Lament of the Images, Alfredo Jaar, Tate Modern
Lament of the Images – Alfredo Jaar
On display at the Tate Modern

Tate Modern

Artist Alfredo Jaar believes that society has been inundated by images and has resulted in a disengagement with the subject of the images. In short, we just don’t get the message anymore. As a consequence of this overproduction of visual icons, we are blind, unable to connect emotionally with images. Furthermore, the images we see are so controlled by the media and by politics that we don’t see the truth anyways.

The as the suspended table rises, the light escapes  until we are bombarded and  blinded by the light. As the table lowers, light gives way to darkness representing media and political censorship.

I liked this piece because it made me think about my personal information overload–I try to do and consume so much in the name of multitasking and trying new things that I neither see the big picture nor get under the skin of anything. I always joke that I thrive in mediocrity but the truth is that I do often quit or give up at that moment before real success or true failure. Jack-of-all-trades, master of none, I suppose.

How can I change that? What should I do to “focus the light”?


2 thoughts on “Transformed Visions”

  1. I saw this installation at the Tate, too, although I didn’t give it as much thought. I guess that proves the artist’s point, eh? I was eager to get on to the next room and see the next piece of art…but did I even engage with any of it? I feel like I’m constantly reading, writing, watching, listening, but, as you said, do I actually get under the skin of any of it?? Oh God, I think I’m having an existential crisis in the comment section of your blog. HELP.

    Better yet, let’s meet up in Toronto and/or London and talk about the meaning of life. AKA get drunk.

    1. Hey Brenna,

      The Tate is great and it’s definitely worth exploring over a few visits. It doesn’t seem that big at first but by the end of it, I felt slightly overwhelmed. Your writing is insightful, so I think you’re good on seeing the bigger picture! The question is really, how deep can we even go in the present? “You can’t connect the dots looking forward”…

      Done – after a few shots the meaning of life will become clear.

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