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Paradox: The Body in the Age of AI
Oct 5, 2018–Feb 3, 2019
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Artists: Zach Blas, Brian Bress, Nick Cave, Kate Cooper, Stephanie Dinkins, Jes Fan, Claudia Hart, Eunsu Kang, Jillian Mayer, Sarah Oppenheimer, Siebren Versteeg

Curated by Elizabeth Chodos 

This exhibition explores the primacy of the human body as it’s poised on the precipice of a potential fusion with artificial intelligence. Inspired by the Moravec Paradox, the show looks deeper into the unconscious role the body’s sensorimotor habitat has in shaping our awareness, imagination, and socio-political structures. Society tends to privilege reason and logic because it is conscious and quantifiable. But beneath this thin “veneer …

Artists: Zach Blas, Brian Bress, Nick Cave, Kate Cooper, Stephanie Dinkins, Jes Fan, Claudia Hart, Eunsu Kang, Jillian Mayer, Sarah Oppenheimer, Siebren Versteeg

Curated by Elizabeth Chodos 

This exhibition explores the primacy of the human body as it’s poised on the precipice of a potential fusion with artificial intelligence. Inspired by the Moravec Paradox, the show looks deeper into the unconscious role the body’s sensorimotor habitat has in shaping our awareness, imagination, and socio-political structures. Society tends to privilege reason and logic because it is conscious and quantifiable. But beneath this thin “veneer of human thought” is a deeper, more complex knowledge system within the body. As technologists imagine the potentials of merging humans with AI, these artists consider the body’s elusive and underestimated power. Their various investigations across multiple media offer room to speculate about the exchange between the unconscious and conscious, and ask questions about what the body knows. Before we enter a generation where cyborgs are as ubiquitous as the internet, in a time when we still inhabit human bodies, the urgent questions to ask are what lessons can our mortal vessels teach us and what unknown paradox might we contain?

Exhibition on all three floors.
 

Exhibition Statement

Disembodied environments for interaction have proliferated with the emergence of social media, which have provided endless opportunities for social life to play out in virtual space, with no physical contact. This new setting has powerfully connected millions of people, but the disembodied nature of these interactions also facilitates dehumanization. The increased access to strangers across the globe fans the flames of xenophobic ideologies, nationalism, and us vs. them mentalities. The fact that technology’s abilities to connect and to divide are equally powerful is a paradoxical outcome of these advances that previous generations could not have foreseen. 

In the late 80’s, artificial intelligence and robotics scientists had promised huge developments that they then struggled to deliver. The Moravec Paradox was one the many challenges delaying progress. It showed that high-level reasoning and logic problems required only little computation, whereas basic sensorimotor skills like walking, or seeing, required enormous amounts of computational resources. CMU faculty, Hans Moravec, theorized that this paradox could be explained by the process of human evolution. He writes, “Encoded in the large, highly evolved sensory and motor portions of the human brain is a billion years of experience about the nature of the world and how to survive in it. The deliberate process we call reasoning is, I believe, the thinnest veneer of human thought, effective only because it is supported by this much older and much more powerful, though usually unconscious, sensorimotor knowledge.” This paradox reveals that there is fundamental information stored in the dialogical relationship of the mind and body; its unconscious nature belies its critical role and its levels of complexity.

At about the same time as the discovery of the Moravec Paradox, Donna Haraway was imagining the cultural implications of new technologies, and published her influential essay, The Cyborg Manifesto, in 1984. In her feminist text, the human/machine amalgam presents a theoretical framework where the category-blurring cyborg breaks down traditional social and political boundaries. Her essay offers a utopic premise that the cyborg might provide the conditions to imagine structures outside of the sexist, classist, and racists systems of patriarchy, capitalism, and colonialism. In it she writes, “Liberation rests on the construction of consciousness, the imaginative apprehension, of oppression, and so of possibility.” Since this essay was published, some of the dystopian influences of AI have been brought to bear through data surveillance, privacy breaches, and election meddling. Could the paradox in the age of the cyborg be technology’s equal role in liberation and oppression? 

Today, access to much faster computers, big data, and more sophisticated machine learning has allowed the AI field to overcome many of the challenges Moravec and his colleagues faced in the 80s. Unprecedented advances and applications of AI are causing a techno-social paradigm shift to rapidly take hold. Entrepreneurs like Elon Musk actively develop technological enhancements, through products like Neuralink, to embed software into the body that can merge humans with AI. Before the turn of the next century the cyborg may be the new status quo.

This exhibition explores the primacy of the human body as it’s poised on the precipice of a potential fusion with artificial intelligence. Inspired by the Moravec Paradox, the show looks deeper into the unconscious role the body’s sensorimotor habitat has in shaping our awareness, imagination, and socio-political structures. Society tends to privilege reason and logic because it is conscious and quantifiable. But beneath this thin “veneer of human thought” is a deeper, more complex knowledge system within the body. As technologists imagine the potentials of merging humans with AI, these artists consider the body’s elusive and underestimated power. Their various investigations across multiple media offer room to speculate about the exchange between the unconscious and conscious, and ask questions about what the body knows. Before we enter a generation where cyborgs are as ubiquitous as the internet, in a time when we still inhabit human bodies, the urgent questions to ask are what lessons can our mortal vessels teach us and what unknown paradox might we contain?

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Title 1, 2017, steel, concrete, tablet, custom software
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Zach Blas, Brian Bress, Nick Cave, Kate Cooper, Stephanie Dinkins, Jes Fan, Claudia Hart, Eunsu Kang, Jillian Mayer, Sarah Oppenheimer, Siebren Versteeg
About the Artists
Zach Blas

Zach Blas is an artist, filmmaker, and writer whose practice spans technical investigation, theoretical research, queer and feminist futurity, conceptualism, performance, and science fiction. Currently, he is a Lecturer in the Department of Visual Cultures at Goldsmiths, University of London. Blas has exhibited, lectured, and held screenings internationally, recently at the 2018 Gwangju Biennale; 68th Berlin International Film Festival; Art in General, New York; Gasworks, London; e-flux, New York; and Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven. His practice has been supported by a 2016 Creative Capital award in Emerging Fields, the Arts Council England, and the Edith-Russ-Haus für Medienkunst.

Zach Blas is an artist, filmmaker, and writer whose practice spans technical investigation, theoretical research, queer and feminist futurity, conceptualism, performance, and science fiction. Currently, he is a Lecturer in the Department of Visual Cultures at Goldsmiths, University of London. Blas has exhibited, lectured, and held screenings internationally, recently at the 2018 Gwangju Biennale; 68th Berlin International Film Festival; Art in General, New York; Gasworks, London; e-flux, New York; and Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven. His practice has been supported by a 2016 Creative Capital award in Emerging Fields, the Arts Council England, and the Edith-Russ-Haus für Medienkunst.

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Brian Bress

In Brian Bress’s photographic and video work, masked and costumed figures populate surreal, collaged and painted landscapes; his works are then housed in brightly colored, custom-built frames. His backdrops reference modernist and abstract works—Roy Lichenstein’s dot paintings, Matisse’s cut-outs, Cubist and primitivist painting of the early 20th century. His often-faceless characters resemble the cartoonish figures of children’s shows and cereal advertisements—at once monstrous and human, but appearing unwound, engaged in repetitive activities, and possessing slow, leaden movements. In Beadman (Parker)(2012), a clownish figure decked head-to-toe in colorful wooden beads jumps on a trampoline, while in Cowboy (Brian led by Peter Kirby)(2012), a man encased in a white foam cowboy suit scribbles childish drawings directly onto the glass screen. Bress is concerned with exploring fabricated space, and probing the relationships between figure and ground, painting and video, animate and inanimate.

In Brian Bress’s photographic and video work, masked and costumed figures populate surreal, collaged and painted landscapes; his works are then housed in brightly colored, custom-built frames. His backdrops reference modernist and abstract works—Roy Lichenstein’s dot paintings, Matisse’s cut-outs, Cubist and primitivist painting of the early 20th century. His often-faceless characters resemble the cartoonish figures of children’s shows and cereal advertisements—at once monstrous and human, but appearing unwound, engaged in repetitive activities, and possessing slow, leaden movements. In Beadman (Parker)(2012), a clownish figure decked head-to-toe in colorful wooden beads jumps on a trampoline, while in Cowboy (Brian led by Peter Kirby)(2012), a man encased in a white foam cowboy suit scribbles childish drawings directly onto the glass screen. Bress is concerned with exploring fabricated space, and probing the relationships between figure and ground, painting and video, animate and inanimate.

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Nick Cave

Nick Cave was born in Fulton, Missouri in 1959. He creates “Soundsuits”—surreally majestic objects blending fashion and sculpture—that originated as metaphorical suits of armor in response to the Rodney King beatings and have evolved into vehicles for empowerment. Fully concealing the body, the “Soundsuits” serve as an alien second skin that obscures race, gender, and class, allowing viewers to look without bias towards the wearer’s identity. Cave regularly performs in the sculptures himself, dancing either before the public or for the camera, activating their full potential as costume, musical instrument, and living icon.

Kate Cooper

Creating multimedia, post-internet work that tackles issues of digital technology, capitalism and the female body, British artist Kate Cooper challenges and appropriates the visual language of advertising. Incorporating live models and CGI fabrication into her varied practice, Cooper’s female representations move through digital space as touchstones of what the artist refers to as ”hypercapitalism.” 

Stephanie Dinkins

Stephanie Dinkins is an artist interested in creating platforms for ongoing dialog about artificial intelligence as it intersects the proliferation of knowledge(s), opportunity and our future histories. She holds an MFA from the Maryland Institute College of Art and is an alumna of the Whitney Independent Studies Program. Her artwork is exhibited internationally at a broad spectrum of community, private and institutional venues – by design. These venues include International Center of Photography, Herning Kunstmuseum, Spellman College Museum of Fine Art, Studio Museum in Harlem, and the corner of Putnam and Malcolm X Blvd, Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn. She is a 2018 Sundance New Frontiers Story Lab Fellow and 2018 Truth Resident at EYEBEAM. 

Jes Fan

About Jes Fan (lives and works in New York, NY) Jes Fan is a Brooklyn-based artist born in Canada and raised in Hong Kong, China. They are the recipient of various fellowships and residencies, such as the 2017 Joan Mitchell Painters and Sculptors Grant Recipient, Van Lier Fellowship at Museum of Arts and Design, Pioneer Works Residency, John A. Chironna Memorial Award at RISD. Fan has exhibited in the United States and internationally; selected exhibitions include Mother is a Woman at Empty Gallery (Hong Kong), Whereabouts at Glazenhuis Museum (Belgium), Disposed to Add, Vox Populi Gallery (Philadelphia), Material Location at Agnes Varis Gallery (New York). Fan holds a BFA in Glass from Rhode Island School of Design. 

Claudia Hart

Claudia Hart emerged as part of a generation of 90s intermedia artists in the "identity art" niche. She still examines identity, though now updated through the scrim of technology. Her art is about issues of the body, perception, and nature collapsing into technology and then back again. Hart is an early adopter of virtual imaging, at first using 3D animation to make media installations and projections, then later as they were invented, other forms of VR, AR, and objects using computer-driven production machines, all based on the same computer models. At the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, she developed a pedagogic program based on this concept - Experimental 3D - which is first art-school curriculum dedicated solely to teaching simulations technologies in a contemporary art-world context. She lives in New York and Chicago, works with Transfer gallery and bitforms gallery, and is married to the Austrian media artist Kurt Hentschlager.

Eunsu Kang

Eunsu Kang is a media artist from Korea. She creates interactive audiovisual installations and artworks using Machine Learning methods. Her work has been invited to numerous places around the world including Japan, China, Switzerland, Sweden, France, Germany, and the US. She has won the Korean National Grant for Arts three times. Kang earned her Ph.D. in Digital Arts and Experimental Media from the University of Washington, MA in Media Arts and Technology from UCSB, and an MFA from the Ewha Womans University. Currently she is a Visiting Professor of the School of Computer Science at Carnegie Mellon University.

Jillian Mayer

Jillian Mayer’s artistic practice is a means of processing how our physical world and bodies are impacted and reshaped by our participation in a digital landscape. Through videos, photography, painting, performance, sculpture and installation, my projects explore how technology affects our identities, lives, and experiences. Mayer explores the points of tension between our online and physicals worlds and make work that attempts to inhabit the increasingly porous boundary between the two. Her works and performances have been premiered at galleries and museums internationally such as MoMA, MoCA:NoMi, BAM, Bass Museum, MoMa PS1, the Contemporary Museum of Montreal and film festivals such as Sundance, SXSW, and New York Film Festival. 

Sarah Oppenheimer

Oppenheimer’s calculated manipulation of standardized spaces disrupts the embodied experience of spatial continuity, reorienting and clarifying the experience of the built environment. I-134442 plays with the choreography between the human body and architectural space by inserting architectural instruments into the gallery walls. This sculpture invites visitors to act as participants in a joint performance with the building and each other. 

Siebren Versteeg

Born approximately 17,000 days ago, New York based artist Siebren Versteeg uses digital technologies to create algorithms that conflate painterly abstraction with images often culled from the internet to produce, display, and interpret an ongoing array of visual permutations. He has studied at S.A.I.C, and UIC, Chicago, and The Skowhegan School, ME. Solo exhibitions include bitforms, NY; The Museum of Art at R.I.S.D; Hallwalls, Buffalo, NY; the Wexner Center for the Arts; Max Protetch, New York; Rhona Hoffman Gallery and The Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago. Group exhibitions include Smithsonian’s Hirshhorn Museum, Washington, DC; ESSL Museum, Vienna; Contemporary Museum, Baltimore; The Fabric Workshop, Philadelphia; and the National Museum of Art, Czech Republic. His work is in the collections of the Whitney Museum; Guggenheim; Albright-Knox, Buffalo; Yale University Art Gallery, CT; Hirshhorn Museum, Washington, D.C.; and more. Versteeg is currently an Artist in Residence with the Chemical Engineering program at the University of Texas in Austin. 

Symposium - Paradox: The Body in the Age of AI

Jan 28, 2019, 5:30–8:30pm

Salon, let’s be in conversation: Not Normative: In the Age of AI

Nov 8, 2018, 6–8pm

Guest Respondents: 

Jes Fan

Jes Fan is a sculptor whose interdisciplinary work is invested in the materiality of identity politics. 

 

Molly Wright Steenson

Molly Wright Steenson is a K&L Gates Associate Professor of Ethics & Computational Technologies at Carnegie Mellon & Senior Associate Dean for Research in the College of Fine Arts. Related book available online "Architectural Intelligence: How Designers and Architects Created the Digital Landscape".

 

Dustin P. Gibson 

In community with others striving for disability justice, Dustin is actively engaged in the struggle for freedom and liberation.

 

Please join us for the first Miller ICA Salon. We are excited to be in conversation with you. 

 

The first conversation will generate and evolve out of the current exhibition,  Paradox: The Body in Age of AI.

 

Our guest correspondants, Dustin, Molly and J will each be sharing points of reference and interest that they have.

 

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READ Research and References from our Guest Respondents.

The exhibition engages artists who transverse, locate and dislocate their (or other) bodies in relationship to Artificial Intelligence. AI has a design and breadth to be utilized and to impact all of us every day in different ways, it simultaneously exists as a tool for liberations (whos) and for oppressions (from who). We acknowledge AI as a system that is being built, funded and reinforced within a system and language that maintains that a normative exists. This same normative that is a control for maintaining a binary. Though, there are …

The exhibition engages artists who transverse, locate and dislocate their (or other) bodies in relationship to Artificial Intelligence. AI has a design and breadth to be utilized and to impact all of us every day in different ways, it simultaneously exists as a tool for liberations (whos) and for oppressions (from who). We acknowledge AI as a system that is being built, funded and reinforced within a system and language that maintains that a normative exists. This same normative that is a control for maintaining a binary. Though, there are also possibilities that AI can destroy the binary - that furthering technology can allow us to exist in the fullest possibility of ourselves. How would AI develop if there was not a normative? Where do you enter?  What is the spectral ever changing relationship between your body and technology? How does english language as a technology insist on maintaining binaries? How do we decenter supremacy, dominance and binaries when the english language still centers the violence  (non binary, non white, anti-capitalist, anti, racist, non normative)?  What interrogation needs to happen so that  the words of the potential of a liberating AI, access, diverse, public, do not remain tools of oppression?

 

The 2018/2019 Miller ICA Salons are a four-part discussion series co-organized by the Miller ICA and facilitator, Dana Bishop-Root, who is an artist living and working in Braddock, PA.

​The Miller ICA Salons are facilitated topical conversations that include the general public and guest respondents whose life practice explores the chosen topic. The guest respondents have been invited to do or share existing research or inquiry on each conversation topic. The research compiled by each respondent will be made available to the public through the Miller ICA website prior to the Salon, and the public will have access to it before joining the discussion as supplemental information. Research that is shared can range from reading lists to lists of people to follow, to podcasts. Three moderators of various backgrounds will be chosen for each discussion to bring a wealth of cross disciplinary ideas, perspectives and modalities to the conversation, creating a space where the public can access free college-level, seminar-style discussions on pressing issues. The goal of these Salons is to animate engaged  citizenship through conversation and exchange in free public space.

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Miller ICA Open House

Oct 14, 2018, 12–6pm

Miller ICA Open House

Sun., Oct. 14
12-6pm: Inflatable artwork by ClaireAshley outside the Miller ICA at CMU
1-1:30pm: Curator's tour of Paradox exhibit
Facebook event
 

On Sunday Oct 14th Miller ICA will be hosting an open house, featuring a free curator's tour of Paradox and a Inflatable Sculpture by Claire Ashley that will be up for one day only! The open house will coincide with the Keyword International tour.  
 

Keyword: International Map + Bus Tour
Sun., Oct. 14, 1:30pm

As a part of the Keyword: Internationalinitiative, Miller ICAis creating a map of participating artist-run spaces, curatorial ventures, and projects. CDCP will offer one-day-only tours of these spaces on shiny yellow school buses! Enjoy an afternoon with the heART of Pittsburgh’s creative community.
Seating is extremely limited.
Get tickets now >>

 

Reception Paradox: The Body in the Age of AI

Oct 4, 2018, 6–8pm

PARADOX: THE BODY IN THE AGE OF AI

Curated by Elizabeth Chodos 
Oct. 5, 2018 - Feb. 3, 2019

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event on all three floors

Upcoming Programs
CMU 2019 School of Design Exhibition
Feb 21–28, 2019
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  • Events

Friday, Feb. 22, 6-8pm: Reception

Join the CMU Design Seniors as they celebrate their accomplishments and share their most recent projects! The work featured in the show offers insight into the culmination of four years of study, pushing the boundaries of medium and method in the field of design.

Reception: CMU School of Design Exhibition

Feb 22, 2019, 6–8pm

Past
Carrie Schneider: Reading Women
Aug 18–Sep 9, 2018
  • About
  • Selected Art
  • Artists
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Work by CMU alumna Carrie Schneider ushers in the 2018/19 academic year. The exhibition, Reading Women, explores the power of reading, studying, and being absorbed by knowledge. In the artist’s words, the work “reveals a constellation of influences among my creative peers.” This series is a rhizomatic view of thinkers who contribute to the intellectual capital of the artist’s community. “It’s a man’s world,” as the saying goes, but this exhibition offers a countervailing proposition. The ideas in these books shape thought, and by shaping thought, form a world made …

Work by CMU alumna Carrie Schneider ushers in the 2018/19 academic year. The exhibition, Reading Women, explores the power of reading, studying, and being absorbed by knowledge. In the artist’s words, the work “reveals a constellation of influences among my creative peers.” This series is a rhizomatic view of thinkers who contribute to the intellectual capital of the artist’s community. “It’s a man’s world,” as the saying goes, but this exhibition offers a countervailing proposition. The ideas in these books shape thought, and by shaping thought, form a world made entirely by women. In repeating the same elegant and matter-of-fact gesture he exhibition forces us to consider what a world would look like if we were all reading women.

Exhibition on first floor.

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Carrie Schneider, this is the title, 2012–2014, 30x36 inches, Chromogenic print
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Carrie Schneider, 2012–2014, 30x36 inches, Chromogenic print
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Carrie Schneider, 2012–2014, 30x36 inches, Chromogenic print
Carrie Schneider
About the Artists
Carrie Schneider

Carrie Schneider received her BHA from Carnegie Mellon University, and her MFA from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago. She attended the Whitney Independent Study Program, the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, and the Finnish Academy of Fine Arts in Helsinki, as a Fulbright Fellow. She has received a Joan Mitchell Foundation Residency Fellowship, a Jerome Foundation NYC Film/Video Grant, and a Creative Capital Award. Exhibitions include the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago; the Finnish Museum of Photography, Helsinki; the California Museum of Photography, Riverside; Galería Alberto Sendros, Buenos Aires; santralistanbul, Istanbul; Kunsthal Charlottenborg, Copenhagen; The Andy Warhol Museum, Pittsburgh; and the Changjiang Museum of Contemporary Art, China, among others.

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Reading Women
Autumn House Press Reading + Reception

Sep 7, 2018, 6–8pm

6–7pm: Autumn House Press Reading featuring Adriana Ramirez, Sherrie Flick, Judith Vollmer, and Toi Derricotte
7–8pm: Reception

 

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event on first floor

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dot Gov
May 5–19, 2018
  • About

CMU 2018 Senior Art Exhibition

Works by: Olanrewaju Adetola, Melanie Anderson, Joshua Archer, Sydney Ayers, Anna Baldi, Katherine Cao, Adrienne Cassel, Hizal Celik, Kelli Clark, Matthew Constant, Christopher Copeland, Lucy Denegre, Andrew Edwards, Emily Giedzinski, Ella Hepner, Jenna Houston, Zaria Howard, Cindy Hsu, Youhyun Jang, Vanessa (Yookyung) Kim, Kasem Kydd, Summer Leavitt, Samantha Mack, Rebecca Marcus, Lisa Park, Faye-Belle Quinn, Sarah Stinson Hurwitz, Chantal Striepe, Gowri Sunder, Jack Taylor, William Taylor, Jessica Tsai, Charlotte-Alyss Weissglass, Kate Werth, Grace Wong, Morgan Rolland

Co-organized by the School of Art

"The threshold to the future has …

CMU 2018 Senior Art Exhibition

Works by: Olanrewaju Adetola, Melanie Anderson, Joshua Archer, Sydney Ayers, Anna Baldi, Katherine Cao, Adrienne Cassel, Hizal Celik, Kelli Clark, Matthew Constant, Christopher Copeland, Lucy Denegre, Andrew Edwards, Emily Giedzinski, Ella Hepner, Jenna Houston, Zaria Howard, Cindy Hsu, Youhyun Jang, Vanessa (Yookyung) Kim, Kasem Kydd, Summer Leavitt, Samantha Mack, Rebecca Marcus, Lisa Park, Faye-Belle Quinn, Sarah Stinson Hurwitz, Chantal Striepe, Gowri Sunder, Jack Taylor, William Taylor, Jessica Tsai, Charlotte-Alyss Weissglass, Kate Werth, Grace Wong, Morgan Rolland

Co-organized by the School of Art

"The threshold to the future has been hijacked. Bullies, bad language, and bellicose antics have set it on fire and outfitted it with a small film crew to capture everyone who dares to run through it. The noble feats of the willing are then broadcast live, in a non-narrative reality show for all to watch.

Try to recall that once-glittery future, when a networked commons democratized access and made way for many silenced voices. That promise, too, was hijacked, or perhaps handed over—and then weaponized—to weaken democracy itself. Now get offline: there are books to read.

As you consider the efforts within this modest catalog, know that this threshold is real, and that the present is tense for those who aspire to transform it. But also leave space for levity, empathy, and the abstract. Yes, the promise of the butterfly is dead, and in its place a whipworm persists, infects, and multiplies. The body politic is a host to horrors. Some say the cycle will last only four years, others say eight; a handful insist it will be longer. Either way, we clearly have work to do to survive it.

In this moment, is it fair to look into the void? Can we shop, browse, like, or swipe left any longer? Should we break plates or throw rocks? Did we usher in this darkness, or have these worms been spreading through us all along? Never mind. Quick—focus—your debt is accruing! There are jobs to gain, memes to post, relationships to record. Hey, did anyone read about the very good pope and the virtuous Federal Bureau of Investigation?

Stop scrolling, and look up.

Tomorrow is imminent, and in this simple truth there is a light. The end of complacency marks the starting line for action, for belief in oneself and others, for the potential of transformation. So we begin here, branded in fire, a generation engaging the future with eyes wider and minds wiser than decades have seen. Things fall apart, and from these pieces we rebuild. This is a cycle; the end of one era and the start of another. To those in these rooms, on these walls and screens, and in these spaces: you shoulder the burden and reap the benefit from this rebuilding. You are a turning point, and everyone is watching. "

- Charlie White, Regina and Marlin Miller Professor, Head of the School of Art 

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Clearance
Apr 19–25, 2018
  • About

Carnegie Mellon 2018 School of Architecture thesis exhibition 

Organized by the School of Architecture

Join the CMU Architecture Seniors to see the work of Thesis, the final year studio where architectural ideas are developed to operate critically within the discipline. The project installations illustrate challenging proposals that explore contemporary questions. During the exhibition, students will present their work for discussion and critique.     

"In this exhibition, the thesis students from the School of Architecture's Bachelor's of Architecture and Master's of Urban Design interrogate value - social, cultural, economic, ecologic - as it pertains to …

Carnegie Mellon 2018 School of Architecture thesis exhibition 

Organized by the School of Architecture

Join the CMU Architecture Seniors to see the work of Thesis, the final year studio where architectural ideas are developed to operate critically within the discipline. The project installations illustrate challenging proposals that explore contemporary questions. During the exhibition, students will present their work for discussion and critique.     

"In this exhibition, the thesis students from the School of Architecture's Bachelor's of Architecture and Master's of Urban Design interrogate value - social, cultural, economic, ecologic - as it pertains to contemporary spatial practice. Capitalist value influences not only the profession’s ongoing fascination with sanitized understandings of building in the sociospatial landscape, but also its (in)ability to consider mediums that offer alternative readings on the cataclysmic trajectory of the path that it carves.

Clearance provides a space for this necessary discussion, emphasizing the importance of a transhistorical conception of space as both the producer and the product of culture. It seizes the latencies such a view offers in shaping a situated understanding of the contemporary built environment. Further, the exhibition offers a clearance of processes, ideas, and practices drawn from this education. It gives a public face to the candid adaptation of architectural skills as a form of critical practice, cultivating a space for their expanded use in the new present."

-School of Architecture class 2018

B Arch: 
Nickie Cheung - Contesting Vacancy: Exploring the Multiplicity of Space in Wilkinsburg, PA 
Sinan Goral - Mycelium as a Remediator of the Anthropocentric Condition: Rethinking the Brute Force Implications of Progressive-Assembly with Organic Self-Assembly 
Nadia Islam - Transcending Bounds: Addressing issues of marginalization within and of the Muslim community through mosque design 
KelliLaurel Mijares - Subverting Borders: Examining Barriers in Urban Space 
Ivy Faye Monroe - Art Capital: Mapping Postwar New York City Art Culture 
Cesar Neri - Mexico 44: Speculative Futures of the Chiapas Highlands 
Trent Wimbiscus - Life at the Crossroads: Emergent Landscapes and the Cultural Politics of Automobility 
Kyle Wing - Oikonomikos / Polis: The new politics of living 
Francis Yang - Existential Schema: Exploring the qualitative design method

MUD: 
Ernest Bellamy - patch-works
Tamara Cartwright - Hotel to Home: Commoning the Princess Hotel
Yidan Gong - Commoning Gejiaying Village Amidst Metropolitan Wuhan
Paul Moscoso Riofrio - Public accessibility in contested spaces: Imaging a spatially and programmatically diverse approach to the waterfront in the Suburbio of Guayaquil, Ecuador
Chun(Pure) Zheng - Mobile Street Encroachment: Shared Living Space in Lilong, Shanghai
Lu Zhu - Incremental Community

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Immutable Stage
Mar 17–Apr 8, 2018
  • About
  • Artists

CMU 2018 MFA Thesis Exhibition

Works by: Shobun Baile, Alex Lukas, KR Pipkin, Gray Swartzel, Lee Webster

Co-organized by CMU School of Art

Created within the current political tumult, new works by the 2018 CMU School of Art MFA candidates examine pop culture fantasies of entertainment, capital, and collapse. Interrogating the documentarian impulse, Immutable Stage flattens a historical cycle of wealth and decay into the now, arguing that artifice is a tool with which to construct real narratives.

Shobun Baile, Alex Lukas, Everest Pipkin, Gray Swartzel, Lee Webster
About the Artists
Shobun Baile

Shobun Baile is an artist working in video, sound, writing, and sculpture. He works individually and collaborates with an evolving group of artists and writers. He received a BS from the University of Michigan, and was formerly a scientist working in virology research at Columbia University.  His work deals with the technologies and politics that exist at the intersection of architecture, space, and sound. He also makes music.

www.shobunbaile.com

Shobun Baile is an artist working in video, sound, writing, and sculpture. He works individually and collaborates with an evolving group of artists and writers. He received a BS from the University of Michigan, and was formerly a scientist working in virology research at Columbia University.  His work deals with the technologies and politics that exist at the intersection of architecture, space, and sound. He also makes music.

www.shobunbaile.com

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Alex Lukas

Alex Lukas was born in Boston, Massachusetts in 1981 and raised in nearby Cambridge. He has been exhibited internationally at commercial galleries, non-profit institutions and artist run spaces. His work is included in the collections of the New York Public Library, the Museum of Modern Art Library (New York), the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Spencer Museum of Art, the MIT List Visual Arts Center Student Loan Art Collection and the Flaxman Library at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. He has lectured at The Rhode Island School of Design, The Maryland Institute College of Art, University of the Arts in Philadelphia, Alfred University and The University of Kansas. Lukas has been awarded residencies at The Bemis Center for the Arts, the Ucross Foundation, AS220 and The Jentel Foundation. He received a BFA from the Rhode Island School of Design and, after stints in Chicago and Philadelphia, moved to Pittsburgh in 2015 to pursue a Masters of Fine Art degree at Carnegie Mellon University.

alexlukas.com

Alex Lukas was born in Boston, Massachusetts in 1981 and raised in nearby Cambridge. He has been exhibited internationally at commercial galleries, non-profit institutions and artist run spaces. His work is included in the collections of the New York Public Library, the Museum of Modern Art Library (New York), the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Spencer Museum of Art, the MIT List Visual Arts Center Student Loan Art Collection and the Flaxman Library at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. He has lectured at The Rhode Island School of Design, The Maryland Institute College of Art, University of the Arts in Philadelphia, Alfred University and The University of Kansas. Lukas has been awarded residencies at The Bemis Center for the Arts, the Ucross Foundation, AS220 and The Jentel Foundation. He received a BFA from the Rhode Island School of Design and, after stints in Chicago and Philadelphia, moved to Pittsburgh in 2015 to pursue a Masters of Fine Art degree at Carnegie Mellon University.

alexlukas.com

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Everest Pipkin

Everest Pipkin is a drawing and language artist from Bee Cave, Texas, whose work follows landscape as complicated by the advent of digital space.

Through examination of social spaces online, the physical infrastructure that supports digital technology, and the overlap of public and corporatized space, Pipkin questions the ease at which the commons- physical, social, and digital- are commodified. They produce printed material as books, chapbooks, and zines, as well as digital work in software, bots, and games. They also make drawings by hand, on paper.

Pipkin holds a BFA from University of Texas at Austin, are a MFA candidate at Carnegie Mellon University, and have shown nationally and internationally at The Design Museum of London, The Texas Biennial, XXI Triennale of Milan, The Victoria & Albert Museum, and others.

everest-pipkin.com/

Gray Swartzel

Gray Swartzel, born in Raleigh, works to navigate lived performativity and intersectional
identities as he interrogates the queer body in relation to the social construction of
motherhood. Using still and moving images, as well as installation, he reconstitutes the often-
untold episodes of his family’s matrilineage to make physical the conceptions of connectedness
and isolation. He holds a BFA from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, is currently
an MFA candidate at Carnegie Mellon University, and has shown nationally and internationally
at The CICA Museum in South Korea, The Andy Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh, The Museum
of Human Achievement in Austin, and others.

grayswartzel.com

Lee Webster

Lee Webster makes work about American mourning and the perpetual pop culture nostalgia machine. Working with and against documentary and narrative filmmaking, Webster resituates filmic structures as installation, looped video, and live performance to ask the viewer to look between frames to examine the complex yet mutable stuff with which we weave the stories that become our personal and social mythologies.

Webster earned her BA at Sarah Lawrence College and is a Master of Fine Arts Candidate at Carnegie Mellon University. She is the recipient of an Art Matters Foundation grant and a fellowship at the Kimmel Harding Nelson Center. Her work has been exhibited and screened at The Contemporary in Austin, TX, Microscope Gallery in Brooklyn, New York, the Portland Oregon Women’s Film Festival, as well as other venues.

leewebster.com

Faith Wilding: Fearful Symmetries
Jan 20–Feb 25, 2018
  • About
  • Artists

Faith Wilding: Fearful Symmetries the first retrospective exhibition of the influential feminist artist who played a key role in the formation of the Feminist Art Program at California State University in Fresno in 1970 and at California Institute of the Arts in Valencia in 1971.

Wilding was a major contributor to the historically significant month-long collaborative installation Womanhouse, sited in an abandoned mansion in Los Angeles in 1972, where she performed her highly celebrated work Waiting.

Faith Wilding: Fearful Symmetries includes a selection of works from Wilding’s studio practice spanning the past forty years, highlighting a …

Faith Wilding: Fearful Symmetries the first retrospective exhibition of the influential feminist artist who played a key role in the formation of the Feminist Art Program at California State University in Fresno in 1970 and at California Institute of the Arts in Valencia in 1971.

Wilding was a major contributor to the historically significant month-long collaborative installation Womanhouse, sited in an abandoned mansion in Los Angeles in 1972, where she performed her highly celebrated work Waiting.

Faith Wilding: Fearful Symmetries includes a selection of works from Wilding’s studio practice spanning the past forty years, highlighting a range of works on paper – drawings, watercolors, collage and paintings – exhibited together here for the first time. Taking up key, allegorical imagery in Wilding’s work, the exhibition focuses on themes of “becoming,” both the transformative event itself, and the threshold to transfiguration. This state of in-between-ness is articulated through imagery of leaves, the chrysalis, hybrid beings, and liminal circumstances themselves, such as “waiting,” the subject of Wilding’s two prominent performances Waiting and Wait-With.

Wilding’s work manages to be both delicate and harsh in its exploration of the pivotal moment between private revelation and public manifestation. Viewed together in this exhibition, her work makes a powerful impression about psychological and physical transition and transformation. In the depiction of the chrysalis and the embryo, for example, gestation is suggested, while in imagery of tears, wounds, and “recombinant” bodies, emergence and materialization are pronounced. The sum of these parts provides a unique account of how themes of emergence were central to Wilding’s articulation of feminism, and her own reflections on a childhood growing up in an intentional Christian commune. 

The exhibition will be accompanied by a publication featuring original writings by Irina Aristarkhova, Mario Ontiveros, and Faith Wilding.

Faith Wilding: Fearful Symmetries is a traveling exhibition curated by Shannon R. Stratton in collaboration with Faith Wilding. The exhibition originated at Threewalls in Chicago, Illinois in January 2014 with an archive, reading room and screenings curated by Abigail Satinsky. It has since been exhibited at: Rhodes College, Memphis, Tennessee (September 5 - October 4, 2014); Pasadena Armory Center for the Arts, Pasadena, California (September 26, 2015-January 3, 2016) and University of Houston-Clear Lake Art Gallery, Houston, Texas (September 2 - December 8, 2016).

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Faith Wilding
About the Artists
Faith Wilding

Faith Wilding is Professor Emerita of performance art at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, a graduate faculty member at Vermont College of Fine Arts, and a visiting scholar at the Pembroke Center, Brown University. Born in Paraguay, Wilding received her BA from the University of Iowa and her MFA from the California Institute of the Arts. Wilding was a co-initiator of the Feminist Art Programs in Fresno and at CalArts, and she contributed Crocheted Environment and her Waiting performance piece to the historic Womanhouse exhibition. Her artwork have been featured in major feminist exhibitions including WACK! Art and the Feminist Revolution; Sexual Politics; Division of Labor: Women’s Work in Contemporary Art; and re.act Feminism. Her writing has been featured in such books as The Power of Feminist Art, By Our Own Hands, The Feminism and Visual Culture Reader, MEANING, and many more. 

Wilding has exhibited nationally and internationally, including at the Reina Sofia Museum in Madrid; Centre for Contemporary Art in Glasgow; MoMA PS1 and the Bronx Museum of Art in New York; Museum of Contemporary Art and Hammer Museum in Los Angeles; University of California Riverside Museum of Art; the Singapore Art Museum; and many others. Wilding co-founded and collaborates with subRosa, a cyberfeminist cell of cultural producers using bioart and tactical performance in the public sphere to explore and critique the intersections of information and biotechnologies in women’s bodies, lives, and work, and she is the co-editor of Domain Errors! Cyberfeminist Practices! She is the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship, Creative Capital grant, and artist grants from National Endowment for the Arts.

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Assemblage
Dec 2–10, 2017
  • About

CMU School of Design Senior Thesis Exhibition

Works by: Adella Guo, Albert Yang, Alex Palatucci, Angee Attar, Anqi Wan, Benal Johnson, Bettina Chou, Carolyn Zhou, Chris Perry, Christie Chong, Deborah Lee, Deniz Sokullu, Emily Mongilio, Faith Kaufman, Gillan Johnson, Hae Wan Park, Hee Jung Koh, Jake Scherlis, Jasper Tom, Jeong Min Seo, Jesse Klein, Jessica Headrick, Ji Tae Kim, Julia Ainbinder, Kate Martin, Kevin Gao, Lily Fulop, Lily Kim, Lois Kim, Lucy Yifan Yu, Maggie Banks, Max Plummer, Maximilien Stein, Meredith Newman, Natalie Harmon, Natapitt (Popo) Sethpornpong, Nina Flores, Noah Johnson, …

CMU School of Design Senior Thesis Exhibition

Works by: Adella Guo, Albert Yang, Alex Palatucci, Angee Attar, Anqi Wan, Benal Johnson, Bettina Chou, Carolyn Zhou, Chris Perry, Christie Chong, Deborah Lee, Deniz Sokullu, Emily Mongilio, Faith Kaufman, Gillan Johnson, Hae Wan Park, Hee Jung Koh, Jake Scherlis, Jasper Tom, Jeong Min Seo, Jesse Klein, Jessica Headrick, Ji Tae Kim, Julia Ainbinder, Kate Martin, Kevin Gao, Lily Fulop, Lily Kim, Lois Kim, Lucy Yifan Yu, Maggie Banks, Max Plummer, Maximilien Stein, Meredith Newman, Natalie Harmon, Natapitt (Popo) Sethpornpong, Nina Flores, Noah Johnson, Raphael Weikart, Rufeng (Steven) Ji, Sara Remi Fields, Selena Norman, Sharon Yu, Tiffany Jiang, Tina Park, Treat Swarstad, Ty Van de Zande, Youjin (Juliana) Nam

Co-presented by CMU School of Design

The Senior Class of the 2018 welcomes you to Assemblage, a collection of work produced by the first class to complete the new Bachelor of Design program. Projects will be featured from all three design concentrations: Products, Communications and Environments. 

Throughout the new curriculum, we are often encouraged to think about the long-term effects of our decisions and how those decisions affect the larger environment around us. At the beginning of our process we ask questions that lead to more questions, talk to people who matter, and reflect on lessons learned from the past. We do all of this while considering aesthetics and form to go beyond the components of a traditional design education. 

This approach often leads us to help others speak in order to build empathy around the user’s experiences. To convey our intentions, we craft outputs, whether a carefully communicated message or thoughtfully crafted artifact, that respond to our research and reflection. However, as creatives, we often look to express and strengthen our own voice in our personal work. So, as design professionals, when do we speak and when do we listen?

In the show, visitors will experience a wide variety of works from deeply personal narratives, to community building projects, and even future oriented artifacts. In each piece, the designer’s presence is balanced with the message of the project, whether prompted in studio or self defined. Join us as we share how the Class of 2018 has developed their individual voices and built their own design practices throughout their four years at Carnegie Mellon University’s School of Design." 

- Senior Design Class 2018

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Designing the Computational Image/ Imagining Computational Design
Sep 23–Nov 12, 2017
  • About

Works by: Kristy Balliet / Kelly Bair (BairBalliet), Andrew Heumann, Dana Cupkova, Golan Levin, Benjamin Snell, Kyuha Shim, Zach Lieberman, Jürg Lehni, Carl Lostritto, Joseph Choma, Jonah Ross-Marrs 

Curated by Daniel Cardoso Llach

Designing the Computational Image/Imagining Computational Design showcases a selection of previously unseen or lesser-known drawings, films, and high-quality reproductions, as well as interactive software reconstructions, illuminating the twentieth-century emergence of new methods for design representation, simulation, and manufacturing linked to digital computers' capacities for information processing and display. Examining the formative period of numerical control and computer graphics technologies between …

Works by: Kristy Balliet / Kelly Bair (BairBalliet), Andrew Heumann, Dana Cupkova, Golan Levin, Benjamin Snell, Kyuha Shim, Zach Lieberman, Jürg Lehni, Carl Lostritto, Joseph Choma, Jonah Ross-Marrs 

Curated by Daniel Cardoso Llach

Designing the Computational Image/Imagining Computational Design showcases a selection of previously unseen or lesser-known drawings, films, and high-quality reproductions, as well as interactive software reconstructions, illuminating the twentieth-century emergence of new methods for design representation, simulation, and manufacturing linked to digital computers' capacities for information processing and display. Examining the formative period of numerical control and computer graphics technologies between 1949 and 1976, the exhibition traces their evolution from elemental geometric constructions into highly structured semantic models—and from government-funded research in universities into industry standards—shedding light on the social, technical, and aesthetic origins of present architectural production techniques. From blips on radar screens to perspectival representations and free-form surfaces, the exhibition uniquely reveals the confluence of technical innovations in software, data structures, and hardware with a new cultural imaginary of design, endowing computer-generated images with both geometric plasticity and a new type of agency as operative architectural artifacts.

The historical materials featured in the exhibition are drawn from the archives of institutions key to the development of these technologies, including Carnegie Mellon University; the Massachusetts Institute of Technology; the University of Cambridge, UK; and the Computer History Museum, among others.

Daniel Cardoso Llach is assistant professor in the School of Architecture at Carnegie Mellon University, where he teaches graduate and undergraduate architecture courses. His work explores problems ranging from social and cultural aspects of automation in design, the politics of representation and participation in software, and new methods for using data to visualize design as a socio-technical phenomenon. His recent research includes Builders of the Vision: Software and the Imagination of Design (Routledge, 2015), a book on the cultural history of computer-aided design and numerically controlled machinery, which examines how postwar technological projects shaped conceptions of design informing current architectural practices. He holds a PhD and an MS (with honors) from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and a BArch from the Universidad de los Andes, Bogotá. He has been a research fellow at MECS, Germany, and a visiting scholar at the University of Cambridge.

 

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Hadi Tabatabai: Transitional Spaces
Sep 23–Nov 12, 2017
  • About
  • Artists

Co-presented by wats:ON? Festival

Curated by Spike Wolff 

Through an elegant combination of drawing, painting and sculpture, Hadi Tabatabai's work describes a place that is as much an idea as a physical location. These compositions embody liminality: that is, they create a constant experience of sensations that exist at the limen, or edge, of perception. To bring about this state, Tabatabai has removed all possible distractions. Narrative and figuration, even figure and ground, have been excised from these delicate combinations of squares, rectangles and floating lines.

Tabatabai uses the physical nature of the materials …

Co-presented by wats:ON? Festival

Curated by Spike Wolff 

Through an elegant combination of drawing, painting and sculpture, Hadi Tabatabai's work describes a place that is as much an idea as a physical location. These compositions embody liminality: that is, they create a constant experience of sensations that exist at the limen, or edge, of perception. To bring about this state, Tabatabai has removed all possible distractions. Narrative and figuration, even figure and ground, have been excised from these delicate combinations of squares, rectangles and floating lines.

Tabatabai uses the physical nature of the materials to create subtle shifts within the surface plane.  The lines are delineated by slightly raised or lowered edges of materials to create works that straddle the realm of the pictorial and the sculptural.  Through the use of light and shadow, depth of field, and other optical obfuscations, the positive and negative space in the paintings becomes indeterminate.  His work evokes the relationship between what is imagined on the surface and what is actually rendered—in a sense questioning what is being “looked at” or “seen.”

For the past twenty years Tabatabai has devoted his attention to a very tiny area—an area that comprises the physicality of a line and functions as the transitional space between two entities. He views the ‘line’ as empty space without an agenda or allegiance; it is neither here nor there. Tabatabai believes that by paying attention to this tiny, subtle, yet detailed space, one is forced to turn away from the outside world and focus inward on one’s own interior space.

As art historian, Peter Lodermeyer, described the work in a catalogue essay, “You have to look closely, as close as possible, then steadily until you can see the seeing itself. Watch yourself as you look in order to perceive.”

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Hadi Tabatabai
About the Artists
Hadi Tabatabai

Hadi Tabatabai was born in Mashhad, Iran, in 1964. He immigrated to the United States in 1977 with his family, settling in California. Tabatabai received a BS in industrial technology from California State University Fresno in 1985 and a BFA in painting from the San Francisco Art Institute in 1995.

Tabatabai's work has been shown in London, Paris, Turin, Frankfurt, Bonn, Bogotá, and widely in the United States. He has had solo exhibitions at Danese/Corey and Anthony Grant Galleries in New York, Brian Gross Fine Art and Stephen Wirtz Gallery in San Francisco, Peter Blake Gallery in Laguna Beach, and Inde/Jacobs in Marfa, Texas.

His works are included in the collections of the Achenbach Foundation at the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, Berkeley Art Museum, (Berkeley, California), Delaware Art Museum (Wilmington, Delaware), the Contemporary Museum (Honolulu, Hawaii), Colby College Museum of Art (Waterville, Maine), the Blanton Museum of Art at The University of Texas (Austin), Davis Museum at Wellesley College (Wellesley, MA), Bowdoin College Museum of Art (Brunswick, ME), The Lannan Foundation, The Progressive Corporation Art Collection, the Werner H. Kramarsky Collection, Lloyd Cotsen collection, Gerald E. Buck Collection, the Estate of Agnes Martin and Luc Tuymans.

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Worlds Within
Sep 22–Dec 15, 2017
  • About

Works by: Rob Kesseler, Leopold and Rudolf Blaschka, Carl Ignaz Leopold Kny, Edwin H. Reiber

Co-presented with Hunt Institute for Botanical Documentation

Curated by Lugene Bruno and John Carson 

Worlds Within opens our eyes to the generally unseen world of plants and their internal architecture, textures, patterns and functions. It reveals repeating patterns in nature: generic structures and forms, which recur on a macro and micro scale.

The graphic impact of historical instructive botanical wall charts and models alongside monumentalized, hand-colored micrographs of seeds and pollen by Rob Kesseler creates a remarkable visual bridge between the …

Works by: Rob Kesseler, Leopold and Rudolf Blaschka, Carl Ignaz Leopold Kny, Edwin H. Reiber

Co-presented with Hunt Institute for Botanical Documentation

Curated by Lugene Bruno and John Carson 

Worlds Within opens our eyes to the generally unseen world of plants and their internal architecture, textures, patterns and functions. It reveals repeating patterns in nature: generic structures and forms, which recur on a macro and micro scale.

The graphic impact of historical instructive botanical wall charts and models alongside monumentalized, hand-colored micrographs of seeds and pollen by Rob Kesseler creates a remarkable visual bridge between the conventional purpose of scientific illustration as used in educational materials, and the aesthetic interpretation of scientific imagery in contemporary art. 

Worlds Within is a unique collaboration between the Hunt Institute and The Miller Gallery. The two venues, at either end of the Carnegie Mellon University campus, will be exhibiting work by British artist Rob Kesseler, alongside 19th-century botanical wall charts from Carl Ignaz Leopold Kny’s series Botanische Wandtafeln. Complementing the forms represented in these charts and photographs will be a selection of models of marine organisms made of glass in the 19th-century by Leopold and Rudolf Blaschka and made of glacite in the early 20th-century by Edwin H. Reiber. The glass models have been kindly loaned by the Carnegie Museum of Natural History.

The work in the Hunt Institute offers a more comprehensive comparison between the micrographs and the historical charts and models, while the Miller Gallery exhibition features a fuller range of Kesseler’s recent art work. Both sections of this joint exhibition celebrate the extraordinary aesthetic interrelationships between historically different methods of visually interpreting the wonders of botanical phenomena, which are not readily visible to the naked eye.

Viewers are encouraged to visit both venues to experience these stunning visual juxtapositions, in which the many complexities of representing plants are concentrated into mesmeric visual images and objects. 

ABOUT THE CURATORS 

Since 1996, Curator of Art Lugene Bruno has held a position at the Hunt Institute for Botanical Documentation, where she has immersed herself in the botanical art and library collection. She is responsible for all activities of the Art Department and curates the art collection and twice-yearly exhibitions in the Institute's gallery, including the triennial International Exhibition of Botanical Art & Illustration. She designs the exhibitions and companion catalogues; provides talks and tours related to collection items to the public and at botanical conferences; responds to research requests; and makes available for study selections of the art collection to visiting scholars, students and botanical artists. She is an honorary member of several botanical art and florilegia societies in the United States and abroad.  She is also a practicing artist working with gestural abstraction that is inspired by street markings, employing the mediums of photography and water-soluable graphite drawing. She is a member of the Associated Artists of Pittsburgh and exhibits her work regionally.

For the past 30 years, working in various media, John Carson has wittily and provocatively explored the interface between high and low culture and has sought to widen the audience for contemporary art practice. He has exhibited and performed internationally and has made works for television and radio. He is best known for performative projects such as I’d Walk from Cork to Larne to See the Forty Shades of Green (a 320 mile,14 day photographic journey) and A Bottle of Stout in Every Pub in Buncrana (a one day endurance test). From 1986 to 1991 he was Production Director of Artangel, a London-based organization presenting temporary artworks in public locations. He has been a visiting lecturer at various schools and colleges in Ireland, UK, Europe, USA, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. He taught at the National College of Art and Design in Dublin, Ireland and at Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design in London, England, where he was Course Director of the BFA program from 1999 to 2006. He was Head of the School of Art at Carnegie Mellon University from 2006 to 2016, and is currently a member of the teaching faculty.

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Causing A Scene
Aug 19–Sep 3, 2017
  • About

Works by: Edda Fields-Black, John Carson and Jennifer Keating-Miller, Larry Shea

Co-organized by The Center for the Arts in Society

Every three years CAS reinvents itself with a new themed initiative, where two coordinators, an artist and a scholar, structure a topic and select projects that engage in a focused exploration of that topic. We approached “Performance” as an expansive form, looking beyond the traditional relationship between an audience and an actor to consider how people performatively frame their lives through social rituals, athletics, digital capture devices, and everyday acts. The rubric of …

Works by: Edda Fields-Black, John Carson and Jennifer Keating-Miller, Larry Shea

Co-organized by The Center for the Arts in Society

Every three years CAS reinvents itself with a new themed initiative, where two coordinators, an artist and a scholar, structure a topic and select projects that engage in a focused exploration of that topic. We approached “Performance” as an expansive form, looking beyond the traditional relationship between an audience and an actor to consider how people performatively frame their lives through social rituals, athletics, digital capture devices, and everyday acts. The rubric of "Performance" has also been a fruitful springboard for CAS's ongoing consideration of how the distinctions between the work and place of “artist” and “scholar” might be reassessed and transformed through collaborative work. Directed by James Duesing, and co-organized by Wendy Arons of the School of Drama and Kristina Straub of the English Department, the CAS Performance Initiative (2014-2017) has drawn together faculty members who undertook three major projects: Ghosts in the Machines, by Larry Shea (School of Drama); Performing Peace in the North of Ireland, by John Carson (School of Art) and Jennifer Keating-Miller (Dietrich Dean’s Office and English Department); and Requiem for Rice, by Edda Fields-Black (History Department). The three-year initiative has involved speakers, workshops, panel discussions, and an evening of performances titled "Drama Queens." The projects have developed courses that included field trips to Ireland and brought in outside experts to engage with students at Carnegie Mellon and constituencies outside the university. This exhibition presents selections from the scenes that have been caused over the past three years by the CAS Performance Initiative.

The Center for the Arts in Society (CAS) is a collaborative research effort comprised of artists and scholars from the CMU faculty. Situated between the College of Fine Arts and of the Dietrich College of Humanities and Social Sciences, CAS aims to explore the role, place, and impact of the arts both in the workings of social power and in processes of social change.  CAS is dedicated to the exploration of the ways diverse forms of social and political engagement have shaped the history of the arts and might drive their transformation in the future. 

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Roll Call
May 6–20, 2017
  • About

CMU 2017 Senior Art Exhibition 

Works by: Elizabeth Agyemang, Isabella Katarina Antolić-Soban, Clare Burdeshaw, Bonnie Chan, Clair Chin, John Choi, Becca Epstein, Madeline Reed Finn, Ethan Gladding, Jarel Grant, Autumn Hill, Miranda Jacoby, Amanda Jolley, Maya Kaisth, Sandra Kang, Nat Rose Kent, Janice Kim, Bronwyn Kuehler, Kira Melville, Rachel Moeller, Natalie Moss, Miles Peyton, Bridget Quirk, Anna Azizzy Rosati, Gwen Sadler, Caroline Santilli, Kaitlin Schaer, Christine Shen, Charlotte Stiles, Joni Sullivan, Lauren Valley, Gerald Warhaftig, Nicole Yoon, Chengcheng Zhao

Co-organized by CMU School of Art

The Dilemma of the Now

The great modernist thinker and …

CMU 2017 Senior Art Exhibition 

Works by: Elizabeth Agyemang, Isabella Katarina Antolić-Soban, Clare Burdeshaw, Bonnie Chan, Clair Chin, John Choi, Becca Epstein, Madeline Reed Finn, Ethan Gladding, Jarel Grant, Autumn Hill, Miranda Jacoby, Amanda Jolley, Maya Kaisth, Sandra Kang, Nat Rose Kent, Janice Kim, Bronwyn Kuehler, Kira Melville, Rachel Moeller, Natalie Moss, Miles Peyton, Bridget Quirk, Anna Azizzy Rosati, Gwen Sadler, Caroline Santilli, Kaitlin Schaer, Christine Shen, Charlotte Stiles, Joni Sullivan, Lauren Valley, Gerald Warhaftig, Nicole Yoon, Chengcheng Zhao

Co-organized by CMU School of Art

The Dilemma of the Now

The great modernist thinker and architect Adolf Loos stated in his defining essay, Ornament and Crime, that “[t]he speed of cultural development is hampered by the stragglers.” In this pithy observation, Loos points to the truth that the future is made by those who live most in the present, and although we may imagine that we all share the same time period, we do not. This could not be more palpable than in art school, where propositions are perpetually arising and the future is in a continual cycle of germination and formation. However, this process no longer entails the creation of the new, because that idea’s very nature has been corrupted by capitalism’s desire to remake, remarket, and resell. Instead, what is occurring is the now—art’s counterpoint to progress: a formlessness that has no polish, no promise, and no utopian ideals. The now is the real that exposes the artifice of the new by sharing conceptual conclusions in advance of any form or figure. Art is no longer charged with solving problems, as much as it is driven to present them within and to contemporary culture. In this position, art can refuse to be either product or brand, resigning itself instead to mapping a trajectory of ideas and expressions across time. Art is thinking and theorizing manifest; it is a cousin of philosophy and a sibling to science, whose threads have exceeded the body and body politic to confront change through a series of radical proposals that have mapped humankind’s progression from the caves of Lascaux to contemporary conditions of post-humanism. With all of this in mind, I invite you to take part in the now, as this exhibition is a testament— a Roll Call—to the vision and voices of those who bear witness to the present and offer us a brief glimpse of tomorrow.                 

- Charlie White Regina and Marlin Miller Head of the School of Art.

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Hacking / Modding / Remixing as Feminist Protest
Jan 28–Feb 26, 2017
  • About

Works by: Addie Wagenknecht (Frank-Ratchye STUDIO for Creative Inquiry Fellow 2014), Anne-Marie Schleiner, Annina Rüst, Cat Mazza (CMU Alumna, SoArt 1999), Channel Two, Dara Birnbaum (CMU Alumna, SoArch 1969), Elisa Kreisinger, Kathy High, Lynn Hershman Leeson, Mary Flanagan, micha cárdenas, Morehshin Allahyari, Myfanwy Ashmore, Olia Lialina, Rachel Rampleman, Rachel Simone Weil, RAFiA Santana, Skawennati, Soda Jerk and VNS Matrix, Sondra Perry, and Suzie Silver (CMU Professor of Art)

Curated by Angela Washko

HACKING / MODDING / REMIXING as Feminist Protest is an exhibition of twenty two artists, designers and developers working at the intersection …

Works by: Addie Wagenknecht (Frank-Ratchye STUDIO for Creative Inquiry Fellow 2014), Anne-Marie Schleiner, Annina Rüst, Cat Mazza (CMU Alumna, SoArt 1999), Channel Two, Dara Birnbaum (CMU Alumna, SoArch 1969), Elisa Kreisinger, Kathy High, Lynn Hershman Leeson, Mary Flanagan, micha cárdenas, Morehshin Allahyari, Myfanwy Ashmore, Olia Lialina, Rachel Rampleman, Rachel Simone Weil, RAFiA Santana, Skawennati, Soda Jerk and VNS Matrix, Sondra Perry, and Suzie Silver (CMU Professor of Art)

Curated by Angela Washko

HACKING / MODDING / REMIXING as Feminist Protest is an exhibition of twenty two artists, designers and developers working at the intersection of art and technology to intervene on dominant voices in tech and popular culture, producing critical works that give visibility to women's perspectives and experiences often marginalized, ignored, or dismissed.

Angela Washko is an artist, game developer and organizer devoted to creating new forums for discussions of feminism in spaces frequently hostile toward it. Since 2012, Washko has operated The Council on Gender Sensitivity and Behavioral Awareness in World of Warcraft, an ongoing intervention inside the most popular online role-playing game of all time. 

Washko’s practice has been highlighted in Art in America, Frieze Magazine, Time Magazine, The Guardian, ArtForum, the New York Times and more. Her projects have been presented nationally and internationally at venues including Kiasma Museum of Contemporary Art (Helsinki), Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art, the Milan Design Triennale, and the Shenzhen Independent Animation Biennial. Her writing has been published in Creative Time Reports, FIELD Journal of Socially Engaged Art Criticism, Copenhagen University Peer Reviewed Journal, Neural Magazine, VASA Journal of Images and Culture, .dpi Feminist Magazine of Art and Digital Culture and more.

Additional support for Hacking / Modding / Remixing as Feminist Protest comes in part from the Frank-Ratchye STUDIO for Creative Inquiry, the CMU School of Art, and Conflict Kitchen.

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Focus
Dec 3–11, 2016
  • About

CMU School of Design Senior Thesis Exhibition

Works by: Ji Young Ahn, Zainab Aliyu, Leah Anton, Kate Apostolou, Rachel Chang, Lea Cody, Kaleb Crawford, Justin Finkenaur, Linna Griffin, Ruby He, Rae Headrick, Jeff Houng, Eileen Huang, Vicky Hwang, Jackie Kang, Jonathan Kim, Brandon Kirkley, Daniel Kison, Alisa Le, Zac Mau, Gabriel Mitchell, Jillian Nelson, Courtney Pozzi, Vivian Qiu, Temple Rea, Hannah Salinas, Diana Sun, Praewa Suntiasvaraporn, Albert Topdjian, Kaitlin Wilkinson, Julia Wong, Brian Yang, Lauren Zemering, Catherine Zheng

co-prersented by the CMU School of Design

The work featured in the show offers insight into …

CMU School of Design Senior Thesis Exhibition

Works by: Ji Young Ahn, Zainab Aliyu, Leah Anton, Kate Apostolou, Rachel Chang, Lea Cody, Kaleb Crawford, Justin Finkenaur, Linna Griffin, Ruby He, Rae Headrick, Jeff Houng, Eileen Huang, Vicky Hwang, Jackie Kang, Jonathan Kim, Brandon Kirkley, Daniel Kison, Alisa Le, Zac Mau, Gabriel Mitchell, Jillian Nelson, Courtney Pozzi, Vivian Qiu, Temple Rea, Hannah Salinas, Diana Sun, Praewa Suntiasvaraporn, Albert Topdjian, Kaitlin Wilkinson, Julia Wong, Brian Yang, Lauren Zemering, Catherine Zheng

co-prersented by the CMU School of Design

The work featured in the show offers insight into the culmination of four years of study, pushing the boundaries of medium and method in the field of design.

"Amidst the freshman year excitement of becoming designers, our class often gravitated towards social activity rather than schoolwork. As a reminder to stay focused on our work instead of distracting each other, we came up with 'Friends Only Cause Ugly Sketches,' a tongue-in-cheek motto that has helped us stay grounded.

However, as we progressed through the four years of our education, we all naturally began to refine our concentrations and iterate on what we each believe design to be. We were all able to individually develop a personal design focus, without losing sight of what ties us together as a whole.

This exhibition is a collection of our talents, interests, and values – our focus in design. Through this exhibition we hope to demonstrate not only our work and accomplishments, but also highlight the personal moments we’ve shared with each other, and how they have shaped our communal experience here at the School of Design."

- CMU School of Design 2017 Seniors

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Climactic: Post Normal Design
Nov 4–Dec 11, 2016
  • About

Works by: Sara Adhitya, Ahmed Ansari, Laurens Boer and Jared Donovan, Eva Brandt, Deepa Butoliya and works from the Speculative Critical Design class CMU, Tentative Collective, Beck Davis,Tricia Flanagan, Raune Frankjaer, Jennifer Gabrys, William Gaver, Joachim Halse, Thomas Binder, Eva Brandt, and Brendon Clark, Interplay, Terry Irwin, Tie Ji, Cyrus Kabiru, Tobie Kerridge, Onkar Kular, CMU HCI and robotics Create Lab, Golan Levin, Zoe Mahony, Mike Michael, Katherine Moline, Manar Moursi, NoamToran, Pedro Oliveira, Liliana Ovalle and Colectivo 1050º, Nestor Pestana, Matthew Plummer-Fernandez, Luiza Prado, Tristan Schultz, Srishti, Superflux, Laurene Vaughan, Alex Wilkie

Climactic: Post Normal Design focuses on design and activism surrounding issues of coloniality, crises of culture and race climate change in both the Global South and North. The curatorial premise of the exhibition …

Works by: Sara Adhitya, Ahmed Ansari, Laurens Boer and Jared Donovan, Eva Brandt, Deepa Butoliya and works from the Speculative Critical Design class CMU, Tentative Collective, Beck Davis,Tricia Flanagan, Raune Frankjaer, Jennifer Gabrys, William Gaver, Joachim Halse, Thomas Binder, Eva Brandt, and Brendon Clark, Interplay, Terry Irwin, Tie Ji, Cyrus Kabiru, Tobie Kerridge, Onkar Kular, CMU HCI and robotics Create Lab, Golan Levin, Zoe Mahony, Mike Michael, Katherine Moline, Manar Moursi, NoamToran, Pedro Oliveira, Liliana Ovalle and Colectivo 1050º, Nestor Pestana, Matthew Plummer-Fernandez, Luiza Prado, Tristan Schultz, Srishti, Superflux, Laurene Vaughan, Alex Wilkie

Climactic: Post Normal Design focuses on design and activism surrounding issues of coloniality, crises of culture and race climate change in both the Global South and North. The curatorial premise of the exhibition is to engage audiences in thinking about the ongoing moment of contingency and precarity that characterize contemporary life and challenge the design disciplines. Our exhibition, panel discussions, and workshops aim to present alternative models for design that broaden human capacity to understand and intervene in accelerated social and environmental crises. Climactic: Post Normal Design is the fourth iteration of a series of exhibitions and symposia led by Feral Experimental: New Design Thinking, shown at UNSW Galleries, Sydney, Australia, in 2014. 

Curatorial team: ­­Katherine Moline, Ahmed Ansari, Deepa Butoliya
Curatorium: ­­Katherine Moline, Ahmed Ansari, Deepa Butoliya, Laurene Vaughan, Brad Haylock, Beck Davis, Peter Hall
Provocateur: Cameron Tonkinwise
Co-organized by CMU School of Design

Additional support for Climactic: Post Normal Design comes in part from Carnegie Mellon School of Design.

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Architecture With and Without Le Corbusier + The Chapel of the Mosquitos
Aug 20–Nov 13, 2016
  • About

José Oubrerie architecte/ Atelier Wylde-Oubrerie 

Associate Curator Spike Wolff

José Oubrerie is Professor Emeritus at the Knowlton School of Architecture at Ohio State University. An internationally renowned French architect and protégé of Le Corbusier, Oubrerie was the project architect for the Saint-Pierre de Firminy Church, seeing the final design through to completion in 2006. Other projects include the French Cultural Center in Syria, the Miller House in Kentucky, and The Chapel of the Mosquitoes in New York. Oubrerie is Honorary AIA, author of the recently released Architecture With and Without LeCorbusier, and …

José Oubrerie architecte/ Atelier Wylde-Oubrerie 

Associate Curator Spike Wolff

José Oubrerie is Professor Emeritus at the Knowlton School of Architecture at Ohio State University. An internationally renowned French architect and protégé of Le Corbusier, Oubrerie was the project architect for the Saint-Pierre de Firminy Church, seeing the final design through to completion in 2006. Other projects include the French Cultural Center in Syria, the Miller House in Kentucky, and The Chapel of the Mosquitoes in New York. Oubrerie is Honorary AIA, author of the recently released Architecture With and Without LeCorbusier, and is currently visiting professor at the School of Architecture at the University of Illinois at Chicago.

Additional support for Architecture With and Without Le Corbusier comes in part from the Steven Myron Holl Foundation, the Knowlton School of Architecture, Carnegie Mellon School of Architecture and the Alan H Rider Distinguished Lecture fund. Special thanks to Frost Engineering (Waterjet Cutting) Cincinnati and NBBJ Architects, Columbus OH, Brian Polgar, Alex Mann, Cory Frost and Dustin Page, Benjamin Wilke, Mark O’Bryan, Romain Chazalon, Luis Burriel-Bielza Chuck Paros, Mark Pataky and Alicia Civile.

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Willful Wondering: Patricia Bellan-Gillen Drawings 2010-2016
Jun 11–Jul 24, 2016
  • About
  • Artists

Willful Wondering features large-scale mixed media drawings and prints by Patricia Bellan-Gillen.  The exhibition also includes a new installation by the artist.

“Somewhere in my brain, personal narrative mixes with fairytales.  Historical events intertwine with the imagined and the veil of nostalgia blurs the border between fact and fiction.  Archetypal imagery moves about in the temporal lobe with cartoon characters and recent news flashes picked from the Internet join the sagas of black and white television. My work uses these bits and pieces of visual history: the stones and bones of memory to suggest …

Willful Wondering features large-scale mixed media drawings and prints by Patricia Bellan-Gillen.  The exhibition also includes a new installation by the artist.

“Somewhere in my brain, personal narrative mixes with fairytales.  Historical events intertwine with the imagined and the veil of nostalgia blurs the border between fact and fiction.  Archetypal imagery moves about in the temporal lobe with cartoon characters and recent news flashes picked from the Internet join the sagas of black and white television. My work uses these bits and pieces of visual history: the stones and bones of memory to suggest a narrative and remix our stories.  These disorderly notions are exploited and employed in an attempt to engage the viewer’s associative responses and to jar the senses of wonder and wondering that lay quietly below the surface.” – Patricia Bellan-Gillen

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Patricia Bellan-Gillen
About the Artists
Patricia Bellan-Gillen

Patricia Bellan-Gillen was born in Beaver Falls, PA and currently lives and works in rural Burgettstown, PA adjacent to the West Virginia border.  She recently retired from Carnegie Mellon after 29 years as a professor in the School of Art.  In 2000 the university honored her with the Ryan Award for Meritorious Teaching.  In 2002 she recieved the Dorothy L. Stubnitz Endowed Chair in Art.

Bellan-Gillen’s paintings, prints and drawings have been the focus of over 45 solo exhibitions across the U. S., including venues in Washington DC, Nashville, TN, Las Cruces, NM, Albany, NY, Bloomington, IL Portland, OR, Grand Rapids, MI and Wimbledon/London, UK.   Her work has been included in numerous group shows in museums, commercial galleries, university galleries, and alternative spaces.  Venues have included: Hudson River Museum, Yonkers, NY, Chelsea Museum of Art, New York, NY,  The Art Museum at FIU, Miami, FL, Frans Masreel Centrum, Belgium, University Art Museum, Laramie, WY and the Tacoma Museum of Art, Tacoma, WA.  Upcoming exhibitions include a solo exhibition at The Media Center at Rice University and a second two-person exhibition at Solander Gallery, Wellington, New Zealand.  Active in the Pittsburgh art scene since 1977, Bellan-Gillen was the Pittsburgh Center for the Arts 1996 Pittsburgh Artist of the Year.

Bellan-Gillen is an alumna of Edinboro University of Pennsylvania where she received a B.S. in Art Education in 1973 and a B.F.A. in Printmaking in 1975. She did post-graduate work at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville and received an M.F.A. from Carnegie Mellon in 1979.

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Maximum Minimum in Unum
Jan 23–Feb 28, 2016
  • About
  • Selected Art
  • Artists

Works by: Ben Bigelow, Felipe Castelblanco, Peter Coffin, Ron Desmett, Maggie Haas, Institute for New Feeling (Scott Andrew, Agnes Bolt and Nina Sarnelle), Laleh Mehran, Shana Moulton, Zak Prekop, Paul Rouphail, Diane Samuels, Carrie Schneider, Jina Valentine, Rebecca Vaughan, and Gregory Witt. (Participating artists, all alumni of the Carnegie Mellon School of Art)

Curated by Josh Reiman and Suzanne Slavick

This exhibition features artists whose work eludes maximalist or minimalist classification. They probe or collapse extremes, whether ideological or aesthetic. Multiple dualities run parallel or intersect in their practices. Co-curators Josh Reiman …

Works by: Ben Bigelow, Felipe Castelblanco, Peter Coffin, Ron Desmett, Maggie Haas, Institute for New Feeling (Scott Andrew, Agnes Bolt and Nina Sarnelle), Laleh Mehran, Shana Moulton, Zak Prekop, Paul Rouphail, Diane Samuels, Carrie Schneider, Jina Valentine, Rebecca Vaughan, and Gregory Witt. (Participating artists, all alumni of the Carnegie Mellon School of Art)

Curated by Josh Reiman and Suzanne Slavick

This exhibition features artists whose work eludes maximalist or minimalist classification. They probe or collapse extremes, whether ideological or aesthetic. Multiple dualities run parallel or intersect in their practices. Co-curators Josh Reiman and Susanne Slavick selected works in which these seemingly opposing qualities — both separately and together — coalesce.

 

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Shana Moulton, The Undiscovered Drawer, 2013, 9:19, Material A, Material B, Material C
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Ron Desmett, 2015
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Peter Coffin, 2012
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Jina Valentine, 2015
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Felipe Castelblanco, 2014
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Zak Prekop, 2014
Ben Bigelow, Felipe Castelblanco, Peter Coffin, Ron Desmett, Maggie Haas, The Institute for New Feeling , Laleh Mehran, Shana Moulton, Paul Rouphail, Zak Prekop, Diane Samuels, Carrie Schneider, Jina Valentine, Rebecca Vaughan, Gregory Witt
About the Artists
Ben Bigelow

Ben Bigelow’s work explores the shifting identity of Americana and its relationship to technology through combinations of video, installation, performance, and photography. Venues for past exhibitions include: Kala Art Institute, Berkeley; City Limits Gallery, Oakland; the Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia; and the Harlem Factory Fest in New York City. In 2014, he lectured in the Department of Art & Art History at Stanford University and in 2015 was a faculty member in the SIM Department at the Massachusetts College of Art & Design. He has an MFA from Stanford University and a BFA (2008) from Carnegie Mellon University. Originally from Los Angeles, he currently lives and works in Brooklyn, New York. http://benbigelow.com

Ben Bigelow’s work explores the shifting identity of Americana and its relationship to technology through combinations of video, installation, performance, and photography. Venues for past exhibitions include: Kala Art Institute, Berkeley; City Limits Gallery, Oakland; the Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia; and the Harlem Factory Fest in New York City. In 2014, he lectured in the Department of Art & Art History at Stanford University and in 2015 was a faculty member in the SIM Department at the Massachusetts College of Art & Design. He has an MFA from Stanford University and a BFA (2008) from Carnegie Mellon University. Originally from Los Angeles, he currently lives and works in Brooklyn, New York. http://benbigelow.com

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Felipe Castelblanco

Felipe Castelblanco is a multidisciplinary artist working at the intersection of socially engaged and new media art. A 2013 MFA alumnus of Carnegie Mellon, he attended Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in 2012. International venues for his work have included: the Royal Academy of Arts, London; the San Diego Museum of Art; FAD Festival in Belo Horizonte, Brazil; FIVAC Festival in Camagüey, Cuba; PRACTICE Gallery in Philadelphia; the Valenzuela Klenner Gallery in Bogotá, Colombia; and in storefronts and street corners throughout the United States. Castelblanco has been the recipient of the 2013 John Fergus Post MFA Fellowship at The Ohio State University in Columbus, the 2014 Starr Fellowship at the Royal Academy in London, and in 2015 served as a Cultural Emissary in the Philippines with U.S State Department and U.S Embassy in Manila through the American Arts Incubator exchange program. www.felipecastelblanco.com

Felipe Castelblanco is a multidisciplinary artist working at the intersection of socially engaged and new media art. A 2013 MFA alumnus of Carnegie Mellon, he attended Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in 2012. International venues for his work have included: the Royal Academy of Arts, London; the San Diego Museum of Art; FAD Festival in Belo Horizonte, Brazil; FIVAC Festival in Camagüey, Cuba; PRACTICE Gallery in Philadelphia; the Valenzuela Klenner Gallery in Bogotá, Colombia; and in storefronts and street corners throughout the United States. Castelblanco has been the recipient of the 2013 John Fergus Post MFA Fellowship at The Ohio State University in Columbus, the 2014 Starr Fellowship at the Royal Academy in London, and in 2015 served as a Cultural Emissary in the Philippines with U.S State Department and U.S Embassy in Manila through the American Arts Incubator exchange program. www.felipecastelblanco.com

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Peter Coffin

Peter Coffin has mounted over 30 solo museum and gallery exhibitions internationally at venues such as: the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington D.C.; the Center d’art Contemporain d’Ivry, France; The Barbican, London; Le Centre d’Art Contemporain de Fribourg, Switzerland; Palais de Tokyo, Paris; the Horticultural Society of New York; and Le Confort Moderne, Poitier. His work has been included in art biennials in Berlin, Belgrade, Liverpool, Moscow, New York, Trentino and Yokohama and in numerous museums such as: the Singapore Art Museum; Schirn Kunsthalle, Frankfurt; El Centro Andaluz de Arte Contemporáneo, Seville, Spain; Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, San Francisco; The Geffen Contemporary at MoCA, Los Angeles; Boston Museum of Fine Arts; Nouveau Musée National de Monaco, Monaco; The Israel Museum, Jerusalem; the CAPC musée d’art contemporain de Bordeaux, France; Saatchi Gallery, London; Hessel Museum of Art, Annandale-On-Hudson, NY; Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York; Museo d’Arte Contemporanea, Rome; and Tate Britain, London among others. Peter Coffin was born in Berkeley, California in 1972. He studied at the University of California, Davis and is a 2000 MFA alumnus of Carnegie Mellon. He lives and works in New York City.  http://petercoffinstudio.com

Ron Desmett

Ron Desmett is a contemporary sculptor using molten black glass to disturb the canons of craft. Black glass is his holy grail. Subverting a material known for its sleek beauty and transparency, he creates slumped, dark and earthy forms. Desmett is a descendant of Belgian coal miners relocated in the diaspora of migrants to the mines of Clearfield, Pennsylvania where he was born in 1948. He has received awards from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, including Pennsylvania Artist of the Year 2013-2014. In 2010, he was Artist in Residence at the Tacoma Museum and has also been a resident artist at Artpark in Lewiston, NY and the Contemporary Art Center at Wheaton Village, Millville, NJ. His works are in the permanent collections of the Renwick Galleries of the Smithsonian Institution, the Carnegie Museum of Art, the Westmoreland Museum, the Tacoma Museum of Glass, the American Museum of Glass at Wheaton Village and the Corning Museum of Glass in New York. http://www.rondesmett.com

Maggie Haas

Maggie Haas is an artist and writer based in San Francisco. She holds an MFA from California College of the Arts, and a BFA (2003) from Carnegie Mellon University. Haas has exhibited at venues including the Lab, San Francisco; Arttransponder, Berlin; Slow, Chicago; and the Royal Nonesuch Gallery, Oakland. She is Featured Artist Editor at Little Paper Planes, and coproduces the interview series LPP In Conversation for Art Practical.  http://www.maggiehaas.net

The Institute for New Feeling

The Institute for New Feeling is a research clinic committed to the development of new ways of feeling, and ways of feeling new. The Institute is the inventor of its own authority, borrowing from the language of corporate branding and new age healing, as well as that of mainstream medicine, therapy, health and beauty. It’s work takes the form of treatments, therapies, retreats and wellness products that acknowledge the contemporary digital age’s modes of production, consumption, and distribution of goods and services.

Founded by Scott Andrew, Agnes Bolt, and Nina Sarnelle, IfNf’s physical existence is regularly shifting but its long term plan is to open a permanent space/spa in Los Angeles. 

The Institute for New Feeling has recently exhibited at Recess, NY; Southern Exposure, San Francisco; Thank You For Coming and Eastside International, Los Angeles; Open Engagement Conference, Queens Museum of Art, NY; Spaces, Cleveland; Vox Populi, Philadelphia; and Threewalls, Chicago, among other venues. IfNf has been featured on Clocktower Radio and KChung Radio and their work has recently been reviewed in Art in America, Huffington Post, Animal NY, Fader, Hyperallergic, ArtFCity, and ArtHopper. http://institutefornewfeeling.com

Laleh Mehran

Laleh Mehran constructs elaborate artworks focused on complex intersections between politics, religion, and science. The progeny of Iranian scientists, Mehran’s relationship to these issues is necessarily complex, even more so given today’s political climate in which certain views can have extreme consequences. Her research, often modeled on and about the very ideas of science and technology, takes advantage of their cultural importance in order to articulate a set of ideas that require precisely these kinds of mediations from both political and religious intolerance. Considerations that shape her work are as veiled as they are explicit, as personal as they are political, and as critical as they are tolerant. Mehran received her MFA in 1997 from Carnegie Mellon. Her work has been shown individually and as part of collectives in venues including: The International Symposium on Electronic Art, United Arab Emirates; National Taiwan Museum of Fine Arts; Electronic Language International Festival, Brazil; Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art; The Georgia Museum of Art; The Andy Warhol Museum; Denver Art Museum; Biennial of the Americas at the Museum of Contemporary Art Denver; 404 International Festival of Art & Technology, Argentina; Next 5 Minutes 4 Tactical Media Festival, Netherlands; and the European Media Arts Festival, Germany. Mehran is an Associate Professor and Graduate Director in Emergent Digital Practices at the University of Denver. http://lalehmehran.com

Shana Moulton

Shana Moulton creates evocative and oblique narratives in video and performance works. Combining an unsettling, wry humor with a low-tech, Pop sensibility, she plays a character whose interactions with the everyday world are both mundane and surreal, in a domestic sphere just slightly askew. As her protagonist navigates the enigmatic and possibly magical properties of her home decor, Moulton initiates relationships with objects and consumer products that are at once banal and uncanny. Shana Moulton was born in 1976. She studied at the University of California, Berkeley and Carnegie Mellon University where she received her MFA in 2004. Moulton has also attended the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in Maine and studied at De Ateliers in Amsterdam. Her video work has been screened and exhibited at international venues including: Art in General, New York; Migros Museum, Zurich; Contemporary Museum of Art, Uppsala; Rencontres internationales Paris/Berlin; Aurora, Edinburgh; Dark Light Festival, Dublin: Impakt Festival, Utrecht; Internationale Kurzfilmtage, Oberhausen; Broadway 1602, New York; and Gimpel Fils, London. Moulton has performed at venues including The Kitchen, Electronic Arts Intermix, PERFORMA 09 and Socrates Sculpture Park in New York; Aurora Picture Show, Houston; and The Bluecoat, Liverpool, among others. Moulton lives and works in Brooklyn, New York and teaches at Kunstakademie in Muenster, Germany. http://www.shanamoulton.info

Paul Rouphail

Paul Rouphail is a painter who fuses architectural history, American pop
iconography, and linguistic turns of phrase. His works have been exhibited
at the The Gelman Gallery at the Rhode Island School of Design, Microscope
Gallery in Brooklyn and The Chautauqua Institution, among others. Rouphail’s work has been been reviewed online and in print, including in New American Paintings (Issue 122), The Chautauqua Daily (Howard Halle), and Gestalten Press’ Imagine Architecture (Lukas Feireiss and Robert Klanten). Rouphail is currently an MFA candidate at the Rhode Island School of Design. http://www.paulrouphail.com

Zak Prekop

Zak Prekop was born in 1979 in Chicago and currently lives and works in Brooklyn. He has shown his work in solo exhibitions at: Essex Street, New York; Shane Campbell Gallery, Chicago; Thomas Duncan Gallery, Los Angeles; Hagiwara Projects, Tokyo; Galería Agustina Ferreyra, San Juan; Galería Marta Cervera, Madrid; and in Art Statements at Art Basel with Harris Lieberman Gallery. His work was included in the group exhibitions Painter Painter at The Walker Art Center, Minneapolis; The Pittsburgh Biennial at the Carnegie Museum of Art; The Prague Biennial, and Greater New York 2010 at MoMA PS1, New York. His work is in the permanent collections of the Walker Art Center and the Carnegie Museum of Art.  thomasduncangallery.com/index.php?/project/zak-prekop

Diane Samuels

Diane Samuels is a visual artist with studio and public art practices. She is also co-founder of City of Asylum Pittsburgh that provides sanctuary to writers in exile. Her exhibitions include those at: the Andy Warhol Museum, the Carnegie Museum of Art, the Mattress Factory Museum in Pittsburgh; the Leo Baeck Institute and the Center for Book Arts, New York; the Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum in Connecticut; the Contemporary Arts Center of Cincinnati; the Municipal Museum of Art in Gyor, Hungary; the Synagogue Center in Trnava, Slovakia; the Bernheimer Realschule in Buttenhausen, Germany; and the Czech Museum of Fine Arts.

In 2013 she was recipient of a Rockefeller Bellagio Residency in Italy and an American Academy in Jerusalem Fellowship. Samuels holds both BFA and MFA degrees from Carnegie Mellon University, a diploma from the Institute in Arts Administration at Harvard University and has received honorary doctorates from Seton Hill University and Chatham University. http://www.dianesamuels.net
 

Carrie Schneider

Carrie Schneider was born in Chicago in 1979 and is currently a Brooklyn-based artist working in photography, film and video installation. Her work has been shown widely at international arts institutions, including: the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago; The Finnish Museum of Photography, Helsinki; Gallery 44, Toronto; Fotogalleriet, Oslo; the Mattress Factory, Pittsburgh; Trondheim Academy of Fine Art, Norway; The Andy Warhol Museum, Pittsburgh; Kunsthal Charlottenborg, Copenhagen; The Kitchen, New York; Galería Alberto Sendrós, Buenos Aires; and the California Museum of Photography, Riverside. She received a Jerome Foundation NYC Film, Video, and Digital Production Grant, a residency fellowship from the Joan Mitchell Foundation, and a 2015 Creative Capital Award. She has also participated in residencies with the artist Rineke Dijkstra and with her longtime collaborator, choreographer Kyle Abraham. Schneider earned her BHA in Fine Arts and Psychology in 2001 from Carnegie Mellon University and her MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. She attended the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, the Finnish Kuvataideakatemia (Academy of Fine Arts), Helsinki, as a Fulbright Fellow, and the Whitney Museum of American Art Independent Study Program. http://carrieschneider.net

Jina Valentine

Jina Valentine is an Assistant Professor of Art at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She received her MFA from Stanford University and a BFA in 2001 from Carnegie Mellon. Her work has been exhibited widely at venues including: The Drawing Center, Marlborough Gallery, and the Studio Museum in Harlem, all in New York. She has been an artist in residence at The Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in Maine, Sculpture Space in New York, Santa Fe Art Institute in New Mexico, and will be in residence at Project Row Houses in Houston, the Frans Masereel Centrum in Brussels, and the Joan Mitchell Center in Los Angeles in 2016. She is currently a fellow of the Open Sessions program at The Drawing Center, and is consulting curator for Elsewhere Museum’s Southern Constellation Series residency in Greensboro, North Carlina. Black Lunch Table, a collaborative project co-founded at Skowhegan in 2005 with New York based artist Heather Hart, was awarded a 2016 Creative Capital Fellowship and a Digital Innovation Fellowship through the Institute for Arts and Humanities at UNC. www.jinavalentine.com

Rebecca Vaughan

Rebecca Vaughan received her BFA cum laude in Sculpture at the University of Colorado, Boulder and an MFA in 2001 at Carnegie Mellon. She is currently the Program Director at the Art Students League of Denver and former Chair of Fine Arts and Head of Sculpture at the Rocky Mountain College of Art + Design. She held a residency as a Resource Artist at Redline Denver from 2011-2013. Prior positions included: working as project manager for Ann Hamilton’s 2008 Circles of Operformance; assisting in other projects in Dialog: City, a city-wide arts event for the Democratic National Convention in Denver; serving as an Artist-Teacher for the Vermont College of Fine Art; and teaching as a visiting instructor at Bowling Green State University in Ohio. http://www.rebeccavaughan.com

Gregory Witt

Gregory Witt grew up in Indiana, where he completed a BFA in Sculpture at Indiana University in 2005. Since 2006, he has been living and making art in Pittsburgh, where he earned his MFA from Carnegie Mellon University in 2009. He has exhibited nationally, most recently at Brown University’s Bell Gallery and the University of West Virginia’s Mesaros Gallery. http://gregorywitt.com

Aftersound: Frequency, Attack, Return
Aug 21–Nov 22, 2015
  • About
  • Artists

Curated by Melissa Ragona and Margaret Cox 

Sound has entered contemporary art in profound and unexpected ways. This exhibition explores sound’s infiltration into contemporary discussions of aural and visual culture, with a particular focus on sound visualization, the physics of sound, political uses of sound, i.e. sonic warfare and DIY, as well as the resurgence of neo-metaphysical experiments with sound as a portal to new sensory experiences.

Works by: Paul DeMarinis, Michael Johnsen, Victoria Keddie, Caroline Record, Marina Rosenfeld, Jesse Stiles, Sergei Tcherepnin, and more

Pioneers of Sound + Archive: Maryanne Amacher, Cathy Berberian, John Cage, …

Curated by Melissa Ragona and Margaret Cox 

Sound has entered contemporary art in profound and unexpected ways. This exhibition explores sound’s infiltration into contemporary discussions of aural and visual culture, with a particular focus on sound visualization, the physics of sound, political uses of sound, i.e. sonic warfare and DIY, as well as the resurgence of neo-metaphysical experiments with sound as a portal to new sensory experiences.

Works by: Paul DeMarinis, Michael Johnsen, Victoria Keddie, Caroline Record, Marina Rosenfeld, Jesse Stiles, Sergei Tcherepnin, and more

Pioneers of Sound + Archive: Maryanne Amacher, Cathy Berberian, John Cage, George Crumb, Karlheinz Stockhausen, Iannis Xenakis, and more

Featured Visual Scores: Roger Beebe, Lin Culbertson, Luca Forcucci, Kraig Grady, Scott Kiernan, Jonna Kina, Zach Layton, Golan Levin, Eric Normand, Eric Raynaud, Dmitry Shubin, Matt Wellins and more in the gallery + online

Additional support for Aftersound comes in part from The Frank-Ratchye Studio for Creative Inquiry. Funding for the VIA 2015: Marina Rosenfeld Site-specific event comes from Ideate, and Listening Spaces media initiative from the Center for Arts in Society. Special thanks to the Arts Library and Special Collections, Carnegie Mellon University Libraries with a very special thanks to Mo Dawley, Art and Drama Librarian, Mary Catharine Johnsen, Senior Librarian, Special Collections Librarian for Fine & Rare Book Room, Liaison Librarian to the School of Design; and Kristin Heath, Music and Catalog Librarian, Liaison Librarian to the School of Music.

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John Cage, Paul DeMarinis, Michael Johnsen, Victoria Keddie, Caroline Record, Marina Rosenfeld, Jesse Stiles, Sergei Tcherepnin
About the Artists
John Cage
  John Cage (born, 1912 in LA, California- died, 1992 in New York) is among history’s most influential artistic innovators, who broadened the definitions of music, sound, and most importantly, silence. Experimenting with notions of readymade sound, chance operations, duration, indeterminacy, and numerous conceptual innovations, Cage changed the face of Western music and sound compositional processes and performance. Working with his long time professional and romantic partner, Merce Cunningham, he also led inventive forays into dance, theater, film, and many other aspects of both performance and visual art. By rethinking conventional instruments, he transformed the use of pianos, into sounding objects called “prepared pianos” in which he placed objects between the strings in order to produce percussive and otherworldly sound effects. Likewise, he inspired generations to position radios, record players, and tape recorders at the center of their practices, to see the “electronic” as new kind of time-based media in sound and performing arts. By placing a print of the visual score for his multi-channel tape work, Fontana Mix (1958) at the center of our exhibition, we are pointing to the vast influence Cage has had upon generations of artists, especially those featured in our current exhibition, exploring, as Cage did the edges of ...

 

John Cage (born, 1912 in LA, California- died, 1992 in New York) is among history’s most influential artistic innovators, who broadened the definitions of music, sound, and most importantly, silence. Experimenting with notions of readymade sound, chance operations, duration, indeterminacy, and numerous conceptual innovations, Cage changed the face of Western music and sound compositional processes and performance. Working with his long time professional and romantic partner, Merce Cunningham, he also led inventive forays into dance, theater, film, and many other aspects of both performance and visual art. By rethinking conventional instruments, he transformed the use of pianos, into sounding objects called “prepared pianos” in which he placed objects between the strings in order to produce percussive and otherworldly sound effects. Likewise, he inspired generations to position radios, record players, and tape recorders at the center of their practices, to see the “electronic” as new kind of time-based media in sound and performing arts. By placing a print of the visual score for his multi-channel tape work, Fontana Mix (1958) at the center of our exhibition, we are pointing to the vast influence Cage has had upon generations of artists, especially those featured in our current exhibition, exploring, as Cage did the edges of temporality across audio arts. 


Read more about the numerous exhibitions, performances, lectures and writings by John Cage here: johncage.org/

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Paul DeMarinis

Paul DeMarinis (Stanford, California) has been making noises with wires, batteries and household appliances since the age of four. One of the first artists to use microcomputers, DeMarinis has toiled since the 1970's in the areas of interactive software, synthetic speech, noise and obsolete or impossible media. He has created installations, performances and public artworks throughout North America, Europe, Australia and Asia, including The Kitchen in New York, Festival d'Automne a Paris, Het Apollohuis in Holland, Ars Electronica in Linz, I.C.C. in Tokyo, The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and the Shanghai Biennale, among many others. He is a Professor in the Department of Art & Art History at Stanford University in California.
Read more here: well.com/~demarini/

Paul DeMarinis (Stanford, California) has been making noises with wires, batteries and household appliances since the age of four. One of the first artists to use microcomputers, DeMarinis has toiled since the 1970's in the areas of interactive software, synthetic speech, noise and obsolete or impossible media. He has created installations, performances and public artworks throughout North America, Europe, Australia and Asia, including The Kitchen in New York, Festival d'Automne a Paris, Het Apollohuis in Holland, Ars Electronica in Linz, I.C.C. in Tokyo, The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and the Shanghai Biennale, among many others. He is a Professor in the Department of Art & Art History at Stanford University in California.
Read more here: well.com/~demarini/

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Michael Johnsen

Michael Johnsen (Pittsburgh) is best known as a performer of live-electronics using an integrated menagerie of custom devices whose idiosyncratic behaviors are revealed through complex interactions. His work is characterized by an intense focus on observation, the way a shepherd watches sheep. The extensive patching of large numbers of devices produces teeming chirps, sudden transients and welcomed modes of failure. In brief, Johnsen embraces the dirt in pure electronics. Recent research includes circuit-level documentation of David Tudor’s folkloric homemade instruments. His work has been shown widely at MoMA, SF Cinematheque, Radio France, Wesleyan University, Anthology Film Archives (New York) and Musique Action (France). 
Read more here: vimeo.com/69916070

Victoria Keddie

Victoria Keddie (New York) works in varying media involving audio/visual signal generation, magnetic field recording, and broadcast. She is Co-director of E.S.P. TV, a nomadic, live TV studio that hybridizes technologies to realize synthetic environments for performance. She has performed and exhibited at numerous venues and festivals throughout the US, such as, the New Museum, the Museum of Arts and Design, The Kitchen, Museum of Moving Image, Issue Project Room, and Yerba Buena Center for the Arts. Her work has also been featured internationally in Dublin, Reykjavik, Berlin, London and Naples. She received her MA from New York University with a focus on the preservation of time-based media.  
Read more here: victoriakeddie.com

Caroline Record

Caroline Record (Pittsburgh) is an artist and technologist who uses code to create her own artistic systems. These systems are at once clever and sensual, incorporating extreme tactility with ephemeral, abstract logic. Her work has been featured in exhibitions at the Carnegie Science Center, Space Gallery, The Miller Gallery, and The Brewhouse Association. Fellowships include the Studio for Creative Inquiry at Carnegie Mellon University, Brewhouse Association Artist in Residence, and Yale University Norfolk. She is a recent graduate of both the BFA School of Art and Human Computer Interaction Masters programs at Carnegie Mellon University.
Read more here: carolinerecord.com/

Marina Rosenfeld

Marina Rosenfeld (New York) is known equally as a composer of large-scale performances and an experimental turntablist working with hand-crafted dub plates. She has been a leading voice in the increasing hybridization between the domains of visual art and music with recent solo projects for the Museum of Modern Art in New York; SPOR, Ultima, Wien Modern and Holland Festivals; the Whitney, Liverpool and PERFORMA Biennials; and many others. She has created chamber and choral works, as well as a series of installation/performance works, often mounted in monumental spaces, such as the Park Avenue Armory in New York and Western Australia's Midland Railway Workshops, deploying complexes of unamplified live performers and custom loudspeaker installations. Rosenfeld is Co-chair of Music/Sound, Milton Avery Graduate School of the Arts, Bard College.
Read more here: marinarosenfeld.com

Jesse Stiles

Jesse Stiles (Pittsburgh) is an electronic composer, performer, installation artist, and software designer.  Stiles’ work has been featured at internationally recognized institutions including the Smithsonian American Art Museum, Lincoln Center, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Park Avenue Armory, and Carnegie Hall. He has collaborated with many leading figures in experimental music including Pauline Oliveros, Meredith Monk, David Behrman, and Morton Subotnick. His recordings have been published by Conrex Records, Specific Recordings, Gagarin Records, and Araca Recs. Stiles is currently a Professor in the School of Music at Carnegie Mellon University, where he leads courses on emerging music technologies. 
Read more here: jts3k.com

Sergei Tcherepnin

Sergei Tcherepnin (New York) composes sound works that are actualized through sculptural forms, objects that exist simultaneously as speakers and instruments. He explores visitors’ capacities to affect and be affected by sound through their bodies as much as their auditory systems. His performances and exhibitions include MIT List Visual Arts Center, Boston; The Kitchen, New York; Foksal Gallery Foundation, Warsaw; The Museum of Modern Art, New York; Pavilion of Georgia at the 55th Venice Biennale; Murray Guy, New York; Karma International, Zurich; Guggenheim Museum, New York; and the 30th São Paulo Biennial, Brazil, just to name a few. He participated in the 2014 Whitney Biennial and is a recipient of 2014 Villa Romana Fellowship in Florence, Italy.  
Read more here: murrayguy.com/sergei-tcherepnin/biography/

From the Edge
Jan 16–Mar 1, 2015
  • About

Co-presented by the CMU Carnegie Mellon School of Drama

"Let us not waste our time in idle discourse! (Pause. Vehemently.) Let us do something, while we have the chance! It is not every day that we are needed. Not indeed that we personally are needed. Others would meet the case equally well, if not better. To all mankind they were addressed, those cries for help still ringing in our ears! But at this place, at this moment of time, all mankind is us, whether we like it or not. Let us …

Co-presented by the CMU Carnegie Mellon School of Drama

"Let us not waste our time in idle discourse! (Pause. Vehemently.) Let us do something, while we have the chance! It is not every day that we are needed. Not indeed that we personally are needed. Others would meet the case equally well, if not better. To all mankind they were addressed, those cries for help still ringing in our ears! But at this place, at this moment of time, all mankind is us, whether we like it or not. Let us make the most of it, before it is too late! Let us represent worthily for once the foul brood to which a cruel fate consigned us! What do you say?" 
- Waiting for Godot by Samuel Beckett

This USA National exhibit is reflective of those issues consuming American performance makers today: issues of identity, healing, and obsessions with death and loss after 9/11 and hurricane Katrina; the pull of conscience that is inevitable when engaged in war; anger directed toward the obliviousness of many to the destruction of our planet; the conundrum of eating; rising political polarities (and ambiguities) in reaction to the first African-American to be elected president; tensions relative to race and gender; anxieties about technology; the role of religion in society and the challenges of the those marginalized whether they be immigrants, differently-abled or queer.

The viewer will find works that push the limits of how performance design is imagined in the USA today. Seminal founders and long standing ensembles of performance makers are recognized. Vital new designs are celebrated.

Welcome to our country on edge.

 

Susan Tsu- Artistic Director and lead curator
Chris Barreca- Scene Design curator
Linda Cho- Costume Design curator
Allen Hahn- Lighting Design curator
Don Tindall- Sound Design curator
With Randy Gener as curatorial advisor

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Armin Hoffman: Farbe / Color
Nov 4, 2014–Mar 1, 2015
  • About

Curated by April Greiman

Co-presented by the CMU School of Design

Organized by the LA Architecture and Design Museum

For Armin Hofmann, lecturing at design schools and working as a freelance graphic artist went hand in hand: his activities as an educator invariably provided inspiration for his own work. Rather than a doctrinaire approach, Hofmann’s teaching style centered on the students’ engagement with their own experiences and abilities, so enabling them to hone their individual perception of design issues.  

During his many years as a teacher at various institutions across the world, including the …

Curated by April Greiman

Co-presented by the CMU School of Design

Organized by the LA Architecture and Design Museum

For Armin Hofmann, lecturing at design schools and working as a freelance graphic artist went hand in hand: his activities as an educator invariably provided inspiration for his own work. Rather than a doctrinaire approach, Hofmann’s teaching style centered on the students’ engagement with their own experiences and abilities, so enabling them to hone their individual perception of design issues.  

During his many years as a teacher at various institutions across the world, including the Basel School of Design in Switzerland and the Yale University School of Art, Hofmann accumulated a treasure-trove of experiences and findings on the subject of color. Following his retirement, he produced 20 silkscreen portfolios, each containing 12 compositions.

The exhibition will showcase one of Hofmann’s portfolios as well as 16 studies of the prints as a part of Farbe / Color. The legendary Swiss graphic designer and educator has described his silkscreens as an account of his pedagogical activities. 

As an educator for 44 years, Hofmann has had immeasurable influence on generations of designers and shaped the world’s perception and understanding of color and design.

ABOUT THE CURATOR

April Greiman is a thinker, artist, designer, and educator, whose transmedia projects, innovative ideas and projects, and hybridbased approach have been influential worldwide over the last 30 years. Her explorations of image, word, and color are often integrated into the built environment and select projects with architects, fusing art with technology. A former student of Hofmann’s, Greiman curated this exhibition for its first u.s. showing in Los Angeles.

 



 

 

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Neurons and Other Memories: Work in and around the brain
Oct 10–24, 2014
  • About

Works by: Marie Barcic (A 14’), the Alison Barth Lab, JoAnna Commandaros (BFA '86), Erin Crowder, Greg Dunn, Kevin Jarbo and Tim Verstynen, Rob Kesseler, Clayton Merrell, David Plaut, Jena Tegeler (SHS 13’), Aaron Regal (A 13’ MAM’14), JoanaRicou (BSA 04’), Qiong Zhang and Nicolas Kim, Yu Zhao (BHA’14)

Curated by Patricia Maurides

In collaboration with the Center for the Neural Basis of Cognition

Neurons and Other Memories gathers together the work of artists and scientists whose investigations offer a bridge between and among the fine arts and neuroscience or neuropsychology. These investigations may occur in the studio, laboratory or somewhere in between. Many of these works share the exploration of common territories …

Works by: Marie Barcic (A 14’), the Alison Barth Lab, JoAnna Commandaros (BFA '86), Erin Crowder, Greg Dunn, Kevin Jarbo and Tim Verstynen, Rob Kesseler, Clayton Merrell, David Plaut, Jena Tegeler (SHS 13’), Aaron Regal (A 13’ MAM’14), JoanaRicou (BSA 04’), Qiong Zhang and Nicolas Kim, Yu Zhao (BHA’14)

Curated by Patricia Maurides

In collaboration with the Center for the Neural Basis of Cognition

Neurons and Other Memories gathers together the work of artists and scientists whose investigations offer a bridge between and among the fine arts and neuroscience or neuropsychology. These investigations may occur in the studio, laboratory or somewhere in between. Many of these works share the exploration of common territories of anatomy, memory and perception, but with varied sets of tools and perspectives. These investigators ask questions, search, wonder, invent, reflect and offer us a diversity of expressions to enrich our own perceptions of our brain and its mysteries.

This exhibition also offers homage to Santiago Ramón y Cajal (1852-1954), gifted artist and “father of modern neuroscience” whose intricate drawings of individual neurons (or as he called them, his ‘butterflies of the soul’) revealed the exquisite architecture of the brain.

Neurons and Other Memories was created in collaboration with the Center for the Neural Basis of Cognition (CNBC), specifically Dr. Marlene Behrmann, Co-Director, CNBC and Dr. Michael Tarr, Head, Department of Psychology, Carnegie Mellon. This exhibition coincides with the CNBC’s 20th Anniversary Celebration.

- Patricia Maurides, Curator


Patricia Maurides is a visual artist and adjunct professor at Carnegie Mellon who designs and teaches courses that bridge the fine arts and natural sciences/social sciences. These courses include Art and Biology, NeuroPhoto and most recently Art+theBrain. Maurides has a BS in Biological Sciences from the University of South Carolina and an MFA in Art from Carnegie Mellon.


Neurons and Other Memories is supported in part by the Center for the Neural Basis of Cognition and the School of Art.

A special thank you to Dr. Juan A. De Carlos, Instituto  Cajal (CSIC) Madrid, Spain and Charlotte Tancin, Librarian, Research Scholar, Hunt Institute for Botanical Documentation (HIBD), Lugene Bruno, Curator, Research Scholar, HIBD, Carnegie Mellon.

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Alien She
Sep 21, 2013–Feb 16, 2014
  • About

Works by: Ginger Brooks Takahashi (Pittsburgh), Tammy Rae Carland (Oakland), Miranda July (Los Angeles), Faythe Levine (Milwaukee), Allyson Mitchell (Toronto), L.J. Roberts (Brooklyn), Stephanie Syjuco (San Francisco)

Curated by Astria Suparak + Ceci Moss

Alien She is the first exhibition to examine the lasting impact of Riot Grrrl on artists and cultural producers working today. A pioneering punk feminist movement that emerged in the early 1990s, Riot Grrrl has had a pivotal influence, inspiring many around the world to pursue socially and politically progressive careers as artists, activists, authors and educators. Emphasizing female and youth empowerment, collaborative organization, creative resistance and DIY ethics, Riot Grrrl helped a new …

Works by: Ginger Brooks Takahashi (Pittsburgh), Tammy Rae Carland (Oakland), Miranda July (Los Angeles), Faythe Levine (Milwaukee), Allyson Mitchell (Toronto), L.J. Roberts (Brooklyn), Stephanie Syjuco (San Francisco)

Curated by Astria Suparak + Ceci Moss

Alien She is the first exhibition to examine the lasting impact of Riot Grrrl on artists and cultural producers working today. A pioneering punk feminist movement that emerged in the early 1990s, Riot Grrrl has had a pivotal influence, inspiring many around the world to pursue socially and politically progressive careers as artists, activists, authors and educators. Emphasizing female and youth empowerment, collaborative organization, creative resistance and DIY ethics, Riot Grrrl helped a new generation to become active feminists and create their own culture and communities that reflect their values and experiences, in contrast to mainstream conventions and expectations.

Riot Grrrl formed in reaction to pervasive and violent sexism, racism and homophobia in the punk music scene and in the culture at large. Its participants adapted strategies from earlier queer and punk feminisms and ‘70s radical politics, while also popularizing discussions of identity politics occurring within academia, but in a language that spoke to a younger generation. This self-organized network made up of teenagers and twenty-somethings reached one another through various platforms, such as letters, zines, local meetings, regional conferences, homemade videos, and later, chat rooms, listservs and message boards. The movement eventually spread worldwide, with chapters opening in at least 30 states and 26 countries.* Its ethos and aesthetics have survived well past its initial period in the ‘90s, with many new chapters forming in recent years. Riot Grrrl’s influence on contemporary global culture is increasingly evident – from the Russian collective Pussy Riot’s protest against corrupt government-church relations to the popular teen website Rookie and the launch of Girls Rock Camps and Ladyfest music and art festivals around the world.

Alien She focuses on seven people whose visual art practices were informed by their contact with Riot Grrrl. Many of them work in multiple disciplines, such as sculpture, installation, video, documentary film, photography, drawing, printmaking, new media, social practice, curation, music, writing and performance – a reflection of the movement’s artistic diversity and mutability. Each artist is represented by several projects from the last 20 years, including new and rarely seen works, providing an insight into the development of their creative practices and individual trajectories.

In various ways, these artists have incorporated, expanded upon, or reacted to Riot Grrrl’s ideology, tactics and aesthetics. For instance, many continue to cultivate and nurture alternative communities. Ginger Brooks Takahashi creates spaces for conversation and exchange with jubilant publications, dance parties, mobile reading rooms and soup delivery service. Through photography and video, Faythe Levine documents groups committed to DIY independence and handmade aesthetics, such as crafters, off-the-gridders, and, in her new book and documentary, traditional hand-lettered sign painters. L.J. Roberts fabricates declarations of protest and solidarity with evocative banners and textile works.

Riot Grrrl thrived through the establishment of DIY networks and information sharing, an aspect manifest in Stephanie Syjuco’s project for freely distributing copyrighted critical texts and in Miranda July’s video chainletter for “lady moviemakers.” Recalling forgotten her/histories was also central to Riot Grrrl, and in that vein, Allyson Mitchell pays homage to key writings, feminist presses, bookstores and libraries with lesbian feminist library wallpaper, while Tammy Rae Carland reveals intimate relationships in her autobiographical photo series. All of the artists included here have worked collaboratively and many have built platforms for other artists and under-recognized groups to connect, encourage, share resources and self-publish.

The exhibition’s historical section is designed to be plural and open-ended; this is a living history, not a sealed past. By representing numerous voices and experiences, rather than outlining one single definitive story, we hope it will reflect the multiplicity that was such an integral part of the original movement. Toward this end, a sampling of the Riot Grrrl movement’s vast creative output is included here. Hundreds of self-published zines and hand-designed posters were solicited from institutional and personal archives through open calls, word-of-mouth and invitations – similar to the way Riot Grrrl expanded. Music playlists represent different Riot Grrrl scenes across the U.S., Canada, South America and Europe, guest curated by musicians, DJs and label owners, and accompanied by records, cassettes, set lists, band T-shirts and other ephemera. Video interviews and an ongoing, online Riot Grrrl Census provide an expanded oral history.

The exhibition’s title, Alien She, is a reference to a Bikini Kill song of the same name. The lyrics are about the negotiation of normalized gender roles, the uneasy line between feminist critique and collectivity, and the process of coming to a feminist consciousness, with the repeated refrain, “She is me, I am her.” More broadly, Alien She conjures the possibilities of identity, self-determination and subversion. In the face of alienation and bigotry, Riot Grrrl fostered community, action and creation. This exhibition provides a view into the passion and diversity of the original Riot Grrrl movement, and highlights how these ideas have broadened, evolved and mutated in the work of contemporary artists. 

Archival Materials from: dumba collective; EMP Museum, Seattle; Interference Archive; Jabberjaw; the Riot Grrrl Collection at the Fales Library & Special Collections, NYU; and many personal collections

Collaborative Projects and Platforms include: Counterfeit Crochet Project, Feminist Art Gallery (FAG), General Sisters, Handmade Nation, Joanie 4 Jackie, Learning to Love You More, LTTR, projet MOBILIVRE-BOOKMOBILE project, Sign Painters and more

Regional Music Curators: Tammy Rae Carland of Mr. Lady Records and I (heart) Amy Carter zine (American South); Pete Dale of Slampt Records and Pussycat Trash (England); Donna Dresch of Chainsaw Records and Team Dresch (Pacific Northwest); Maaike Muntinga of Riot Grrrl Benelux and Ladyfest Amsterdam + Jessica Gysel of Girls Like Us magazine (Belgium + the Netherlands); Lynne T + Bernie Bankrupt of Lesbians on Ecstasy (Canada); Allison Wolfe of Bratmobile, Girl Germs zine and Ladyfest Olympia (D.C. + Olympia); Elisa Gargiulo of Dominatrix (Brazil); Ceci Moss + Astria Suparak, exhibition curators and former Riot Grrrls (California)

Alien She was curated by Astria Suparak and Ceci Moss, former Riot Grrrls from Los Angeles and the Bay Area, and organized by the Miller Gallery at Carnegie Mellon University. Support for Alien She is provided in part by Vox Populi.

The curators would like to thank Sara Marcus, Vega Darling, Mimi Thi Nguyen, Lisa Darms and exhibition intern Rose Hermalin.

* From data compiled in the Riot Grrrl Chapters Map, an online collaborative project created for the exhibition that assembles research from various people and the public: www.bit.ly/RGmap

 

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Imperfect Health: The Medicalization of Architecture
Sep 15, 2012–Feb 24, 2013
  • About

Curated by Giovanna Borasi + Mirko Zardini

Organized by the Canadian Centre for Architecture, Montréal

We observe — and suffer daily from — the unforeseen consequences of our actions on the environment. We are anxious about ground pollution, food safety, pollen allergies, smog, asthma, cancer, obesity, epidemics, and ultimately, aging. Now that everything is perceived as a possible source of disease, the health, defense and fortification of our own bodies have become obsessive pursuits. We have begun to think of all aspects of our lives in medical terms.

Architecture, urban design, and landscape design are addressing these …

Curated by Giovanna Borasi + Mirko Zardini

Organized by the Canadian Centre for Architecture, Montréal

We observe — and suffer daily from — the unforeseen consequences of our actions on the environment. We are anxious about ground pollution, food safety, pollen allergies, smog, asthma, cancer, obesity, epidemics, and ultimately, aging. Now that everything is perceived as a possible source of disease, the health, defense and fortification of our own bodies have become obsessive pursuits. We have begun to think of all aspects of our lives in medical terms.

Architecture, urban design, and landscape design are addressing these fears, incorporating medical issues and related concerns in their projects. Their new ideas and solutions are based on the optimistic premise that design has the capacity to deliver individual and collective well-being. Projects propose allergy-free gardens, more trees, cleaner air, soil remediation, and new quarantine spaces to prevent epidemic outbreaks. On the other hand, in addressing health issues, design also introduces new levels of complexity in projects that test industrial methods for food production, stairs that re-educate the obese and infirm, and the segregation of communities by age.

Imperfect Health is not a comprehensive survey of the relationships between health, architecture, cities and the environment. On the contrary, these projects for buildings, interiors, and open spaces are meant to highlight uncertainties and contradictions present in the ideas of health that are emerging in Western countries today, particularly in Europe and North America.

We are exposed to a lot of solutions, but at what cost?

Is the future of architecture in its medicalization?

- Giovanna Borasi + Mirko Zardini

ABOUT THE EXHIBITION

Health is a focus of contemporary political debate in this moment of historically high anxiety. Are architects, urban designers and landscape architects seeking a new moral and political agenda within these concerns?

The Miller Gallery at Carnegie Mellon University is proud to present the U.S. premiere of Imperfect Health: The Medicalization of Architecture. This exhibition has particular resonance in Pittsburgh, a city that has recovered from the collapse of its steel industry through its new health care, education and technology industries, and at Carnegie Mellon, a research institution focused on innovation, interdisciplinary collaboration, and creating and implementing solutions for real problems. Despite decades of revitalization, Pittsburgh still ranks as one of the most polluted cities in the United States, with higher rates of cancer, asthma, and obesity than the national averages.*

Imperfect Health features a wide range of works, including photographs, sculpture, video, research and archival materials, design projects, and architectural models and drawings, that together examine the complex relationships between design and health. The exhibition includes works by an international group of architects, artists, designers, and institutions, including Bernd and Hilla Becher, Berkeley Institute of Design and Intel Labs, BIG (Bjarke Ingels Group), Mel Chin, Todd Haynes, Henry Dreyfuss Associates, Steven Holl Architects, Gordon Matta-Clark, Niall McLaughlin, MIT AgeLab, Morphosis, MVRDV, New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, OMA (Office for Metropolitan Architecture), Philippe Rahm, François Roche, SANAA, and Alison and Peter Smithson.

Accompanying the exhibition are a book extending the research (published by CCA with Lars Müller and available as an e-book and in print in the gallery), an online TV channel, and public programs including a lecture series, panel discussions, screenings and tours.

* According to the American Lung Association, 2008; Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2010; Pennsylvania Department of Health, 2011. 

Support for Imperfect Health at Carnegie Mellon’s Miller Gallery is provided in part by The Heinz Endowments.

 

CURATORS

Giovanna Borasi is an architect, curator and editor. As Curator of Contemporary Architecture at the Canadian Centre for Architecture (CCA) since 2005, Borasi has worked on several major exhibitions and their companion books, with a particular interest in how environmental and social issues are influencing urbanism and architecture today. Borasi was editor and writer for Lotus International (1998-2004) and Lotus Navigator (2000-2004), and recently joined the editorial board of Abitare as Deputy Editor in Chief.

Mirko Zardini, an architect, has been the Director and Chief Curator of the Canadian Centre for Architecture since 2005. His research engages the transformation of contemporary architecture by questioning and relooking at the assumptions on which architects operate today. Zardini has been editor for Casabella and Lotus International magazine and his writings have been widely published. He has taught design and theory at architecture schools in Europe and the United States, including Harvard University GSD, Princeton University SoA, Swiss Federal Polytechnic University (ETH) at Zurich, and the Federal Polytechnic at Lausanne (EPFL).

 

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Intimate Science
Jan 21–Mar 4, 2012
  • About

Works by: BCL, Center for PostNatural History, Markus Kayser, Allison Kudla, Machine Project, Philip Ross

Curated by Andrea Grover 

The most recent manifestation of artists working at the intersection of art, science and technology demonstrates a distinctly autodidactic, heuristic approach to understanding the physical and natural world. Intimate Science features artists who are engaged in non-disciplinary inquiry; they aren’t allied to the customs of any single field, and therefore have license to reach beyond conventions. This kind of practice hinges on up-close observation, experiential learning, and inventing new ways for the public to participate in the process. And through their …

Works by: BCL, Center for PostNatural History, Markus Kayser, Allison Kudla, Machine Project, Philip Ross

Curated by Andrea Grover 

The most recent manifestation of artists working at the intersection of art, science and technology demonstrates a distinctly autodidactic, heuristic approach to understanding the physical and natural world. Intimate Science features artists who are engaged in non-disciplinary inquiry; they aren’t allied to the customs of any single field, and therefore have license to reach beyond conventions. This kind of practice hinges on up-close observation, experiential learning, and inventing new ways for the public to participate in the process. And through their engagement with “intimate science,” a more knowledgeable public might well be able to influence what research is supported and adopted by the larger culture, and the walls of science can become more transparent.

For four months in the fall of 2010, I worked at a cozy desk in the STUDIO for Creative Inquiry at Carnegie Mellon as a research fellow hosted jointly by the Miller Gallery and the STUDIO. On a daily basis, students, faculty and visiting artists would stop by my front row seat at this frenetic concourse of technoscience dispatches.

While my initial line of inquiry was artists embedded in scientific or industrial environments in the 1960s, I began to uncover a new narrative — a tactile shift in discourse and practice between that moment and this one. While artists two generations ago were dependent on access to technicians, labs, computer time or manufacturers to realize works of scientific or technological complexity, those I was presently meeting had far greater agency to conduct this kind of work themselves. Even ambitious endeavors such as independent biological experiments, materials research and micromanufacturing can be conducted by today’s working artist — and not at a naive or removed distance.

Roger Malina, physicist, astronomer and executive editor of Leonardo, a leading journal for readers interested in the application of contemporary science and technology to the arts, describes this direction as “intimate science.” He writes:

“In an interesting new development in the art world, a generation of artists [is] now collecting data about their world using technological instruments but for cultural purposes. Shared tool-using leads to overlapping epistemologies and ontologies. These artists both make powerful art and help make science intimate, sensual, intuitive.[1]”

And unlike the rare “Leonardo” polymath of the Renaissance, contemporary artists who operate across disciplines employ the expertise of the network: the network, not the individual, is encyclopedic. The Internet has provided unprecedented access to shared knowledge assets, materials, fabrication processes, microfunding, and audiences. This exhibit examines how networked communication and open source culture have contributed to this shift from artists aiding science to doing science, and the impact this imparts on the way scientific knowledge is acquired, utilized and disseminated.

BCL (Tokyo)
In Common Flowers/Flower Commons (2009), BCL (Georg Tremmel + Shiho Fukuhara) bio-hacks Suntory’s genetically-modified “Moondust™” cut flowers — carnations bio-engineered to have a blueish purple petal color — back into living plants with the intention of creating an “open source” population of these flowers.

Center for PostNatural History (Pittsburgh) is a project spearheaded in 2008 by Rich Pell with the objective to advance “knowledge relating to the complex interplay between culture, nature, and biotechnology.” It is a singular natural history museum that is concerned with “PostNatural” varieties of life normally excluded from scientific taxonomy, i.e., transgenic organisms that have been altered by humankind via selective breeding, genetic engineering, or other methods of biological tampering.

Markus Kayser (London) takes notions of sustainable micromanufacturing to the extreme through projects like his Solar Sinter (2011), which combines a custom-made 3D printer with solar power to transform sand, on site in the Sahara, into glass forms, and Sun Cutter (2010), a low tech ‘laser cutter’ that makes objects by focusing sunlight into a beam powerful enough to cut through plywood.

Allison Kudla (Seattle) combines computer fabrication technologies and plant tissue culturing to make living installations. In Capacity for (urban eden, human error) (2009) she uses a custom-built computer controlled four-axis positioning table to “print” seeds and algae into a delicate architectural pattern, which she describes as biological material in collaboration with an engineering mechanism.

Machine Project (Los Angeles) is a “not-for-profit arts organization and community event space dedicated to making specialized knowledge and technology accessible to artists and the general public.” Machine describes its terrain as encompassing “art, technology, natural history, science, music, literature, and food,” and more. Machine’s style of presenting promotes hands-on engagement and engineers atypical collisions between different branches of knowledge.

Philip Ross (San Francisco) works in the realm of “biotechniques.” He makes sculptural and architectural works from plants and fungi, and videos about micro-organisms. His “mycotecture” series is an experiment using reishi mushrooms as a sustainable construction material. He is also the facilitator of DIY biology events via CRITTER — a salon he founded for the natural sciences.

Andrea Grover was the 2010 Andy Warhol Foundation Curatorial Research Fellow at Carnegie Mellon’s Miller Gallery and STUDIO for Creative Inquiry.

A densely illustrated publication, New Art/Science Affinities (2011), accompanies the exhibition. Co-authored by Grover, Régine Debatty, Claire Evans and Pablo Garcia, and designed by Thumb, the book features more than 60 international artists and collaboratives.

1 R. Malina, “Intimate Science and Hard Humanities,” Leonardo Vol. 42, No. 3, page 184, 2009.

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2011 Pittsburgh Biennial
Sep 16–Dec 11, 2011
  • About

Works by: Justseeds, Lize Mogel, Sarah Ross, and Ryan Griffis, subRosa, Temporary Services, Transformazium 

Organized by Astria Suparak

Setting a new precedent for city-wide collaboration among major art institutions, the 2011 Pittsburgh Biennial is co-organized by Carnegie Museum of Art, Miller Gallery at Carnegie Mellon University, The Andy Warhol Museum, and Biennial founders Pittsburgh Filmmakers and Pittsburgh Center for the Arts. Each of the five partner institutions will present a distinct exhibition of work by artists connected to the Pittsburgh region, reflecting each organization’s curatorial focus.

The Miller Gallery at CMU’s presentation, organized by gallery director Astria Suparak, features artists who …

Works by: Justseeds, Lize Mogel, Sarah Ross, and Ryan Griffis, subRosa, Temporary Services, Transformazium 

Organized by Astria Suparak

Setting a new precedent for city-wide collaboration among major art institutions, the 2011 Pittsburgh Biennial is co-organized by Carnegie Museum of Art, Miller Gallery at Carnegie Mellon University, The Andy Warhol Museum, and Biennial founders Pittsburgh Filmmakers and Pittsburgh Center for the Arts. Each of the five partner institutions will present a distinct exhibition of work by artists connected to the Pittsburgh region, reflecting each organization’s curatorial focus.

The Miller Gallery at CMU’s presentation, organized by gallery director Astria Suparak, features artists who work collaboratively, harmonizing individual perspectives, ideas, and talents. Embodying self-sufficiency within a cooperative spirit, the collectives and collaborators encourage us to reassess our assumptions and values, reveal the global in the local and the personal in the political, and imagine alternate realities and possible futures. The exhibition unveils four new installations and two recent projects, and includes sculpture, printmaking, painting, video, publications and workshops.

Sarah Ross and Ryan Griffis of Chicago and Carnegie Mellon alumna Lize Mogel of New York debut Global Cities, Model Worlds, an installation that explores the spatial and social impacts of “mega events,” such as the Olympics and World’s Fairs. The host cities of these international spectacles seek to transform themselves into “global cities” through planning, architecture, and ideology. Locally, these events pave the way for redevelopment projects that can create new public resources such as parks, stadiums, or transportation infrastructure, but often result in significant displacement of residents or industry, reinforcing existing inequalities. This installation asks us to consider what would happen if a mega event came to Pittsburgh. Using evidence from dozens of site visits and more than a decade of research, Global Cities contrasts the promise of transformation with the on-the-ground realities of urban development.

Transformazium, comprised of Ruthie Stringer, Dana Bishop-Root, Leslie Stem, and Caledonia Curry, create an evolving installation with bricks from a condemned building they deconstructed near their home in North Braddock, an outer borough of Pittsburgh. During the course of the exhibition, collective members and gallery visitors will clean the bricks, visibly transforming waste to useable resources and underlining the economic viability and environmental sustainability of deconstruction, or “green demolition.” In neighborhoods that face high levels of property abandonment as well as persistent under-employment, deconstruction “makes room for the possibility to discover wealth in places of blight and energy in places of stagnation.” Transformazium’s relationship-based practice examines systems of values, with a mission to use the creative process to transform ideas into tangible social and economic benefits.

Justseeds is a worker-owned cooperative of 26 printmakers in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico, with members and a distribution center in Pittsburgh. For the Biennial they built a landscape overpopulated by billboards. The artists simultaneously subvert the hard-to-ignore, omnipresent advertising medium and playfully concede their didactic tendencies; instead of peddling products, the handmade billboards advocate for borderless nations, indigenous sovereignty, and immigrant rights. Justseeds believes in “the transformative power of personal expression in concert with collective action.”

subRosa, a collective whose core members are Hyla Willis of Pittsburgh and Faith Wilding of Providence, speculate on how feminism could affect the scientific world, as it has with art and other areas of culture. In their new installation Feminist Matter(s): Propositions and Undoings, they invoke cultural producers, experimenters, and processes that could be antecedents of this new way of thinking and working, including 4th century scientist and inventor Hypatia; Romantic poet William Blake; modernist writer Virginia Woolf; interior designers the Omega Workshop; para-surrealist painter and anarchist Remedios Varo; and groundbreaking geneticist Barbara McClintock. Inspired by Woolf’s antidote to the war-mentality brewed in boardrooms and command centers, subRosa re-envisions lab workbenches as a series of small tables for more intimate and conversational “tea-table thinking.”

Temporary Services, composed of Carnegie Mellon alumnus Marc Fischer in Chicago, Salem Collo-Julin in Philadelphia, and Brett Bloom in Copenhagen, present two projects. Self-Reliance Library is a collection of recently published and out-of-print books and reference materials that the artists have found inspiring and hope will “provoke the reader, solve creative problems, or suggest imaginative directions for a range of creative practices.” Topics represented in the library include visionary architecture, nomadic living, self-publishing, everyday repair solutions, designs for alternate realities, survivalism, and skill-sharing. Personal Plastic is an ongoing project that explores the problem of plastic bags in our waste stream. Made from recycled bags, the banners feature quotes drawn from books in the accompanying library.

The artists in the Pittsburgh Biennial at the Miller Gallery at CMU choose to work with others, negotiating their individuality for the sake of the group or project. This collaborative approach echoes the long labor and union histories of the area, as well as the Biennial’s new partnership among local art organizations. This multigenerational selection of artists, who currently live in Pittsburgh or spent significant time here, also exhibit internationally, reflecting the connection Pittsburgh has to the global art world and broader discourses. The projects included here demonstrate the strength of collective voices in deciding the future of neighborhoods, cities, nations, and societies, and the importance of intimate conversations and compassionate listening.

Co-organized by the Carnegie Museum of Art, Miller Gallery at Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh Filmmakers/ Pittsburgh Center for the Arts, and The Andy Warhol Museum.

Support for the 2011 Pittsburgh Biennial is provided by Hillman Foundation, Juliet Lea Hillman Simonds Foundation, The Heinz Endowments, The Pittsburgh Foundation, and Kreider Printing. General operating support for the Miller Gallery is provided by Carnegie Mellon University. The exhibitions and programs are supported in part by a grant from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, a state agency funded by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, as well as the CMU College of Fine Arts and the School of Art. 

Global Cities, Model Worlds was supported by a grant from the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts, and created during an Art and Technology Residency at the STUDIO for Creative Inquiry in partnership with the Miller Gallery at Carnegie Mellon University for the 2011 Pittsburgh Biennial. Support for the residency was provided by the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts and the National Endowment for the Arts. 

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Whatever It Takes: Steelers Fan Collections, Rituals, and Obsessions
Aug 27, 2010–Feb 6, 2011
  • About

Curated by Jon Rubin + Astria Suparak

If space aliens landed in Pittsburgh, what would they determine was the dominant culture that unified the populace? It could only be Steelers culture.

Steelers culture is Pittsburgh’s popular culture, and the fans are its primary producers. Often overlooked in discussions of pop culture, much less “high” culture, sports fans are portrayed as immature, uncritical, and passive consumers blindly following a branded product. Whatever It Takes: Steelers Fan Collections, Rituals, and Obsessions looks at the particular and ingenious methods Steelers fans use to construct their own …

Curated by Jon Rubin + Astria Suparak

If space aliens landed in Pittsburgh, what would they determine was the dominant culture that unified the populace? It could only be Steelers culture.

Steelers culture is Pittsburgh’s popular culture, and the fans are its primary producers. Often overlooked in discussions of pop culture, much less “high” culture, sports fans are portrayed as immature, uncritical, and passive consumers blindly following a branded product. Whatever It Takes: Steelers Fan Collections, Rituals, and Obsessions looks at the particular and ingenious methods Steelers fans use to construct their own personal and social identities in relation to the team, and in the process, create an active community of cultural producers. Through countless fan sites, gameday rituals, costumes, tattoos, videos, unlicensed merchandise, and more, Steelers fans brilliantly remix and meld the team’s identity with their own. Take Jim Shearer’s weekly, low-budget Web-show, Yinz Luv ‘Da Stillers, whose new season of episodes will be screened in the gallery. Shearer produces the entire show from his bedroom using homemade props and a remarkably clever remix of footage from the week’s game, popular movies, homemade puppets, hand-painted cutouts, and his own engaging persona. His show takes the basic conventions of a major network post-game telecast and reinvents it as a platform for his idiosyncratic creativity and earnest fandom. This do-it-yourself ethos of many Steelers fans reflects larger pop cultural trends in which enthusiasts of TV shows, bands, and movies build fan communities that create their own narratives and aesthetics out of the objects of their passion. 

Of course not all Steelers fans produce a weekly Web show—many simply relate to the team by quietly performing gameday rituals in the privacy of home. Most are fairly common, but there is a more intricate and obsessive form of ritual, such as setting aside 62 minutes to kiss every Steelers item in the house prior to kick-off; following the offense on one TV set and the defense on another; watching the game alone with a painted face; wearing a Terrible Towel throughout the day, even in the shower; defeating that day’s opponent on PlayStation football right before the game; or reciting a customized Lord’s Prayer that cites the Steelers’ owner and the opposing team to be vanquished. And most of these examples are from Steelers fans living outside of Pennsylvania. The Steeler Nation is vast, existing in every American state and at least 27 countries, including over 2,000 self-proclaimed Steelers bars and fan clubs worldwide.

What could cause such intense obsession and devotion? In the 1970s, the fall of the steel industry coincided with the rise of the Steelers football team, generating a perfect storm for the development of a die-hard Steelers fan base. The team mirrored the values and desires of its working class fans: they were owned by a self-made local family, named after the local industry, and had a relentlessly hard-nosed playing style. As coach Chuck Noll used to say, the team would do “whatever it takes” to win. But most importantly, as the city struggled under mill closures and massive layoffs, forcing an exodus of residents in search of new jobs, the Steelers kept winning championships. The result is a demographically diverse community of fans that crosses lines of race, class, gender, political affiliation, and even city and country. "We don't just have fans,” offensive tackle Max Starks explains. “It's bigger than that. It's a devotion. Like a child with its parent.” Even in death, some choose to be remembered foremost as a Steelers fan. Rather than use a traditional casket at the wake, one family decided that their loved one would be last viewed as he would have been on game day: laid out on a recliner, dressed in black and gold, with a beer at his side and remote control in hand, watching a continuous loop of Steelers highlights on a TV set.

A common way fans bridge the gap between team and self is by collecting team-related merchandise and signed memorabilia. What’s interesting about many Steelers fans is that they often take collecting a step further: Shawn Spinda has over 100 signed footballs; the Pittsburgh Sports and Mini Ponies blog details “Great Moments in Unlicensed Pittsburgh Sports Merch”; Denny DeLuca transformed his basement into a Steelers Room (moved in its entirety into the gallery for this exhibition) crammed floor to ceiling with hundreds of handmade and altered objects, each with its own story that describes both the biography of the team and Denny’s autobiography. Other fans dedicate their bodies to expressing their allegiance. For instance, Ron Vergerio has spent the past eight years tattooing his entire torso with a stream-of-consciousness mural of players, plays, trophies, the cigar-smoking team owner, and a stadium full of fans, all intermingled with the Pittsburgh skyline and flowing hot metal.

Whatever It Takes: Steelers Fan Collections, Rituals, and Obsessions presents the participatory popular culture of Steelers fandom. The exhibition, a first of its kind, focuses not on fans as consumers, but on fans as producers—a creative force that modifies dominant culture into something much more personal, and collectively creates the Steeler Nation.

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Keep it Slick: Infiltrating Capitalism with The Yes Men
Nov 14, 2008–Feb 15, 2009
  • About

Curated by Astria Suparak

Reaching countless people through websites, newspapers, and television broadcasts, the sometimes anonymous Yes Men are among the most visible and effective artist-activists of our time. Over the past dozen years they have fearlessly taken on the world’s biggest corporations and bureaucracies through a process they call “Identity Correction.” Masquerading as official representatives at business conferences and on the news, they have helped keep critical issues in the international spotlight. “Unlike Identity Theft, which criminals practice with dishonest intent,” The Yes Men clarify, “Identity Correction is the art of …

Curated by Astria Suparak

Reaching countless people through websites, newspapers, and television broadcasts, the sometimes anonymous Yes Men are among the most visible and effective artist-activists of our time. Over the past dozen years they have fearlessly taken on the world’s biggest corporations and bureaucracies through a process they call “Identity Correction.” Masquerading as official representatives at business conferences and on the news, they have helped keep critical issues in the international spotlight. “Unlike Identity Theft, which criminals practice with dishonest intent,” The Yes Men clarify, “Identity Correction is the art of impersonating a powerful criminal to publicly humiliate them for conspiring against the public good.”

Infiltrating the elite realm of the influential and the moneyed, cloaked in the sheerest layer of authority—thrift-store suits, quick-print business cards, forged press releases—these social activators urge us to question where ethics belong in our capitalist-driven society. In their elaborate hoaxes and improvised pranks, The Yes Men provide fleeting glimpses of a more humane world: Dow Chemical assumes full responsibility for the worst industrial accident in history at Bhopal, The New York Times reports on the end of the Iraq war and legislation capping C.E.O. salaries, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development reopens public housing in New Orleans and forces Exxon and Shell to restore the region’s wetlands, and the World Trade Organization disbands in order to improve the lot of the poor. Alternately, The Yes Men extrapolate extreme conclusions to the free market’s greed and disdain: McDonald’s recycles its hamburgers for Third World consumption, Exxon converts climate-change victims into fuel, Dow calculates the acceptable ratio of death to profit, and the W.T.O. unsheathes its Management Leisure Suit to remotely control sweatshop workers.

This survey represents the first-ever solo exhibition of The Yes Men. Here you can walk into a re-creation of their past exploits in the Conference area, witness a comically apocalyptic future, and pay respects to a janitor who generously donated his body to satisfy our insatiable energy needs. In the Executive Board Room, you may browse through The Yes Men’s personal office items and orate along to their absurd PowerPoint presentations.

In all of their exploits, The Yes Men hold a mirror up to faceless, corporate power. They do this not only to mock its acute disconnect with the real needs of people, but also to rouse to action the individuals who uphold this structure—that is, all of us. They push the limits of taste, forcing us to define our ethical boundaries and reaffirm our agency, a vitally important task in an era of eroding civil rights and marketing campaigns that obfuscate what democracy means.

In the tradition of the Situationists, through lurid satire reminiscent of Jonathan Swift and Mark Twain, strategies of tactical media like those of the Critical Art Ensemble, institutional critique à la the Guerilla Girls, Hans Haacke, and Ant Farm, or public performances akin to those of Abbie Hoffman, Adrian Piper, and the Reverend Billy, The Yes Men seek to incite change. 

Above all, they urge us to do something better.

- Astria Suparak, Curator

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