Archive for June, 2014
I just discovered that Alisa Harris included Brooke and I in a comic series that she created during the 2013 Just Food Conference as part of her Cooking Up Comics graphic blog. As I don’t recall ever being rendered as a comic, I needed to archive Alisa’s piece!
The Guggenheim presents a strong selection of Latino artists (as problematic as the label is), however, the work that is featured is not amongst the strongest by these individuals. Three works that stood out are Carlos Amorales’s Calder-inspired cymbal mobile that visitors may play, Jonathas de Andrade’s “Posters for the Museum of the Northeast Man. 2013”, and Juan Downey’s Amazonian film installation. Many of the works are presented out of context as many were performative and/or protests, works in which the power lies in the environment and moment when they were executed. Presented within the context of the museum robs the cultural significance of many of these pieces.
Photos are not allowed in the Futurist exhibition at the Guggenheim Museum, however, I needed to document the work of Forunato Depero, purely for research and academic reasons. At 22 Depero discovered the Futurist Manifesto that inspired his career as an artist and designer. I was not familiar with Fortunato Depero, now I’m amazed at the work he was doing throughout the first half of the 20th century.
I did not document who made the work below, it’s more of a personal note, however, it is as well part of the Futurist exhibition and across from the Futurist stage constructed in one of the galleries of the Guggenheim.
Yesterday, I had a studio visit with folks from Museo del Barrio which gave me an opportunity to assemble current work and talk about it. My focus over the last few months has been a combination of hand-drawn animations and wooden sculptures which will come together in a new media sculpture series titled “Mediated Idols.”
About “Mediated Idols”
The editors of DE-WESTERNIZING MEDIA STUDIES, Curran and Park ask the following questions in the book’s introduction:
1. How do the media relate to the power structure of society?
2. What influences the media and where does control over the media lie?
3. How has the media influenced society?
4. What effect has media and new media had on the media system and society?
In considering these questions, my initial response is cannibalization. Historically, the cannibalization of one civilization by an emerging civilization. In contemporary reality, the transformation of highly mediated popular culture by either youth subcultures or ethnic specific cannibalizations that transform globalized pop culture in unexpected manners.
In creating the “Mediated Idols,” I am studying artifacts from the pre-Aztec city Teotihuacan that had far reaching influence geographically and through time. As I look at these Mesoamerican artifacts, I am as well studying contemporary popular cultural icons that fade only to reappear in new formats. “Mediated Idols” will combine the physicality of past artifacts with virtual representation and data of contemporary life. As stand alone sculptures, “Mediated Idols” will present greater attention to material and form than the “Undocumented Drones.” The animations will also have greater coherence with the sculptures.
Other images from the studio visit…
I generally, do not like the concept of corporate art or the making of art work closely tied to a corporate sponsor. Of course some forms of art of a long history of corporate/business funding in order to be realized, and amazing work can come of it, that would otherwise be beyond the scope of what a single artist or collective without the financial means of investors would be able to realize (and much of that work, I chalk up as entertainment, rather than art)…
When I encounter something so well-crafted and combines various forms of media, I can’t help but set aside my ethics of what is and isn’t art and the necessary division between big money and creativity… One such work is graphic/comic book artist Rafael Grampá “collaboration” with or through Absolut Vodka – “Dark Noir”. I very much would like to see the full animation, but even this excerpt presents a sense of how visually stunning this work is and that it effectively combines 3D and 2D animation with the main characters and settings in 3D and the demons as 2D art work. Now where to see the entire animation!