Friday, September 11, 2009

Fresh from the Free Press

Untitled (Sisyphean Task), 2009

by Divya Murthy

While Devin the Dude performed on the main stage at Summerfest, Frank Olson, Johnny DiBlasi and Matt Keller were attracting a significant audience toiling away in the sweltering heat. While festival-goers tuned in, turned on and dropped out, at the top of the hill Olson and Keller endlessly repeated a performance piece referencing the unyielding absurdity of an endless chore.


Set under the shade of a tree and surrounded by teeming crowds, Untitled (Sisyphean Task), attracted onlookers, cheerleaders and catcalls. While one performer unsuccessfully attempted to move an old heavy television with broken wheels up a 12-foot ramp, another made lackadaisical loops around the structure. In case there was not enough emphasis on cyclical behavior, Keller and Olson both painted purple Os on their back; their sweat washed the paint down in rivulets. As they continually exerted themselves, jocks in polos and hippie girls in flowery dresses looked on, their minds spinning with circular humdrum. A video looped on the television, playing video of CDs spinning in the players, scenes from action films and screensaver-ish self-generating computer images.... READ MORE