Counting Sheep :: Times Square Midnight Moment
December 1–30, 2016
Every night | 11:57 pm–midnight
December’s Midnight Moment Shepherds in the New Year with Vast Landscapes Across the Screens of Times Square
Brooklyn Filmmaker Tal Yarden, who has collaborated with David Bowie, Ivo van Hove, James Brown and Cindy Sherman, creates something special for Times Square
Times Square Arts presents a visual lullaby for the city in filmmaker and theatrical video artist Tal Yarden’s Counting Sheep on Times Square’s electronic billboards from 11:57 pm to midnight throughout December. This project is a part of Midnight Moment, a monthly presentation by the Times Square Advertising Coalition (TSAC) and Times Square Arts.
For the year’s end, Counting Sheep shepherds us into a soothing American pastiche of expansive Wyoming landscapes. The film follows the Meike brothers, octogenarian sheep ranchers, through the arc of the year’s natural seasons, from the winter fields to the Big Horn Mountains in summer before trailing home in the fall. Yarden, a seminal video artist who recently designed video for The Crucible on Broadway and David Bowie’s Lazarus, first began filming the Meike brothers and their herds to create a backdrop for the opera of Brokeback Mountain in Madrid. Now, a work with its origins in theater spills out into the streets and screens of Times Square, even as it immerses one of the world’s most urbanized environments in the vast landscapes and skies of the Wyoming countryside. And in the city that never sleeps, amidst the largest concentration of hotel beds, Yarden plays on the classic idea of counting sheep to help us pass into a night’s slumber or peacefully lead us into the new year.
On Wednesday, December 7, visitors can join Tal Yarden for a viewing of Counting Sheep. Please arrive by 11:30 pm for the 11:57 pm viewing on Duffy Square at Broadway and 46th Street.
A soundtrack to the film, composed by Yarden and his brother Guy, will be available on Soundcloud.
Tal Yarden, Artist, said “I’m fascinated by how nature marks time. Drawing on ancient pastoral traditions, I want to reconnect with a life guided by the seasons. As we count down to midnight, I want to remind us of a world beyond the urban canyon where losing count is a path to peace.”
Tim Tompkins, President of the Times Square Alliance, said, “In a month where we transition from one year to the next and begin new journeys into new seasons, Yarden’s work evokes our movement through time and life.”
Sherry Dobbin, Times Square Arts Director, said, “Tal Yarden is a seminal media artist, filmmaker and scenic designer whose immersive theatrical environments confuse the boundaries of where the media ends and the performer begins; it was natural that we would want him to consider the Times Square canyon and how we could have the same impact on the outside skins of the Broadway theaters.”
Fred Rosenberg, President of the Times Square Advertising Coalition, said, “It’s exciting to have the opportunity to display an artist like Yarden, who has created art for the interior venues of these buildings, from backdrops for the opera to videos for Broadway. Now we’re thrilled that he will be wrapping the outside of our digital architecture with his work, reminding us of the vast scale of Times Square.”
The following digital screens are participating in the December Midnight Moment:
ABC SuperSign, American Eagle Times Square, Bank of America, Branded Cities 7 Times Square, Branded Cities NASDAQ Tower Times Square, Branded Cities Thomson Reuters, Outfront Media 1515 Broadway/ Viacom North & South, CEMUSA, City Outdoor, Clear Channel Spectacolor HD127/CNN, Clear Channel Spectacolor HD128, Morgan Stanley, Sherwood Equities 1 Times Square, Superior Digital Displays Crossroads of the World, Triple Play on 7th Ave & The Waterfall on 42nd St
About Midnight Moment
Midnight Moment is the world’s largest, longest-running digital art exhibition, synchronized on electronic billboards throughout Times Square nightly from 11:57pm to Midnight. Presented by the Times Square Advertising Coalition and curated by Times Square Arts since 2012, it has an estimated annual viewership of 2.5 million.
Past artists featured in the program include Emilio Perez; Tim Etchells; Elizabeth Peyton and Kristian Emdal; Jherek Bischoff; Beau Stanton; Saya Woolfalk; Jennifer Steinkamp; Soundwalk Collective; Lorna Mills; Peter Fischli and David Weiss; Laurie Anderson; Antony Nagelmann; Jesper Just; Shahzia Sikander; Rashaad Newsome; Osgemeos; Eric Dyer; Richard Garet; Andy Warhol; Peggy Ahwesh; Marco Brambilla; Rafaël Rozendaal; Sebastian Errazuriz; Charles Atlas and Antony; Noah Hutton; Ryoji Ikeda; Daniel Canogar; Alfredo Jaar; Isaac Julien; Robert Wilson; Tracey Emin; Seoungho Cho; Vicki DaSilva, Surabhi Saraf, and Elly Cho; Erika Janunger; Takeshi Murata; Bel Borba with Burt Sun and André Costantini; Zach Nader; Brian Gonzalez (aka Taxiplasm); Björk; JR; Ryan McGinley; Jack Goldstein; Nature Theater of Oklahoma; Ezra Wube; Laleh Khorramian; Brian Dailey; Leslie Thornton; and Yoko Ono. For more information on past projects, please visit: http://www.timessquarenyc.org/times-square-arts/projects/midnight-moment/index.aspx
Times Square Advertising Coalition (TSAC) is a trade association comprised of major advertisers, retailers, real estate firms, media companies and other businesses involved in the outdoor sign industry in Times Square, along with organizations representing Broadway and the community. Members of TSAC include: ABC Regional Sports & Entertainment Sales, Clear Channel Spectacolor, Daktronics, D3 LED, Digital Domination, Hines Management, Jamestown One Times Square, Lamar Advertising Company, Landmark Sign & Electric, Metro Media Technologies, Newmark Knight Frank, North Shore Neon, P.R.omotion!, Sherwood Outdoor, SL Green, Times Square Alliance, The WOW Factor and Thomson Reuters. www.timessquareadcoalition.org. Follow TSAC on twitter at @TSACNYC.
Times Square Arts, the public art program of the Times Square Alliance, collaborates with contemporary artists and cultural institutions to experiment and engage with one of the world’s most iconic urban places. Through the Square’s electronic billboards, public plazas, vacant areas and popular venues, and the Alliance’s own online landscape, Times Square Arts invites leading contemporary creators to help the public see Times Square in new ways. Times Square has always been a place of risk, innovation and creativity, and the Arts Program ensures these qualities remain central to the district’s unique identity. Generous support of Times Square Arts is provided by the. New York State Council on the Arts, the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, and the National Endowment for the Arts. Visit http://www.timessquarenyc.org/times-square-arts/index.aspx for more information. Follow us on Twitter and Instagram at @TSqArts.
Tal Yarden is a video artist who often designs video for theater and opera. He frequently collaborates with Ivo van Hove. Recent projects: The Crucible, Kings of War, David Bowie’s Lazarus, Thomas Adés’ Exterminating Angel, The Civilians’ The Undertaking and Les Damnés for Comedie Francaise. Previous projects – Opera: Brokeback Mountain, La Clemenza de Tito, Ring Cycle, Der Schatzgräber, Mazeppa, and Macbeth; Theater: Indecent, King Lear, Distracted, The Fountainhead, Angels in America, Little Foxes, The Misanthrope, Cries & Whispers and Roman Tragedies. He has collaborated with Patricia Fox, Conway & Pratt, Chris Wangro, Reza Abdoh, Dancenoise, Stephen Petronio, Cindy Sherman, Pavel Zustiak, Andrew Ondrejcak, and many other artists. As a VJ and live video director: James Brown, Annie Lennox, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Alicia Keys, Snoop Dogg, Garbage, Wyclef Jean, Peaches, Patti Smith & Moby. Tal Yarden was born in Jerusalem and resides in Brooklyn with his son. www.talyarden.com