Thursday, July 05, 2007

‘Endosymbiont’ at Axiom

Located at the Green Street Orange Line T station, Axiom Gallery has been “metaphorically transformed into a biological cell that feeds off the sounds and electromagnetic fields of passing MBTA trains.” At least, that’s what the Axiom Web site tells me about its new collaborative installation, “Endosymbiont” (a fancy word for a creature that lives symbiotically within its host), by Jerel Dye, Jake Lee High, Sean O’Brien, and Fred Wolflink. Don’t be distracted by the hifalutin lingo — what we have here is a funhouse. And it’s worth a visit.

The perimeter of the gallery has been curtained in reflective mylar. Inside, it’s dark. In one chamber (pictured at top), sausage-shaped mylar balloons dangle above blinking computer monitors covered in bubble wrap. Sensors triggered by the movement of gallery visitors and trains rumbling underground cause the balloons to inflate and deflate like living organisms (think: the most manly part of a man’s physique) and make a crinkly noise. In the next room (pictured above), a pair of sausage balloons hang from the ceiling, and two big inflated plastic bags slouch on the floor. Light from a pair of projectors reflects off the mylar curtain, projecting jittery, watery green-and-white waves on the gallery wall. Bells, electronic buzzing, low metallic rumbles, and dings make you feel as if you were in an underwater space-alien lair.

“Endosymbiont,” Axiom, 141 Green St., Jamaica Plain, June 7 to July 15, 2007.


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