The Vistors


Last week’s post I wrote about The Broad Museum.

This week’s post I’m compelled to write about the most amazing, impactful installation; The Visitors by Ragnar Kjartansson.

I cannot express it better than the listing on the website. However, I will say it was at times haunting, moving, funny, spiritual, calm, lovely, unforgettable.



From The Broad website:

About this artwork

2012 – nine channel HD video projection

Icelandic artist Ragnar Kjartansson’s nine-screen installation The Visitors was filmed at the historic Rokeby farm in upstate New York. Kjartansson invited a group of friends to stay with him for a week at the ethereal, yet decrepit estate, culminating in the ambitious performance. The title references the Swedish pop band ABBA’s final album of the same name, suggesting parallels between both the contents of and the social conditions surrounding the works.
Running for over an hour, The Visitors was produced in one take, recording each musician’s performance simultaneously in different rooms of the mansion. The friends play the same song, instilling it with nuanced meaning through voice, instrument and movements of the body. Kjartansson himself plays much of his rendition in a bathtub. The installation elicits feeling through duration and repetition: rituals are personalized, subtle variations emerge and decay is pervasive. The lyrics are based on a poem by Ásdís Sif Gunnarsdóttir and the musical arrangements are by Kjartansson and Davíð Þór Jónsson.
Here is the poem:
Feminine Ways
Ásdís Sif Gunnarsdóttir
A pink rose, in the glittery frost, a diamond heart, and the orange red fire
Once again I fall into my feminine ways
You protect the world from me, as if I’m the only one who’s cruel, you have taken me to the bitter end
Once again I fall into my feminine ways.

2 thoughts on “The Vistors

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