Für seine Ausstellung You’ve Reached the Office of Stuart Ullman baute George Jenne vor zwei Jahren eine exakte Kopie des Büros von Stuart Ullman, dem Manager des Overlook Hotels aus The Shining, der Jack zu Beginn des Films eine kleine Geschichte von Mord und Totschlag erzählt. // via The Overlook Hotel
Jack Torrance : I don’t believe they did.
Stuart Ullman : My predecessor in this job left a man named Charles Grady as the Winter caretaker. And he came up here with his wife and two little girls, I think were eight and ten. And he had a good employment record, good references, and from what I’ve been told he seemed like a completely normal individual. But at some point during the winter, he must have suffered some kind of a complete mental breakdown. He ran amuck and killed his family with an axe. Stacked them neatly in one of the rooms in the West wing and then he, he put both barrels of a shot gun in his mouth.
Jack Torrance : Well, that is quite a story.
Stuart Ullman : Yeah it is. It’s still hard for me to believe it happened here. It did, and I think you can appreciate why I wanted to tell you about it.
Jack Torrance : I certainly can and I also understand why your people in Denver left it for you to tell me.
Stuart Ullman : Well obviously some people can be put off by staying alone in a place where something like that actually happened.
Jack Torrance : Well you can rest assured, Mr. Ullman, that’s not going to happen with me.
A near exact recreation of the office set from the Overlook Hotel in the 1980 film, The Shining is the centerpiece of George Jenne’s third solo show at LUMP. You’ve Reached the Office of Stuart Ullman measures the veracity of cinephilia by taking verisimilitude to its threshold. The show will open with the fully realized office on display, empty of its necessary characters. Opposite the installation, there will be a two channel video that portrays a fan of the movie as he discomfortingly mouths the words of a notorious scene while the movie plays off screen.
The banality of Stuart Ullman’s office makes the portentous moments that occur inside of it all the more palpable. The office, which is buried deep in the eerie spacial and narrative architecture of the movie, defies the logic and layout of the Overlook Hotel, according to die hard Shining fans. Is it true conspiracy on Kubrik’s part, or did he fudge it, and perform a calculated manipulation in the face of the pragmatism that guides every creative endeavor?