About this artwork

On three monitors a filmed sequence of crows wander on the roof of a gothic church. Each sequence starts with the eerie screeching of the birds, followed by a spotlight that continuously chases them as they move around, eat and attempt to fly. The raven has often been used to symbolise bad omens or death in literature and art, Edgar Allan Poe famously depicted the raven as a supernatural messenger in 'The Raven' (1845). Here Gordon portrays birds as a symbol of menace and explores film's ability to elicit fear. The title of the work comes from a popular Scottish poem about a bird sitting on a treetop, while looking down on a group of children.

Updated before 2020

  • artist:
  • title:
    Looking down with his black, black, ee
  • date created:
  • materials:
    Video, 3 monitors, sound, colour, 7 minutes 56 seconds
  • object type:
  • credit line:
    ARTIST ROOMS National Galleries of Scotland and Tate. Presented by the artist 2012
  • accession number:
  • gallery:
  • subject:
This artwork is part of Artist Rooms
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Douglas Gordon

Douglas Gordon

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