Ann Hamilton, the event of a thread, 2012-13. Participatory installation with 42 swings, ropes, pulleys, cloth, radio receivers, 42 homing pigeons, wooden cages, wooden tables, paper, and performers, 55,000 sq.ft. overall.

Ann Hamilton

New York

Park Avenue Armory

Ann Hamilton, who trained as a weaver, understands the importance of repeating the same gesture or movement over and over again until one obtains an accumulation of actions, which may merely seem, or may actually be, significant. These actions may come and go, leaving—like much of what we do—no tangible trace, or they may result in an object. Hamilton’s work relies on largeness of scale, as well as grandness of setting, repetition (which presumably leads the practitioner into a near trance-like state), and Bergsonian durée. It is also steeped in nostalgia, which, when handled lightly, can lead to gripping results; however, Hamilton’s gravitas and quasi-penitential work ethic (also embraced by her participants) can come across as bombastic. For a recent multimedia installation, Hamilton took over the huge Wade Thompson Drill Hall of the Park Avenue Armory, an oddly fascinating building dedicated in 1880. The 55,000-square-foot vaulted hall, with its brick, metal, and glass surfaces burnished by wear, is imposing indeed, threatening to dwarf much of the work exhibited in it, but Hamilton triumphed… see the entire review in the print version of November’s Sculpture magazine.