While this show is technically inside the San José Museum of Art, those seeking it out need only be within earshot of the museum’s clock tower. A newly commissioned sound piece by artist Trevor Paglen—his first—will issue regular verbal announcements in a synthesized male voice not unlike the one heard on the U.S. Naval Observatory’s time-by-phone line (that’s 202-762-1401, for future reference).
A blend of local facts (time, weather) and global information (data culled from satellite navigation systems, an endangered species list, Cal Fire updates, to name a few) will interrupt business as usual for 45 seconds at a time, reframing everyday life in relationship to events happening at a geological scale.
‘Beta Space: Trevor Paglen’ is audible Nov. 5, 2021–Nov. 6, 2022 at the San José Museum of Art.