Mary Mattingly, Fore Cast (an opera)

mary mattingly forecast

White Box 525 West 26th Street New York NY (map) 212-714-2347

Fore Cast will run day and night for six days and one hour, from the morning of December 19, until 1:00 am on Christmas morning.

Mary Mattingly first drew us into her strange world at the Ecotopia exhibition at ICP. She’s pulling us further in with Fore Cast, a water opera. From the artist’s digital diary:

With tree stumps, sand, salt, steam, sonorous operatics, streaming video, sea-water, and a story about WWIV, Fore Cast is about the future. People wear masks (just like in Victorian England), and really, time is time, time is unexplained, irrelevant, played with and time is completely over explained, in 360 degrees, in the new week, in the fact that I will live at White Box for the entire run of the opera.

Fore Cast is a clarion call anticipating the looming environmental catastrophe. Fore Cast is an interactive Opera, opening at White Box on December 19, 2006, at six o’clock pm. Fore Cast will transform White Box’s space into a waterlogged, apocalyptic swampland, soundscape, and videosurround. The opening and closing nights will feature live performances of an original opera score by The Redcoats Are Coming! with members of Antonious Block and Apples and Arrows.

Entering a water-filled and truncated landscape, viewers witness the land’s predicted end-state, a reversion to its primeval condition and a topographical perspective of a sick new world. The marshy waterscape is the setting for the future of a civilization ensnared in an unceasing loop of WWIV, a war Albert Einstein foreshadowed as being fought with sticks and stones. With an unparalleled innate sense of intelligence, wit and craft, Mary Mattingly creates an installation explains the tragic outcomes of this hypothesized war in the not-so-distant future.

Multiple video projectors arranged in a semi-circle fill the walls of White Box and present a Fore Cast) that will loop for six days and one hour. (A new week, according to Mary Mattingly’s proprietary uniform time scale, derived from ancient Assyrian and Babylonian astronomical methodology and translated to a system for future use.)

The videos play continuously in White Box’s waterlogged space. The main screen portrays WWIV, fought by six groups of combatants —The World Economic Forum, The Council on Foreign Relations, Bechtel, Nestlé, The United Nations, and B.R.I.C.— colluding to capture and assert political and economic control over a shattered and borderless world. The belligerents’ leaders plot together in a corporate conference rooms, ultimately degenerating into intercontinental world-scale conflict fought with the weapons of Cain and Abel, the war unfolding in disastrous environments everywhere.

Image from White Box.

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