Presence/Absence is the first exhibition of Bruce Nauman’s work in Hong Kong, these include two single-channel works in 1999 and 2001, and three dual-screen projections made in 2013, highlighting the artist’s experimental methods before and after the camera. Shooting in his ranch, his studio, or the surrounding landscape in New Mexico, they are an exploration of thought and material. These works use elements such as performance, labor, language, hallucinations, and duration to study the cognitive and social fields.
Although the film highlights the artist’s commitment to ranch life, as its title implies, it also solves a wider range of issues, symbolizing Nauman’s dual role as the builder of fences and artworks, and his long-term Since then, I have recorded my own performance and self-assigned practical tasks. Accompanied by environmental sounds—wind, machines at work, and conversation fragments—movements unfold slowly and purposefully. The video tape duration limit provides the following form: real-time shooting, running 59 minutes and 18 seconds, which is the standard length of video tapes. “You began when the job started; and when the job was over, the film was over” Nauman said.