10/04/17 TIME HOTEL JULY

I'm making progress with my senior project, TIME HOTEL. I've completed the 1st of 12 virtual installations. Each installation is dedicated to a different month and this one relates to July. Here's a glimpse.

Each object relates to one "Time Card" created in July, I'm sticking to objects that are familiar to me, objects that I interact with regularly. 

An aspect of virtual reality that I enjoy is that it's conversational. To see the work, a viewer needs to enter into the studio space and receive a short tutorial about how to use the controllers to move through space. This can also be a barrier if the person is having difficulty using the controllers, that's why I've been creating scenes where the VR controllers are optional. Someone can see the scene in a 360 view without the controllers, if they feel engaged with it they can then ask for the controllers and move wherever they like.

I'm interested in hearing more feedback about this. I'll include a link to the drawing if you're able to check it out on Tilt Brush (or in VR). 

I'm also including a process video (because who doesn't love a process video?). I'll be uploading a lot of these in the following weeks with some tools and tricks that I've stumbled upon. 

Time to go back to work, more updates to come!

Paul.

09/14/17 TIME HOTEL BEGINS

Hi friends!

This semester is off to a good start. I'm excited because I was invited to give two lectures next month at an AR/VR symposium event at University of New Haven's main campus. I'll be blogging more as I start collecting my thoughts. If you have questions or comments there's a message thread at the bottom of the post. 

New Sketch_16.jpg

MY INFLUENCES

I first started doing rule based art in the Spring of 2016. I was interested in the major figures of conceptual art like Sol LeWitt, On Kawara, and Mierele Laderman Ukeles. I'll briefly introduce them. 

Sol LeWitt

Taken from Mass Moca website (http://massmoca.org/sol-lewitt/

Taken from Mass Moca website (http://massmoca.org/sol-lewitt/

Taken from MOMA website (https://www.moma.org/calendar/exhibitions/305)

Taken from MOMA website (https://www.moma.org/calendar/exhibitions/305)

Sol Lewitt's art was a testament to community and collaboration. He would write rules for generating artwork that a team of artists would interpret and implement. LeWitt's artwork was the idea, the physical artwork was only a manifestation of the idea, and could be reinterpreted by other artists (as long as the same rules were followed). 

On Kawara

Taken from Guggenheim website (https://www.guggenheim.org/exhibition/on-kawara-silence

Taken from Guggenheim website (https://www.guggenheim.org/exhibition/on-kawara-silence

Taken from Guggenheim website (https://www.guggenheim.org/arts-curriculum/topic/postcards-i-got-up

Taken from Guggenheim website (https://www.guggenheim.org/arts-curriculum/topic/postcards-i-got-up

On Kawara was a Japanese artist living in NYC and well known for his Today series. For nearly 3,000 days, he carefully recorded each day by painting the date on canvas. Numeration and repetition are both essential parts of his work. On Kawara worked on numerous other time related projects, one where he sent out postcards to his contemporaries bearing daily facts like "I GOT UP AT..." or "I AM STILL ALIVE."

Mierle Laderman Ukeles

Taken from TheCut.com (https://www.thecut.com/2016/09/mierle-laderman-ukeless-ode-to-nyc-sanitation-workers.html

Taken from TheCut.com (https://www.thecut.com/2016/09/mierle-laderman-ukeless-ode-to-nyc-sanitation-workers.html

Taken from QueensMuseum.org (http://www.queensmuseum.org/events/opening-reception-3

Taken from QueensMuseum.org (http://www.queensmuseum.org/events/opening-reception-3

Mierle Laderman Ukeles is a NYC based artist who saw a division between what artists were trying to represent in their studios and their day-to-day tasks. Ukeles' saw every part of her daily routine as art and began documenting her tasks. In 1967 she wrote the Manifesto for Maintenance Art. She then went on to an ambitious project where she shook the hand of every sanitation worker in NYC, over 8,000 people, and performed a series of performance pieces. She has been a non-salaried worker at the sanitation department ever since. 


PREVIOUS WORK

12_25_16.9_00-9_27PM24Minutes26Seconds138Lines.jpg

I created a repetitive system where I create a similar drawing each day. I called these drawings Time Cards and they were made using the following rules: 

  1. Within each 24 hour cycle (local time) a ‘time card’ is drawn.

  2. The card is prepared (torn from a larger sheet of paper) on the day it will be drawn on, using the previous day’s card as a template for size.

  3. A drawing session proceeds without interruption.

  4. Lines are drawn on to the card from top to bottom (in landscape orientation).

  5. The card is filled with drawn lines from left to right.

  6. The exact length of the drawing session is recorded in minutes and seconds (MM:SS).

  7. The time of day (start time and end time) is recorded in local time (HH:MM-HH:MM).

  8. After the conclusion of the session, the exact number of lines is counted.

  9. The cards data (start time, stop time, length of session, number of lines, and date) is recorded (in this order) on the back of the card in the upper right hand corner

The project ran from July 2016 to July of 2017. As I was working on this, I experimented with scale and site-specific projects at three of my college's campuses. I painted three murals with the intention of 'syncing' the three locations in the same 48 hours. 

 

Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts. 10:30 AM - 12:45 PM. 2 hours 28 minutes 27 seconds. 287 lines. 08/04/2016 30"x148"

Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts. 10:30 AM - 12:45 PM. 2 hours 28 minutes 27 seconds. 287 lines. 08/04/2016 30"x148"

University of New Haven, Orange Campus. 12:46 PM - 3:28 PM. 2 hours 41 minutes 49 seconds. 405 lines 08/05/2016 30"x225"

University of New Haven, Orange Campus. 12:46 PM - 3:28 PM. 2 hours 41 minutes 49 seconds. 405 lines 08/05/2016 30"x225"

University of New Haven, Main Campus. 7:31 PM - 8:32 PM. 1 hours 0 minutes 5 seconds 178 lines. 08/05/2016 25"x96"

University of New Haven, Main Campus. 7:31 PM - 8:32 PM. 1 hours 0 minutes 5 seconds 178 lines. 08/05/2016 25"x96"

The rules were very similar to the Time Cards, each drawing was done in a single session and the data was recorded. The two colors in the paintings are the same value so each rectangle has a dull vibration.

At this point (Fall 2016) my work consisted of 2D drawings with repetitive line and its corresponding time data. It wasn't until the Spring of 2017 that I pushed into new mediums. 

 

Shot before a studio performance. 

Shot before a studio performance. 

I realized that I was more interested in collecting data from small bursts of activity than drawing, so (other than the Time Cards) I stopped drawing completely and made a series of videos where I perform different activities on camera. I thought of each scene as a virtual space, where antiquated forms of technology are destroyed or re-purposed. Brooms and dust-pans became my brush and palette. (blog post 05/29/17 goes into more detail)

Seeing these videos through the lens of social media was important to the content. At this point I started working with sound and virtual reality. 


INTRO TO VIRTUAL REALITY (VR)

I make artwork in vr using two programs, Google Tilt Brush and Google Blocks. Tilt Brush a mix between painting and sculpting, where I create gestures in real space that translate into 3D paint gestures. 

Example of my virtual palette. 

Example of my virtual palette. 

As you can see in the picture above with the spiral, the brushes create ribbon-like forms. This is important to remember when trying to create forms that have volume. 

Example of creating forms. 

Example of creating forms. 

You really need to tilt your wrist to follow the form of whatever you're building to make it seem real. I guess that's why they call it Tilt Brush! Many people have asked me how to move in a drawing, it's similar to rowing in a wheel chair. 

A collection of drawings are available for VR view in the online Tilt Brush gallery, you can see more examples under the VR section (under the Artwork tab of my website). 

The other program I use is called Google Blocks. It's an easy way to create solid looking objects, and now, thanks to a recent update, it's possible to import objects made in Blocks to Tilt Brush. 

Blog Post.JPG

TIME HOTEL

I've consolidated 365 days worth of Time Card data into a spreadsheet. I added the total number of seconds, total number of Instagram likes (I also know the average lines/likes per day). I'm using all of this data to create a set of immersive installations titled TIME HOTEL. I've started by sculpting furniture in Blocks, each object correlating to one Time Card. I like the idea of putting furniture and utilities in VR because they don't have a functional value anymore.

TIME HOTEL 1.5.gif

After working with numbers and counting on such a regular basis, I started to discover that I'm probably on the spectrum of color/number synesthesia. I have a color association with each number, I don't physically see the colors but I still associate them. I've been incorporating this into my work. The colors of each number relate to my perceptions. 

 

TIME HOTEL 1.6.gif

Each object is something that I interact with on somewhat of a regular basis. I'll be consolidating all of these objects into the same virtual space. 

TIME HOTEL 1.3.gif

I'll be updating you as I develop further in this. Right now I'm creating as many objects as I can (365 is a lot!). Hopefully you have a sense of what I'm grappling with right now. I'll stay in touch.

 

My best,

Paul. 

05/29/17 Performance Art

I took a break from blogging this Spring but now I'm consolidating some of my ideas and looking to the future. I guess I should talk about performance art since it has been an integral part of my work as of late.  

This is my first video and it marks where I started to think about performance as a form of media rather than a way to create physical objects. I started looking at Matthew Barney's Drawing Restraint series and it got me thinking about using gesture to talk about action painting.

A picture of Pollock because why not? I've been thinking about Abstract Expressionism as a declaration of ego and a glorification of a male dominated industry. I think there is a link between this and the tech industry.

I try not to overthink my studio setups by arranging things just a few minutes before shooting. It's been important to just produce work and not over think decisions so that I can start to develop by doing. All of my work has started to take on an immediacy, where things are edited and posted the day of. Social media has been a huge component to this and the work is best viewed through this lens.

The social media component to the work enhances the content, specifically the exploration of ego in relation to the artists space and the camera. Even the timecards, as I get closer to 365 days, have begun to feel like a ritual to gain likes (I'll blog about that later). 

Another important revelation has been to SIMPLIFY! When I started, the time of day, action completed, and heart rate were all a part of the title. As this work has developed I've been including only the data that is integral to understanding the video. 

For my final in my mold and cast making class, I casted VHS tapes, CDs, and floppy disks in plaster to smash during my performance. I hope people view these as humorous and maybe a little self deprecating. Showing the numbers as I sweep seems like the most eloquent way to show the data and I'll probably re-edit some of the first videos. I'm also thinking about creating a gallery in virtual reality where someone can walk through different rooms and can view the videos. I imagine theses spaces as liminal and accessible everywhere so virtual reality could enhance that. Anyways, I hope you have a sense of what I'm grappling with.

Thanks for listening,

Paul.

12/28/16

The first semester of junior year has ended and I have more time to consider the past four months. I have no structure to these posts, simply my thoughts as they arrive to me. Last December I made a line drawing during the landing of a plane, recording the vibrations as it landed. I couldn’t have imagined then how important the act of recording would become to my artistic process. I just finished a 10’ ink on paper line drawing of 1000 lines using primary colors.

Ink on paper, 1000 lines, 23 hours 5 minutes 13 seconds

Ink on paper, 1000 lines, 23 hours 5 minutes 13 seconds

I have been told by my peers and teachers that the rectangle is repelling from a distance yet stimulating up close.

The drawing was interesting towards the end because as I drew I had to count each line out loud to stay on track for 1000. speaking numbers as I draw has been a relatively new process that refocuses my intention at the start of each line. It also has had some unexpected results. I've always perceived numbers with colors simultaneously, not to the extent that some people experience synthesesia, but the link has been there as long as I can remember. The act of counting has made those connections more apparent. If I'm counting line number three and drawing a blue line something feels off since the numeral three is yellow to me. To explore this further, I've been making monotype prints and paintings with numbers drawn in their related colors.

There’s a declarative aspect to the pieces, they feel like math rubrics. I have been recording the time for each number/color work but I’m not sure if it’s necessary. I also need to point out that these works are interpretive and just because I’m using a blue doesn’t mean that it’s the ‘correct’ blue. Often I would draw a number and the color would feel slightly wrong. In my number painting I found most of my process to be corrective, trying to make the work more ‘right’. I also created an audio track of the numbers 1-288 counted with sounds overlapping each number. Different pitched sounds would represent a color and as the numbers climbed to the double digits the overlapping sounds became more complicated, reminiscent of a trance track.  

Monotype. Numerals 1-64

Monotype. Numerals 1-64

This fall has been an integral part to my development as an artist and I'm excited for the new year. 

My best,

 

Paul.