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Aspen Art Museum


Susan Philipsz: White Winter Hymnal

Dec 10, 2010-Feb 21, 2011

Instead of becoming a focal point within landscape or architecture, Susan Philipsz’s audio installations dramatize their setting. Working solely with her own voice, and performing her own arrangements of both popular and folk songs, Philipsz imbues spaces with introspection and personal experience.

For her installation at Trestle Bridge on Snowmass Mountain, Philipsz sang a slower, unaccompanied version of the song White Winter Hymnal, originally recorded by Fleet Foxes. Philipsz transformed this ode to the beauty of winter, with its soaring choral harmonies and drums, into a gentle, intimate lullaby. The repeated phrase “I was following the pack” mirrored the skiers’ movement along the bridge, and the snowy scene described in the song is reflected from this vantage point. The closeness of Philipsz’s voice set against the vastness of the surroundings reflected the combination of personal and collective experience that is the key to Philipsz’s work.

Susan Philipsz’s exhibition was organized by the Aspen Art Museum in collaboration with the Aspen Skiing Company with general exhibition support provided by the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts.