The Spider’s Wheels, Parts 1-3
Conceived, directed, video by Janie Geiser
Music: Valerie Opielski
The Spider's Wheels is an installation in three parts, all viewed within a single room/viewing space; it centers on the struggle of a fictitious of a forgotten early film performer, the star of a (fictitious) serial about a female detective “The Spider”. The central section of the installation, shown here as an excerpt of the 3 minute loop, shows The Spider crawling through a tunnel, projected on all surfaces of a mechanical, slamming box.
Part 1: A small corner projection, on a sewn vellum screen; the woman's face with a white spider crawling on it.
Part 2: A 5'long mechanical box; projected on all sides with The Spider crawling around the box; after about 90 seconds, the perforated metal flaps open---the film is still projected, but now on the softer plexiglas/sewn surface. The Spider can't go further---and 30 seconds later, the flaps slam back down. She begins to crawl backwards, and her clothes begin to tear as she moves backwards, and she loses her shoes. At the 3 minute point, the cycle begins again, and she starts to crawl around the closed box. The music is on a 6 minute loop; the second 3 minutes follow the basic structure of the first, but with variations.
Part 3: Along one of the walls of the room, the viewer can enter another area, walk up 2 steps to a closed door, and open the peephole. A scene unfolds inside (with the same music playing), and The Spider appears in closeup, this time with a large spider crawling around her face.
Digital video from found sources and 16mm film shot for the installation.
Sanded, sewn, and printed Plexiglas, perforated aluminum, welded steel, motor.
Room sized installation. Mechanical Box dimensions (closed): 50" x 29" x 11"
Collaborators: Bill Ballou, motor and welded frame; Valerie Opielski, sound.
Performer: Andrea LeBlanc
Carpenter: Jerry Buszek
Assistant Lighting Design: Kristy Baltezore
Presented as part of the City of Los Angeles Artist Fellowship exhibition; partly developed at the Atlantic Center for the Arts.