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Mapping Vapours

(In Three Acts)

Time-based installations

of drawing (Act I) , soundscapes (Act II), and sculpture (Act III), created through a performative process. This new project is a meditation on loss and the shifting contours of self. It examines the embodied experience of invisible disability through the prism of subjectivity, gender, environmental toxins, domestic space, and family history. The project uses an expanded sensory range including time, bodily awareness, sound, smell, haptics, and vision.


For 2024, Mapping Vapours (Sonic Fields) is made possible by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of the Office of the Governor and the New York State Legislature. Daly was sponsored for the grant by Millay Arts, Austerlitz, NY. Link to grantee .pdf can be found here


Mapping Vapours has received the Porter Prize, from Berkshire Taconic Foundation (October 2022). A Millay Arts Core Residency Award for Spring 2023 also supports this work.


On Soundcloud, test mix prototypes from 2023:

A Through Line Sonic and To Choreograph Entropy (Breathing for Voice and Violin)

Mapping Vapours (In Three Acts) began in 2022 and is ongoing.

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Interdisciplinary Artist Ann Burke Daly's studio at Millay Arts in April 2023. Work in Progress (Mapping Vapours, Day Drawings). Daly is a Porter Fellow for a Millay Core Residency. Minimal ink drawings, black and white, are seen on two walls.   ···  
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Right: First sketch which began the Day Drawings, Act I of Mapping Vapours (In Three Acts) in 2022.

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Interdisciplinary Artist Ann Burke Daly at work drawing in the studio at Millay Arts in April 2023. Work in Progress (Mapping Vapours, Day Drawings). Daly is a Porter Fellow for a Millay Core Residency.Minimal ink drawings, black and white, are visible.   ···  

Mapping Vapours (In Three Acts), Act II Sonic Fields. Daly at work, right, sound mapping her live work space at Millay Arts in April, 2023. All field recordings were made from the interior space. 


Ann Burke Daly's current sound artwork Mapping Vapours (Sonic Fields) is made possible by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of the Office of the Governor and the New York State Legislature. Daly was sponsored for the grant by Millay Arts, Austerlitz, NY.

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Related installation artworks from Daly's most exhibited and critically reviewed project The Automaton Olympia's Cabinet of Curiosities follow here. 

These works are all created with performative methods of recording 'trace' as evidence, which either of scripted spoken narrations as sound tracks, real-time video, or repetitive wax castings, accumulates to excess. In two of these works sound is a critical component. Haptics and the use of furniture and other household objects belonging to the artist are used in all three. Pre-digital DIY video and audio are features, along with consumer playback devices, beeswax casting, and repetitive pinning with steel pins to temporarily hold wax casts in place. Six sound tracks are used in this work all are scripted and spoken narrations performed by Daly.


Daly's current project Mapping Vapours (In Three Acts) picks up threads from this earlier work.


About the works in The Automaton Olympia's Cabinet of Curiosities, below are several quotes from reviews:


"Ann Burke Daly's Stereoscopic Vision... an audio piece, but one set up for a single listener positioned to face outlines of absent photographs traced against the wall. Two different descriptions of the lost visual information played through the headphones. Though the voice on the tape was Daly's, any easy accessibility to her own narratives concerning the missing images was denied by the fact that the sound loops were of differing durations, creating endless and contradictory permutations of potential descriptions. The listener was thrown back into the privatized space of his or her own memories, constantly unfixed, however, by Daly's perpetually shifting cues."
–Narrative Urge Exhibition at Lombard-Freid Fine Arts, Artforum review by G. Baker, excerpt

About "The Collector's Dream" "...The suffocating sensory excess of Ann [Burke] Daly's all-white bedroom, which is filled with wax flowers that emit a sickeningly sweet aroma. A halting monologue, delivered from speakers hidden in different corners of the room, is barely audible. As you move about the installation in an attempt to catch the words, the voice seems to shift elsewhere, like a memory that fades at the exact moment of recall."
–The Los Angeles Times, Claudine Ise


Of the project:

"Daly unhinges the everyday by her strategies of collecting details and evidence, to produce a dreamlike collection that thrives on loss in order to break free from the confines of the domestic interior.” –Susette Min, Curator, The Mourning After

From the extended review of this project "Decoration and Detection" (PAJ)

“As Rosalind Krauss has shown, Marcel Duchamp (and his alter ego Rrose Sélavy) put together a “panorama of the index” in his last painting Tu m’ (1918); here Ann Burke Daly (and her alter ego, the Automaton Olympia) puts together what we can only call an “index of the index.” The peculiar charge of all these disparate objects seems to rest in the paradoxical, indeed contradictory, double meaning of the word “index” itself.”


"An index preserves the trace of its referent, offers up its material residue, and yet this residue can only present itself as testimony to an absent object, an object both dissipated and opaque. Ann Daly’s collections then are characterized by a recurring failure, a failure to amass a coherent knowledge, to produce a series of self-contained objects. They are collections of holes, if we can imagine this, literally filled with absence. Daly’s project produces a collision between these two understandings of the index, the incongruity of which creates the logic of the work as a whole."
–Review in PAJ | Performing Arts Journal: Download: "Decoration and Detection - Ann Burke Daly, The Automaton Olympia's Cabinet of Curiosities, Installations at The Linda Kirkland Gallery NY and 57Hope, Brooklyn," –Review by GeorgeBaker (excerpts)



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