bOdy pandemOnium :: Immersion into Noise

Viral Venture: an excerpt

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Joseph Nechvatal – bOdy pandemOnium. Immersion into Noise

Exhibition runs: 25 April – 21 June 2015

Opening: 24 April 2015, 8PM
Artist Talk & Noise Music Concert: 25 April, 2PM

Prinzenallee 34, 13359 Berlin

Opening hours: Fri-Sun, 2-6PM and by appointment
http://www.artlaboratory-berlin.org
info@artlaboratory-berlin.org

front-window-retinal-automata_2012--2x2m-small-for-groupmail1rear-window-curiosités_2012-2x2m-small-for-groupmail
Joseph Nechvatal, frOnt windOw retinal autOmata (l), rear windOw curiOsités (r) 2012, computer-robotic assisted paintings, 2x2m

Curators: Regine Rapp & Christian de Lutz

Joseph Nechvatal (born in 1951 in Chicago) is a post-conceptual artist working in digital art. He is one of the most important pioneers of ‘new media art’, but at the same time makes use of ‘old media’ (such as painting and drawing). What is phenomenal, and in our opinion relevant to the 21st century, is that his paintings are created through a use of custom artificial life software and computer robotics.

The exhibition, subtitled Immersion into Noise, is Nechvatal’s first solo show in Berlin and presents recent works to a Berlin audience alongside his eponymous book Immersion into Noise (2011). In that text, Nechvatal provides visual analogies to audio noise within the powerful effects of the act of immersion.

In the bOdy pandemOnium exhibition, and in Nechvatal’s work in general, the term viractualism, meaning the interface between the biological and the technological, plays an essential role: “The basis of the viractual conception is that virtual producing computer technology has become a noteworthy means for making and understanding contemporary art. This brings art to a place where one finds the merging of the computed (the virtual) with the uncomputed corporeal (the actual).”

Parallel to his theoretical research, Nechvatal has created a series of paintings and projections that show  a C++ custom virus program (created with the programmer Stephane Sikora) invading, destroying and transforming his painterly art images based on intimate parts of the human body. In the exhibition at Art Laboratory Berlin, two large computer-robotic assisted paintings will be on display: frOnt windOw retinal autOmata (2012) and rear windOw curiOsites (2012).

Also on view will be one of his famous viral computer software de-generative works: Viral Venture (2011). It is accompanied by a musical score for two hundred electric guitars by the composer Rhys Chatham.

An Artist Talk with Noise Music Concert of his piece 3 pOstmOrtems will take place on the opening weekend, on Saturday, 25 April, 2pm.

For more information:
http://artlaboratory-berlin.org/html/eng-exh-archive.htm
http://www.eyewithwings.net/nechvatal/

This exhibition is made possible in part by a generous gift from Michael Schröder

 

 

About josephnechvatal

Joseph Nechvatal is an American post-conceptual artist who creates virus-modeled artificial life computer-assisted paintings and animations. Themes he has addressed in his art include the apocalyptic, communication excess, the virus, and gender fluidity. In 1975, he moved from Chicago to the downtown Tribeca area of New York City. He began studying at Columbia University with the philosopher Arthur Danto while working for the Dia Art Foundation as archivist to the minimalist composer La Monte Young. In 1980, he moved from Tribeca to the sordid Lower East Side where he found artistic camaraderie and politically inspired creative energy. There he became closely associated with Collaborative Projects (Colab), the influential post-punk artists’ group that included Kiki Smith and Jenny Holzer, among others. Those were glory days for the famous Colab projects, such as Just Another Asshole, The Real Estate Show and The Times Square Show. He also helped establish the non-profit cultural space ABC No Rio, where exhibitions were animated by political purpose. In the early 1980s, his art consisted of dense post-minimalist gray graphite drawings (that were sometimes photo-mechanically enlarged), of sculpture, of photographs, and of musique concrète audio collages. In 1983, he co-founded the famous avant-garde art music project Tellus Audio Cassette Magazine. In 1984, he created an opera called XS: The Opera Opus (1984-6) with the no wave musical composer Rhys Chatham that was presented in Boston and New York. In 1986, Nechvatal began using computer-robotics to make conceptual paintings. Some were exhibited at Documenta VIII in 1987. In 1992, when he was artist-in-residence at the Louis Pasteur Atelier in Arbois and at the Saline royale d’Arc-et-Senans, he created computer virus codes that he used as an artistic tool. This work was a reflection on his personal experiences of risk and loss with the AIDS epidemic. In 1999, he earned his doctorat in the philosophy of aesthetics and technology in England and soon wrote two art theory books: Towards an Immersive Intelligence and Immersion Into Noise. In 2001, he extended his initial experimentations into the virus as an artistic painterly tool in a series of artificial life works. These works include various series of paintings, animations, and a lengthy audio composition entitled viral symphOny. He has created a series of virus-based themed exhibitions of artificial life paintings and animation projections that explore the fragility and fluidity of the human body. You can follow him on Twitter at @twinkletwink Homepage: http://www.nechvatal.net
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