Director and media artist Lars Jan creates exciting installations that “weave the unraveling stories of water” by simulating floods in boxes while people perform everyday tasks inside them. He strives to create visceral beauty and discomfort with these “HOLOSCENES” disrupting public and private spaces with the collision of the human body in water.

Jan will give a keynote presentation at PVDFest Ideas, providing insights into his large-scale installation/performance that viscerally portrays the relationship between climate change and everyday human behaviors. Jan’s visit is also exploratory, laying the ground for a future Providence mounting of HOLOSCENES.

A nuanced high-tech, wake-up call, HOLOSCENES weaves the story of water—rising seas, melting glaciers, intensifying floods and droughts—into the patterns of the every day and in doing so offers a portrait of our collective myopia, and, adaptation.  Filled and drained by a custom, programmable hydraulic system, a central aquarium floods with up to 12 tons of water in less than a minute, deluging the performer within.

What would everyday life look like if Earth was flooded by rising seas, melting glaciers, intensifying floods and droughts? HOLOSCENES is a thought-provoking performance installation by artist Lars Jan that visually answers this question.  “The ebb and flow of water and resulting transformation of human behavior offers a portrait of our species’ collective myopia, persistence and, for better or worse, adaptation,” explains Jan.  It is a “visceral, visual and public collision of the human body and water.”

Jan’s original works— including HOLOSCENES —have been presented by institutions as diverse as the Whitney Museum, Sundance Film Festival (New Frontier), BAM Next Wave Festival, the World Science Festival, Toronto Nuit Blanche, London’s Burning, the Istanbul Modern and Art Basel Miami Beach this December. He is on faculty at CalArts and a TED Senior Fellow.


DATE: Thursday, June 6

TIME: 5:30PM – 7:00PM

LOCATION: Graduate Hotel, 2nd Floor Capital Ballroom, 11 Dorrance St.


Artist Bio:

Lars Jan is a director, visual artist, writer, and founder of Early Morning Opera, a genre-bending performance + art lab whose works explore emerging technologies, live audiences, and unclassifiable experience. Jan’s original works — including Holoscenes, The Institute of Memory (TIMe), and Abacus — have been presented by the Whitney Museum, Sundance Film Festival, BAM Next Wave Festival, Under the Radar Festival, REDCAT, Hammer Museum, Portland Institute of Contemporary Art TBA Festival, ICA Boston, EMPAC, Toronto Nuit Blanche Festival, London’s Burning, NYU Abu Dhabi, and Times Square Arts among others.

Lars is the winner of the 3rd Audemars Piguet Art Commission and exhibited Slow-Moving Luminaries, an immersive kinetic pavilion on an acre of waterfront during Art Basel Miami Beach in December 2017. His visual works have most recently been exhibited at the Pasadena Museum of California Art and Istanbul Modern, and are represented by Charlie James Gallery in Los Angeles, where he had a solo show in March 2018.  Jan is a past MacDowell and Princeton Atelier Fellow, artist-in-residence at the Center for the Art of Performance at UCLA, and recipient of the Sherwood and Yerba Buena Center for the Arts100 Awards. He is the son of émigrés from Afghanistan and Poland, on faculty at CalArts, and a TED Senior Fellow.

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