12 May 2018

RAMMΣLLZΣΣ: Racing for Thunder

Red Bull Arts New York

Reviewed by William Corwin

Rammellzee envisioned a galactic struggle between the letters of the alphabet that would redefine the nature of language. The battalion of Letter Racers, each a distinctive starship built of found objects on a skateboard substrate, swoops down in formation as the centerpiece of this ecstatic retrospective.

The word was the beginning for Rammellzee. A Medieval manuscript starts the journey through a miasma of phantasmagorical costumes, Day-Glo pigments, luminous spray paintings, and grainy hip-hop performance footage. Key for the artist's Gothic Futurism were the gilt, illuminated letters in that book, characters granted independence by the monks who painted them. Those symbols became the Letter Racers, robotic, interstellar mechanisms of unchained communication.

Ramm was the prophet and caretaker of these rebellious angels of sound, and he dressed the part. The blacklight-lit subterranean level displays his Voltron-Transformer-comic book villain-monastic performance gear.

Exhibition RAMMΣLLZΣΣ: Racing for Thunder link
Start date 04 May 2018
End date 26 Aug 2018 (in 41 days)
Presenter Red Bull Arts New York link
Venue 220 West 18th Street, New York City, NY, USA map
Image RAMMΣLLZΣΣ: Racing for Thunder, installation view, courtesy of William Corwin
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