“Maximus Clarke employs the metaphor of the slot machine to consider randomness in
the life of the artist, only the payout isn’t anything like a deluge of coins; rather, it’s Western culture itself.” —BOMB
SLOTS is a projection-mapped video installation that considers questions of fate, chance, art, and entertainment, using the metaphor of a slot machine. Rows of brilliant symbols are projected onto a staircase in a dark room. Periodically, the images blur into motion, to the sound of spinning gears, and then click into a new configuration. When a four-in-a-row “jackpot” turns up, a bell begins to chime, the slot icons vanish, and glowing words float across the steps. Textual sources include Andrei Tarkovsky, William Butler Yeats, a slot machine patent application, and the Biblical story of Genesis 28 — in which Jacob dreams of a ladder to heaven, and a divine promise of success.
First presented as a site-specific piece at Long Island City’s Radiator Gallery in 2012, SLOTS has been recreated as a freestanding work for the seventh edition of the Governors Island Art Fair. The fair features the work of 100 selected artists from around the world, including painting, video, photography, sculpture, installation, and sound art. Run by artists, for artists, New York’s largest independent exhibition unfolds a short ferry ride away from Brooklyn and Manhattan, every Saturday and Sunday in September 2014, between the hours of 11am and 6pm.