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April at Fourth Wall: New installation: “Lagan”

Visit the gallery site here: Fourth Wall at Vox Populi

To cap our run as guest curators of Vox Populi’s Fourth Wall space, we present Lagan, an installation work combining resonant porcelain sound tubes, video, and lighting.

Lagan is a nautical term for cargo thrown from a ship and marked with a buoy, which rests on the sea floor waiting to be reclaimed. Even memories can be purposely submerged, their location saved, to be salvaged later. In the intervening period (has it been months? years? a lifetime?) they have been transformed, just as jettisoned cargo has attracted corals, lush seaweed, and colorful fish.

In creating Lagan, we find ourselves returning to deeply-rooted techniques and images of distant friends and places left behind, viewing and hearing them as they are in the process of submerging, transforming, and surfacing again with new layers of meaning and beauty.

Lagan 1

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March at Fourth Wall: CON-MYTHOLOGY/Moving Image

The Electronic Vision of Conrad Schnitzler

Conrad Schnitzler

Click here to read an essay on the life and work of Conrad Schnitzler prepared by Wolfgang Seidel for this exhibition, and here to visit the website dedicated to Schnitzler’s work, maintained by Gen Ken Montgomery.

Conrad Schnitzler (1937-2011) is legendary in the German electronic and avant-garde music scene as a founding member of Tangerine Dream and of Kluster. Though mostly known as a composer, his intermedia video work from the 60s, 70s and 80s is far less known. At Fourth Wall in March 2015, we are given a rare opportunity witness Schnitzler’s work with moving images as well as some rare photographs of his sculptural work in metal.

Schnitzler studied sculpture with Joseph Beuys at the Düsseldorf Academy of Art, exhibited his black and white metal sculptures in Berlin, and participated in performances and “happenings” in the same circles as many Fluxus artists, although he rejected being a part of any group or movement. In the early 70s Schnitzler left all of his sculptures in an open field, abandoned the art world and began to devote himself to composing music. His continual and prolific self-produced electronic music gained an international cult following. Schnitzler’s immense creative energy could not be limited to one medium. He continuously experimented with moving images to accompany his music by painting and scratching directly on 8mm film, shooting stop-motion animations and designing sets in which he filmed himself performing. By the 80s Schnitzler had become increasingly reclusive, shooting long meditative videos accompanied by his distinctive electronic musical scores.

This program of moving images accompanied by Schnitzler’s vintage electronic soundtracks are selected from a vast video archive, most of which has never been seen publicly before.

CON-MYTHOLOGY/Moving Image has been put together by Conrad’s friend and collaborator “Gen” Ken Montgomery in co-operation with Fourth Wall’s guest curators, Mike Bullock and Linda Aubry Bullock.

February at Fourth Wall: Ears Back, Eyes Forward

Still from Naomi Yang's music video for Richard Youngs' "Furrows Again"

Still from Naomi Yang’s music video for Richard Youngs’ “Furrows Again”

Ears Back, Eyes Forward

Video shorts from musicians and other listeners
Curated by Mike and Linda Aubry Bullock

Featuring works by:
Seth Cluett [Montclair, NJ]: Recollection
Malcy Duff [Edinburgh, Scotland]: Snowcone
Camille Escudero [Brussels, Belgium]: Vacillements de Rétine and Selfie Board On
Bonnie Jones [Baltimore, MD]: Untitled (in memory of Cynthia Gray)
Dina Kelberman [Baltimore, MD]: Colors Movie
Mazen Kerbaj [Beirut, Lebanon]: Inkology (in four movements)
Vic Rawlings & Jeff Silva [Easthampton & Boston, MA]: Excerpts from 215 Dead End Road
Naomi Yang [Cambridge, MA]: Furrows Again (music by Richard Youngs)
C. Spencer Yeh [Brooklyn, NY]: Landscapes and Subtitles
Neil Young Cloaca [Turners Falls, MA]: Impractical Palynology

Total time: 56 min. 33 sec.

Ears Back, Eyes Forward brings together 11 artists whose video works engaged us in the past year. Most of the artists represented have strong sonic roots and branches in their highly varied outputs. Even those who may not consider themselves sound artists contributed pieces with a canny ear for detail and timing. Throughout this reel, the artists use sound and silence to take a listen back onto memories of communication, loss, and transition.

Mike and Linda take over Fourth Wall at Vox Populi Gallery

For the months of February, March, and April 2016, Mike and Linda will take over the Fourth Wall screening room at Vox Populi Gallery in Philadelphia, PA.

February: Ears Back, Eyes Forward: video shorts by musicians and other listeners
March: A Celebration of Conrad Schnitzler
April: Installation by rise set twilight

About the space
Fourth Wall at Vox Populi presents new works chosen by a group of professionals from various locations and backgrounds. Each month, one of these curators will present the work of an experimental artist working in video, film, animation, or new media in the Vox Populi Project Space.

Founded in 1988, Vox Populi is an artist collective that works to support the challenging and experimental work of under-represented artists with monthly exhibitions, gallery talks, performances, lectures, and related programming. For over 25 years, Vox Populi has played a unique role in the cultural life of Philadelphia by bringing our audience a diverse range of programming and providing a supportive environment in which artists can take risks and gain valuable professional experience.

With a rotating membership and a commitment to working collectively, the gallery is a vital forum for the development and exchange of artistic ideas. Vox Populi’s comprehensive exhibition schedule includes solo shows of both member and guest artists, a curated video lounge, annual guest-curated shows, exchanges with peer organizations and group shows that provide critical exposure for emerging artists.

Vox Populi is located on the 3rd Floor of 319 North 11th Street, in Philadelphia. Artist receptions are free and open to the public, and take place on the first Friday of each month, from 6–10pm.

Recent: “For Violet Oakley” at SANCTUARY, Philadelphia, 10-12 October

Website for event: http://bowerbird.org/sanctuary/

Documentation for a work by rise set twilight (Linda Aubry Bullock and Mike Bullock), developed as part of the Sanctuary residency program at the University of Pennsylvania.

The piece centers around a 1500 lb. iron chandelier in the circular sanctuary space of a former Christian Science church (now called The Rotunda) on the campus of U. Penn. Designed by Violet Oakley and built by Louis Comfort Tiffany, the massive chandelier that once hung from the ceiling now rests on the sloping floor of the vast, domed Rotunda.
rise set twilight were inspired by the graceful, almost alien form of the grounded chandelier. Linda Bullock made porcelain vessels whose forms are inspired by the tapered shape of the original glass bulb covers, made by Tiffany and now mostly missing. Mike Bullock created a sound and light composition utilizing sounds recorded in the highly reverberant space. The sounds – harp, contrabass, and voices – are combined with synthesized sounds created at EMS Stockholm and resonated directly into the steel structure. A series of LEDs controlled to an arduino was set up inside the translucent porcelain vessels, lighting them from within, flashing to patterns derived from Oakley’s own words.

“The Rotunda and Bowerbird are proud to present SANCTUARY, a series of sound based & site specific works created for The Rotunda’s rarely seen main sanctuary. This space – which is covered by a massive 4 story, 80-foot diameter dome – will house new works by seven Philadelphia based artists – John Phillips & Carolyn Healy, Michael & Linda Bullock, Jorge Cousineau, Tiona McClodden, and Daniel Fishkin. These works were created during a multi-month artist residency in the space and offer an opportunity for the public to reimagine the architectural, cultural, and historic context of The Rotunda from a variety of perspectives.”