Established and emerging artists, historical and contemporary themes: Platforms juxtaposes moving image works from the Walker’s collection with new commissions by 12 international artists. The films and videos on view cover a wide range of political and cultural issues—from atomic bomb testing on Bikini Atoll to telepathic improvisation—all while staying at the forefront of the avant-garde. The new works bridge generations: the contemporary artists each create a piece inspired by the work of a specific predecessor. The dynamic initiative weaves together production, scholarship, distribution, and archival research.
Explore the Web
Originally developed for viewing on the Walker’s website, these commissions were created for a truly international audience. Visit the Moving Image Commissions page to watch the videos, read critical essays, and learn more about the artists.
Experience in the Gallery
These forward-thinking filmmakers reimagined how their art can be shared. During Platforms, you can see the commissions differently: installed in the gallery, side by side with the works that inspired them, for the first time. See schedule below.
View in the Mediatheque
Now part of the Walker’s collection, these videos are available daily in the Bentson Mediatheque, located in the Main Lobby. Make your own playlist with works from the exhibition in the museum’s unique self- select cinema.
On View & In Gallery Now: Sonic Landscapes
The impact of prominent British filmmaker, artist, and writer Derek Jarman (1942–1994) permeates the found footage, surrounding environments, and sounds used in the commissions by Moyra Davey and James Richards.
Moyra Davey, Notes on Blue, 2015
Moyra Davey’s Notes on Blue is both a testament to Derek Jarman’s highly influential career and a meditation on her own declining body. She uses the color blue and experiences of blindness in a monologue that addresses Jarman’s powerful film Blue (1993). Scenes of Davey pacing her New York apartment in front of the camera while recording her voice are juxtaposed with Super 8 footage of the dream-like world outside—braiding together observations and personal accounts, preserved and suspended in time.
James Richards, Radio at Night, 2015
This experimental work investigates sensual and sonic representations of contemporary life that is saturated by technology. James Richards combines recordings and found sounds from personal electronic devices with footage appropriated from instructional videos, documentary films, and medical photographs.The artist frequently cites Derek Jarman’s confessional and lyrical style as influence on his practice.
Platforms: Collection and Commissions is divided into six seven-week-long rotations, each presenting a single landmark film from the collection alongside the commissions it inspired. Viewers are encouraged to visit the exhibition multiple times to experience yet another new perspective.
Leslie Thornton, They Were Just People, 2016
James Richards and Leslie Thornton, Crossing, 2016
Bruce Conner, CROSSROADS, 1976
Curators: Sheryl Mousley, senior curator, Moving Image; and Ruth Hodgins, Bentson
archivist/assistant curator, Moving Image
The Walker Moving Image Commissions are generously supported by the Bentson Foundation.