Acts to Objects



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Activating Pangea: Acts to Objects

 

Curated by: Ciara Scanlan & Matthew Nevin of MART Gallery Dublin
Runs: March 15th – April 29nd 2018
Gallery: LACE, Los Angeles.
Artists: Aine Phillips, Amanda Coogan, Helen Mac Mahon, Margaret O’Brien,
Katherine Nolan, Eleanor Lawler, Laura O’Connor, and Jane Fogarty.

Opening Reception: March 15th, 2018, 7-10 PM

The opening night will feature performances by: Amanda Coogan, Eleanor Lawler, Cindy Rehm, Thinh Nguyen and Mothertongues (Meital Yaniv & Kim Ye).

Art and cultural practice often seeks to challenge the primacy of the visual in Western culture, as dominated by a pervasive masculinised privileged gaze (Irigaray). To affect change women artists too have sought ways to refute, undermine and evade this primacy of the visual in art practice in order to find a visual language and a voice that can be heard (Mary Kelly).

So too have artists harnessed and heightened the spectacle of the visual as means to staking a claim to the authorship of cultural practice, and thereby a form of subjectivity. It is in the tradition of these ‘attention grabbers’ that the artists in this show employ strategies that arrest and twist the gaze, that clamber for visibility. The artworks play with and investigate the idea of art as spectacle, whether refracting and manipulating light, playing on expectations of material form and colour, or performing acts that intervene in social space and norms.

As a set of work disparate in form, from sculpture to performance, together they speak to ideas of spectacle. The art works shun the lingering forces that continue to undermine women’s right to cultural authorship, unapologetic in staking their claim to visibility. The philosophical terms that frame westernised art practices assert ‘calling attention to’ as a critical strategy: these art works glisten, tousle and shout.

The exhibition is staged in Los Angeles, the locus of production of the Hollywood spectacle, that much early feminist discourse critiqued for its dominant gendered narratives that constantly position women as passive objects to the active masculine look, that continues to persist in new forms. Bringing together artists from Los Angeles and Ireland that span a number of generations, in order to explore the role of spectacle in feminist practice today.




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Echo Chamber | EUCIDA 2017 EXHIBITION




Echo Chamber – EUCIDA 2017 Exhibition  

Featuring: Jeanne Briand, Adam Gibney, Fabien Leaustic, Helen Mac Mahon, Rasa SmitePaula Vitola.

Curated by Matthew Nevin of MART, Assistant Curator, Deirdre Morrissey.

Lūznava Manor Rēzeknes | Latvia: 9th June – 31st August 2017

RUA RED | Ireland: 16th June – 5th August 2017 

Gantner Multimedia Space | France: 24th June – 22nd July 2017

 

European Connections in Digital Arts / EUCIDA is a 3 year project funded by Creative Europe led by RUA RED Ireland in partnership Gantner Multimedia Space, France and Lūznava Manor Rēzeknes, Latvia. The Project aspires to work collaboratively while demonstrating innovation and high standards contributing to making the Digital Arts sector highly visible internationally.

“an echo chamber is a metaphorical description of a situation in which information, ideas, or beliefs are amplified or reinforced by transmission and repetition inside an “enclosed” system, where different or competing views are censored, disallowed, or otherwise underrepresented.”[link]

As a curatorial platform for creation of new work, Echo Chamber has encouraged the dialogue of art and technology as a means of sharing experience and creative practice. Exhibiting simultaneously across Ireland, Latvia and France it showcases six contemporary visual artists, two from each of the host countries, whose practice is rooted in various aspects of digital technology.

Its primary aim to create an accessible conversation and debate between the digital arts, technology, politics, culture and society in an accessible way to a European wide public. The three parallel exhibitions, which mirror each other, will analyse how culture, politics and socio-economical issues are bounced around, applauded, and never truly open within one’s own Echo Chamber; i.e colleagues, friends, families etc.

The exhibitions provide a platform for the artists to push conversation beyond the normal realms of an art audience or local groups, to a further international and trans European audience. By encouraging participating artists to explore and reinvent material, technologies and methodologies, Matthew Nevin, the curator, has worked alongside the artists to re/produce work that can provoke the limitations of the ‘Echo Chamber of the normal gallery environment, into producing powerful, informative and experimental new work to a wider audience.  

These artists, often working as the mirror for society, will create new dialogues that challenge conventional views on politics and culture; pushing for examination of our preconceived expectations of what is contemporary art and its relevance to the society we live in. The curator has encouraged the artists to be reactionary and politically engaged in their approach to their practice and tease out new radical ways of viewing and perceiving their art works through technology.

Helen Mac Mahon, who creates artwork through experimentation and investigation into the phenomena of light, movement, perception and space, has produced ‘Mirror Affect’ an interactive piece playing with the mirrored image using a combination of everyday objects and live digital technology.

Jeanne Briand forges links with new technology and craftsmanship to create beautiful sculptural pieces that reference fantasy and trans-aesthetics. Briand’s ‘Gamete Glass’ propose a new form of life, and the origin of the sounds they emit serves to raise questions in the viewer’s mind about the artifice or real existence of the animated forms.  

Fabien Leaustic creates sculptural work which while physical has an ephemeral aesthetic. Leaustic’s work ‘Hello World’ activated by the presence of the visitor disturbs our interpretation of our world, evoking an emotional response juggling a naive optimism and a dark poetic duality that defines us.  

Rasa Smite is an artist, network researcher and cultural innovator, working with science and emerging media technologies. Smite’s artwork ‘Talk to Me’ is a human-plant communication interface, through which people were asked to send encouraging messages via text & social media to the growing plants, “equipped” with web-cam, wi-fi and loudspeakers.

Adam Gibney’s artwork is generally realised through sculpture, installation, sound and video. ‘Conundrum 8: I am somewhere between we and they’ questions the political and personal use of pronouns. Playing a key role in the construction of the ‘self’ and the ‘other’, pronouns help toward the creation and division of societies. 

Paula Vitola works through media art & archeology, researching relationships between human and technology. Her work encompasses experimenting with technology and nature, programming and gadget-hacking.

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