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My pieces Vortex 1 and Vortex 2, the title card information for which I posted here, will be in a show opening Friday night, September 8, in Mobile, AL. Here's the Press-Register article about the exhibit:
High concept : Space 301 opens high-tech multimedia show Friday
Sunday, September 03, 2006
By THOMAS B. HARRISON
Our bold new millennium has brought a sense of impermanence at once terrifying and exhilarating.
New technologies make it possible for artists, writers and musicians to exist in a parallel universe, one foot in the corporeal (physical) world, the other in cyberspace. Sometimes simultaneously.
Hard to imagine a visual arts event with greater contemporary resonance than "Art and Place I: Place as Muse," which opens Friday and runs through Oct. 29 at Space 301 in downtown Mobile.
"This show is innovative on so many levels," says Barclay McConnell, curator for Space 301. "I think it will be very exciting, especially for anyone interested in the (seemingly infinite) creative possibilities of digital technologies and the World Wide Web.
"There will be video-game art and art films including a stop-animation DVD of an artist's homepage as it evolved over several years. [preview .mov from Paul Slocum here]
"Contemporary artists are really pushing the boundaries in terms of medium -- moving away from the traditional such as drawing and painting into using video, computers and the Web in new and unusual ways."
McConnell says "Art and Place" is "full of new media" and has a fascinating concept. This show also marks the debut of guest curator Clayton V. Colvin, creator of the StealthArts Web site and an adjunct instructor at the University of Alabama and UAB in Birmingham.
Based in Birmingham, StealthArts is an "evolving space focused on contemporary art," according to the Web site: www.stealtharts.com. Viewing is by appointment.
"Clayton is a respected and very intelligent young curator bringing something entirely new to Mobile," says McConnell.
In his curatorial statement, Colvin writes:
"As a culture, our concept of place is in flux. We can mean a physical location, a virtual location on the World Wide Web, or a fictional location in a narrative or fantasy. Regardless, we are talking about an environment; a space."
Colvin hopes this exhibition will explore how artists are creating works using place as subject or muse.
"The relationship of individual to location is interestingly entangled with personal experience and identity," he writes.
"A person's relationship to the land can define their character. Its presence may be subconscious, surfacing in quiet thoughts of nostalgia for the pastoral, or in loud symbols of hysterical nationalism.
"It is difficult to imagine an identity without a place, be that a destination in the future, a place of the present, or point of origin."
Colvin selected 20 artists to investigate "how (or if) this relationship changes as the concept of place becomes a synthesis of the virtual and the concrete."
The artists examine the issue by exploring telecommunications and the Internet, globalization, homelessness, journalism, personal memory, hallucination, tourism, genocide, natural disasters and video games, according to Colvin.
Colvin says he is keenly interested in artists who deal with topical issues in both an old-school way through painting and sculpture, as well as artists whose work exists primarily in MySpace pages and jpeg files.
"You have online friends and then real-life friends also," he says. Colvin says he met many of these artists in the 1990s, a convenient point of reference for anyone trying to make sense of the ever-changing concept of "place." Net-art came of age in the '90s and is now being revisited, he says.
He says the diverse range of artwork here is "very contemporary with what artists are doing right now," but as one would expect, it is not a regional exhibition. Some of the artists live and work in the South; others are from New York City, Los Angeles, Texas, Nebraska. One lives in London.
That's a worldwide web of artwork.
Memphis artist Hamlett Dobbins takes a traditional approach by capturing a moment in time, says Colvin. His oil-on-linen panels are titled with the initials of the person with whom he shared those moments, "so for him it's about personal memory."
Paul Slocum of Dallas contributed a stop-animation of his homepage; New York artist Tom Moody's "Vortex 1" was created from inkjet on paper.
Birmingham photographer Ryan Russell (ryanrussell.net), who graduated from UAB in graphic design, shoots photos of rock bands and travels a lot, and his work reflects a life in transit.
His "Photograph From a Delta Airplane" provides the postcard image for the exhibition.
One of the more intriguing artists in the show is Jason Varone (www.varonearts.org) of Brooklyn, N.Y., who attended NYU with Colvin and whose work focuses on telecommunications. "Topology of Technology" is a mixed-media DVD.
Colvin hopes visitors to Space 301 will have a chance to experience these varying perspectives and walk away with new ideas and insights.
"Hopefully it'll strengthen whatever relationship (the viewers) already have to place," he says.