The Plains of Sweet Regret
In North Dakota, seismic change has swept away family farms and ranches, small towns, and rural schools. The land is now occupied by agri-business with its massive machinery, global positioning systems for precision crop management, worldwide marketing networks, and government safety nets. The lone farmer, the cowboy, crews of custom combiners, migrant workers, and field hands gradually move on. The remains of that earlier life dot the landscape like the skeletons of fish washed up on far distant shores. The Plains of Sweet Regret is Mary Lucier’s response: an eighteen-minute, five-channel video installation employs four video projections, two plasma screens, surround sound, and various rescued objects and artifacts. With these she creates the experience of moving through the landscape, across the Prairies and the Plains, into the birthing pens and the rodeo arenas, and, finally, back into the West of the imagination—the West, which, if it ever existed, lies in ruins.
New York, NY
Recognized as a pioneer of video installation work, Mary Lucier has presented numerous solo exhibitions at venues around the world. Among those are the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the TV Gallery in Moscow, The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles, Lennon, Weinberg, Inc., New York, and the Media Test Wall at MIT, She was also featured in The Milwaukee Art Museum’s Sensory Overload, Museo Nacional Reina Sofia’s Primera Generacion: Arte E Imagen en Movimiento, the Whitney Museum of American Art’s Into the Light: The Projected Image in American Art, 1964-1977, and ZKM/Museum fur Neue Kunst’s Video Cult/ures . Lucier has won support for her work from The Guggenheim Foundation, The National Endowment for the Arts, The Rockefeller Foundation, The American Film Institute, the New York State Council on the Arts, the Jerome Foundation, Anonymous Was a Woman, and the Nancy Graves Foundation. She was named recipient of the Skowhegan Medal for Video in 2007.