From March 22 through July 1, 2018, the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao presents the exhibition Closed Circuit, featuring works by the renowned Canadian artist Michael Snow (Toronto, 1928), a major figure in the development of experimental cinema, moving image installation, and conceptual photography since the 1960s. With this new exhibition, the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao launches the 2018 program for its Film & Video gallery, a space that is entirely devoted to the presentation of key works of video art, film, and contemporary practices addressing the moving image.
Besides video art and experimental film, Michael Snow’s oeuvre also embraces painting, photography, sculpture, and music. A multifaceted artist, Snow critically blends his knowledge of different techniques and media in the creation of his works. As he has explained, “my paintings are made by a film-maker, my sculptures are made by a musician, my films by a painter… and sometimes they all work together.”
Moving freely from one discipline to another, Michael Snow reflects upon the world’s systems of representation, visual and not. For him, the materiality of the filmic image—its temporality, sound, color, and luminosity—is as important as what is represented. In this sense, the artist understands film as a kind of sculpture of light and time, and devises objects that will monopolize, deflect or block the spectator’s view, thus revealing the artwork’s capacity to create specific circuits of attention.