"More than Super" at Gogue collective
On Sunday. February 7 2010 the great American event that is the Super Bowl was contested twice. Super Bowl XLIV was played Miami, Florida in front of a packed stadium and an international television audience of millions. Simultaneously an “improved” version of the game was played in Ridgewood, Queens before a live audience of a few dozen enthusiasts and streamed online to perhaps hundreds more. Artists Matt Freedman and Jude Tallichet produced “More Than Super”, a simultaneous, play-by-play restaging of the Super Bowl with a small army of collaborators who substituted themselves for all the roles in the spectacle-players, referees, TV producers, half time performers, advertisers, team owners, and fans in the stadium. The duplicate game was staged in the artists’ studio, a defunct synagogue in Queens. Freedman and Tallichet created a miniature football stadium in the old sanctuary; stained glass windows bracketed the end zones and dusty chandeliers illuminated the field. The entire production streamed live as the actual game was played. Freedman and Tallichet played a game identical to the Super Bowl, but better.
The artists used the slivers of time between the broadcast plays in the “real” football game to restage the action that had just taken place. Just two people in Queens did the work of the 90 professional athletes playing the game in Miami. Freedman played all the positions, offensive and defensive, for the NFC champion New Orleans Saints and Tallichet portrayed the entire AFC champion Indianapolis Colts team.
Great care was taken to recreate the ambience of the television broadcast as accurately as possible, down to the half time entertainment, but “More Than Super” was a collaboration rather than a competition, more an awkward dance than a sublimated war. The game in the synagogue engaged America’s greatest spectacle and cut it down to size.
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