Dave Beck, Logjam, 2010. Projected three-dimensional video installation, 24 minutes.

Dave Beck

Potsdam, New York

Roland Gibson Gallery, State University of New York

Dave Beck uses unconventional tools and systems to make art. He once recorded the movements of people during 24-hour segments—their changing geographical coordinates—to create a series of linear sculptures mounted in shadowbox frames. His most recent exhibition, “Continuation,” included four works. In one, Beck plotted the sound waves of (Wall Street’s) Gordon Gekko saying the famous line “Greed is good”; translated by rapid prototype machine, sound becomes a three-dimensional “artifact of 1980s corporate culture.”

“Continuation” was dominated by Logjam, a large-scale, three-dimensional animation. Visitors entering the gallery confronted a rumbling din reminiscent of road noise, which drew them into a dark space dominated by a 20-by-20-foot wall screen. Because the projection occupied the entire wall, the images took on a cinematic power. Logjam depicts 30 large logs sinking one by one down to the surface of a riverbed. As the logs make contact, they create “explosions” of sand and jostle each other. Because these actions take place underwater, movement and noise are muted—like slow motion. After 30 logs descend, they float away one by one until they are gone, coming and going in a 24-minute loop…see the entire review in the print version of September’s magazine.