Art21 New York Close Up

NYCU | Josephine Halvorson Is on the Clock

Josephine Halvorson in Thomaston, Connecticut, 2012. Production still from the "New York Close Up" film, "Josephine Halvorson Is on the Clock". © Art21, Inc. 2013.

Josephine Halvorson in Thomaston, Connecticut, 2012. Production still from the New York Close Up film, Josephine Halvorson Is on the Clock. © Art21, Inc. 2013.

Can an artist create a compelling work in a single day?

In this film, artist Josephine Halvorson attempts to make a new painting in Thomaston, Connecticut, conscious throughout the day that her effort might result in failure. Choosing as her image the mural of a clock, Halvorson’s obsession with time is both literal and metaphoric, reflected in the subject matter, the hours passing by, and the additive process of her brushstrokes. “I love stuff that shows you how it’s made,” says the artist, “I haven’t found a way to paint in successive days on the same surface that doesn’t feel like concealment.” As the painting continues, Halvorson struggles with the oppressive summer heat, dwindling light, and the mental struggle to realize her ambitions. “Such a huge part of making art is having these high expectations and not reaching them,” she says. The film follows the artist from a residency at Steep Rock Arts in rural Connecticut to, several months later, her studio in Brooklyn’s Navy Yard where the fate of the painting is ultimately determined. Josephine Halvorson Is on the Clock features the works Shutter 1–4 (2012), Room 441 (2012), Barber-Bettendorf (2012), Ride Control (2012), Cheddar (2012), XII (2012), VI (2012), III (2012), and IX (2012).

Josephine Halvorson (b. 1981, Brewster, Massachusetts) lives and works in Brooklyn, New York.

Watch the film below.

CREDITS | New York Close Up Created & Produced by: Wesley Miller & Nick Ravich. Editor: Mary Ann Toman. Cinematography: John Marton, Wesley Miller, Rafael Moreno Salazar & Ava Wiland. Sound: Ava Wiland & Nick Ravich. Associate Producer: Ian Forster. Design: Crux Studio & Open. Artwork: Josephine Halvorson. Thanks: Artzfest 2012, Erika Klauer, Mural Artists, The Phoenix Rising Center & Steep Rock Arts. An Art21 Workshop Production. © Art21, Inc. 2013. All rights reserved.

New York Close Up is supported, in part, by the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council; Toby Devan Lewis; Lambent Foundation; the Dedalus Foundation, Inc.; and the Lily Auchincloss Foundation, Inc. Additional support provided by The 1896 Studios & Stages, and by individual contributors.