Mark Wallinger, Threshold to the Kingdom, Video
The arrivals doors at an airport open and close automatically, releasing passengers in various states of bustle and confusion. In the background, one hears the uplifting notes of the Miserere by Gregorio Allegri, a piece of music composed to be performed only in the Sistine Chapel during Holy Week. All movement has been slowed down and this causes a dramatic interaction with the non place.
There's a strange power from the conflation of Allegri's spiritual music with the banal, anonymous setting of an international airport. Yes, the gates of heaven might be like this - ordinary, yet astonishing. Wallinger really is a conceptual artist, it is the message not the medium that counts.
For me although if not mesmerised by the music the way that Wallinger has used an established recognisable place, he successfully uses the slowness of the film to make the ordinary somehow much more compelling; there are moments when collisions seem inevitable as those waiting cross the path of the new arrivals. By definition, airport arrivals is transitional space where people enter or reenter a country.
This to me is the epitome of a non place, ordinary, unsettling, alienating, yet compelling.
As well as Mark Wallinger's video I also felt that Do Ho Suh's three channel video piece had a sense of transience, encompassing psychogeography.