Soo Visual Arts Center
Submission to curatorial panel for the 2014 exhibition season
I understand from your call for submissions that one video link equals three images. Therefore, I have included three looping animations and one installation photograph as my submission to participate in Soo Visual Arts Center's 2014 exhibition season.
I would like to create a multimedia installation at Soo Visual Arts Center through which I will explore the history of human activity in the sky. I am particularly interested in exploring flight as a reflection of human desire, exploration, and innovation, but also violence, manipulation, and destruction. I can provide and install all electronic equipment.
Here you will find examples from the series Construction/Destruction. This series deals with a collection of glass plate negatives taken by Orville and Wilbur Wright to document their flying machine experiments between 1898 and 1911 in Kitty Hawk, North Carolina, and Dayton, Ohio. To protect their discoveries and progress, the Wright brothers were secretive about the details of their flying experiments and made few prints from these negatives. The plates were eventually stored in a shed on the Wright family property in Dayton and were damaged in the Great Dayton Flood of 1913, the greatest natural disaster in Ohio’s history. Many of the negatives contain marks, cracks, and tears where the photographic emulsion began to break away.
There is a compelling juxtaposition between these marks and the documented flying experiments. Although progress toward a grand invention is captured, the marks become suggestions of disaster. Some of the marks are reminiscent of explosions in the sky, perhaps foretelling the violent and destructive potential of the invention. Indeed, World War I began the year after the flood, and the fighter aircraft soon emerged.
Like the photographic exposures, the flood blemishes capture a moment in time. They are part of the life of the negative, and part of the Wright brothers’ story. Using digital tools, I emphasize the relationship between the flying machines and blemishes by isolating them together in an empty white space. The flying machines sway, mimicking the motion that made fixed-wing, powered flight possible and satisfied the human desire to fly.
1. Untitled from Construction/Destruction, 1-minute looping high definition animation, 20” x 32” HDTV, 2012
2. Untitled from Construction/Destruction, 1-minute looping high definition animation, 20” x 32” HDTV, 2012
3. 1. Untitled from Construction/Destruction, 1-minute looping high definition animation, 20” x 32” HDTV, 2012