At the Rose Art Museum, Sarah Sze is taking her time. By Cate McQuaid
WALTHAM — Projections flash and chase each other around the walls of the Foster Gallery in the Rose Art Museum, at Brandeis University. In Plato’s allegorical cave, prisoners mistook shadows playing on the wall for real life. Like Plato’s cave, Sarah Sze’s installation “Timekeeper” asks us to consider what’s real.
Plato’s prisoners were ignorant, trapped in their cave and unaware that puppeteers were the source of the shadows. Unlike Plato, Sze does not withhold the mechanics of her projections. At the center of the darkened gallery, beckoning to visitors the way a glittering Emerald City drew Dorothy, a structure holding close to 50 projectors hums, clicks, and glows.
“There is nothing here that is hidden,” the artist says. “Art has smoke and mirrors, but in this case the mirrors and the smoke are all here.”
She stands in the flickering light of that central sculpture. It has a bay with three stools and… a countertop?