Westin Bonaventure Hotel, Los Angeles, CA - April 2010
‘I am proposing the notion that we are here in the presence of something like a mutation in built space itself. My implication is that we ourselves, the human subjects who happen into this new space, have not kept pace with that evolution; there has been a mutation in the object unaccompanied as yet by any equivalent mutation in the subject.’
– Frederic Jameson, ‘Postmodernism, or the Cultural Logic of Late Capitalism’ (1984)
LA Tapped is a spatial enactment of the Westin Bonaventure Hotel in Los Angeles, California. Here we perform the building as per Frederic Jameson’s reading of it as a model of postmodern architecture and allegory for the logic of late capital. This involves tap dancing a set sequence at various locations throughout the Bonaventure including elevators, walkways, hallways, shops, indoor track, outdoor pool and peripheral spaces.
The video piece LA Tapped is both a documentation of this performance and a video work in itself. Coupling footage of our performance of the Bonaventure with sound and footage from John Pilger’s The War You Don't See (2010), the work exposes the enmeshment of topologies and representations of our built environment not only with the logic of late capital, but also with the systematic violence that this logic both upholds and reinforces.
The project is accompanied by a piece of writing: a series of sentences, one for each iteration of the tap dance in the Bonaventure. The sentences are the result of a procedural act of 'writing through' Jameson's essay along with Judith Butler's book Frames of War and information, images and video from the web. As with the video piece, this writing acts to expose the enmeshment of capital, architecture, representational practices and war and to offer a poetic rendering of a history of postmodernism from 1969 to now.