Jenny Holzer: Laments
March 2, 1989 - February 18, 1990
A new body of work conceived and made by the artist for this installation titled "Lamentations," will be shown on the third floor. The "Lamentations" express the thoughts of fifteen male and female personae before death. Each "lament" will be presented on a vertical LED (light emitting diode) sign affixed to the face of columns throughout the space and carved into stone sarcophagi isolated at one end of the floor.
Holzer has worked on this project for Dia over the past year and a half, developing thirteen new texts titled "Laments" presented in this installation planned for the third floor of 548 West 22nd Street. Each text is programmed on a vertical electronic LED (light emitting diode) sign and also chiseled into a stone sarcophagus. The thirteen electronic signs are affixed to the faces of architectural columns throughout the floor of the building. The thirteen sarcophagi are arrayed in a long, contiguous gallery, each illuminated with a single spotlight. All natural light in the space has been blacked out. Holzer has described the "Laments" as "voices of the dead"--one infant, two children, and ten adults.