• In "Luton" (2001), John Wood and Paul Harrison roll around uncontrollably on the floor of a confined space.

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Videos presented at Media Test Wall


Art lovers seeking a fix can satisfy their craving at the Media Test Wall's seventh program--selections of videos by U.K.-based collaborators John Wood and Paul Harrison.

Featuring themselves and low-tech special effects, Wood and Harrison combine high conceptualism and body art with comic vaudeville slapstick to create an existential theater that is equally tragic and funny, both poetic and philosophically rich.

"There's a beguiling allure to the slapstick antics of John Wood and Paul Harrison, two artists whose pratfalls herald from the deadpan comedy of Buster Keaton and early performances of Bruce Nauman," wrote the London Guardian and the Glasgow Herald. "Clowning has never looked so contemporary."

Wood and Harrison, who both trained at Bath College, have been making video work collaboratively since 1993. Wood was born in Hong Kong in 1969, and Harrison was born in Wolverhampton in 1966. Their work has been exhibited widely throughout the United Kingdom, Europe, Asia, South America and the United States.

The Media Test Wall is on the ground floor of Building 56 next to the elevators. The videos by Wood and Harrison will be on view through Jan. 31.

A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on December 3, 2003.


Topics: Media Lab

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