Posted On: April 1, 2013

Sandra Gibson and Luis Recoder

Sandra Gibson and Luis Recoder’s Topsy-Turvy: A Camera Obscura Installation  reimagines one of the world’s oldest moving-image devices into a life-sized, ten-by-ten-foot structure. Park visitors can enter the interactive, large-scale installation, which will utilize the physical properties of light to capture images of the surrounding Flatiron neighborhood in real time.


For over a decade, Sandra Gibson and Luis Recoder have collaborated on numerous performances and installations, uniting the various rich traditions of experimental film. They are particularly interested in the medium’s structuralist and materialist aspects, and the multi-modal sensibility of expanded cinema that emerged in the 1960s in which the moving image was woven into the labile realms of performance, sound, and audience interaction.

Their larger body of work incorporates both avant-garde film practice and time-based media into a distinctive art practice. For Madison Square Park, Gibson and Recoder turn to their shared interest in cinema, drawing upon and manipulating basic elements of projected light and shadow in order to articulate space and time, as well as to explore their most fundamental optical and formal qualities.  In the words of Ed Halter,  Artforum  critic and founder of Brooklyn-based film and electronic art venue Light Industry: “In their collaborative film performances, Sandra Gibson and Luis Recoder employ simple mechanical means to hypnotically elaborate ends.” The artists elaborate: “Topsy-Turvy  is our homage to one of the earliest moving-image technologies in the pre-history of cinema. The projected image inside our circular Camera Obscura delivers a topsy-turvy panoramic abstraction of Madison Square Park and the surrounding scenery of the Flatiron District.”

Sandra Gibson and Luis Recoder

About the Artists

Sandra Gibson  (b. 1968) and  Luis Recoder’s  (b. 1971) collaborative performances and installations have been exhibited internationally at numerous museums, galleries, and film festivals including the 2004 Whitney Biennial, Whitney Museum of American Art, NY; Performa 09,  Light Industry, NY; Radical Light, Berkeley Art Museum/Pacific Film Archive, CA; Sundance Film Festival, UT;  Film.Text.Performance.Film, Ballroom, Marfa, TX;  Film Projection Performance, Redcat, Los Angeles, CA;  Conversations At The Edge,  Gene Siskel Film Center, IL; Toronto International Film Festival,  Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto;  Expanded Cinema: Film als Spektakel, Ereignis und Performance, Hartware MedienKunstVerein, Dortmund;  Expanded Cinema: Activating the Space of Reception,  Tate Modern, London; BFI 50th London Film Festival, Institute of Contemporary Arts, London;  Kill Your Timid Notion,  Dundee Contemporary Arts, Dundee, Scotland; 36th International Film Festival Rotterdam, The Netherlands;  Improvisacoes Colaboracoes,  Serralves Foundation, Porto; Image Forum Festival at 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa; and The Kitchen, NY.

Sandra Gibson and Luis Recoder live and work in New York City, and are represented by  Bryce Wolkowitz Gallery, New York  and Robischon Gallery in Denver.


Major support for Mad. Sq. Art is provided by Charina Endownment Fund, Liane Ginsberg, Agnes Gund, Toby Devan Lewis, Dorothy Lichtenstein, Tiffany & Co., Sorgente Group, and Anonymous. Substantial support is provided by Martha and Bruce Atwater, Melva Bucksbaum and Raymond Learsy, Henry Luce Foundation, Melissa S. Meyer, Ronald A. Pizzuti, The Rudin Family, Lizzie and Jonathan Tisch, Tishman Speyer, Joseph S. and Diane H. Steinberg Charitable Trust, and Sol LeWitt Fund for Artist Work. Additional support is provided by Lizzie and Jonathan Tisch, Danny and Audrey Meyer, and NYC &  Company. Exhibition support is provided by Bryce Wolkowitz Gallery. Delta Air Lines is the Official Airline Sponsor of Mad. Sq. Art. Ace Hotel New York is the Official Hotel Partner of the Madison Square Park Conservancy. Mad. Sq. Art is supported in part with public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, in partnership with the City Council. The Madison Square Park Conservancy is a public/private partnership with New York City Parks & Recreation. Special thanks to John G. Hanhardt, Consulting Senior Curator for Film and Media Art, Smithsonian American Art Museum, and Aaron Scott Design. The Madison Square Park Conservancy is a public/private partnership with New York City Parks & Recreation.




The Brooklyn Rail

Further Information

Robischon Gallery