EMPAC’s distinguished artist-in-residence Laurie Anderson returned to EMPAC to revise her multi-channel video installation, The Gray Rabbit, renamed as The Swimmer. In this new iteration, the piece was being prepared for The Language of the Future, an exhibition featuring works made by the artist between 1971 and 2013 to be presented at the Samstag Museum of Art at the University of South Australia as part of the Adelaide Festival. The exhibition was Anderson’s first solo exhibition in Australia. Like its earlier incarnation, in The Swimmer Anderson re-examines her memories of a summer spent in the hospital when she was 12, realizing that what she recounts from that time is what is palatable for her to remember. The installation projects a six-minute loop of dreamlike and heavily processed images that evoke scenes from the story—children swimming, nurses’ faces, and nostalgic farming country vistas—onto an alley made of shredded books on the floor to achieve the effect of “a story you could walk through.”
Laurie Anderson, EMPAC’s inaugural distinguished artist-in-residence, presented a series of events focusing on topics unique to her practice as an artist.