Art

Guitar Drag

When: Thu., May 28, 6-9 p.m. and Wednesdays-Sundays, 12-5 p.m. Continues through Aug. 30 2015

The boundaries of visual art and music are brilliantly blurred in the work of Christian Marclay, a New York-based artist who took home the Golden Lion award at the 2011 Venice Bienniale for his 24-hour video mashup The Clock. Challenging conventions since the 1970s, Marclay has spun record collecting — and playing — into a form of high art by constructing hybrid LPs from disparate vinyl slices, sewing mismatched album covers into jarring (and frequently funny) arrangements and using turntables in a live format paralleled with the origins of hip-hop. Partly in response to the 1998 death of James Byrd Jr. at the hands of white supremacists, Marclay created Guitar Drag — a 14-minute video depicting a pickup truck dragging an amplified, electric guitar “across a Texas roadway to its aggressive destruction” — while in residence at Artpace in 1999. Due to its sensitive subject matter, Marclay chose not to include the video in his Artpace exhibition, which instead involved him acting as DJ in the Hudson (Show)Room and installing conceptual musical instruments in the windows of nearby Alamo Music Center. Now 17 years after Byrd Jr.’s murder (which helped spark the federal Matthew Shepard and James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act), Marclay returns to San Antonio for the Texas premiere of “the completed version” of Guitar Drag.

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