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Giant Machine

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"We wanted to make a video where we have essentially a giant machine that we dance with," says OK Go band member Damian Kulash, Jr. about the band's latest music video, which was made in collaboration with the LA-based art and engineering collective Synn Labs. Composed in a single shot with a Steadicam following the path of action set in motion by a toy truck colliding with a line of dominoes, the simply spectacular video includes lots of rolling balls, falling umbrellas and splashing paint interwoven perfectly with the song "This Too Shall Pass." A short article in Wired describes the video's production, which included six weeks of strenuous work by a core group of 12 builders in large studio space in Echo Park; the actual shoot involved 60 takes over two days to capture the perfect sequence of events. The resulting video is eminently watchable, and echoes previous Rube Goldberg machine experiments, such as the notorious 1987 video by artists Peter Fischli and David Weiss called The Way Things Go, which was in turn repeated by Antoine Bardou-Jacquet's homage in the award-winning Honda Accord commercial "Cog," featuring a nicely polished nuts-and-bolts machine. Yet another connection could be made with Timo Arnall and BERG's project titled "Nearness," which explores a more high tech sequence, moving from analog to digital, and playing with what's visible and invisible. Each of the videos is seeming non-narrative, but in being totally rooted in cause and effect, they are really all about narrative, and this is part of their allure: storytelling stripped to its core. The OK Go video will be featured at the upcoming Flux quarterly screening Tuesday, March 23 at the Hammer Museum, with a mix of other new music videos and motion graphics pieces.

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Flux Screening Series
Tuesday, March 23, 8:00 - 11:00 p.m.
Hammer Museum
Screening and party, with DJ Tim Nordwind
Free; RSVP suggested

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