Reverse Icarus is a site-specific installation presented by Kyle Marks Projects located atop, within, and in front of a shipping container in the parking lot of High Line Brewing on Saturday, September 26, 2020.
Kyle Marks collaborates with artists to work in spaces appropriate or challenging for their work.
Transcript of remarks given by Caitlind r.c. Brown:
It’s appropriate, somehow, that today’s work is situated in a parking lot, adapted for a sea can — itself a provisional space, perpetually ready to be packed up and moved along to the next location. What are shipping containers if not one of the most globally standardized units of transport? This is apt for Logan’s practice as I have come to understand it. Many of his interests centre around the broad concept of “camping” — modular, transportable, and provisional objects-turned-sculptures and sculptures-turned-situations — sometimes occurring at literal campsites, around airstream trailers, or pitched in the backyards of friends.
For me, much of Logan Lape’s work sits, however charmingly, on either side of warning and adaptation to disaster — in the time just before or after the flood, fire, cataclysm, or embarrassment. I have encountered many of Logan’s previous works in this parallel time, where an extra-tall lawn chair is a necessary alteration to relax near the rising tides; everything is pop-up and pop-down, for convenient escape; and a chain-link fence-flag marks the perimeter, a satirical declaration of ownership and exclusionism — what could be more absurd than swearing allegiance to a fence? And yet, what flag does not, in some capacity, mark the same fallacy?
Today’s work comes from an adapted myth — that of Icarus, who flew too close to the sun, and Daedalus, who built his faulty wings.
“The myth of Icarus needs to be reversed. Icarus does not fly into the Sun; the Sun descends onto him. His waxwings do not melt under the Sun’s heat, casting him into the sea where he drowns; glaciers and polar ice caps melt and seas rise to engulf him where he stands. He has not ignored the instructions of his father, Daedalus; it was his father who broke the bond with the Earth that brought the Sun down and sent the seas washing onto land. Daedalus too will drown or succumb to the ills of overheating before water fills his lungs. The Sun indiscriminately passes judgment on everyone and everything, sets on the species and claims its full dominion over Earth.”Douglas Kahn, “Reverse Icarus“
Published in “The Geologic Imagination“
Logan re-stages this already re-framed myth, embodied by the materials of a bygone era: the frame of a retro lawn chair holds a sun, built from yellow welding barriers — themselves intended to capture and dispel harmful UV light. A blue water barrel lifts off a stage, literally symbolising “rising waters,” represented by a vessel for collecting rain-water, a tool for survival where potable water is scarce. A structureless ladder — not intended to hold the weight of any person — implies ascent and decent on a human scale; a perilous climb. And we, the viewers, are left wondering: in this analogy, who is Icarus? Who is Daedalus? Are we witnessing a diorama for a slow disaster, or is that too anthropocentric…? Without “man” in the way, will water rise to kiss the stooping sun? Or are we simply encountering objects, severed from their initial function, arranged against a shipping container, in a parking lot near a brewery, in the Autumn of a global pandemic? Is it time to pack up and move along?
welding screen, chain link fencing, aluminum folding chair, rain barrel, tarp, plastic, steel, rope, wood