Christensen and students: The Pod Bay Door and more

The exhibition at The Helen E. Copeland Gallery is a collaborative project by the students at Montana State University and the international artist-in-residence, Jan Christensen. The installation in the gallery consists of a video, artworks and props by the students that were made in response to the movie 2001: A Space Odyssey by Stanley Kubrick (1968). There will be an opening reception on Thursday 21 September, 7PM – 9PM, at the gallery.

The exhibition includes sketches and notes documenting the process of making the video and organizing the show. The original film by Kubrick has been dissected and thoroughly discussed, resulting in a production of fragmented points of views as the different groups of students worked on the separate parts of the story. The constant discussion and critical reading of the work is reflected in documentation of meetings and production scenes, and there is an emphasis on the supercomputer Hal and his distrust of the human beings and his superiority to man, paralleled in the discussions between the students on the actual realization of the project.

The re-make, entitled 2010: The Pod Bay Door, is also an experiment on how to use the simplest means available to produce a video work. Certain parts are more elaborate, but most of the filming has been done with the simplest hand-held digital cameras. The actual title refers to the point in the film where Hal shuts the door of the spaceship in an attempt to leave two astronauts to die in space.

Jan Christensen lives and works in Berlin, Germany. He was born in 1977 in Copenhagen, Denmark and studied at the National College of Art and Design (NCAD/KHiO) in Oslo 1997-2000. If you’d like more information on this topic, or to schedule an interview, please call Kate Jo at 406/994-2562 or email her at