Starting with film and photography, Victoria Fu's practice has grown to include installation, performance, and sculpture. Her ongoing exploration of the ways in which light creates a sense of space, whether printed, digital, or projected, addresses our haptic relationship with images. TÉLÉVOIX will feature the large-scale moving-image projection Télévoix 2 (2019) and the window installation Sky 2 (2019) that premiered in the Deutsche Bank VIP Lounge at Frieze LA.
In Télévoix 2, Fu employs perspectival tricks throughout art history, from the Renaissance practice of linear perspective to the material shading of Light and Space, with a mix of digital tools and original documentation to transport the viewer. Originally presented on the ceiling, the video evokes an oculus, where viewers can observe the sublime—or an illusionistic rotunda fresco that simulates an oculus—creating feelings of containment, smallness, and wonder. At Honor Fraser, the work is projected onto a freestanding flattened orb, a digital rabbit hole into another world. In both scenarios, the work throws off the viewer's sense of grounding and place, a nod to Hito Steyerl's ideas about perspective in a post-screen world. With this work, Fu shifts viewers' sense of time and space and pushes them further into her desktop screen movie.
Looping has always occurred in Victoria Fu's video works; these non-narratives have no beginnings or endings, and Télévoix 2, her first static circular video, concretizes that theme. The shape recurs throughout the video: spirals created by a circular cursor; a tondo fresco from Andrea Mantegna's Camera degli Sposi in Mantua, Italy (1465-74); scraps of color cellophane; various balls; the moon; the yolk of an egg; balloons. To encircle an object is to contain it. Rounded glass focuses and magnifies objects within its view for inspection as in a telescope, camera, or peephole. These properties of the form remain true as the video is a closed system, but within that circle is a window unto an expansive digital world where things are slightly misaligned, and lead to an implied off-screen reality.
The soundscape to the video is a mix of ambient (winds, birds, cars passing, materials rustling), jarring (machinery, fireworks, and abrupt silence), and vocal (songs in Chinese, the audio from an instructional video, a conversation that is just distant enough to be incomprehensible) sounds. These original and found sounds do not all link to the action on screen. Some take place outside of the lens's view as with Fu's own voice directing movement. This dissonance is a deliberate choice by the artist to keep viewers in limbo between active engagement with the work and full engrossment. Fu wants viewers to situate themselves within the imagery, but uses audio to disrupt a total immersion. Viewers remain cognizant of her gestures and critical of their bodies' perceived relationship to her movements.
Throughout her work, Victoria Fu explores how light can illuminate objects as well as create spaces of illusion. Visitors to the exhibition will enter the gallery through Sky 2 (2019), the artist's digital photographs applied to the doors and windows, literally stepping into the work. Her ongoing attempts to make these tricks apparent put the viewer in a liminal place of observation, making us all more aware of the ways in which we inhabit the physical and digital worlds daily.