An autobiographical artist-talk as a performance delivered from the artist's bed over Zoom.
Conjuring Gloria Swanson's role as former-silent film actress Norma Desmond in the 1950 Hollywood classic "Sunset Boulevard," Julia Scher's "Filzengraben Boulevard" weaves autobiography with melodramatic fiction.
Delivered over Zoom from her bed in Cologne, Germany, Scher recalls pivotal memories that have influenced her work. Recollections of her father as a mattress salesman in Burbank, California. Casualties of the film industry. Encounters with art. Warhol's Brillo Boxes at the LACMA Pop Art show in 1968. Waitressing at Max's Kansas City in 1975.
Voices interrupt like car navigation systems. "Director, please wait." Scher is working from a prepared text. The storytelling is generous and at times a cut-up. Speaking through a head-set, now she's a fighter pilot. Machine gun rhythms. Technology and war. Installing in Paris. The start of the first Gulf War.
The album cover is white and the title text is embossed. Nearly invisible. The artist warmly remembers a cousin that while blind, could pick-out LPs from his collection based on their specific feeling. The cover is housed in a black PVC bag. Semi-waterproof for outer space or refugee travel.
The lecture was organized by Elisa R. Linn and hosted by Center for Experimental Lectures. A video of the performance can be viewed at: vimeo.com/490029487
Born 1954 in Hollywood, Julia Scher lives and works in Cologne. Inspired by the French philosopher Michel Foucault and the sociologist Gary T. Marx, Julia Scher's work focuses on the subjects surveillance and cyber-sphere. Aiming at the exposure of dangers and ideologies of monitoring systems, Scher creates temporary and transitory web/installation/performance works that explore issues of power, control and seduction. Her art projects have taken the form of interactive installations, reformulated surveillance, site tours, interventions, performances, photography, writing, net.art, linear video, and sound.
Julia Scher has taught and lectured extensively, and has been Professor for Multimedia Performance Surveillant Architectures at the Academy of Media Arts in Cologne.
Dan Graham, Antoine Catala, Mieko Meguro:
Julia (Uncovered) – The work of Julia Scher – a conversation