Phillip English and Wang Jianwei's "Time Temple" at the Guggenheim
For the past few weeks I've had the privilege of working with the visionary Chinese Artist Wang Jianwei on the performance aspect of his solo exhibition at the Guggenheim. The exhibition is called Time Temple, and the performance was entitled "Spiral Ramp Library". The Guggenheim website explains the performance thusly:
Approaching his practice as an evolving rehearsal, Wang Jianwei scripts this performance based on improvised conversations inspired by the physical space of the museum, the work of writer and poet Jorge Luis Borges, and notions of time and space.
I was honored to be tapped as an Orator composing and delivering a speech about Gnosticism and early Hermetic cosmogony that was broadcast throughout the Guggenheim rotunda and that will be utilized in further theatrical permutations of the work culminating with a performance in February 2015.
The piece was inspired in equal parts by the mysticism of Jorge Luis Borges, the sublime architecture of Frank Lloyd Wright, The Library of Alexandria, and the Tower of Babel. Being able to speak about Gnosis in such a space, and at the behest of a truly visionary artist, proved to be a truly ecstatic experience for me. Check out the exhibition if you can make it to the Guggenheim!