Clifton Childree Creates a Gigantic Installation Comprised of Films and Found Objects at Kunsthalle Wien


VIENNA.- Clifton Childree is an analog artist in the digital era, a curator of transient and anachronistic things – a contemporary counterpart to Harry Smith, the avant-garde filmmaker and editor of the Anthology of American Folk Music, as it were. He prefers a hand crank and the herky-jerky motion and flickering of an old black-and-white slapstick movie to the smooth aesthetic of today’s high-definition resolution. He is fascinated with the tawdry glitter and honky-tonk of cheap illusory worlds from which he borrows formal concepts, ideas, and materials and turns them into 16-mm films and room-spanning installations; circuses, side shows, midnight movie theaters, and vaudevilles are the worlds he draws his inspiration from. He transforms discarded and worn-out things into venues of a theater of the grotesque, of cheap horror, and unlimited eccentricity where he revives attractions and spectacles that saw its heyday in the United States between 1880 and 1930. With his