Wednesday, August 6, 2008
Memory Floor Plan
24' x 36"
Memory Floor Plan changes the architectural floor plan into an autobiographical archive of all the rooms I have lived in since birth. Using this two-dimensional diagram to succinctly re-present my nomadic lifestyle for the audience, I re-interpret the architectural / blue print language as a way to synthesize and make sense of my own personal narrative. The scale of the rooms are proportional to memory. The conventional diagrammatic language transforms the top-down view of this 16-bedroom house into a fictitious visual to re-tell my own story.
Wednesday, July 30, 2008
Hang ‘Em Up Roadie
1 Watt Radio Transmitter tuned to FM station, cassette tapes, tape deck, shelves, table with table cloth, door, cinder blocks, PVC and 1 Large Dunkin Donuts Iced Coffee 7/8 drank.
The radio station consists of a self-built transmitter with a 3/4-mile
range as well as over 500 recorded cassette tapes organized by a complicated arrangement based on the geographic origins of the tapes. For example, an album from a particular band is placed in the city/state/country in which the group or artist was born, speeches are place where they were recorded, animals, people and places where they live, and so on. (Side one of tapes with two different origins is the deciding factor) the only rule beyond that is that no tape is miscellaneous. The tapes include movies dubbed from television, the theater and DVD, books on tape, found tapes, recorded sporting events, television shows, animal sounds, books read into the recorder, documentaries, music, lectures, interviews ect. The shelves are arranged by a loose world geography. A shelf for a place does not exist until there is a least one tape to fill it. Adhesive labels demarcate the location of each shelf.
wax, spray paint, found objects, oil paint, acrylic paint, plasticine, flour, salt, baking soda, glass, dirt
Her background as a geologist finds an expression in her past and current art works. Rachel is focused on the delicacy and the details of natural forms and their ephemeral characteristics both on micro and macro levels. She invites the viewer to explore and situate himself in the environments she creates, an experience often parallel to the displacement she feels in foreign surroundings.
Memories of landscape
Mixed media (ceramics, wood, metal)
Landscape, especially in the southwest United States, is vast compare to the human scale and continuous in both space and time, surrounding the viewer during his visit. Despite the large scale and the continuous nature of a landscape, it often lasts in our memory as a collection of isolated scenes of both the broad and the detailed landform. Back home, we often try to transform those fragments of a landscape, as they exist in our memory back to the feeling we had outdoor.
In this installation I try to capture the perception of the southwest’s desert landscape as it is in my memory: snap-shots of terrain ‘islands’, scattered with no particular geographic arrangement, in a scale that inverts the proportions between the viewer and what he sees. The installation, rather than representing the true nature of the desert terrains, reflects more on the intimacy that one may feel with places he visited, as they are no longer part of a continuous environment. In that installation I invite the viewer to step into my collection of landscape memories where a “vast landscape” becomes an intimate experience.
Video of action on beach, sand, water
Video of action on beach, sand, water
Q: How does the idea of threshold affect your work?
A: It’s the surface that you break though. It’s the space in the door way, the line you cross from occupying one space to occupying another, it’s the pregnant moment. When I decided to make a work about threshold, I want to show the energy that can be released by going though, passing though it and then again there’s the thresholds that you shouldn’t pass though. You shouldn’t cut though your skin, you shouldn’t leave the surface of your body. I read Anne Rice’s The Tale of the Body Thief, [in which] a character has the ability to fly out of his body to leave his body and occupy someone else’s body. It was an agreed mutual act in some cases and in other cases it was definitely body theft. And that’s fascinating to me too, not taking someone else’s body but um, but to be able to step out of your own skin, to be able to will your essence to come out of your body, be able to move though space on the other side of your skin, to be able to look back at your self at that moment to see where your were and now where you are.
The idea of a “lifetime” or for my current thinking a “lifespan” has for a long period been an interest of mine. Death as the end of a lifespan in particular could be a useful concept for relating to my work. I feel that a piece that has a implicate death, is seen to be more alive before that death. The beach pieces involve such an interval of time.
We recently received this message from her, in a bottle:
"In my work I have been exploring the New York City water system as a specific case of human intervention in and use of the environment for urban growth. The ebb and flow of the shores of the reservoirs are intrinsically linked to the viability of the city, and shift with the city's use of water, 100 miles to their south. Massive feats of planning, organization, and engineering contend with the natural forces of geography, weather, and thirst."
Mixed media on paper
34" x 52"
Through sculpture, video, sound, drawings, and the collection of artifacts, Mayen Alcantara employs a number of strategies that explore an expanded notion of terrain. Her work ranges from a video mapping locations within the Providence Place Mall using a lexicon of body movements derived from bees to a 2500 square foot outdoor installation of solar powered led lights that “re-contours” the topography of a section of the Fidelity campus. The body of work reflects a hybrid form of artistic practice that straddles scientific inquiry and aimless wandering.
In 2003, Mayen Alcantara gave up a simple life to join the international jet set as the poster child for wanderlust. She is currently an MFA candidate at Rhode Island School of Design.
mixed media with screenprint
40"x 36"x 82"
Architectural identity and the city have been the focus and inspiration for my work over the past 5 years. Recently, my work shifted from two-dimensional fabrications of cities into three-dimensional constructions of facades, utilitarian structures and found objects. Recycling and destruction are similar processes through which materials have an opportunity for a second life. Using architectural detritus exemplifies the temporal nature of industrial materials and carries historical characteristics, which broaden narrative elements in the work. To regenerate life and meaning to the found materials, I playfully re-present them in context with their architectural origins while addressing the proliferation of industrial waste.
Tuesday, July 22, 2008
Welcome to the Future: Ulaanbaatar
1. Choose a city from from the barely developed world.
2. Destroy every notion of a localized self held within that city.
3. Replace all of this with a global identity.
4. Create a city ready for the future.
Friday, May 9, 2008
In the role of naturalists, architects and engineers, the artists in this show use the dialects of space and form as tools to launch their work towards critical issues regarding the structure and system of our environments. By drawing attention to the relationship between ourselves and our perceived coordinates, it is possible to create a fissure in the construction of what we take for granted.
In this exploration, dislocation heightens the awareness of the strangeness of our positions. The balance between imaginary and real, between human and natural, is exposed in its mutable states. Ultimately, the artists in this show transport us to places that are somehow familiar, yet blur the boundary between the natural and invented/constructed environment.
About the curators:
The works of Mayen Alcantara, Gabriela Salazar, and Martin Smick, approach the themes discussed above from multiple trajectories. Mayen has been employing a number of strategies that explore an expanded notion of what terrain is. Her work ranges from a video entitled "Alternate Kiosk" in which she's mapping locations within the Providence Place Mall using a lexicon of body movements derived from bees to a planned site specific, outdoor installation of solar powered led lights that "re-contours" the topography of a section of the Fidelity campus based on a re-imagined history of how the land has changed over contemporary and geologic time in response to use and natural forces.
In Gabriela's work, the desire to map the individual in a space or landscape is entwined with the systems that sustain and reshape the landscape, specifically the structure of Manhattan and the geology of the Catskills as linked by the New York City Water System. In her recent work, "Prop," she literally locates the body by referencing a human-sized object-furniture and bedding-while playing with the formal possibilities of implying landscape with a shift in scale.
Martin's work explores the area that exists between natural forms and the human-made. In "split-dimension," the artist juxtaposes the painted wood surface with floating matter. The dislocation that is created in this opposition of spaces and forms should make the viewer more aware of the strangeness of their position between these two places. Likewise "Interface," depicts a form that does not completely reveal itself as naturally or human made, invoking an uncertainty and dislocation on the part of the viewer.