JG, a film. A 35mm anamorphic film shot on location in the saline landscapes of Utah and central California
Berlin-based British artist Tacita Dean's latest film, JG, is a sequel in technique to FILM, Dean's 2011 project for Tate Modern's Turbine Hall. JG is inspired by her correspondence with British author J. G. Ballard (1930-2009) regarding connections between his short story "The Voices of Time" (1960) and Robert Smithson's iconic earthwork and film Spiral Jetty (both works, 1970). The new work is a 35mm anamorphic film shot on location in the saline landscapes of Utah and central California using Dean's recently developed and patented system of aperture gate masking. JG departs from her previous 16mm films in that it marks a return to voiceover and sets out to respond directly to Ballard's challenge -posed to her in a letter written shortly before his death- that she should seek to solve the mysteries of Smithson's Spiral Jetty with her film. The connections between Ballard's short story, which ends with its main character building a mandala in a dried saline landscape, and Smithson's earthwork in the Great Salt Lake, are unequivocal. The 26-minute film is screened continuously in the Hammer's video gallery during regular museum hours; organized by Hammer curator Ali Subotnick.