LAYERED TRUTHS : Kevin Cooley’s ‘Skyward’
Los Angeles artist Kevin Cooley’s new installation ‘Skyward’ presents a constantly changing view of the L.A sky, as seen from the open sunroof of a moving car. Viewers must lie on their back to see the video, which is projected onto a huge, suspended screen which hangs 40 feet up on the gallery ceiling. This is a piece we would love to see in the flesh.
We constantly consider how the viewer enters the space of the work, and in positioning the screen on the ceiling, Cooley invites the viewer to take a relaxed position, to physically enter into the contemplative mood of the video.
Something else that intrigues us about this work is in the nature of the edit. Despite appearing to be a single long take, the 10 minute video is actually carefully constructed from multiple short takes and stills, seamlessly woven together. This is the nature of new documentary… Cooley takes the viewer on a constructed journey through his L.A, reliving his childhood nostalgia and presenting the truth of his own experience.
In Skyward, “[e]vents in the cloudless blue sky, from the glistening of palm fronds to the passage of a blimp, unfold across several takes woven together; but there’s no trickery, just layered truths.” (Shana Nys Dambrot, 2012)