Enter the Void of Ryan Trecartin

Published on VMagazine.com July 26, 2010.

Last weekend saw Hollywood heavyweight Jerry Bruckheimer’s fourth brutal box office disappointment in Disney’s The Sorcerer’s Apprentice. Made on a budget of $150 million, perhaps it’s time the bigwigs stop investing in Jerry and start forking their millions to multimedia wunderkind Ryan Trecartin, whose own weekend opening fared much more positively, at least from an art world perspective.

On Friday, newly anointed museum director Jeffrey Deitch opened Trecartin’s first American solo museum exhibition, Any Ever, at the MOCA’s Pacific Design Center in Los Angeles. Comprised of a 7-part video series—a trilogy entitled Trill-ogy Comp (2009) and a quartet, Re’Search Wait’S (2009-10)—the exhibit viscerally espouses the attention-starved-and-deficit, hyperkinetic, experiential language of the internet. Entombed in sculptural environments conceived with chief collaborator Lizzie Fitch (which include ceiling fans and swivel chairs rising out of dirt and asphalt, chained up outdoor heating lamps, board room tables, bleachers, and sledgehammers), the experience is immersive, confrontational, hypnotic, and reality shifting. As Technicolor conceptual tweens and corporate families cavort on, off, and through the screens, the audience is invited to surf the channels of each room to create their own understanding of Trecartin’s gargantuan, non-sequential vision.

The crowd on-hand for the exhibit’s debut, many of whom are performers for and collaborators with the artist (myself included) emerged from the cubed screening maze wide-eyed with a new vitality, hysterically quoting lines from Trecartin’s project. The hysteria continued into the night, when Jeffrey Deitch hosted a private after party at his new L.A. residence. DJ Total Freedom presided over the soundtrack, and everybody else went straight for the pool.


Ryan Trecartin, Ready (Re’Search Wait’S), 2009-2010, courtesy the artist and Elizabeth Dee, New York


Ryan Trecartin, The Re’Search (Re’Search Wait’S), 2009-2010, courtesy the artist and Elizabeth Dee, New York


Ryan Trecartin, Roamie View – History Enhancement (Re’Search Wait’S), 2009-2010, courtesy the artist and Elizabeth Dee, New York

Top Credit: Top image credit: Ryan Trecartin, The Re’Search (Re’Search Wait’S), 2009-2010, courtesy the artist and Elizabeth Dee, New York