ACRE PROJECTS
Apr
6
to Apr 20

ACRE PROJECTS

Short Circuit
New work by Barber, Sheida Soleimani, Cassie Tompkins, and Lauren Valley
Curated by Elizabeth Lalley

Opening Reception
April 6, 2018, 6–9:00 p.m.

Information
Exhibition runs through April 27, 2018
Gallery hours Sundays from 12–4 p.m.
www.acreresidency.org/acre-projects

Location
ACRE Projects
1345 West 19th Street
Chicago, IL 60608

Through photography, collage, video, and textile, the four artists in Short Circuit respond to the circulation of imagery and information within digital mass media, as they disrupt, reject, or dissect contemporary modes of image production and consumption. Employing strikingly different visual languages and critical sensibilities, these artists are united by an attempt to redirect digital currents towards a material grounding, rooted in the messiness of human output. At moments wry and dissonant, each work in the exhibition draws out issues of identity, subjectivity, and politics embedded in globalized media. 

Created from mash-ups of Instagram screenshots, Barber’s collaged prints expose the influence of algorithms on the imagery in our social media feeds. Fused side-by-side, the screenshots show how particular contents, signifiers, and shapes morph from one image to the next: digital equations that analyze our virtual identities and suggest if we like that, we might like this. Overlaying his own marks on each image, Barber adopts a critical distance, exposing how virtual computations are tailored to each human subject.

Layers of symbolism and recombined imagery can likewise be found in the work of Sheida Soleimani, whose practice melds sculpture, collage, and photography to expose socio-political currents in Iran, often sourcing material from popular press, media trends, and the dark web. In the artist’s newest body of work, “Medium of Exchange,” staged tableaus explore the tangled dynamics of power, corruption, and violence that play out between leaders of oil-rich OPEC (Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries) nations and the West. In the work on view in Short Circuit, a female body is masked by the face of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman—Time Magazine’s “Person of the Year” in 2017—as the letters of “Time” drip ominously with oil: a gesture to the petroleum industry’s male-dominated systems. 

Adopting the alter ego of “Junie Genius” for her YouTube channel, Lauren Valley riffs on the archetype of the “mad scientist”—typically male and white— as she invents robotic devices to aid her with various dilemmas, which are often outlandish or wryly existential (a robot to wipe your tears, for instance). The devices are frequently unsuccessful, however, as each video contains a degree of structured chaos and an aesthetic of failure. Unlike the polished finish of typical “maker” videos, Valley’s series balances rough, lo-fi elements with considered cuts. Expertly weaving together art, robotics, and satire, “Junie Genius” is, among many things, a humorous display of counter-technology and an embrace of creative possibility. 

Cassie Tompkins deliberately departs from the digital realm and turns to analog methods for her vividly colorful, hand-printed textiles. The colors and shapes of quotidian life—increasingly steeped in the digital worlds behind our screens—take on a shifting, ambiguous nature within Tompkins’ textiles. Improvised and organic, each piece of cloth presents tactility and the relational nature of color (unmediated by a device) as means of revising the sensory overload of virtual space. 

ACRE Projects welcomes all gender expressions and features gender neutral bathrooms. ACRE's space is ADA Accessible. Please contact Kate Bowen (exhibitions@acreresidency.org) if you require additional accessibility information.

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ACRE RESIDENCY
Jul
5
to Jul 16

ACRE RESIDENCY

I'm very excited to announce I'll be attending ACRE (Artists’ Cooperative Residency and Exhibitions) for two weeks in July. ACRE is an artist-run non-profit based in Chicago devoted to employing various systems of support for emerging artists and to creating a generative community of cultural producers. The residency takes place in rural Southwest Wisconsin, on 1000 acres of wetland, hills, and farmland. The facilities include communal work spaces, a screen-printing studio, an outdoor wood shop, an art and tech facility, a sound studio, a fibers studio, and a ceramics studio. I look forward to working with my fellow residents, getting some fresh air, and spending an unprecedented amount of time on my artwork. Stayed tuned for a correlating exhibition next year!

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Typeforce 8
Feb
17
6:00 PM18:00

Typeforce 8

The annual Chicago show of emerging typographic allstars

Opening Night
February 17, 6–10:00 p.m.

Information
Exhibition runs through March 4, 2017
Email to schedule showing: loganbaybay@gmail.com

Location
Co-Prosperity Sphere
3219 South Morgan Street

2017 Exhibiting Artists
Adam Trowbridge
Adé Hogue
Aggie Toppins
Alexa Viscius
Andy Detskas
Cassie Tompkins
Chad Reichert
Coleman Collins
Crystal Zapata
Dylan Wells
Jessica Westbrook
JP Ramirez
Kyle Green
Kyle Letendre
Luke Dorman
Nermin Moufti
Nicky Mazur
Niels Post
Renata Graw
Satoru Nihei
Sky White
Tyler Deal
Yan Zhou

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