Nikita Gale, SOME WEATHER (Blizzard), 2021
Hi Nikita. We are very excited to have you as part of CIRCA’s c.20:21 programme for this June month, in collaboration with Chisenhale Gallery. Perhaps we can start by asking you to tell us about your commission?
I’m very excited to be working with you as well! I was thrilled by the invitation from Zoe Whitley and Chisenhale to come up with a concept for these massive screens. Whenever I’ve worked with video in installations of my own work, I have always leaned into the phenomenology of video -- for example, the way in which a video projection is not only about what you see represented in the moving image but also about the effect that the video has on the surrounding environment. I was really excited by the idea of using a large screen not only as a space that presents an image but also as a space that could manipulate the emitted light to completely change the atmosphere of the area around it. And that’s where we get into this idea of weather. The content is fairly simple. I’ve taken footage of four performers who all identify or identified as Black women and I’ve made the images less legible through the use of video animations that simulate strange weather patterns. The weather obscures the images while also creating a strange temporary occurrence within the public spaces in which they are being shown.
Nikita Gale (born 1983, Alaska) is an American visual artist. Gale’s work applies the lenses of material culture and sound studies to consider how authority is negotiated within political, social, and economic systems.
Gale is based in Los Angeles and holds a BA in Anthropology with an emphasis in Archaeological Studies from Yale University and an MFA in New Genres from UCLA. The artist has exhibited with various national and international institutions, including MoMA PS1; The Studio Museum in Harlem (USA); Cubitt (UK); Nottingham Contemporary (UK); Ceysson & Benetiere (France); and the Hammer Museum, Los Angeles (USA). Nikita serves on the Board of Directors for Grex, the West Coast affiliate of the AK Rice Institute for the Study of Social Systems. Gale’s work has been featured in various publications including Mousse, Texte Zur Kunst, The New York Times, Artforum, Art in America, Art21, Frieze, Vogue, and Flash Art.