Los Angeles and Dublin
“Is beauty in the eye of the beholder? No, it’s deep in our minds. It’s a gift handed down from the intelligent skills and rich emotional lives of our most ancient ancestors. Our powerful reaction to images, to the expression of emotion in art, to the beauty of music, to the night sky, will be with us and our descendants for as long as the human race exists.”
Denis Dutton – A Darwinian theory of beauty – Nov 2010 – Ted Talk
Curator Matthew Nevin of the Irish Visual Arts organisation MART invited 18 emerging and established Irish visual artists and designers to take part in ‘Instinct’ – a cross disciplinary exhibition showcasing work in three Los Angeles galleries: Santa Monica Art Studios Gallery, The Los Angeles Center for Digital Art and Hive Gallery, and one Irish: The MART Gallery.
“My recent curatorial research has brought my attention to artworks created through various creative processes. By engaging with artists that are responding to the idea of instinctual and personal artistic representation and production I wish to open up perhaps sometimes a confrontational visual argument with the viewer. I have collated a series of artworks that question the role of instinctual art production. These artists strive to develop their ideas through experimentation and use of formal creative training. The exhibition focuses on the process of visual art making and design in order to achieve a collective approach in analysing the current formation of art; its patterns, imagery, performative practices and digital responses artists are making.” – Curator Matthew Nevin
The exhibition aimed to celebrate and build a greater international awareness and appreciation of Irish visual art and design excellence. By building the profiles internationally it began a foundation for future development, exposure and opportunities of Irish Designers & Artists working in California and the wider USA.
Curated by: Matthew Nevin
Artists: Dominic Thorpe, Liam O’Callaghan, Margaret O’Brien, Katherine Nolan, Terence Erraught, Eleanor Lawler, Francis Fay, Aidan Smyth, Olga Criado Monleon, Kayleigh Forsythe, Marie Farrington, Róisín de Buitléar, Gearoid O’Dea, Grainne Tynan, Ida Mitrani,Patricia Douglas, Karen Vaughan, Christina O’Donovan.
Echo Chamber – EUCIDA 2017 Exhibition
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.