Art &… Democracy as Medium
Thursday, October 13, 2016
20 Jay St. #317
Brooklyn, NY 11201
In the lead up to the 2016 Presidential Election, Triangle invites artists Guy Ben-Ari, Eric Gottesman and Elizabeth Orr to present their work in response to the current state of the political process. The discussion will examine the sea changes that have occurred in the American political landscape over the past four years and address how, as artists and as citizens, we are to contend with a situation, in which facts, truth, and policies are “trumped” by reality television-driven drama and antics, which seem to be fueled by critique rather than quelled.
The event takes its title from For Freedoms’ description of their artist-run Super Pac, presented at Triangle by Eric Gottesman. Interested in American democracy as medium, the project co-founded by Gottesman and Hank Willis Thomas, asks how artists might reshape democracy into a more transparent and representative form. For Freedoms encourages new forms of critical discourse surrounding the upcoming 2016 presidential election. As artists, they offer a way of working that intervenes in the actual, political system, using the Super Pac structure to comment on democracy and distribute funds to artists.
Recent Triangle artist-in-residence Guy Ben-Ari is a painter whose latest works center on the aesthetics of news media, election coverage, and the “staging” involved in public political events; his work examines how visual information in these realms tacitly effects our interpretation of political processes by carefully selecting and rendering scenes as large scale-oil paintings and more abstracted, intimate ink drawings. The event also serves as a launch for Ben-Ari’s new book of drawings, Democracy Soup, published by Meta Meta Meta, LLC.
Elizabeth Orr’s recent video MT RUSH uses campaign emails and fundraising appeals which "perform the pervasive political rhetoric in today's systems of governance" to script a humorous, sci-fi narrative centered on a park ranger. Orr will address her decision to respond artistically to the aesthetic shift she noted in the political material sent to her over the past eighteen months from both presidential parties, and how she decided to use the material to structure a new video work. MT RUSH will be screened at PSSST (LA), Rutgers University, Denison University, and the University of Nebraska.
Art & ... is a multi-disciplinary public program series at Triangle in conjunction with its Residency Programs. Artists, collectives and curators in-residence as well as recent Alum present talks, screenings, performances and more in relationship to their research, ideas and work at Triangle. Past iterations include: Ana Vaz with Anthropologist Elizabeth A. Povinelli, Justin Davy with International Affairs Professor Sean Jacobs, James N. Kienitz Wilkins with artist and writer David Levine, and artists of color bloc with architect Aurora P. Robinson.