Wednesday, July 17, 2024

Sophia Friedman-Pappas’ “Deltille-d Wall’s Necessary Anachronism 2” is at MIT’s List gallery in Cambridge. (Photo: Claire Ogden)

There’s just one more week to see “List Projects 28: Sophie Friedman-Pappas and TJ Shin” at the MIT List Visual Arts Center’s Bakalar Gallery. The show is fascinating and creatively installed, juxtaposing video installations in a dimly lit room around commissioned drawings and poems on custom-made metal poles.

This form of video art – one that plays with the materiality of film and invents scrappy ways to project moving images – is a fitting companion to local experimental cinema circles, from The Brattle’s RPM Fest to Waltham’s AgX Film Collective. The blurred line between cinema and museum installation has been increasingly popular in the local arts scene, as seen most recently in the work of Gallery 263’s artist-in-residence last year, Lilan Yang.

Here the artists’ work explores the unsettling quality of tourist destinations, translating their experiences into a sort of haunted travelog, another echo of Yang. Friedman-Pappas’ “Deltille-d Wall’s Necessary Anachronism 2” (2023) is particularly memorable: a projector made of everyday materials (including what looks like cardboard). The projection is of images from a rotating collage strip that includes notebook paper, printed text and a Bloomingdale’s nylon shopping bag moving at a slow and shaky yet steady clip. Friedman-Pappas tells a surreal story of lovers vacationing in a Grecian dovecote building-turned-Airbnb who succumb to a strange and tragic fate, lending ominousness to the works on paper.

We’re used to being marketed these destinations. The artists freeze them in time in a way that’s disturbing but refreshing.

  • “List Projects 28: Sophie Friedman-Pappas and TJ Shin” closes Feb. 11 at the List Visual Arts Center, 20 Ames St., Kendall Square, Cambridge.

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