Susan Hiller (b. 1940, Tallahassee, FL; lives in London) is an influential pioneer of multimedia installation art recognized for her early adoption of video as an artistic medium and for her ability to transform conventional gallery spaces into haunting, immersive environments. Hiller combines the archival tendencies of conceptual art with an emphasis on psychologically charged subjects, from war memorials to paranormal phenomena. Commissioned by Pérez Art Museum Miami and making its debut in this exhibition, Hiller’s video
Lost and Found
features an audio collage of voices speaking in 23 different languages, including Aramaic, Comanche, Livonian and other extinct or endangered idioms. Many of the anecdotes, songs, arguments, memories, and conversations that the voices relay revolve around the theme of language itself. Translations of these utterances appear in the form of subtitles, which provide an entry point into the narrators’ diverse cultural circumstances. A constantly shifting oscilloscopic line gives visual form to the work’s soundtrack, suggesting the poignant idea that individuals separated by time, geography, and worldview remain linked by the physical experience of sound as it resonates through the human body during verbal communication.
Credit: Exhibition overview from museum website