Blogs Untitled (Blog) Yasmil Raymond Ventura

Meet Museo aero solar: Free First Saturday

Snapshots from the Art Lab at 10 am… Museo aero solar is a solar-powered air balloon made from hundreds of reused plastic bags, with new sections being added each time it is reassembled in different cities. After traveling to Milano, Sharjah, Medellin, Lyon, Rapperswil, Tirana, Ein Hawd, Museo aero solar is now in Minneapolis until […]

Snapshots from the Art Lab at 10 am…

work in progress...

work in progress...

assembling line...

assembling line...

Museo aero solar is a solar-powered air balloon made from hundreds of reused plastic bags, with new sections being added each time it is reassembled in different cities. After traveling to Milano, Sharjah, Medellin, Lyon, Rapperswil, Tirana, Ein Hawd, Museo aero solar is now in Minneapolis until October 12. Participate by bringing old plastic bags to our temporary studio located at 1250 Hennepin Avenue, Minneapolis, from Monday, October 6 through Thursday, October 9 from 10 am – 5 pm.

No Bag Left Behind: Museo aero solar

Last year around this time, Toms Saraceno visited the Twin Cities to install his sculpture Flying Garden/Air-Port-City/32SW in the group exhibition Brave New Worlds. During his stay in Minneapolis we talked about some of his interests-a huge range that includes the work of R. Buckminster Fuller, the 50th anniversary of the Sputnik launch by the […]

Last year around this time, Toms Saraceno visited the Twin Cities to install his sculpture Flying Garden/Air-Port-City/32SW in the group exhibition Brave New Worlds. During his stay in Minneapolis we talked about some of his interests-a huge range that includes the work of R. Buckminster Fuller, the 50th anniversary of the Sputnik launch by the Soviets, and his fascination, in general, with the sky.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1bp8YiHvREc[/youtube]

That’s when I learned about his project that brings together all of these interests. Museo aero solar is a flying museum’ powered by solar energy and made from huge quantities of used plastic bags that are taped together to create a massive balloon. Saraceno embarked on this project in 2006, during his visit to Isola Center for the Art in Milan (Italy), and the balloon keeps expanding – both in its scale (it is now the size of a basketball court) but also in the nature of its collection’ as it travels to different cities.

isola

In the past two years, Saraceno and his friend, the Italian writer Alberto Pesavento (who he met at Isola Center) have taken their flying museo to Sharjah (United Arab Emirates), Medelln (Colombia), Lyon (France), Rapperswil (Switzerland), Tirana (Albania) and most recently Ein Hawd (Israel).

Now the Walker is hosting Museo aero solar‘s first visit to the U.S., from October 1-12, and I want to invite you to join us in this collective effort. Tell your friends and participate by bringing your collection of plastic bags–any size and color–to the Walker Art Center on Saturday, October 4 from 10 am to 3 pm and add your section to the Museo aero solar.

If you can’t help on October 4, you can participate by donating old plastic bags in advance at drop-off bins stationed all around town: the Minneapolis College of Art and Design – 2501 Stevens Avenue, Minneapolis, the Green Institute – 2801 21st First Avenue South, Minneapolis, Rondo Community Outreach Library – 461 N. Dale Street Saint Paul, and Amazon Bookstore, 4755 Chicago Ave. South, Minneapolis.

You can also participate in a series of open studio conversations that Saraceno and Pesavento will be having with students from the Aerospace Engineering and Mechanics (AEM) Department at the University of Minnesota and MCAD, please visit http://air.walkerart.org/index.wac or call 612.375.7550 for location and hours.

girls

Image captions:

1. Launch of Museo aero solar in Medellin, Colombia, 2007

2. Building Museo aero solar at Isola Art Center, Milan, 2006. Photo courtesy the artist

3. Museo aero solar in Rapperswil, Switzerland, 2008. Photo courtesy the artist

No Time Keeping

Created with Admarket’s flickrSLiDR. It is often the norm that exhibitions take a great deal of time to conceive and to organize and very little time to be experienced. This is not the case with the Brave New Worlds, an exhibition that includes more than a dozen of videos and 16 mm and 35 mm […]

Created with Admarket’s flickrSLiDR.

It is often the norm that exhibitions take a great deal of time to conceive and to organize and very little time to be experienced. This is not the case with the Brave New Worlds, an exhibition that includes more than a dozen of videos and 16 mm and 35 mm films, or to be really precise, 3 hours and 33 minutes and 96 seconds of moving image. While imagining the show, my colleague and co-curator Doryun Chong and I sketched out the floor-plan of the pieces in relationship with one another formally and conceptually but also chronologically, taking into consideration their duration in relation to other pieces. We roughly estimated that it could take at least four hours for a visitor to see the entire show, maybe without reading labels. It might seem like a large amount of time to spend in the galleries but we imagined the exhibition as a journey of investigations, where the juxtaposition between time-based pieces along photographs, sculptures, drawings, and paintings allow for shifting levels of contemplation as one walks through each room.

During the preparation process we switched the location of several pieces all the way until the last minute until we were able to feel the fluidity between the narratives and their movement. Afterwards, Doryun mentioned to me that he understood the exhibition as a musical piece in three movements. I’ve come to see it as a chart of proximities, like the one drawn in the bottom left-hand corner of Jorge Macchi’s collage Liliput (2007), where individual works of art are interconnected with one another in a number of common areas in each of the galleries where they meet and share sightlines, floor and wall spaces, sound, light reflections or a cast shadows from their neighboring pieces. As its title suggests Brave New Worlds is not a swift stroll through one world but a journey through a constellation of worlds, viewpoints, and moving images that range from the open sea to a public park, from a narrow corridor to a deserted road, and from a floating satellite to mesmerizing skies. I recommend to leave your watch at home.

Attention must be paid

In preparation for the upcoming exhibition of Kara Walker’s work which will be seen at the Walker Art Center on February 18, 2007, I have been spending more time than usual, not in the library, but in her room-installation that is part of the Quartet exhibition in the Friedman Gallery. After several visits and careful […]

19 KW Testimony 2004.jpg

In preparation for the upcoming exhibition of Kara Walker’s work which will be seen at the Walker Art Center on February 18, 2007, I have been spending more time than usual, not in the library, but in her room-installation that is part of the Quartet exhibition in the Friedman Gallery. After several visits and careful looking, her images still continue to surprise me as they invite me to look at the beautiful and the grotesque simultaneously. The experience that unfolds is filled with diverse emotions and questions about race, prejudices, sexual power or the lack thereof. Walker’s images challenge bourgeois codes of conduct and puritanical views of sexuality. Furthermore, they oppose conventional dialectics of power (i.e. master/slave, villain/victim) in order to create a new type of images, as she has admitted, “ that undermines all our fine-tuned, well-adjusted cultural beliefs.”

Currently on display is a recent piece entitled Testimony (2004). This film animation signals a departure in Walker’s creative process as she brings movement to her still images and takes on the role of puppeteer. Reminiscent of Lotte Reiniger’s pioneering silhouette animation The Adventures of Prince Achmed (1926), Walker created small-scale puppets made of black paper of her most infamous silhouette characters–the mammy, the young negress, the master, and the overseer. But unlike traditional shadow-puppet plays where the puppeteer is invisible to the viewers, the artist’s hands and face are revealed to us as she animates the figures and tell a story of oppression, rebellion, and murder.

Like few other artists of her generation, Walker is determined to investigate the interrelatedness of race, sex, and satire, and bringing them into the history of art in the tradition of Robert Colescott, Kerry James Marshall, and Adrian Piper. Walker’s observations of the past award us the opportunity to confront the roots of racism, the shameful legacy of slavery and as we were reminded recently after Katrina struck New Orleans, the deep-seated racial and economic inequities that define contemporary American life. Her latest project is currently at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York and was recently reviewed by New York Times art critic Roberta Smith. I invite visitors to stop by the Quartet exhibition and contemplate the frankness and courageousness with which Walker has explored these troublesome questions.

Quartet: Barney, Gober, Levine, Walker closes on November 5, 2006.