Maggie Lee’s Music Videos is the artist’s first exhibition in London. On view at Arcadia Missa until October 27, the show features two music installations playing in tandem, Galcher Lustwerk and Miho Hatori’s New Optimism, respectively.
Whitney Claflin writes: “On two TV sculptures, Maggie Lee presents music videos. The visuals are set to the music of Galcher Lustwerk and Miho Hatori’s New Optimism. They play concurrently. There is a stamp for entry. On the wall, a framed body– an image of a birth, twins built of disco ball parts. In the gallery’s office, a concoction of magnesium powder and glitter crystalline is adhered to paper.
The tension between the two audios tracks pulling against each other reminds us that sound can also be felt. The viewer is encouraged to move through rooms as the music pulls them in different directions, much like a club night with multiple rooms, or due to the stamp for entry, more like a discotheque. By mixing analogue and digital, Lee creates sculptural soundbaths accompanied not so much by quotidien items, but things that could be considered throwaway bedroom objects– funky-colored baubles and hair clips that one could find hiding under their bed minimally adorn the space, harking back to visuals of a teen-dream movie bedroom. Lee is a master of this style of heightened domestic symbolism.
However, this exhibition expands those ideas and Lee’s work transposes domestic themes and video sculptures. Being a child from the 90’s, music videos– usually viewed in a domestic setting, bedroom or living area, are the perfect conduit for Lee. Birth of Twins (2018) features the “image of a birth, twins built of disco ball parts”– inviting us to dance, enjoy, feel fulfilled. The haptic nature of this work and the concoction piece hanging in the gallery’s office mediate a tactile, sensory relationship between the two videos. Through Music Videos, the viewer is invited to smell, hear, see, and most importantly, touch– with our eyes and ears.