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Brooklyn Artists Ball 2014

Adam Parker Smith

INTERVIEW: What did you have in mind while designing your table? How would you describe the work you created?  

SMITH: When I was a kid, one of my evening chores was setting the table. I use to like to add some decorations as well. Usually it would be an amalgamation of random objects from the house, or little sculpture I had assembled out of leaves and twigs and things like that from outside. My parents would give me free reign, with the exception that, because people had to eat at the table, it couldn't be unappetizing. While I was designing the table for the Ball, I definitely thought of this long-ago restriction and kept reminding myself that people were going to have to dine with the tablescape.  If I had to quickly describe my decorations this time around, I would say, "a bunch of foam butts."

INTERVIEW: Do you have any specific memories of the Brooklyn Museum or anything you'd like to say about it?

SMITH: Once I was in the museum on a slow day and I entered one of the larger spaces where there was only one other guest viewing at the time. We worked our way in opposite directions around the gallery. I went clockwise, and the other viewer went counter. We intersected in the middle of the gallery in front of a larger painting. Out of curiosity we both glanced at each other. The person that I found standing next to me was Kevin Spacey. I was so shocked that I made a funny face, and because it was such a funny expression he started laughing. Then we both moved on. 

 

 

Alejandro Guzman

INTERVIEW: What did you have in mind while designing your installation? How would you describe the work you created?

GUZMAN: Since I usually create large sculptures for performances, initially, I thought about four sculptural performance objects with four performance artists rolling around on top of the tables and executing choreographed actions. However, I was reminded about safety and people actually eating, drinking, and talking at the tables. I began looking around my studio at these large wooden skeletal structures that create the form, and then the skins are worked into the sculptures. These structures became the catalyst for the tabletop for the BAB14.  So for me and hopefully the audience, these structures act as creative misunderstandings—the emotional, intellectual and cultural baggage that the audience brings with them when they view a work of art.

INTERVIEW: Do you have any specific memories of the Brooklyn Museum or anything you'd like to say about it?

GUZMAN: I can't just choose one memory from my Brooklyn Museum files. But when in I was in high school in Miami, I visited my brother while in undergrad at NYU. He took me to the museum. Family!

 

 

Alyson Shotz

INTERVIEW: What did you have in mind while designing your installation? How would you describe the work you created?

SHOTZ: According to curator CC Marsh of University of Texas, Austin, Visual Arts Center:"Invariant Interval defines the contours of space with a massive web of glimmering volumes; it invites its audience to ponder the deceivingly simple relationship between material and form. Through compression and expansion, Invariant Interval reveals that its structure is also its surface. This transparent duality of form and structure reflects Shotz's interest in topology, the mathematical study of the properties of geometric forms that remain unchanged by transformation. But the shapes of Invariant Interval also allude to spacetime. Likening the denser areas of the installation to warped space and compressed time, the artist reveals her interest in space itself."

 

 

Carrie Schneider

INTERVIEW: What did you have in mind while designing your installation? How would you describe the work you created?

SCHNEIDER: Moon Drawings represents all phases of the moon for one cycle, filmed over the course of one month, August to September 2013, in Blowing Rock, North Carolina, a small town in the Blue Ridge Mountains. Each night, for many hours, I watched the moon rise and set, and filmed the moon moving into and out of the frame, in real time. This video is a digital composite of footage recorded over the course of that month. For the Brooklyn Artists Ball (April 16, 2014), I sped up the footage to 10 times the original rate. Varying atmospheric qualities render the moon different colors, and when the moon appears to bounce in the frame—a sudden gust of wind. Although I tracked the moon with help from the Farmer's Almanac and astronomical charts from the U.S. Naval Observatory, the exactness of my process was less important to me than thinking of the moon as raw material, belonging to everyone—a paradoxically dynamic formal and physical constant.

 

 

Courtney Smith

INTERVIEW: What did you have in mind while designing your installation? How would you describe the work you created?

SMITH: When I designed this table, I was thinking about the format of the table (in this case long and linear) and how that spatial format shapes the social experience. I wanted to design a rigid superstructure, both pseudo-functional and ornamental, to act as the material expression of the social organization. The long chain of regular pattern and particularly the succession of standardized compartments to be occupied by the body, will recall a ship (or a train), where each participant /user/diner will have an equal and uniform space or field of activity within the collective experience. The intention is to make the diners feel themselves as individual elements part of a composite whole, by visually realizing the underlying structure of the codified social procedure of the dinner table. The overall image is an elaborate wooden framework, like a lattice or a skeleton, where structure and ornament converge into one form.

INTERVIEW: Do you have any specific memories of the Brooklyn Museum or anything you'd like to say about it?

SMITH: I admire the Brooklyn Museum for their exhibitions which, in my opinion, successfully focus on artists, causes and ideas that are often under-represented in the mainstream art world. Their posture is bold and energetic and celebratory—unlike most New York museums. But aside from their big shows, I personally have really enjoyed their decorative arts collection. As an artist, I love to look at objects and furniture as much as any piece of fine art, and I remember especially marveling at some 19th and early 20th century pieces in their collection. 

 

Ellen Altfest

INTERVIEW: What did you have in mind while designing your installation? How would you describe the work you created?

ALTFEST: I was thinking of taking traditional table design elements like candles and flowers and mixing them with elements I use in my paintings, like plants and parts of the body. There are groupings of brown and pink flesh-colored candles shaped like pieces of a man's body set in a desert-like environment with dried agave leaves, cactus, spirea, sand and driftwood.

INTERVIEW: Do you have any specific memories of the Brooklyn Museum or anything you'd like to say about it?

ALTFEST: I still remember a show years ago of Hiroshige's 100 Views of Edo. The way he represented trees was very important for my work at that time.

Ghost of a Dream

INTERVIEW: What did you have in mind while designing your installation? How would you describe the work you created?

GHOST OF A DREAM: We have been collecting detritus from art and trade fairs since 2010 with the intention of bringing these materials into another context. The art fair has become so huge over the past few years that many people see more art at fairs than any other place. As we all know, the cluttered and tight confines of an art fair booth is an impossible way to fully see a work of art. That being said, we wanted to use a zigzag "op" pattern repeated on everything to make your eyes buzz, making it hard to see where one object ends and other begins, much like seeing work at a fair. The reason we thought it was the right project to choose for the museum is the curious fact that more people see artwork at a fair, than if it were in most museums or galleries. So we are bringing it full circle, taking the rubbish from the fair into the museum.

 

 

Heeseop Yoon

INTERVIEW: What did you have in mind while designing your installation? How would you describe the work you created?

YOON: The piece is a 40-foot-long black drawing cutout that will sit along in the middle part of the table. The piece consists of two main elements; one is black paper cutout drawings that are placed on the middle part of the table, and the other is a quarter-inch black plexi laser-cut drawing sculpture which is standing in the middle part of paper cutout drawings and make it look like the extension of the drawing on the table. The width of the paper drawings will be about 15 inches. The whole table will have 11 individual laser-cut drawings with the dimension of each between 9 to 15 inches high and 10 to 20 inches long. For the past few years, I have been making various still-life drawings and site-adaptable drawing installations. For the table, I am drawing still lifes from warehouses, storage spaces, secondhand stores and people's basements, which are often claustrophobic spaces that are the spaces hidden within our lives. These are the drawings of things I have visually collected by photograph when I was traveling in Korea, Europe, and the USA. The idea of this particular still-life drawing is inspired by the earliest surviving still lifes in European art: ancient Greco-Roman wall paintings representing fruit and other provisions, and sometimes including live game, poultry and hunting dogs. They were called xenia, "presents to a guest," from the Greek xenos, meaning either "foreigner, foreign guest" or "host." By presenting typical subject matter of still life painting—objects of all kinds, in this case random everyday objects in our lives—I would like to make these "forgotten objects" as a present to guests.

INTERVIEW: Do you have any specific memories of the Brooklyn Museum or anything you'd like to say about it?

YOON: I used to live right by the Brooklyn Museum for about three years, and that was my first neighborhood living in Brooklyn. During that time, I used to visit the museum and got to know about their amazing diverse programing. I feel like the Brooklyn Museum is the only museum that shows both internationally established artists and emerging Brooklyn artists. I also felt that the museum is very open to the community and always tries to bring in the community to their programs. 

 

 

Jeremy Couillard

INTERVIEW: What did you have in mind while designing your installation? How would you describe the work you created?

COUILLARD: I was thinking about a few disparate things: dioramas in small historical museums, EMT conduit as sculpting material, early American landscape painting, 3D printing and mythological cosmology. I'd been making small dioramas in EMT junction boxes for a while and used this as an opportunity to embed them in a larger sculpture and link up those varied ideas. The small dioramas are conceptually and aesthetically similar to larger four-by-four-foot paintings I had been doing before, and I still think of them as paintings. The work is titled Four Proposals for a Pavilion at the Historical Society of Atmos Village. I imagine it as a centerpiece at a hallucinatory investor meeting in a small museum in a fictitious town somewhere inside a computer.

INTERVIEW: Do you have any specific memories of the Brooklyn Museum or anything you'd like to say about it?

COUILLARD: At the Fred Tomeselli show, I learned how to pour resin watching the video of him doing it. I learned how to sand acrylic paint looking at Murakami paintings. I also remember getting pretty depressed seeing some Eve Hesse paintings there because she passed away so young, and I thought of all the art she didn't get the chance to make.

 

 

Olek 

INTERVIEW: What did you have in mind while designing your table? How would you describe the work you created?

OLEK: My crocheted table draws inspiration from the still life paintings from 17th-century painters, like those of Jan Davidsz de Heem and Willem Kalf, who depicted opulent displays of lush fruit, highly ornate gold and silver dinner wear and rich lighting. These hedonistic displays of the finest food and accompanying silverware starkly contrasted to the life of the poor who lived just outside in the streets, who could only dream of such meals. My crocheted table will be covered in crochet made of all the colors of the rainbow with objects of different colors, incorporating silver, gold and shiny metallic yarns. The glamour woven into my crocheted table questions the ideals of the "Golden Age," where wealth determined social standing and controlled the availability of sustenance and quality of living. My table is made from crocheted mixed media and keeps with my past and current work, for example from my solo exhibition "The End is Far" at the Jonathan Levine Gallery. However, my crocheted table for the Brooklyn Museum amplifies my ongoing exploration of personal identity and social standing.

INTERVIEW: Do you have any specific memories of the Brooklyn Museum or anything you'd like to say about it?

OLEK: The first thing I saw in New York was the Brooklyn Museum at night. When I arrived in 2000 as an immigrant from Poland, several friends took me to the Brooklyn Museum for "tango night" to learn to dance the tango. We danced that night in the open hall, the same place that the tables for the 2014 Artists Ball will be set up! I also did a performance in the same space. So it's an incredible experience to be able to come back for the third time and create my crocheted table in the same space!

 

 

Oliver Clegg

INTERVIEW: What did you have in mind while designing your installation? How would you describe the work you created?

CLEGG: When I was asked to make a table for the Brooklyn Artists Ball, I was interested in the concept of creating a dining table in which the experience would be enjoyable, memorable and unique to the people who sat around it. I also liked the idea of creating a table that would be able to travel after the ball and be an experience that could be shared again and again in different locations, nationally and internationally. These factors, amongst others, influenced the design of what can only really be described as a carousel pieceâ??referencing the fun fair rides that are enjoyed by children and adults alike.

INTERVIEW: Do you have any specific memories of the Brooklyn Museum or anything you'd like to say about it?

CLEGG: I feel that the support which the Brooklyn Museum gives to Brooklyn-based artists is extremely encouraging.

 

 

Brooklyn Artists Ball