presented an exhibition of related and preparatory works to preview McGill’s latest project. ‘Red Regatta’ ahead of its debut in Venice. The exhibition coincided with the United Nations General Assembly’s meeting, “Climate Protection for All: High-Level Meeting on the Protection of the Global Climate for Present & Future Generations of Humankind in the Context of the Economic, Social and Environmental Dimensions of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.”
‘Red Regatta’ is presented in collaboration with Associazione Vela al Terzo Venezia and more than 250 local partners, led by McGill, curator Chiara Spangaro, and project manager Marcella Ferrari, and is co-organized by Magazzino Italian Art Foundation.
Thank you to Sergio Costa, Min. of the Environment of Italy, Amb. Mariangela Zappia, Ambassador of Italy at the U.N., Manlio di Stefano, Undersecretary of State for Foreign Affairs, Giuseppe Papalia, First Secretary Chief of Staff to the Permanent Representative, and Min. Plen. Francesco Genuardi, Consul General of Italy for joining us.
Melissa McGill’s Campo Box (Santa Maria Nova), a sound installation, is on view at Totah, 183 Stanton Street, NYC, through April 21st, 2019.
The Campi is a sculptural sound project that invokes the Venetian Campo: an open, irregularly shaped public square that is the historic heart of the neighborhood. The architectural footprints of five different campi are translated precisely into three dimensions, taking the form of a series of elegant black lacquered wooden boxes, reminiscent of music boxes. When closed, each box murmurs softly until the viewer lifts the lid to release a world of everyday ambient sounds recorded in that particular campo, capturing the imagination as it conjures up the rich environments of these centers of Venetian living architecture. The sense of sound transports the listener, evoking both aural and visual memory.
THE CAMPI, Venice, Italy, was first exhibited on May 8, 2017 coinciding with the opening week of La Biennale di Venezia – 57th International Art Exhibition.
Image above: Melissa McGill, Mapping Campo Santa Maria Nova, 2017, digital rendering
David Weeks Studio is pleased to present Light & Space, an exhibition featuring Melissa McGill and David Weeks on view at 38 Walker Street from March 14−May 2, 2018.
Melissa McGill’s recent work, 100 Breaths, is made up of 100 unique works on paper. Each is made with her breath, blowing metal dust suspended in varnish to create drawings that refer to both geography and the body. These gold, copper and silver forms are highly responsive to ambient light and changes throughout the day, as the light changes in the room. They flare up and soften as the viewer moves and looks at them from different angles. The light animates the work, bringing it to life, creating an experience in the moment.
David Weeks’ Lorre is an installation of kinetic lights. Drawn from the idea of altering a space with simple lines, the series utilizes copper cables to create definition. Using the inherent conductivity of the cable, the light source is free to move without the constraints of wiring.
For further information click here.
Grazie a Marie Claire e Adelaide Corbetta!
“At Casa Scatturin, which is an office and apartment designed by Carlo Scarpa, I met Melissa McGill who, collaborating with curator Chiara Spangaro, exhibited The Campi a project dedicated to Venice. The American artist picked up sounds around some of the city’s public squares, photographed these spaces, mapped them and then went back to work on recordings that are now contained in sculptural sound boxes. Opening a Campo Box you are transferred into the middle of Venice, from any place you are. Because the sounds are unique to this city and the capacity to bring them elsewhere is unique to art.” Click here for full article. Photo by Adelaide Corbetta
Thank you Vogue and Eve MacSweeney!
“Another small but beautifully formed exhibition is “The Campi” by Melissa McGill. The New York–based artist, who lived for a time in Venice, has crafted a small edition of mahogany boxes in the irregular shapes of three of the city’s “squares” (campi), chosen for being part of Venetians’ everyday life rather than tourist spots. Like tiny grand pianos, the boxes open to produce the recorded sounds and voices of each space, released like birds into the air—the perfect repository for memories of this infinitely fascinating destination.”
Read the full article here. Photo by Luca Marella.
The Campi will be exhibited in Venice May 9th to 14, 2017, coinciding with the opening of La Bienniale di Venezia-57th International Art Exhibition.
The Campi is a sculptural sound project that invokes daily life in the Venetian Campo (public city square), exploring the conversation between the visible and the invisible that defines public space.
The project will be presented at exclusive (art and architecture) locations throughout Venice, creating an opportunity to explore hidden gems in the city.
For more information, go to thecampi.eu
Constellation Boat Tours begin May 7, 2016. For schedules and details click here for information.
Beginning in June 2015, a new constellation has been rising nightly above a small island in the middle of the Hudson River, fifty miles north of New York City. Every evening as the sun goes down, starry points of light emerge one by one with the stars of the night sky above the Bannerman’s Castle ruin on Pollepel Island in Melissa McGill’s light-based public art project.
Constellation, the book, accompanies this mysterious and sublime installation, both as an extension and artifact of the project. The book is a visual and literary dialogue between artist Melissa McGill and several celebrated writers and poets, using the artwork as a springboard for inspiration and collaboration.
By: Melissa McGill (Artist), Sam Anderson (Contributor), Tracy K. Smith (Contributor), Richard Blanco (Contributor), Hadrien Coumans (Contributor), Joe Baker (Contributor), Edwin Torres (Contributor), Jeffrey Yang (Contributor)
Very happy to announce that the Constellation book, published byPrinceton Architectural Press is coming out in October! Join us for a special event to celebrate under the stars, presented by the Sunset Reading Series! (space is limited- book early!)
Vist artful.ly for tickets
Follow this link to hear the interview recorded on location with Sarah LaDuke and WAMC: http://wamc.org/post/seventeen-stars-added-multitudes-melissa-mcgills-constellation
Thank you to Ted Loos, Todd Heisler and The New York Times!
I will be leading my LAST “Artist’s Tour” of “PALMAS”, my surround sound installation at Manitoga, on October 11th at 4pm.
Hope to see you there!
“Palmas is a site-specific surround sound installation by artist Melissa McGill that engages Manitoga’s Quarry Pool and encircling path. The work takes its name from the improvised, rhythmic clapping that is an integral part of Flamenco. McGill’s exploration of absence and presence, accents and pauses enlivens the landscape, playing the Quarry Pool like an instrument….Experience Palmas as you explore Manitoga’s Upper and Lower Quarry Pool paths and discover hidden moments with McGill. House and Studio visit included. “
Follow this link for tickets and information:
What an amazing turnout today at Manitoga for my “Palmas” project featuring the lovely Sol “La Argentinita”, Cristian Puig, Barbara Martinez, Isabel del Dia, and Peter Basil Bogdanos! Thanks to all who came! Olé!
Artist Melissa McGill invites Flamenco y Sol Ensemble to collaborate and create “Palmas” – a site specific project at Manitoga with live music, song and dance. Flamenco y Sol Ensemble consists of Artistic Director Sol “La Argentinita”, baile-dance/cante-song; Music Director Cristian Puig, cante/toque-guitar; Peter Basil Bogdanos, percussion; Isabel del Dia, baile; and Barbara Martinez, baile/cante.
Manitoga’s central Quarry Pool forms a natural amphitheater where moss-covered alcoves, rock ledges and tranquil waters will come to life with exhilarating music, song, and dance. Performers will enliven the water’s edge upon a temporary stage at the base of Manitoga’s waterfall and seemingly float on water from a central pier. Around the Quarry rim, specially designed resonant boxes will serve as acoustic platforms for Flamenco’s signature clapping and footwork, turning the central Quarry into an instrument of sound and human interaction.
“The sculptural quality of sound followed by its palpable absence enhances the experience and intimacy with nature, building upon Russel Wright’s original intention at Manitoga,” explains McGill. Palmas animates and activates the site aurally to invite a heightened sense of awareness of Manitoga’s landscape – its natural richness.
In naming the property Manitoga, Wright borrowed native Algonquin words meaning “place of great spirit”. At Manitoga, Flamenco’s duende – its spirit of evocation and heightened sense of emotion – finds a perfect home.