Not unlike Swiss artist Pipilotti Rist, Swiss-born Katja Loher creates brightly surreal video worlds. The artist crafts kaleidoscopic visuals, setting unitard-clad female dancers against strange flora. The videos are hypnotic and riveting; the only problems are in the presentation.
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In an extremely successful installation in the back of the Anya Tish Gallery, Loher amassed a cluster of huge, white weather balloons and projected circles of video over their rounded forms. The artist's imagery and the balloon forms work incredibly well together.
But in other pieces, Loher sets video screens behind circular openings in wall-hung panels. She then attaches thick glass spheres over them. The glass has nodules that distort the video in an interesting way, but as an object, it's too much. The same goes for the circular screens set into a table like placemats and underneath a glass pitcher and goblets.
These pieces are extremely slick and well-executed, but just because Loher can pull off these complicated objects/presentations doesn't mean she should. The video is strongest in its simplest presentation.
The show runs through November 23 at Anya Tisch Gallery, 4411 Montrose. For information, call 713-524-2299.