Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Art Papers Live Hosts Daniel Canogar

I generally assume a piece of art is good if pictures of it provoke gasps from audiences. Canogar's presentation had at least two or three mass-audience-gasps.

Otras Geologias 5, Daniel Canogar

A slightly more complete summary of my thoughts, about an hour and a half after Canoger's talk:

1) He's brilliant.

2) His artistic vision seems to have evolved in interesting ways over the last few years.

3) His overall philosophy tends towards extremes of both control and randomness (randamnity?), which makes me wonder to what degree his philosophy is a reflection of similarities between artists who do most of their work with large-scale installations. There are probably a few other ways to explain the emphasis he places on control and [the opposite of control].

13 comments:

Ginna Funk Wallace said...

Man you've been looking at some great art here lately. Thanks for sharing.

Fifth said...

Thanks for reading!

Check out Canogar's site for some really great stuff - especially anything involving fiberoptics.

Cinque said...

Yeah, and that was a great talk last night. Thanks for the summary. I find that I buy the imagery of his work the more specifically it is connected to the technology used to project it.

Fifth said...

I really enjoyed seeing him talk about the interruptible technology, projections displayed so the audience was forced to interact with them. (and those pictures were amazing!)

But I find myself more emotionally connected to his landfill inspired work - I like the idea of an artist willing to switch focus to a radically different direction at the height of his popularity.

Miss Darrow said...

I wasn't as crazy about his landfill work. I think it would have been interesting if he could have integrated the viewer intothe landfill space, instead of having photogrphed the figures into it. For some reason, that struck me as being a bit too obvious.

Jonathan said...

I second that Miss D - the photographs lost the level of interactivity so important in his other installation work.

Fifth said...

Miss Darrow, Jonathan - I was actually discussing this with Jeremy a few hours ago. (He agreed with y'all)

While I agree that Canogar's more interactive installations are definitely better than his landfill work, I find his landfill photographs more satisfying.

I think our difference of opinion may lie in what we look for in artwork. I find myself much more attached to work which communicates something about its creator (though I realize this can get cloying). The three of you (and maybe Cinque as well) are more attracted to philosophical/theoretical questions posed by the artwork.

If I saw Canogar's two styles side by side, without having known anything about his methods, I'm sure I would have preferred his more interactive installations.

I'm curious - what do you think of his post-landfill installations?

Cinque said...

"Post-landfill installations"? Would those be the jumping and climbing pieces? Someone refresh my aging memory, pleeze...

Fifth said...

post-landfill - I was thinking of the fiber optic tree; I had forgotten the projections-onto-monuments.

Jeremy said...

Hmm... I could see how you could qualify my taste as "theoretical," but really, I wasn't reading anything blatantly theoretical into his work. (Just consider my question to the man: "Did anyone pass out or throw up when they saw the pictures of intestines?")

The atmospheric use of the whole room is what's so impressive about those projections. Sure, "space" is an concept that's "in vogue" now, but the power there - and I can only imagine what the experience would be like - is "Damn, there's freaking planets and gallbladders and *flying* people all around me. Oh God, they're on my skin. Look - they're on your face!"

(Sorry for the hyperbole... Couldn't resist.)

Cinque said...

It's funny, based on the images he showed, it occurred to me that when they don't land on the wall or the floor, the projections most often end up on people's backs. And a projection aimed right at you in front, basically just looks like a point of light as far as you're concerned. So basically only other people experience the projections landing on you, which means that the observer-artwork conflation we've been talking about is something that mostly happens between spectators, not between a spectator and the work necessarily.

@Jeremy
The space issue is crucial for me. By and large, Atlanta artists have not really managed to crack the nut of immersiveness and space transformation. A few have come close: Danielle Roney's installation at the Contemporary certainly filled the space; Robert Witherspoon's thesis project in the back gallery at Eyedrum a couple of years ago used the space in an engaging way. But I wouldn't say either of them transformed the space, nor was that their aim really. Partly, I think this has to do with resources. It's expensive to turn a space into something else. A couple of people have transformed the space in Eyedrum's small gallery--I think because it's a very manageable amount of space.

Sorry, fifth, I didn't answer your question at all...

Jonathan said...

I spent the second half of the talk wondering what images, if I were Canogar, I would have coming out of the fiber optics. I'm still not sure but for me the images of bacteria, and innards, and space, are too seperate from the sculptural device projecting them. They are overly literal, reading a bit like stock photography, and in an age where images are overwhelmingly everywhere, is the projection of images onto your person going to really illicit a thoughtful response?

Fifth- the trash images had a greater personal affect on me than the fiberoptic work.

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