Last night Hiba, Danielle and I met to do some more prep work on the letters for the Letter Library launch on June 21st. We painted another test letter E a different shade of grey and started to populate a wall with some more of the tests. It was excellent to see more than a few letters up at once to start to get a sense of the scale of the cluster.
Danielle tried her hand at cutting the letters for a little while, but we quickly shifted over to more tests, while also playing catch up and talking through some other projects we want to kick off later this summer.
We head out with a grey letter E and a two-tone S.
This was around 9pm or later … so we didn’t get a read of this shade of grey in the harsher sunlight. There’s something interesting about the grey — certainly it doesn’t pop like the white (or the black really for that matter), but it feels a bit more anchored.
We also put up a white letter Y. It’s no surprise it stands out the most, outside.
Danielle moves the letters around to other locations.
YES, more often.
Hiba, Lucy, and I returned earlier this morning. Hiba installed some rows of white letters to get a better sense of how they’ll look on the walls.
We also figured it might make them easier to paint and not take up every square inch of walking space while we continue to prep.
Taping the letters.
Meanwhile, Lucy takes on the jig saw.
We’re going to play a lot with the lighting.
Letters temporarily installed on a couple of the walls. We’ll end up putting them a lot closer together on the final install.
We’re still planning to paint the faces white to remove the black lines left over from tracing.
The effects are interesting — about what I expected where they feel more a part of the wall than objects to take out and distribute. Of course, getting closer to the letters easily reveals that they’re styrofoam, but we’ll have to work out a really straight-forward set of instructions to carry out the project.
The plan going forward — finish cutting the letters today and Monday, start (and hopefully finish) painting Monday, start clean-up and install Tuesday, and do all the other prep by Thursday morning, giving us the better part of the day for contingency.
I saw this in the Globe and Mail this morning and thought it was worth reposting here given how deep we’re into thinking about text in public spaces at the moment … seems like it would be a really fun installation to see in person! The project is called S/N (Signal to Noise) and can be found in Terminal 1 at Pearson Airport in Toronto. It’s part of this year’s Luminato Festival, one of the preeminent arts festivals in North America, having commissioned over 50 new works of art, and featured 6,500 artists from 35+ countries. Luminato launched in 2007 with a work by one of our favourites, Rafael Lozano Hemmer‘s Pulse Front: Relational Architecture 12.
As for S/N, here’s the project description…
The transformation of random letters into legible words is at the technocentric heart of S/N (Signal To Noise), created by the Belgian artists LAb[au]. The installation is constructed from an assortment of discarded technology and salvaged split-flaps, components from the information displays that predated LED monitors in public spaces like airports and train stations.
Arranged in a circular grid, the flaps randomly rotate until the system identifies a word. The flow of words creates an auto-poetic sequence, inviting viewers to interpret its meaning.
LAb[au] explores the theme of space and time constructs relative to information processes. Its three members – Manuel Abendroth, Jérôme Decock and Els Vermang – specialize in system art and are mainly active within the interactive, reactive and generative realm.
Just back from an incredible week installing at Eye Level Gallery for our show, Unrest Everywhere (tools for playing with Halifax), which runs until May 12, 2012. The show features a number of multiples and interactive works, all of which are yours for the taking and borrowing.
The premise for the show was to create a series of works that could directly or indirectly suggest access points for re-encountering the city and your role within it. We created works that aimed to be highly distributable, playful, and allowed a bit of critical commentary on the ways in which a sense of place comes to be planned, articulated, and established.
Below is a huge pile of documentation of the process — but first — we’d like to extend a huge thanks to all staff and volunteers at Eye Level, especially Michael and Matt, and to Emily and Kaley for the place to crash!
Hi, 5 (5 Questions) is a web-only interview series which presents five questions to artists, activists, and creative thinkers alike. The project acts as an educational device which allows us to gain insight into the narratives that define successful individuals. We are interested in the motivations behind ambitious ideas and how these individuals chart personal change in relation to their surroundings.
About David Spriggs
David Spriggs explores the representation and strategies of power, the symbolic meanings of colour, and the thresholds of form and perception. His installation based work lies in a space between the 2 and 3 dimensions. In many installations he uses a technique he developed in 1999 using multiple painted layered images in space to create unique ephemeral like forms. The subjects depicted in his work relate to the breakdown and recreation of form and volume – as seen through his interest in cyclones, explosions, and forces.
David Spriggs is currently based in Montreal. He was born in 1978 in Manchester, England, and immigrated to Canada in 1992. He received his Master of Fine Arts from Concordia University, Montreal, and his Bachelor of Fine Arts from Emily Carr University in Vancouver.
If you had to describe your current self to a 16-year-old you, what would you say?
I am a contemporary artist working primarily on installation based work.
Could you describe an evolution in your work or way of thinking?
I have been through many different styles in my life as an artist. I tried everything to find out what works and what doesn’t. My thinking has lead from concept to another. 12 years ago I started thinking about transparency, then about 8 years ago concepts around the immaterial and perception, and more recently on concepts of power and the symbolic notions of colour.
Are there any people who have been instrumental in the development of your way of thinking and viewing the world?
The theories of the Futurists and Cubists have been interesting to me. I have been perhaps most inspired by writers such as Baudrillard, Virilio, and Foucault.
How do your political beliefs inform or fuel your work as an artist?
I would say that it is not so much political beliefs as much as being informed about the world, the general news, and advancements in science and theory.
What do you feel a city should be or do for its inhabitants?
A city is a changing organism that keeps it’s community alive. I would like to think culturally that a city provides its citizens a network in which the arts can flourish.
A quick three days at Martha Street Studio finished up with the opening for our exhibition, All the Stories We’re Not Telling About Winnipeg. The show features a series of posters made by participants from our workshops and created in response to the stories they collectively wrote.
The exhibition runs until January 5, 2012!
We have to extend an incredibly huge thank you to everyone at Martha Street Studio for facilitating this residency and exhibition. We were floored by the support we received there and were lucky enough to host some exceptionally great Winnipegers at our workshops.
Needless to say, we had a great time — and below is how it all came together.
This week, Rosina and I spent two days in Hamilton researching for our upcoming project at Hamilton Artist’s Inc. Two Tales of a City will uncover, celebrate, and imagine a future for lost histories of Steel City.
After months and months of work, we finally installed our project for CAFKA.11. Led by Josh, Hiba, Kevin, and myself, the project took an incredible amount of research and build time, but we were incredibly excited to see our efforts finally in place in front of Kitchener’s City Hall when we wrapped up the installation last night.
Reflect on Here calls on passersby to think on the infrastructure of the city, the attempt to create place with architecture, and the materiality of the text itself. This project was made possible with the generous support from the Ontario Arts Council‘s Exhibition Assistance Program and the incredible team at CAFKA.
Here’s a project which is particularly interesting for its subtlety. Designer Oscar Lhermitte created twelve groups of artificial stars and added them to the night sky of London, titling the project Urban Stargazing. Oscar and his team installed a group of lights on thin transparent lines. These lines were then anchored to nearby structures. I find the modification of an ‘image’ humans have lived with and interpreted for thousands of years is a pretty powerful statement.
This project “attempts to have us raise our head again up to the stars in the city sky by adding new constellations that narrate contemporary myths about London. They can only be observed by the naked eye at night time and from the ground they look so uncannily like the old constellations that you might never notice that any change has occurred.”