[-empyre-] Critical Spatial Practice launch statement from Millie Chen
Hello to all readers. I?ll begin by stating the intent of the work I do.
In my installations, actions and public interventions, I attempt
cultural transgression. I experiment with the capacity of immaterial,
non-visual elements (e.g. sound, scent), of unexpected sites, and of
social interaction, for disrupting traditional definitions of art and
generating altered perceptions. An integral part of my work are
collaborative interdisciplinary projects that engage the public and
public space. Stemming from my interest in site-specificity and
interactivity, I often incorporate specific spaces and visitors'
participation in installations and performances. The relationship
between seeing and experiencing is shifted back and forth. Within my
visual art practice, the act of looking is subtly interrogated.
The interrelationship of image and coded space is key to defining
cultural experience. By articulating the links between sight, social
systems, and (in particular, urban) geography, I explore the
perceptual assumptions of the audience. My interest is to invent or
appropriate strategies for collaboration and audience participation,
and for a critical engagement of performative and relational issues.
The intravenous path between my collaborative and solo endeavors
allows me a versatile practice that can adapt to wide-ranging sites
and situations. Methodologies, tools and materials are always
contingent on the needs of the moment. But at the core of all my
projects is the attempt to integrate social responsibility within
contemporary art making.
The work I do evolved from a frustration with what I perceive to be
the continually hermetic state of art. My collaborators and I felt the
need to venture out beyond the sheltered confines of the art gallery ?
or any sanctioned space exclusively purposed for the viewing of art ?
and intentionally agitate the boundaries between art and everything
else. This was not to the exclusion of working in galleries, as that
network for the display of work is still vital and occupies an
important support system, but the range of strategies I?ve utilized
over the years are attempts to disrupt established or complacent
viewing habits and further push open the possibilities for
contemporary practice beyond that which was standardized by museum
culture. It?s amazing, and sometimes enervating, to consider that even
after a century of experimental art making that attempted to break
down the barriers between art and life (the everyday), even at times
doing away with the term ?art? altogether, artists are still faced
with a very limited viewership that is predicated on traditional
notions of connoisseurship and rarefied knowledge. The average viewer
would not look to art to find social critique.
This archive was generated by a fusion of
Pipermail 0.09 (Mailman edition) and