Marie Lorenz: Artist as First-Person Shooter

THE DAILY PIC: The Brooklyner sails around New York's five boroughs.

THE DAILY PIC: Today’s Pic is a still from a video by New Yorker Marie Lorenz, whose piece is a highpoint in “Crossing Brooklyn”, the survey of that borough’s art that’s only up for a few more days at the Brooklyn Museum. Lorenz’s piece, titled Archipelago, documents a trip she took around the waterways of New York in a cockamamie little boat of her own design. (Click on my image to watch a clip.) The piece distills a dream of exploration that I think most New Yorkers–or metropolites in general–have about their city. We feel that there’s always something more to find in our town, if only we had the time to do the finding–as Lorenz seems to have, at least within the narrative of her piece.

Lorenz films her trip from three different viewpoints, simultaneously through three different cameras; the one that means most to me–that really makes her piece­­–is one attached to a stick that rises behind her back. It provides footage that’s a dead ringer for the view we get in some video games, where a virtual camera gives us a strangely disembodied view of our every move and action. By repurposing that view for something as sweet and innocuous as a boat trip around New York, Lorenz provides a palpable antidote to the violence and chaos that our culture often favors.

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