As you currently enter 21c Museum Hotel, you enter artist Tracy Snelling’s transcendence to another space and time. It’s the 1950’s and a full-scale, seedy motel room greets you in the lobby of, yes, a hotel. The black-and-white TV is blinking, there’s a suitcase with wigs and scarves spilling out of it. You feel like you’ve stepped into a Hitchcock crime scene, especially when you view reels of film with images of women running through motel passageways. You’re an interloper watching a dramatic argument between (maybe) lovers, eavesdropping through their windows. Tiny, neon signs flash on the motel’s scale model: Lost, Passion, No-Tell Motel.
Woman on the Run is a menagerie of architecture, scale modeling, video, photography, and 3-D story telling with, according to 21c’s description, “. . . a heady dose of Hollywood glamour. . . and explores a fragmented narrative about a fated woman.” A crime has taken place and the fem fatale is wanted for questioning. Throughout the installation, the audience gains clues about the guilt or victimization of the woman.
Tracy Snelling, an Oakland based artist, was inspired by the abandoned buildings she passed driving down the street at night. Curious of their story and the stories inside people’s windows, she developed Woman on the Run in homage to 50’s-60’s film noir.
Learn more about Snelling’s influences and messages on feminism in this exhibit Thursday night, January 13th, at 6:30. The artist will speak about her art and a Q and A will follow. Woman on the Run will be on exhibit through January and will then travel to The Frist Center for Visual Arts in Nashville.
Preview Snelling discussing her art at www.21cmuseum.org .
Photo courtesy 21c Museum Hotel.