It’s been a wild ride, and it is hard to believe, but People’s Biennial has only FOUR MORE DAYS at the Cantor Fitzgerald Gallery here at Haverford College! Please be sure to stop by for one last look before the show closes this Friday, March 2nd! Also, be sure to visit the installations at Magill Library and the Koshland Integrated Natural Sciences Center as they will be closing along with the show. The gallery will be open Tuesday – Friday, 11am-5pm, with additional hours Wednesday night from 5-8.
THIS IS YOUR CONFERENCE
4:30-6:30 FEBRUARY 24 @ HAVERFORD COLLEGE
11-5 FEBRUARY 25 @ INSTITUTE OF CONTEMPORARY ART, UPENN Read the rest of this entry »
Head over to Philly artist Laura Deutch’s “Messages in Motion” page for a short video account of Occupy Philly, the local iteration of the protests sweeping the nation’s major cities. Laura continues her important work as self-charged local documentarian, filming messages from an array of local social groups and personalities and posting them online. In her most recent video, we witness an Occupy group assembly meeting. Listen as they repeat what each speaker says – this is a phenomenon known as the “human microphone.” Most basically, the group will ensure that all can hear by amplifying the message through united repetition. Through the Occupy movement, new voices are being heard. Through People’s Biennial, new voices are being heard. The two projects mirror each other in that they provide a platform for new ideas that might not fit into the current respective structures.
Here is a statement from Laura’s website:
MIM offers participants the opportunity to produce short video postcards that communicate personal and social messages about their diverse life
experiences. As the Van travels through the city, the stories inspire, educate and provoke participants from different communities to learn from one another.
Pardon my absence, it’s been a wild year and a half since we spoke last. My semester away in Austria was nothing short of remarkable. I return with an intensified addiction to coffee and a new appreciation for pounded cutlets, battered and fried. Missing schintzel. But look at what has taken its place! The pristine white hardcover catalog for People’s! It’s a handsome thing – stately, unabashedly digging on the red, white, and blue. To that effect, holding it here in the Cantor Fitzgerald feels like coming home. Design-wise the book is a nod/homage to Howard Zinn’s ever-popular A People’s History of the United States. Zinn is an American writer, historian, political scientist, and social activist (fun fact: his father is from Austria). His account of American history is rooted in the belief that history is best told from the perspective of the people, not from that of the political or social elites in power. In the wikipedia article, there’s this great snippet:
In a 1998 interview, Zinn said he had set “quiet revolution” as his goal for writing A People’s History. “Not a revolution in the classical sense of a seizure of power, but rather from people beginning to take power from within the institutions.”
In this sense, People’s Biennial mirrors Zinn’s project. The show is a call to arms. Jens and Harrell, along with the participating institutions, have amassed a humble militia. Keep your ear to the wind: Art belongs is ours, we the people.
Back on the grind, yours truly, David.
Maiza is an artist who only recently moved to Philadelphia. She brought some video work to the open call at the Friends Center. She showed her short film “Men Are Much Harder.” It depicted groups of people reacting to erotic images. Maiza said the video was borne out of another art project done in Kentucky, where she worked as a curator. She is currently making a final edit for the People’s Biennial show.
Photo credit: Steve Magnotta
We received Andrew’s work via email. He sent photographs of his paintings to our website. Andrew paints everyday objects – phonebooks, GPS printouts, maps. He tries to re-understand these objects as illusory. He notes, “Through painting objects that are both read as flat images (photography/print) and images with dimension (a calendar or book) one can make a distinction between our imagined reality prompted by a reproduction. The subject of my work is about the presence of objects existing in their own right apart from the mind. There exists a form of looking where we stop seeing our illusions; where our seeing eclipses our thinking or cultural references, a slow shift in the mind where the tunnel vision of symbols and ideas dissolve.”
Alan brought his paintings and collages to the open call in Philadelphia. He works primarily on tiny swatches, the kind you get at hardware stores when you are trying to decide on the color of a room or what kind of rug to install. He covers these swatches in paint and other materials. His pieces are geometric abstractions, intriguing for their mix of dark and bright coloration and small size.
Photo credit: Steve Magnotta, Intrigue Photography
During the Philadelphia open call we met with John Diaz, the former Associate Director of Facilities Management at Haverford College. He had with him a series of drawings done by his daughter Cymantha. John told us that she drew constantly as a child. When she was around 12, however, she mysteriously stopped pursuing her artistic abilities. She rarely drew throughout her teen years. Her childhood work will be featured in the Biennial.
Photo credits: Steve Magnotta
We visited the studio of Howard Kleger at the suggestion of James Weissinger who had seen his work at PIFAS place before. Howard works in a wide variety of mediums. He considers his work “living arts.” Howard writes, “The “living arts,” for me, also includes “multimedia,” meaning conceptually driven motifs in the format of film, sculpture, performances, staged events, environments, diagrams, conscious post-figured fine arts pieces, music, writings, and inventions.” His autobiographical film, “Howard2go,” will be included in the People’s Biennial.
Photo credit: Steve Magnotta, Intrigue Photography