Aside from all the great conversation with fellow students we were treated to talks given by Germaine Koh, Althea Thauberger, Randy Lee Cutler, Folke Kobberling and Martin Kaltwasser (visited the site where they are building a giant dozer near the former Olympic Village), Thomas Riedelsheimer, and a dual-video-link with John Cussans in the UK (we really are digital). Our studios were given by Ken Lum (brilliant), and the team of Sabine Bitter and Helmut Weber (doubly brilliant). Chris Jones is leading our thesis class.
Two papers down, mentors and a supervisor to choose yet, a few books purchased (from my working bibliography), organizing research into neat little compartments (I’m sure some wind will blow in messing it all up), as well as trying to find some space to work in my overflowing into the hallway 10×10 foot studio.
Thursday, I had the opportunity to go to an art talk given by Maria Hupfield. Hupfield has a diverse practice that includes performance and photography. I especially appreciated the work she did called My Evil Twin (as discussed on her profile at ECUAD). The set up, though seemingly simple at first, brings the viewer to a place where they are asked to consider two things. One being the way in which we view images and ideas – through what lenses do we choose to look, and the other being the degree to which we are removed from the “real”. First, the photographer has stepped in between us and the “event” followed by the process of the image making, resulting in a two dimensional representation, covered with glass and set in a gallery. This representation is then filtered further through the sweet little lenses of the bird-house spy-glasses. I enjoyed the whole idea and it’s presentation – well … viewing it as a projected representation, sometimes through a bird house lens, of a representation.
After the talk several students were treated to an on campus studio visit. It was encouraging to hear her fresh take on our work. As students we benefit from the discernment of instructors who know our work and our persons, but fresh eyes and insights can make for better work. Provided the student can hear, of course. All in all, I had a great and valuable time.
See More: www.ecuad.ca, mariahupfield.com
Two weeks ago I attended a talk given by David Khang. He discussed his ideas and some of his projects. While he stated that his work deals with language, gender, and identity, I was struck by some of the concepts floating around in those ideas. I find his work to be subtly humorous and powerful at the same time. Though not all of it engenders an internal smile, it is intelligent.
During his talk he introduced Richard Dyer and his White: Essays on Race and Culture, which I thought was particularly interesting since I had just completed a presentation on Glenn Ligon. Ligon used Dyer’s essay as a jumping off point for some of his work. Khang also discussed his feeling surrounding his own ethnicity. Here in North America he is an “Asian man,” but in Japan et. al., he is a “man.”
Today the talk was given by Jackson 2bears. 2bears uses music and cinema and combines them with the notion of scratch video, producing sound and video performances that point at stereotypes surrounding native North Americans. I found some of his work to be thought provoking.
So here I am looking at the work of three non-white males and feeling angry and inspired at the same time. I feel as though this is a topic that is definitely going to need more time, study and research. Have I mentioned yet that my skin has hardly any melanin in it (my legs are virtually transparent), I’m a natural light blond, and female?
More on David Khang: http://www.davidkhang.com/
More on Glenn Ligon: http://www.diacenter.org/ligon/
More on Jackson 2bears: http://jackson2bears.net/