New York’s White Box Gallery Held Ground-Breaking Contemporary Art Exhibition


Curator, Tatyana Stepanova, together with White Box Gallery, skillfully arranged a cacophony of individual artistic voices into a unified chorus, raising awareness about themes that should matter to us all. Using literary reference by T.S. Eliot and Samuel Beckett as a framework for the exhibition, Stepanova recognized the stridency with which these early-modern writers addressed the cogent themes of cultural survival and global strife plaguing the dawning years of the last century.

Dates have changed, but times have not.  Project Birch Forest was, and is, an event for out times… and a clarion call for awareness and action.

The sheer number of images – there must be over 1000 – and the dizzying speed at which they flash by on the screen in Jean-Gabriel Périot’s (Paris, France) 21.04.02 (2002-9 min) video, left, was simply electrifying. Using contemporary and historical images taken from TV, film, advertising, print media, books, library archives, and public and private photography collections, Périot re-presents the history of the world as a filmmatic collage. With tight, precise editing, he creates sequences of pictures, both beautiful and horrific, that become social critiques on labor conditions, war, persecution, revenge, violence against women, and just about any other political and social issues that come to mind. Images of bloody murder victims, bathing beauties, concentration camp atrocities, flowers, famous paintings, Hollywood actors, and campus protests, all interspersed, flash by at hundreds a minute. It is a visual trip not easily forgotten.


By Edward Rubin,
Artes Magazine, January 2013