S.A. Bachman/Neda Moridpour/Louder Than Words
"LOUDER THAN WORDS is a cross-cultural, intergenerational art collective that targets sexual assault, domestic violence, women and migration, LGBTQ+ equality, and jail reform ... We strive to ignite civic dialogue, unravel obstacles, reorder entrenched cultural gridlock, and generate languages of critique and possibility."
Their presentation of "These Walls Can Talk" during "Half the Sky: Intersections in Social Practice Art", which I directed in China on behalf of the Women's Caucus for Art, was a powerful, interactive event with Chinese students and faculty and addressed "domestic violence. It alludes to domestic space by juxtaposing wallpaper with information on gender violence, video, and “don’t remain silent” stickers. The wallpaper design incorporates a number of common objects that are frequently used to inflict injury: fists, knives, belts, guns and irons. Conversely, the video presents famous world leaders including President Obama and King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia reciting Jackson Katz’s 10 Things Men Can Do To Prevent Gender Violence."
As socially-engaged artists, activists and educators, S.A and Iranian-born Neda, continue to develop community-engaged projects, including:
"Women on the Move" " transforms a 26-foot truck into a mobile billboard and resource center to address sexual assault, harassment and domestic violence" and "Vehicle for Change" which will transform" a 26-ft truck into a mobile billboard and resource center addressing jail reform and incarceration alternatives in L.A. County. The truck will travel throughout L.A County promoting passage of the 2020 ballot initiative, registering voters, educating, participating in healing justice events."
A link to a video about them is posted in the comments.
Photos by Christine Giancola and courtesy of the Louder Than Words website.
Thank you to all who ventured over to my Open Studio during Art Walk on Friday night! Families, children, elected officials, Montana Arts Council members, my buddies at High Plains Architects, artist and curator colleagues, dear friends and friends I haven't seen in a while, and the curious. Far-ranging conversations... about city/county planning and community building and memory and collaborations and supporting family members and making mustard and graphic novels and how to depict water and being our true selves and very sweet discussions, with children, about how I could expand my projects. And then there was that spiced hot chocolate...
Thank you to Virginia Bryan and the Downtown #billingsartwalk for another opportunity to bring so many people downtown to enjoy our offerings.
Texas Roadtrip 2019
With Cory Cornett
The Kinsey Collection of art and historical documents deserved much more than a couple of hours and will, hopefully, travel to more museums.
Ragnar Kjartansson’s “The Visitors”
9 channel video projection
Dallas Museum of Art
Dirge-like, and eerily seductive... slow repetitions of lyrics such as “There are stars exploding around you, and there’s nothing, nothing you can do.” Each video a different, carefully staged room in a large home, each with a different musician/singer, rich color,each with it own full sound blended with the while as one moves through the space.
Texas Roadtrip 2019
My five years living in Fort Worth in the late 80s were both financially and socially challenging (the very bright spot was getting pregnant with and delivering Collin, a 6th generation Texan). I discovered the Japanese Gardens on my first exploratory trip for housing, when I realized how different our lives would be here vs. our culturally diverse time in Houston. These gardens became one of my frequent getaways, transporting me to peaceful moods and reconnecting me to my true self.
In the 80s, I was drawn into photography in a new way when I saw Richard Avedon’s large scale photographs “In the American West” at the Amon Carter... as SFGate’s Kenneth Baker wrote, these photos: “consistently shows us people whose self-representations appear to override the camera's powers of affirmation and betrayal.”
During today’s visit, I saw works and artists that had influenced me and/or parallel my creative interests...
Dallas-area James Surls “Seven and Seven Flower” with his use of fence posts and materials gleaned from his land
Lewis Wickes Hine “Steamfitter” . He was originally a sociologist; I am a political scientist... and chose to use his camera as a tool for activism
Mexican-born Gabriel Dawe “Plexus no. 34” using sewing thread to push gender + material stereotypes and his use of web like connections (plexus - network of nerves) which, for me, symbolize, in my community memory project, our collective community memory
Camille Utterback “Untitled 5” using digital/tech art in an interactive, collaborative way, each interaction influenced by the previous one and influencing the next one
And then a surprising juxtaposition of Georgia o’Keefe and a male artist’s (Robert Laurent) similar “, but sculptural, use of plant forms which, when she painted them, pigeon holed her as a painter of erotic female form.
When I lived here, I was the public relations￼ and marketing director for the YMCA. One of our members was friends with Ed Bass,who, at that time developed what was then called the , Caravan of Dreams (now Reata) on Houston street. On the roof of this performance/art center was a geodesic dome and bar to which we were able to have private access one night. ￼The dome relates to another project Ed financed, Biosphere 2, in the Sonoran Desert, which was initially supposed to be a totally enclosed space, Including domes, for environmental experiments. I seem to recall that the systems of natural air purification failed, but that there was still decent scientific information that came out of that project.￼￼ I enjoyed some Mezcal up there last night After drinks and light fare at Booger Reds in the stockyards and a quick tour around “the largest honkey tonk in the world”, Billy Bob’s :-)￼
Another place of respite for me when I lived here in the 80s were these water gardens by Phillip Johnson and John Burgee. Climbing down into them, below street level and with the falling water blocking out any city noise, was heaven. This morning I had the whole, glorious space to myself!
Texas Road Trip 2019
Some of the many public art visits in San Antonio with artists Doerte Weber and her husband Ansen Seale.
Mel Chin’s “CoCobijos”
Houston-born artist Chin creates the word CoCobijos or “co-shelters” for this work that references resilience and community support. “Two-faceted cactus-like pads arc in a supporting embrace appearing to hold each other up.” The plasma cut lattice pattern resembles the xylem, interior capillary structure of prickly pear cacti.
This and other public art here were placed so as to be seen from highways, especially when leaves have fallen from trees in the winter.
Margarita Cabrera’s “Arbol de la Vida: Memorias y Voces de la Terra”
Margarita’s work filled my heart and touched my passion for community-engaged art. This 40x80 foot sculpture stopped me in awe as I rounded the bend in the path. She collaborated with 700 people, who created 700 ceramic representations of their 700 stories celebrating the city’s rich cultural history, diversity and community bonds.
Ansen Seale’s “Tricentennial Clock, 2018”
The Jewelbox Project
In historic Roatzsch-Griesenbeck-Arciniega House
Doerte’s husband Ansen let us inside the building to see this normally “peep-in experience” installation more closely.
The public art program in San Antonio is vibrant and impressive!
Texas Road Trip 2019
With Jo Hamilton
Chinati Foundation Highlights
Donald Judd...I had previously acknowledged Judd’s artistic contributions, but they had never moved me when seen in the comparatively sterile galleries in MOMA or even DIA Beacon, but I was stopped in my tracks by his “100 Untitled Mill Aluminum” with their infinite variation of shades of gray and tricks of the eye as openings become reflections and light and clouds move across polished surfaces as I slowly weaves through the cubes. I love it when my mind is opened to new ways of thinking and seeing.
Robert Irwin “untitled (dawn to dusk)” played with outside light shining on subtle gradations of scrim, the visitor wandering slowly into the brightness of white
I had never been attracted to Carl Andre’s work (partially influenced by his connection to Ana Mendieta’s death), but his word pieces reminded me of Jon Lodge’s way of thinking.
The public sculpture by Elmgreen and Dragset, as a criticism to consumerism and designed to slowly erode into the earth has become a selfie-stop, but its remoteness along a lonely highway and the train that was reflected in its window created and interesting roadside attraction and brief stop along our travels.
Erected by John Cerney, this was a surprise further down the road, especially when we go out of the car and heard the solar-powered c&w soundtrack.
Delightful visit with Kiley Dunlap and sweet Campbell Bo Warren.
My "Home : Peace" community-engaged installation at Toucan Gallery continues to grow with additions by the Billings Public School's Quest Program's 4th, 5th, and 6th graders (with whom I spent a week discussing community-engaged and environmental art), attendees at the Billings Art Walk, attendees at my discussion about community-engaged art at Kirk's Grocery and preschool visitors from St. Luke's Enrichment Center (who field-tripped to the gallery). ! Here are some shots of the many responses to concepts of home, be it a physical space, loved ones, events, emotions . . . I love that I overheard comments about the painted cushion in front looking like the ripples in the river and the ovals on the wall as partially submerged river rocks!
"Home Grove" is a set of mixed-media sculptures designed to invoke thoughts of peace, comfort, rest and ease. Similar to my public art piece, Thicket, installed under the Sky Point in downtown Billings, these sculptures use the structure of groves of willows and red twig dogwood, which grow along our river and form protective spaces for insects and animals, as symbolic of how our community provides haven for our many and diverse citizens.
Thank you to Dixie Rieger and Bonny Beth Luhman for including eight of my works in the "Wood You Could You" exhibition at Waterworks Art Museum in Miles City,October 11-November 8, and featuring sculpture and furniture. Intriguing shadows within the gallery.
[from upper left in top image]
"Inflamed" (freedom series)
steel, copper, river rocks
94 x 35 x 24
"Rushing Grotto" (from Grottoes series)
34 x 38 x 22 inches
steel, video screen, copper wire, rope, vinyl
"Uncorked" (freedom series)
recycled, repurposed steel and copper
83 x 36 x 36 inches
"Yellowstone River Grotto" (from Grottoes series)
35 x 24 x 15 inches
recycled steel rod, video screen, steel wire, recycled steel mesh, recycled bicycle tires, recycled nylon rope, recycled guitar strings, balloons, nylon hose, trash bags, transparent tape, electrical tape, recycled shower curtain, recycled nylon yarn, recycled VHS tape, wax paper, plastic wrap, organza ribbon, nylon undergarments
"Erupted" (freedom series)
steel, cedar post, deck stain, glue
84 x 28 x 24
"Unfettered" (freedom series)
steel, cedar, chains, wire, zip ties, steel fittings
81 x 48 x 36 inches
"The Answers Await in the Chrysalis" (from Chrysalis series)
84 x 34 x 16 inches
steel, copper, wood, kiln-formed glass
"Iridescence Grotto" (from Grottoes series)
37 x 28 x 18 inches
Steel, copper wire, aluminum foil, aluminum sheeting shards, fabric, video screen, paint
Also including works by: Melissa Burns, Thomas Coulhourst, Bob Janssen, Jake Klamm, Robert Kramer, Rex Luhman, Gifford Wood
So lush, such variety of vegetation and so moist that, unlike at his installations at Tippet Rise Art Center and Blackfoot Pathways: Sculpture in the Wild, the branches in Patrick Dougherty’s “Lopo de Loop” have been reborn and are sprouting, giving another sweet aspect to his enticing environments.
Thank you to Ann and Scott Botel-Barnard for taking me to Morris Arboretum
A 2 hour immersion into the astonishing story of the Barnes Collection. One man collecting more Renoirs (181) then any international museum, 69 Cezannes, and on and on and displaying them in ensembles with other objects to encourage his students to look for visual relationships. Of the 59 Mattises, many were of his Odalisques, and, since the collection was so massive (and I have named my teardrop trailer “Oda” - the Turkish word for room or chamber and the root word of Odalisque, which is often used for reclining nudes, or the relaxing posture required in my not-so-tall trailer)... I decided to focus on the many paintings referencing this posture. Many were from Mattise, but also Renoir, Modigliani, Picasso and Pascin.
I am grateful to Jo Hamilton for introducing me to this collection and do hope to return so I can focus on other aspects.
A place to decant my brain, to capture inspiration and share fresh insights. [Posts from 2015 onward]