Monday, January 25, 2010

The current exhibition at Herron Galleries in Indianapolis is called COLLABORATE. We also have "Friends First: Collaborative Works by Brian Presnell" and "Work Product: Designs from the Walker Art Center" currently on view. This post shows some of the process behind the current exhibitions. Collaboration is crucial not only in the finished product of the exhibitions (the artwork), but also in the process of mounting the shows. My post as a gallery monitor/installation assistant allows me to be a part of this collaborative process, which is largely murky and curious to the general public. I hope this post sheds a bit of light on just what goes into mounting exhibitions of contemporary art.

VINYL. Most exhibitions feature vinyl logos and blocks of text. Many people might assume they are painted on with stencils or the like, but this is not the case. They are ordered at print shops and come to us with adhesive backing. We decide how we want the vinyl placed, then carefully use levels, rulers and painter's tape to place it correctly. We then remove the paper behind the adhesive and use a squeegee device similar to a credit card to smooth any air bubbles out and keep the adhesive firmly on the wall. Then we carefully remove the top layer of paper, and the job is done. In this case, we mounted a tricky vinyl logo onto a window. The small arrows at the bottom made this one difficult but we successfully mounted it without damaging the vinyl.

This mountain was painted onto one of our movable walls, which allow us to divide up our gallery space as well as mount artwork.

FABRICATION OF EXHIBITION COMPONENTS. Here at Herron Galleries, staff collaboratively build a lot of our own components such as pedestals and housings for media elements within our exhibitions. We worked together to build, paint and mount the boxes below. There are two parts to each box. The top part was painted white and fits over the bottom, which houses a Mac Mini that feeds content to monitors that are mounted on the wall. This was for Ultra Red's portion of the COLLABORATE exhibition.

CHRIS VORHEES AND STEVE LACY/ACADEMY RECORDS used overhead projectors to sketch two images directly onto our walls and also contributed similar framed works on paper for their portion of the exhibition.  Using a computer program, they turned images into blocks of text and numbers and then enlarged these "new" images onto the walls using overhead projectors.  The art is interesting in its investigation of our use of land and its assertion that technology is both a paradigm for seeing, and also waste in the case of the Indianapolis mall that is now a computer dumping ground.  They also created a limited run newspaper based on discussions with people in Indianapolis that is available to visitors.  Below are some pictures of the artists' process and two videos where they talk about their art.

Conversations with Chris Vorhees from Charles Fox on Vimeo.

1 comment:

  1. Eastgate Mall! East Washington St.!

    As a native Eastsider, I have firsthand experience with the dissolution of this mall (and this part of the city) over the last 20 years, especially the last 5.

    Great work guys, love the show.

    -Jeff Roy