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Animistic Thinking and Landscape: Videos about California History and Mythology

by Nicole Antebi

Animistic Thinking and Landscape: Videos about California History and Mythology

Published on 9/16/2015.

This exhibition by Brooklyn-based interdisciplinary artist Nicole Antebi features an installation of three animated experimental documentary videos with accompanying drawings, paintings, sculptural models and handmade books. Antebi works in non-fiction animation, motion graphics, and installation, and as an artist describes herself as “a student of magical thinking and landscape.” Her work investigates the ways in which our culture has embraced popular legends and mythological thinking in shaping environmental policy and how our state’s land is used. Her meticulously researched, hand-drawn video animations deftly blend both the fictional and the historical in describing distinct narratives about California history and ecology, including a story about the ceremonious arrival of the invasive Eucalyptus Tree in California, the history of the Sunol and Pulgas Water Temples in the San Francisco Bay Area, and also a curious legend surrounding William Mulholland—the controversial figure who brought water to the Los Angeles Basin in 1913. Antebi’s work is mysterious, engaging, and compelling for its level of historical accuracy, and also fascinating for its careful unearthing of some of California’s long-buried historical narratives and myths.

 

Nicole Antebi’s work has been shown at Hive House Los Angeles, the High Desert Test Sites in California, The Manhattan Bridge Anchorage, Teeny Cine’s converted trailer, Portable Forest, a Texas Grain Silo, and in the cabin of a capsized ship at Machine Project in Los Angeles. In 2015, Antebi was the animator-in-residence at Circuit Bridges, New York and she has also been recently awarded a Jerome Foundation Grant in Film/Video for her animated film about El Paso and Juarez in the early 90’s.

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