A digital archive of Asian/Asian American contemporary art history

Let Us Keep Our Own Noon

Artist Image Description List; Lohr, Nikki. "In Search of New Time: David Horvitz at the New Museum." Review of "Gnomons" by David Horvitz. New York Observer 27 June 2014. Web.
2014

47 bronze bells + performances + bronze shavings + bronze slag, dimensions variable

"Last Saturday afternoon at precisely 12:57 p.m., 20 people exited the New Museum toting bronze bells the size of pill bottles and scattered out along the Bowery, ringing them as they passed pedestrians. I was among them, and wandered down to Delancey Street. [...]

It was the local noon of that day, he explained, the time when the sun is actually highest in the sky. Local noon, the midpoint between sunrise and sunset, changes based on the day’s length, so the solstice made noon late that day. After a dozen rings, we would disperse, still waving our bells, walking until we could no longer hear any of the sister bells. [...]

The bells were created from one 1742 French church bell that Mr. Horvitz bought for about €500 (about $680) at a shop in Berlin and melted down. He was mesmerized by the object, which once marked time for an entire town. “It generated routine and the synchronization of the community,” he said. “That still exists today, but now it’s on your watch…or more likely your iPhone.”

As the work’s title suggests, Mr. Horvitz wanted the performers to ignore standard time and make their own. It felt awkward at first, wandering through the neighborhood with the bell. A few strangers cast suspicious glances. But, as we dispersed, everyone seemed to find their own rhythm and tempo. After about a minute of walking I could no longer see my fellow bell-ringers, but I still felt connected to them by the invisible string our ringing created. [...]"

Materials

bronze (metal)

Style/Period

performance art
Let Us Keep Our Own Noon
Let Us Keep Our Own Noon
Source: Digital Image
Installation shot
Let Us Keep Our Own Noon Let Us Keep Our Own Noon