Eureka, a lighthouse play
Eureka, a lighthouse play, is a narrative performance that centers on the Great Lighthouse of Alexandria. Since its destruction in a series of earthquakes during the Middle Ages, many people have tried to reconstruct the lighthouse, searching for its remains in an effort to reconstruct the histories of one of the lost wonders of the ancient world.
Eureka recounts Ellie Ga’s journey, beginning in 2012 when she joined a marine archaeology program at Alexandria University in pursuit of the lighthouse alongside a quixotic cast of characters. The narrative describes the journey of an artist lost in the process of research, drawing upon an archive of photographs, video footage, documents, artifacts, and interviews. Like the growing cast of unlikely characters, it becomes harder and harder to piece together the lighthouse’s history from the thousands of stones that are barely visible on the seabed.
Ellie Ga’s multimedia essays are part field dispatch, part artist’s notebook, part home-movie, part poem. Her narratives are inspired by the indeterminacy of exploration and the human desire to contact and chart the unknown. Her projects often develop in collaboration with scientific and historical institutions such as the Explorers Club (New York), Tara Arctic Expeditions (France/Arctic Ocean) and The Center of Maritime Archaeology, Alexandria (Egypt).
Ga was recently the subject of one-person exhibitions at M-Museum, Leuven (Belgium); Le Grand Café, Saint-Nazaire (France); Art Basel Statements, Basel (Switzerland); Grand Arts, Kansas City and Bureau, New York. She has presented performance works at The Playground Festival, Leuven, Belgium; The Kitchen, New York; Le Consortium, Dijon, France; and the Fondation Cartier, Paris, France. Upcoming performances and group exhibitions include the Guggenheim Museum, New York in June 2015. Ellie Ga is a co-founder of Ugly Duckling Presse in New York and is currently a recipient of a three-year grant from the Swedish Research Council. Ellie Ga (b.1976, New York City) lives and works in London.
Research and production for Eureka, a lighthouse play, is funded in part by Grand Arts, Kansas City and The Royal Institute of Art, Stockholm.
"Ellie Ga connects to the ultimate mystery at the heart of the work: the history that is embedded deep undersea and the meaning and memory that is locked in the imperfections of language."