Exhibition Analysis: Space Signals

Bailey Dowlin

 

Senior Thesis Studio

Exhibition Analysis Worksheet

General Description of the Show

 

“Space Signals” 1305 Gallery 10/30/15 Opening Reception

Space signals is a show with two male Cincinnati artists using their personal aesthetics to create a narrative of some sort

 

The artists’ name(s):

 

Christian Schmit,

Artist Statement: I create sculptural scenes that depict the mysterious behavior of unseen characters. These dioramas grant the viewer a glimpse into private spaces, the kind of spaces occupied by obsessive types who spend their time building things, without thought of sharing their work with anyone. It is no coincidence that this mirrors my own behavior, as I sit at my table night after night gluing cardboard and paper together. I am the same as the man who for decades methodically constructs a vast model railroad in his basement. The only difference is that instead of constructing a model, I construct a model about the construction of a model.

 

David Wischer

Artist Statement:  My work functions, primarily, as an inside joke for a generation who grew up absorbing their worldly knowledge through television and the internet. I find myself both skeptical of and obsessed with the absurdity of mass media. That conflict, along with a penchant for satire and parody, is what influences the things I create.

 

How many pieces are in the show:  

 

Christian Schmidt: 7 Cardboard Sculptures

David Wischer: 15 Screen Prints

 

Describe the location/context of the exhibition space:

The  1305 Gallery is located in OTR. It is a very small gallery that is named from its address on Main Street. The gallery has goals with the Over the Rhine community to give rebirth to art resources.

Describe your perceptions on the content or idea behind the work:

The work  from Christian Schmit was very time consuming and detail oriented, models of people making art, I thought it was very interesting. It made me imagine the type of characters that would be in those little spaces, passionately creating work for themselves, and I really enjoyed that idea. I could relate because there is art that I have made for myself, or writing I’ve done for myself that no one else has ever seen or read, and it’s all about being therapeutic. This work made the viewer wonder about the character that would have occupied that space, and each sculpture was full of clues and details that helped the imagination create a non existing person.

 

David Wischer  had a more graphic style. His screen prints were simple and illustrative. The work made me think about lots of issues social media and television and how these elements of media impact everyone today. Using sarcasm and satire, he gives his opinion on these issues through a cartoonish illustration. It is apparent that he is somewhat disgusted over social media takeover in our society. Very relatable, but I did not linger on his work nearly as long because I feel it is work that I’ve seen a lot the past few years, and I’m not really used to seeing meticulous craft that was displayed in the  cardboard sculptures, which were both conceptual and amazing. WIscher’s work was satirical and witty, and I quite enjoyed a few of them. Aesthetically his illustrations had nice color that was pleasing to my eye, but again his work did not hold my interest as long.

Give Detailed Descriptions of the Following:

The method of presentation of artwork (media of artwork, size of artwork, and how it is presented- frames, mats, pushpins, pedestals, etc.)

All artwork of both artists was split in half, one side of the room had Christian’s work, the other half had David’s work. David Wischer’s work was framed and had lights highlighting each piece.

Schmit’s sculptures were on square pedestals mounted on the wall, allowing the viewer to see the detail of the work at eye level. Presented very professionally, and to highlight each work of art instead of a collection as a whole. I believe they created even spacing and a particular order for their work to be viewed.

 

The nature of the exhibition space (size, shape, ceiling height, formal, informal, etc.)

The 1305 Gallery is very small with wooden walls which provided an interesting background for the space and the work.. There was only one room, so when you entered the space, all of the artwork was there greeting you as you enter the door. There was some room to walk around, but a little cramped. There was also a back room for storage and whatnot, but all the art was divided in one room. Ceiling height was pretty high, and the walls provided enough room to hang quite a bit of artwork. The space is longer than it is wide. The gallery was very informal, being a hip gallery located in OTR.

 

The type and nature of the lighting in the exhibition space

Lighting was very and  more focused on the works of art. There was an overall lighting going on, but more attention was put on the works of art than lighting the space evenly. Because of the small size, the lighting seem a lot brighter.

The relationship of the art pieces to each other (physical and thematic)

Schmit and Wischer had artwork that did not really relate to each other. One was more sculptural and time based, the other was more conceptual and 2d. Could not be more different physically, because of the nature of the medium and the process. Schmit’s work had lots of small details to take in, while Wischer’s graphic style was more loose.  The sculptures were made out of cardboard and glue, not painted but the natural color, while the screen prints were bursting with lots of color. Both bodies of work had some similarities however. The amount of time it took for the creation of the cardboard sculptures as well as the process of screen printing both are long processes. Both bodies of work were conceptual and visually appealing as well. I don’t think that these works would normally be put in a show together, besides being conceptual and contemporary.

 

Other external factors (noise level, air currents, number of people in the space, etc.)

 The 1305 was a quiet, intimate setting to enjoy artwork.  I think the smallness of the space reflected that. I almost felt as though I were crashing a private get together, there were lots of people there that seemed to know each other, and I have never seen any of them before. The gallery seemed more crowded because of a  small space rather than attendance. Because there were a gathering of people in a small room enjoying art, there was not a lot of loud chatter, but more contemplative nature of talking.

             How the Presentation Method Affects the Art

Whether you feel that the method used to present the work supports and enhances or detracts from and

weakens its meaning for the viewer, clarify the criteria upon which you are basing this opinion.

 

I feel as though the presentation of the artwork worked very well with the works of art. The hanging and spacing of the screen prints and the mounted pedestals of the cardboard sculptures allowed the viewers to focus on one piece of art at a time. Splitting the room up between the artists made it obvious which work belonged to which artist, and the viewer could enjoy the works as a group and individually. The lighting of the space was very nice, and highlighted the works very well. However, I feel as though the space was so small, it was rather cramped and harder to enjoy the artwork. It seemed somewhat smashed together in one room, and it was hard to move around and navigate. If I were to visit the gallery when there was not an opening going on, it would be a great space to enjoy the art. However, with a decent amount of people crowded into a small gathering, it makes it hard to meander and take in the artwork effectively.

I believe there was thought put into the ordering of the pieces in this space. Although it was rather crammed, the order had a purpose to the show. I liked that they considered how the artwork was placed and the order, because of the  tightness of the gallery, they had to take into consideration how to best use the limited space they had.

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