“POSSESSED” at The Projects/FATVillage
Curated by Lisa Rockford
August 29 – October 17, 2015
VIP Preview/Panel discussion with artists and curator: August 28, 6-8pm
Artwalks: August 29, September 27, 6-10pm
Art Fallout event/Closing: October 17, 6-10pm
The Projects Contemporary Art Space in FATVillage Arts District
523 NW 1st Ave, Ft Lauderdale, FL 33301
Send inquiries to: Lisa Rockford, Outsidetheboxcurator@gmail.com
The Viewer becomes the Performer in an exhibit responding to Art & “Selfies”
The curatorial theme for Possessed is inspired by the rampant trend of “selfies” by viewers at art exhibitions. Is this behavior simply a way to relate to or be enthusiastic about the artwork, or are contemporary viewers unable to appreciate the original object without inserting themselves into the work? In this exhibit, the viewer is unwittingly provoked into becoming the performer.
The curator, Lisa Rockford, invited artists that create striking, colorful, provocative, 3-dimensional artworks, to creatively respond to the narcissism of the viewer. Artists were asked to consider how they would create an installation that will entice viewers to “Strike a pose” next to their work; either honoring, or critiquing this selfie trend.
Several works will be made new specifically for the exhibition, or modified to thoughtfully include a place for the viewer. For example, artists may decide to create something that will surround the viewer, mirror them, or act as a backdrop. Each installation will have an “X” where the viewer is to stand, a photo with a “suggested pose,” and specific #Hashtags to use when posting online (i.e. #SelfiePossessed #Fatvillage). This interactive format will allow the viewer to use their narcissism to promote the artist and the exhibit in social media.
One of the featured artists, sleeper, will be conducting a premier performance called “Reflections” from the “I think I love you” series (image right). According to sleeper, “Reflections is calling on the spirit of the sacred clown to highlight our culture’s relationship to new media. The sacred clown is a satirist. Sacred clowns function as a mirror. Their behavior, in most cases extreme in nature, forces others to examine themselves. A sacred clown forces the audience to read between lines and look at things in a different way, sometimes exposing doubts, fears, and weaknesses. They are jesters who provoke important questions through satire.
The piece acts as a sort of ritual, the screens bringing the entranced figures from the darkness in a partially choreographed procession. The figures are drawn unwillingly to the glow of the monitors and struggle in its embrace. The performance culminates with the performers breaking free only to be caught by a different beast. “Reflections” playfully responds to surveillance and self-documentation. The double standards we have created to cope with new media by outside forces have ultimately transformed us into the greater propagator. “
The exhibition opens as part of the August art walk, and closes in conjunction with the Annual Art Fallout event on October 17. The idea for the exhibit was partly inspired by the ArtFallout theme of “Interactivity.”
The exhibition is housed within The Projects, an 8000 square foot warehouse gallery, in the heart of FATVillage Arts District, (Flagler Arts and Technology Village) which is the impetus for Fort Lauderdale's ever growing Arts community as well as the founder of the monthly Last-Saturday Art walks that have now expanded to run shuttles between clusters of artist’s studios, galleries & creative businesses throughout Flagler village. This unique exhibition space allows artists to make very large or very tall artworks, or hang things from the rafters 30 feet up. The Projects exhibition space was recently awarded the Knights Art Challenge grant, which is in part funding Possessed and the accompanying panel discussion.
To see images of a few previous exhibits in the space, go to:
Examples of other exhibits curated by Lisa Rockford:
Joshua Hunter Davis
Mark Joseph Oliver
About the CURATOR:
Lisa Rockford received her MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and since moving to South Florida in 2007, has been a trailblazer in raising cultural awareness in visual arts and supporting local artists. While in residence at Sailboat Bend Artists lofts, Lisa was the principal organizer of launching 1310 gallery, bringing it to recognition. Lisa immediately gained media attention for her curated exhibitions, comprised of artists both local and national professional artists, in which she collaborated with prominent art professionals from universities, museums, and galleries in Miami and Broward, including FIU, FAU, The Patricia & Phillip Frost Art Museum, Girls Club Art Collection, Gallery Schuster Berlin/Miami, Fountainhead Art Residency, Carol Jazzar Contemporary art, and more. Five of these exhibits received grants from the Broward Cultural division, and offered cash prizes for the artists.
Lisa was asked by Girls Club Art Collection to help them found the “Art Fallout,” an annual event, now in its 6th year, which unites the contemporary art spaces in downtown Fort Lauderdale in an evening of interactive exhibitions, special presentations, live-mural painting and open studios. As an Assistant Professor of Art at Broward College, Lisa created an annual Visiting artist series, bringing national artists to give lectures and workshops. Lisa has also been selected to jury art exhibits for the Broward Art Guild, local art fairs, acted as the lead tour guide for Art Nexus Magazine at the International art fair Art Basel Miami Beach, and recently asked to be curator for the outdoor art Biennial “Outside the Box3” at the prestigious Whitespace-the Mordes Collection in Palm Beach, FL.