(3) Three views on Salto del Agua
A collection of essays by Lauri Firstenberg and Peter Zellner, Gabriel Kuri and Gilbert Vicario on a recent film by Anton Vidokle and Cristian Manzutto. (Engl./Spanish)
Three Views on Salto del Agua is a book of three insightful essays on the architecturally based film, Salto del Agua, a collaborative project by conceptual artist Anton Vidokle and sound engineer Cristian Manzutto. The 10-minute Super 8 film focuses its lens on the facade of an unremarkable building in Mexico City; a public transportation station that would otherwise go unnoticed in the urban sprawl. Built in the late-sixties in the center of Mexico City, the building represents a moment in the city's history shortly following 1968 Olympics, when idealistic hopes of 'progress' infused civic design.
The film presents a highly abstract experience of the building as a graphic system that "flattens the sinewy edifice into pure surface as sign," according to Lauri Firstenberg and Peter Zellner. Their essay "Sign as Surface" focuses on the implications of Vidokle's depiction of modernist architecture as ornamental, decorative design as opposed to an expression of functional and mechanical imperatives as it is commonly believed to be. Gabriel Kuri's essay "Duration / Replay / Fact / Construction / Format" discusses Vidokle and Manzutto's sophisticated use of formal filmic strategies in Salto del Agua and Gilbert Vicario writes on the films "CinematicArchitecturalTypography."
Lauri Firstenberg is the curator of Artists Space and a Ph.D. candidate in the History of Art and Architecture at Harvard University. Peter Zellner is an architect and the author of Hybrid Space New Forms in Digital Architecture (Thames and Hudson). Gabriel Kuri is an artist born in Mexico City. He exhibits internationally and has written texts for Casper, Trans, and the monographic book on Gabriel Orozco published by The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles. Gilbert Vicario is a curator at the Institute of Contemporary Art in Boston. Christian Manzutto is a sound engineer who has worked extensively with music, film and sound projects in Mexico and Europe. Most recently he worked on the sound track for a new documentary on Gabriel Orozco. Anton Vidokle is a Russian-born artist based in New York. His work has been included in exhibitions at Musee d'Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris, Museo Carrillo Gil, Mexico DF and P.S.1. The book has been designed by FDTdesign, a communication architecture studio committed to bridging the gap between art and design.