The boundary-breaking project Collapsing Scenery kicked off their February residency, “Rebuilding Babylon," last Wednesday with psychedelic immersive art installations, a noisy live musical performance, and a disquieting reading by Genesis Breyer P-Orridge.
Like the residency, the event was hosted in the basement gallery space of the D’Agostino & Fiore Gallery on the Lower East Side. Contrasting the traditional Picasso show upstairs, Collapsing Scenery created a psychedelic dancefloor filled with synthesized video projections and layers of colorful plexiglass, set to the tune of experimental electronic music.
Collapsing Scenery began five years ago, when artist Don Devore and partner Mickey Madden decided they wanted to just do what they wanted to do, Devore tells The Creators Project. It began with a series of video installations that evolved into a traveling residency series, this month landing back in New York. “We wanted to have this totally mixed bag of the expressions we get into on a daily basis, without being like, ‘strictly acrylic paintings,' or 'strictly beat-oriented music,'" Devore explains.
Providing a platform for performers that the duo personally believe in is also paramount. That night, Devore, Michael Beharie, and Sam Hillmer inaugurated the residency with an experimental noise set, before the legendary Breyer P-Orridge took the stage to recite a gritty, existential poem with the refrain “Humanity is a virus,” set to ominous drone music by Ryan Martin of Dais Records.
A video posted by Collapsing Scenery (@collapsingscenery) on Feb 4, 2016 at 5:35am PST
In the coming month, the space will host a different musical performance each week. Among them are Collapsing Scenery, (also a band in addition to the art project); Marshall Allen, the 91-year-old director of the Sun Ra Arkestra; and more. There will also be a rare book show with original zines for sale; but no word yet on the exact schedule of performances and events.
To learn more about Collapsing Scenery, click here.