The Field, The Mantel (Exhibition), Cupola Bobber’s first solo exhibition at the gallery. As an exploration of monumental duration the two primary works at Adds Donna will stretch to approximately 250 hours and two lifetimes, respectively.
The first, a video installation titled Reading the Library of Congress Classification Schedule to The Trees, (2010 – ongoing), shows the duo taking one-hour turns reading the 42 volume subject outline the Library of Congress uses to organize and arrange it’s collection. Each volume on view is read to a different natural setting. The first volume, A (General Works) is read to a forest in the afternoon. The second work shown, The Dictionary of Endurative Actions, (2009 – ongoing), is a participatory project developed to initiate endurative actions for every word on dictionary.com. The phrase ‘endurative action’ is open to interpretation, below the duo talk about the project.
“Within the more specific context of art which uses performance, endurance has come to mean something different than the word endurance can mean more generally. We are interested in the endurance of everyday more than the endurance of an individual’s will to create a single beautiful image, in spite of pain. Our project engages the idea of endurance in art in a different way. This project’s duration, or maybe the lack of a tangible conclusion, generates discomfort. No one is being heroic and overcoming all odds. The project only overcomes some odds by continuing, by persisting in spite of lacking a finish line.”
Cupola Bobber recounts the time-scale of the projects in The Field, The Mantel (Exhibition) as existing in natural time. So natural that garnering our participation can help realize the work. As seasoned performance artists Cupola Bobber confidently embark on new grounds of understanding with the ability to break down the subject and the outside world to a palpable, poetic, quip. The works presented at Adds Donna attempt to mine sense from the Field, while providing participatory license to collect for a monumental or Mantel conscious.
The performance duo known as Cupola Bobber is a collaboration between Stephen Fiehn and Tyler Myers. Founded in 1999 they have created four evening length performances; Subterfuge, 2001, Petitmal, 2004, The Man Who Pictured Space From His Apartment, 2007, and Way Out West, the Sea Whispered Me, 2009 commissioned by PS122, NYC, Links Hall, Chicago, and the National Performance Network. Cupola Bobber perform nationally and internationally and have been the recipients of numerous honors, fellowships, and commissions including a fellowship at the MacDowell Colony, honorees at ACE International at Nuffield Theatre, Lancaster University, UK, fellows at School of the Art Institute of Chicago’s First Year Program, and Goat Island’s Summer School among others. The duo has also performed at the PAC/Edge Performance Festival, The Spare Room, Performance Works Northwest, Portland, OR, and have realized the durational work, Light Curve, in Chicago’s Millennium Park as part of the Great Performers of Illinois Festival. Published writing include A Conversation in 50 Jumps Using a Trampoline and a Cliff in JUMP, an anthology on jumping, and Internal Monologue for One Performer Taking One Step Slowly in SLOW. Their current project exhibited at Adds Donna, The Field, The Mantel, 2011 inspired by Flaubert’s unfinished novel Bouvard et Pécuchet, intends to explore the collective repositories of the sublime through a process the duo calls monumental duration. Cupola Bobber are currently living and working in New York City, NY.