Monday, April 25, 2011

Cornell MFA Show

This week DAC welcomes the Cornell University MFA show "Meditations in an Emergency," curated by Christopher Lew.

April 28–May 7, 2011

Reception: April 30, 6pm to 9

For emerging artists today, the environment in which they create is one marked by distraction and preoccupation. Meditations in an Emergency—whose title is borrowed from Frank O'Hara's 1954 poem—suggests how to make work in a time of disruption. The studio, whether it be in a physical room or lodged in the mind and imagination, is a space to pause and think, a generative space that does not run counter to the world at large, but is positioned at a certain distance and remove from it. It provides a way for an artist to create in a time of crisis, moving beyond gut reaction to a headspace that is more contemplative and insightful.

Meditations in an Emergency brings together eleven candidates of Cornell University's MFA program who all reveal individual notions of what art can be through varied approaches. Some artists give primacy to the materials employed while others are led by research-based methods, and still others play off the tension between subjectivity and authorship, content and form, or the power of the image and its ability and inability to convey meaning. The exhibition aims to make tangible what O'Hara describes as "the ecstasy of bursting forth"—a sense of birth and renewal as these artists contribute to dialogues about art and its making that extend beyond their immediate communities, into a larger conversation that is potentially and inherently international in reach and multigenerational in scope.

Featured artists: Robert Andrade, Piotr Chizinski, Amie Cunat, Gabrielle Jesiolowski, Gabriela Jimenez, Daren Kendall, Baseera Khan, Ruth Oppenheim, Benjamin Rubloff, Farideh Sakhaeifar, Bernie Yenelouis

Thursday, April 14, 2011

two trunkshow

DAC's neighbor and supporter two will be previewing their latest designs in the DAC gallery space this Friday. Stop in to look through the handmade fashions and view the exhibition Harry & Pete before it closes Sunday.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Interview with Brian O'Connell and Todd Bourret about their show "Harry & Pete."

Justine the Intern talks with Brian and Todd!

DAC: How did the constraint of time influence your creative process? Do you typically work well under pressure?

Todd: Though we gave ourselves only about a week to produce the work in the show, we were able to develop and refine our concept over several months. It was both thrilling and nerve-wracking to have a plan in order while not having any idea what the resulting objects would really look like.

Brian: For me, time constraints - and this isn't necessarily a good thing - are essential. Without them I rarely feel like I can avoid double and triple guessing, though most of that has already happened by the time a material deadline is actually looming. So, I guess the imposition of this constraint with the knowledge that we'd have time to plan ahead was a bit of a psychological luxury. Yes it was thrilling and a bit scary but it was also motivating. Being 'under the gun' with someone you trust as a collaborator is both exciting and fun. It brought out positive risk-taking in both of us I think.

DAC: While the project was built upon constraint did you find the process itself at all limiting to creativity?

Todd: All exhibitions have these constraints, to varying degrees. We chose to foreground them. I firmly believe that constraints encourage creativity. Not to impose an interpretation, but the exhibition could bee seen as a metaphor for as well as a demonstration of the creative process.

Brian: I agree completely and would only add that sometimes it's fun to look at exhibitions through the lens of such constraints. I think we basically just decided to look at our own production from a similarly blunt but very practically critical perspective of time, space & money.

DAC: How were you forced to reevaluate the role of artist while working (with?) mechanically produced indexes as your medium?

Todd: The work in the show is all very much handmade, and we were both working more or less in our material comfort zones. Though I think neither of us were forced to reevaluate the role of the artist, I had never worked collaboratively before. Fortunately, Brian and I have been in a pretty close dialog for the past five or so years, and came to the project knowing each other's practice more or less inside out. This made for a fruitful and enjoyable working situation.
Brian: I agree completely with Todd's description of our collaborative process. I have rarely worked collaboratively and never in such a tight way. It was a real learning experience. As for the issue of mechanical reproduction and the index I think that is one of the things that makes our working relationship and our practices so compatible. Indexicallity and mechanical reproduction are closely related in as much as mechanical reproduction has implied a degree of indexicallity but clearly indexical processes are not limited to strictly mechanical procedures. In a way I think a lot of what our show deals with, beyond the circumstances of its production, is precisely this point. It is possible to trace through all the objects in the show a chain of indexical relationships, just as a detective might follow the chain of evidence but like a detective in a novel an intuitive leap is required to go beyond this step-by-step procedure and I hope our process made such a leap possible for the viewer.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

My House Is Burned But The Cherry Tree in My Garden Scatters Its Blossoms As If Nothing Had Happened

Check out this project by upcoming exhibiting artists Aeron Bergman 
and Alejandra Salinas:

"My House Is Burned But The Cherry Tree in My Garden
Scatters Its Blossoms As If Nothing Had Happened”

45 minute electroacoustic radio piece commissioned by
Markus Heuger for German radio WDR 3: Studio Akustische

It will be broadcast on 8 April 2011 at 23:05.

“Orbiting alongside the asteroid Itakawa, Divine Olivine
is a hazard data observatory, a monitoring station and the
first deep space sacred site. Only a few make “The Decade”
(as the pilgrimage became known) to breathe filtered air
by the Olivine found in Itakawa.”

The piece will also be available online, after 8 April:

There will be a listening event at Ny Musikk in Oslo, 9
April at 15:00.

Work mixed and mastered at NOTAM, with the help of sound
engineer Cato Langnes.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Harry and Pete

Just a little over a week left to see this remarkable show by Todd Bourret and Brian O'Connell!

In Harry and Pete, Todd Bourret and Brian O’Connell come together under three familiar constraints – space, time, and budget - to produce a body of collaborative work that explores the nature of dialog, debate, support, and influence. Limiting themselves to an established materials list, Bourret and O’Connell will use the DAC gallery as a studio in the week preceding the opening.

Through a material back-and-forth, Bourret and O’Connell employ their mutual interest in the manipulation of indexes to suggest further generative possibilities. Both artists use indexical procedures (e.g. photographic processes, prints, stencils, molds, etc.) to make effects of the past present. In making, recording, and displaying residues, their work provokes both memories of and projections into pasts as viewing becomes an act of reconstruction. In Harry and Pete, an expanding series of works traces material and conceptual transformations that reflect both deliberate responses as well as chance effects.