As part of Storylines, an ongoing exhibition of contemporary art associated with larger narratives, the Guggenheim museum in New York is offering a rare delight of cinematic maximalism – and masochism – with marathon screenings of artist Matthew Barney’s complete Cremaster Cycle. The five films, produced out of order between 1994 and 2002, make for a nine-hour helping of moviegoing, including short restroom breaks, a 90-minute respite for lunch and an “Oh God, let me feel the sun on my face” interlude. The Cremaster Cycle is somewhere in between a traditional film and an art installation. It isn’t too easy divining a plot, but each entry offers a great deal of “business” to follow, usually oddly dressed characters trying to accomplish some sort of strange task. This can range from chopping up a room full of raw potatoes with bladed shoes to a kit of pigeons bringing a man’s penis to erection with ribbons. These films are not available on home video. Well, that’s not entirely true. Twenty DVD collections in elaborate packaging were sold for $100,000 a piece. In 2007, just one-fifth of the series (Cremaster 2) was sold at auction for over $500,000. The disc came in a… Read full this story
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