Ellie Ga: Book launch and short performance of new work in NYC


September 27th, 2018


Join us in celebrating the release of Square Octagon Circle by Ellie Ga with a book signing and a short performance of new work!


Thursday, October 1, 6:30-8:30 p.m. (performance at 7)   |    Bureau   |    178 Norfolk Street, NYC  |    p: 212-227-2783


About the book:

Over two thousand stone remnants of the fabled Pharos Lighthouse lie in the murky waters of the Mediterranean. Although mapped meticulously by underwater archaeologists, this ancient wonder will never be reconstructed: the Lighthouse can only be inferred from its fragments. Above the surface, in the post-revolutionary Egyptian city of Alexandria, images of the Lighthouse are everywhere, populating the public imagination, though they bear little resemblance to the ruins at the bottom of the sea.

In a richly layered narrative of image and text, artist Ellie Ga embarks on a labyrinthine inquiry into the Lighthouse, navigating the spaces between history, memory and mythology, translation and mistranslation, the uncovered and the overlooked. Ga takes the reader with her on dive boats and into the water, behind the walls of hidden museums, through city streets pasted with political graffiti, into the offices of archaeologists and the homes of Alexandrians.

Using a lightbox and transparencies of photographs, video stills, and an array of archival materials, Ga arranges and rearranges fragments, accumulating and subtracting them to illuminate correspondences and contradictions. Above and below the surface, into the past and the present, Square Octagon Circle not only pursues seeming tangents, elusive truths and near-discoveries, but also maps the impossible desire to reconstruct this ancient wonder of the world.


About the artist:

ELLIE GA is a New York-born artist whose immersive, wide-ranging investigations include the classification of stains on city sidewalks to the charting of the quotidian in the frozen reaches of the Arctic Ocean. In performances, video-essays and installations, Ga’s braided narratives intertwine extensive research with first-hand experiences that often follow uncertain leads and take unexpected turns. She has exhibited and performed internationally at the New Museum, The Kitchen and the Guggenheim Museum in New York, the Albright-Knox Museum in Buffalo, and La Fondation Cartier pour L’Art Contemporain in Paris, among many others.


Additionally, Ga will be performing from a new work-in-progress called The Eoliths. “These stones are called eoliths, from the Greek word eos, meaning dawn, and lith, meaning stone. The dawn stone, because these stones were celebrated as the dawn of civilization. In the late 19th and early 20th century, eoliths were widely accepted as the oldest human hand tools and placed the beginning of civilization in Europe.” In this work-in-progress, Ga narrates aspects of the eolith debate.