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Still from Laurie Anderson's video work "From the Air" showing herself projected onto clay figures

Laurie Anderson

From the Air, 2008

Video with audio loop projected onto clay figures

5h x 10w x 3d in

12.70h x 25.40w x 7.62d cm

The musician and artist on CD-roms, cancel culture and her new show, The Art of Falling

It is a beautiful early spring afternoon, full of those surprises of sunshine that make hope seem more like reality when I talk to Laurie Anderson, but she is in the thick of a blizzard. She is at home in Manhattan, immediately liking the idea of our different situations. “I have a great perch right over the Hudson River. It’s a very strange blizzard, they’re calling it a ‘bomb cyclone’, they’ve even weaponised the weather.” She says this with a wry laugh. She is also worried about her dog, Little Will, who has been off his food. “He’s a border terrier,” she says. “It’s like living with a cop. When someone comes in, he’s, ‘who are you? What do you want?’”

Such is Anderson’s warmth, I don’t for a moment feel that taking her time, in the thick of an explosive blizzard, coupled with pet worries, is any imposition. As our talk ranges from the early days of digital through party planning for Philip Glass to the idea of beauty in everything, the overriding sense she brings is of delight in exploring ideas, and an abiding interest in interconnectedness. Hers is a warmth without sentimentality – a surprisingly rare combination: “We got him [Little Will] right after we lost a dog. What am I saying? You don’t lose a dog. Our dog died”; or, on her mother, “I didn’t like her very much, actually, but I did really admire her.”

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