2013 Exhibitions

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December 7, 2012 - January 19, 2013
Global Space

Global Space brings together artists An Xiao, Man Bartlett, Clement Valla, Caleb Larsen, Lorena Turner, and Jasper Elings. Through their work the exhibit searches for what it means to be a citizen of the world made so much smaller by our use of the Internet.

When assembling the exhibit, curator Ben Valentine asked himself how humans relate to and engage with something as ephemeral as the cloud and crowd, as distant as child labor, and the simultaneously accessible and unfathomable amount of content that is held within Google.

“It’s been a long time since humans were relegated to use only the clay and wood found nearby; yet the internet has presented us with a quantum leap of communication technology of an unprecedented magnitude,” said Valentine.

One piece in the exhibit, We Meme, is an interactive project that borrows from the idea of Indianapolis as a “Crossroads of America.” An Xiao, American designer, researcher, and artist, uses the internet as a site for the cross pollination of visual culture online. The project connects two cultures via the language of memes (the photos you see on the internet with funny phrases and sentences). On one panel are GIFs and image memes from Tumblr in China. On the other panel are animated GIFs and image memes from Tumblr in the United States. Visitors will be invited to sit and watch them. Although the initial images will be curated by the artist, anyone, including a select number of invited guest artists, may submit their own images for inclusion via the Tumblr feed.

Another piece, the Made in China Series, commonly used items that were made and packaged in China and purchased in small department stores in the United States, were removed from their original packaging and dusted for fingerprints; they were then photographed in a studio under black lights. This process allows for the evidence of another’s touch, quite possibly the person involved in constructing and packaging the item, to be revealed on the surface of the object.

Through these and other pieces the Global Space exhibit makes it clear how the Internet has changed us as consumers and united us through pop culture.

Artist Information:

An Xiao
Xiao’s art has been featured in diverse venues like the Brooklyn Museum and Shanghai’s Xindanwei, and she recently exhibited a live, month-long Tumblr piece at the Museum of Chinese in America. Her work on memes and social media art has been covered in publications like The Atlantic, Wired, Art in America and ArtNews. Find her on Twitter at @anxiaostudio or on her website at www.anxiaostudio.com.

Art404:
Art404 is a new media duo based in New York & Miami creating works within the realm of contemporary tech art. Their work is published through their online portal, Art404.com and often exhibited in the real world through their pop up space, Low Budget Gallery. Their work has been featured on prominent art & technology publications and has been included as part of several new media art festivals. Known for their interventionist style of art making they call “post-trolling”, the duo is currently working on a series of work exploring online identity & branding in contemporary culture.

Clement Valla:
Valla is an artist working with algorithmic systems. He pushes problem-solving logic to irrational ends. His recent work examines copies, repetition and reproduction in Chinese ‘Oil-Painting Factories’ and crowd-sourced online drawing tools. Valla wonders about the blurring boundary between human creativity and computational interpretation.

He received a BA from Columbia University in 2001, where he studied architecture. After working for architects in the USA, France, and China, Valla began using computers and digital technologies in his own work. He received an MFA from the Rhode Island School of Design in Digital+Media.

Valla has collaborated with a number of artists, architects, designers, scientists and archaeologists, developing novel uses for digital technologies. His work has been shown internationally, and recently written about in such publications as the Huffington Post, Wired, boingboing, the Guardian, Liberation. He currently teaches in Digital + Media and Foundation Studies at RISD. He lives and works in Brooklyn, NY

Jasper Elings:
Elings is a Dutch animator and Internet artist. He is considered one of the new, highly inventive generation of young animators who explore new techniques and platforms for their work. Elings’ work often consists of light-hearted animations dealing with contemporary internet culture. Using the everyday and pop-culture as reference, Elings pushes the aesthetics of online space, an arena characterized by a dizzying array of content, influences, and interconnectivity. He studied animation and film at the Art Academy AKV St. Joost in Breda, the Netherlands where he graduated in 2005. He lives and works in the Netherlands and his artwork has been shown on many different platforms like Tumblr, international film festivals, the New Museum, and is constantly featured prominently in Speed Shows around the world.

Lorena Turner:
Turner is a social scientist with a camera. She creates photographic projects which are indexes of socialization and contemporary social experience. Her work is shown in galleries, museums and non-traditional art spaces both nationally and internationally. Recently, her project “The Michael Jacksons” was featured on Studio 360 (an NPR/PRI radio program), and is gaining recognition as a series that considers the human impact of Michael Jackson’s work and legacy through the people who perform as him.

Lorena received an MFA from the University of Oregon, and teaches photojournalism and documentary studies in the Communication department at California State Polytechnic University in Pomona, California. She resides in both Los Angeles and New York City.

Man Bartlett:
Bartlett (b.1981) is a multidisciplinary artist who lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. His practice includes online performance, drawing, and collage.

He has exhibited or performed in a variety of venues including: The V&A Museum (London), his tiny windowless bedroom (Brooklyn), a Best Buy store (New York), Freies Museum (Berlin), Port Authority Bus Terminal (New York), Winkleman Gallery (New York), Skydive Art Space (Houston), Platform Gallery (Seattle), Hinge Gallery (Chicago) and the Whitney Museum of American Art (New York).

Bartlett has also participated in residencies at VCCA, Flux Factory, The Wassaic Project, and with Residency Unlimited as their first S&M (Social and Media) Artist in Residence.

He has guest-lectured at various institutions including: MICA (Rinehart School of Sculpture), Pratt (School of Digital Arts and Animation) and to the Kindergarten class at the Amherst Elementary School (Amherst, Virginia).

Bartlett’s work has been featured in ARTnews, C Magazine (#class), LA Weekly, Art in America online, Art Fag City, Hyperallergic, Huffington Post Arts, The L Magazine, ARTINFO, The Daily News, and The Stranger, among others.

Click here to see images from the opening night.

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February 1 - March 16, 2013
TrA-Jose Di Gregorio

The middle gallery iMOCA features California artist  Jose Di Gregorio’s installation, TrA, which holds the essence of a planetarium and a mandala. This fall, Di Gregorio took his young children to the planetarium at the Lawrence Hall Of Science in Berkeley, CA. While constellations may seem like nothing more than memory aids to distinguish particular stars, they also remind us how small we are in the universe and that this is part of what makes us important to each other. One constellation in particular caught DiGregorio’s attention, the small Triangulum Australe (TrA) in the southern sky.

“Romanticizing how impossibly far and esoteric the three stars that make up the constellation are,” explained Di Gregorio,  “I held my daughters’ hands. Our worries, problems, the color of our skin, how much we own; the details of our lives mean nothing in the universe. If we were to leave earth we would mean nothing. It’s only through our interactions, whether they be negative or positive, with each other that we truly exist.”

To create a mandala with the constellation, TrA uses the principles of the Net of Indra. It stretches out infinitely in all directions and is associated with the motionless timeless center of the universe. To illustrate theses concepts of emptiness, as well as interpenetration, ten circles that form a density in its design. TrA serves as the equilateral triangle increasingly obscured within the circles.

A Herron School of Art and Design alumni, Jose Di Gregorio has shown work at the Tangent , Bows and Arrows, Milk, Fe, Ridley Galleries and other places across the Pacific Northwest. Di Gregorio lives in Sacramento with his wife and two daughters.

All our programs and exhibitions are made possible with support from The Allen Whitehill Clowes Charitable Foundation, The Efroymson Family Fund, Deer Zink Foundation, KEJ Foundation, the Indianapolis Foundation, The Tracy Haddad Foundation, The Netherleigh Fund, the Indiana Arts Commission, the Arts Council of Indianapolis, the Murphy Arts L.L.C., Faegre Baker Daniels, Penrod Foundation, and Big Car Art + Design.

Click here to see photos from the opening reception.

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February 1 - March 16, 2013
Double Vision: Hulleah J Tsinhnahjinnie

Hulleah J Tsinhnahjinnie’s Double Vision is a partnership with the Eiteljorg Museum. Exhibited in the main gallery at iMOCA, it features photos by Tsinhnahjinnie of Tuskegee/Diné tribes. She has worked with the permanent collection of the Great Plains Art Museum to create a series of new works. Through the portal of digital technologies Tsinhnahjinnie transports the sitters of vintage photographs through time, space and technologies.

In their original form, the images are printed as carte-de-visites, cabinet cards, stereopticons, and real photo cards. Their transformation in size from a few inches to up to five feet in size and the infusion of vibrant colors from a muted sepia-toned palette renders the figures to be undeniably present. She further liberates the images from the fixity of photographic paper by producing them on shimmering poly-satin fabric. Mounted inches off the wall, the pieces and subjects seem to be in movement, gently wafting with the breeze of passing by. Paying homage to the Bison and in respect for the peoples of the Plains, she gives voice, agency and presence to the figures to serve as a protagonist.

Tsinhnahjinnie’s works in this series provide an Indigenous perspective from a personal and political response to the archives. The works validate the critical importance of archival materials as evidencing alternate histories when considered in a contemporary context. From selection, to commentary and her own perspective of double vision, Tsinhnahjinnie demonstrates the partnerships between artists, curators and museums in working with archival materials and a way of bringing light to photographs perhaps long forgotten and buried deep within institutional collections.

First presented through the collaboration between the C.N. Gorman Museum and the Great Plains Art Museum at University of Nebraska, Lincoln, iMOCA and the Eiteljorg Museum have partnered to bring Double Vision to Indianapolis.

As part of the UNL’s Geske Lecture series, the exhibition was intended to address arts, history and the regional influence of the Great Plains. The lectureship with C.N. Gorman Museum Curator, Veronica Passalacqua, provided the opportunity to examine the permanent collections of the Great Plains Art Museum.

Photographer, curator and educator, Hulleah Tsinhnahjinnie (Navajo/ Creek/ Seminole) was born in Phoenix, Arizona in 1954, relocated to the Navajo reservation in 1966, and currently lives in the Southwest. In 1975 she attended the Institute of American Indian Art in Santa Fe, New Mexico, and in 1978 she studied at the California College of Arts and Crafts in Oakland. She received a B.F.A. in painting with a minor in photography in 1981. She is currently Director of the C.N. Gorman Museum at University of California Davis and Associate Professor in the Department Native American Studies at University of California Davis.

All our programs and exhibitions are made possible with support from The Allen Whitehill Clowes Charitable Foundation, The Efroymson Family Fund, Deer Zink Foundation, the Indianapolis Foundation, The Tracy Haddad Foundation, The Netherleigh Fund, the Indiana Arts Commission, the Arts Council of Indianapolis, the Murphy Arts L.L.C., Faegre Baker Daniels, Penrod Foundation, and Big Car Art + Design.

Click here to see photos from the opening reception.

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April 5 - May 18, 2013
Tese: Chido Johnson

Chido Johnson, raised in Zimbabwe and Zambia as the child of American missionaries, grew up speaking several African languages with more ease than he spoke English. Now he lives in Detroit. His exhibit opens April 5 at the Indianapolis Museum of Contemporary Art. It plunges into the divides and contradictions he experiences in his two cultures — and within himself.

In piece “me me me” Johnson mashes up elements of American consumer culture with traditional African figure carving. Look at “me me me,’’ which started out as an ebony figurine for the tourist market in Africa. The artist has fashioned it into a self-portrait, carving away all evidence of the original statue, and placed it on a white Ikea shelf. The new figure looks exposed in this almost clinical DIY environment: He holds his hands over his genitals and grins awkwardly, looking maniacal yet apologetic.

Also part of the exhibit is his piece “Love Library’’ in which “individual artist’s interpretation of “love” are concealed and superficially homogenized as romance novels.”

Different artists selected by Johnson were invited to submit a “book” for the exhibition. While basic dimensional guidelines had to be followed, each artist’s book could take a seemingly infinite variety of forms. Once submitted, each book is assigned a call number and becomes a permanent part of the library.The library is an exceptionally rare work of art, as it requires hands-on audience participation. In fact, the only way to properly view the books is to take them off the shelf and open them, a tactile imperative that provides a real thrill in a museum setting, where touching artwork is typically frowned upon.

“Staring Contest” presents alternating views of two sculptures facing each other across a street near the Detroit Institute of Art. One is an existing 1973 statute of Nicolas Copernicus, on the west side of the street; the other is a new sculpture by the artist of Nasir al-Din al-Tusi, a Persian astronomer whose important work preceded that of Copernicus by several hundred years.1 Johnson’s video documentation activates the installation as a performance, with the two historical figures gazing out into space at one another. Neither figure wins in the staring contest of course. Instead, we are offered the corrective to a Western history of science through the artist’s portrayal of enduring cultural exchange between East and West.

The exhibit will open April 5 and run till May 18th. The opening reception is April 5, 6-11 pm at our location in Fountain Square, 1043 Virginia Avenue, Suite 5.

Johnson was a 2009 Kresge Fellow, as well as a 2009 MacDowell Colony Fellow. He was born and raised in Zimbabwe and Zambia, then moved to the U.S.A. Both his BFA degrees in Sculpture and Painting, with a minor in Drawing, were from the University of Georgia, Athens. Johnson earned his MFA in sculpture from the University of Notre Dame in 2000. Johnson has worked, exhibited, and taught both nationally as well as internationally. Some of these shows include PAFA Museum in Philadelphia, Museum of Contemporary Art in Detroit (MOCAD), the Detroit Institute of Art, the Sullivan Galleries in Chicago, the Printed Matter in New York, Umea University in Sweden, the Cortona Study Abroad Program in Italy, and the National Gallery of Zimbabwe in Harare, Zimbabwe.

His work has been reviewed in the Art Papers, Sculpture Magazine, Bad in Sports as well as other notable publications and catalogues. Currently he is a fulltime associate professor and the section chair of Sculpture at the College for Creative Studies.

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June 7 - July 20, 2013
The Opposite of Lost

Indianapolis-based artist and musician Nathaniel Russell will show The Opposite of Lost, an exhibit of “fake fliers” he’s made and shared in recent years. Most are about imaginary lost or found things. Some are offbeat and funny, others touching or mysterious. Some of these fliers have been posted online to later appear, anonymously, in cities around the world. Russell and this work were recently featured in the national publication, Juxtapoz. A book of his fake fliers, published by San Francisco-based Needles & Pens, will be available for purchase.

Nathaniel Russell makes drawings, paintings, prints, sculptures, photos, and music. After receiving an undergraduate degree in printmaking, he spent several years in the bay area making poster, record covers, and woodcuts. He now splits his time between central Indiana and northern California, where he spends most of his time creating large drawings, silkscreens and wooden cut-outs.

His work has been shown internationally, including solo and group exhibitions in San Francisco, New York, London, Los Angeles, Chicago, and Tokyo. His design work has been seen on numerous t-shirts, record sleeves, and posters throughout the world. Nathaniel also regularly updates his blog, Crooked Arm, with new drawings, photos, and sketches.

Click here to see images from the opening reception.

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June 7 - July 20, 2013
We Buy White Albums

We Buy White Albums looks like a record store. But upon closer inspection visitors will discover that the store only stocks one title: The Beatles’ “White Album.” And nothing is for sale. In fact, Chang is interested in buying more copies.

Pursuing an interest in exhaustive cataloguing, Chang has collected over 750 first-pressings of “The White Album,” featuring an all-white cover designed by Richard Hamilton. He considers the serialized first-press, an edition running in excess of 3 million, to be the ultimate collector’s item, and aims to amass as many copies as possible. Chang has created an archive, listening library, and anti-store to house and grow his collection of the Beatles’ iconic record.

The album covers are weathered, often with marks or writing from previous owners, and the vinyl discs are usually scratched or warped. The character of each copy, distinctly shaped by its history, is told through the physicality of the media. This phenomenon, at the cusp of extinction due to digital technologies, is made apparent by the identical yet unique multiples that comprise Chang’s collection.

Visitors are invited to browse the collection and listen to the records. They are also encouraged to bring their copy of “The White Album,” as iMOCA will continue to buy albums on Chang’s behalf, expanding the collection throughout the exhibition.

Rutherford Chang was born in Houston and currently lives and works in New York and Shanghai. He received a B.A. from Wesleyan University in 2002. His work has been exhibited internationally at venues including White Space in Beijing, Brown Gallery in London, and Haus der Kulturen der Welt in Berlin.

This exhibit is sponsored by Big Car, Smallbox, Steven Pettinga and Michael Byrum, and Luna Music.

All our programs and exhibitions are made possible with support from The Allen Whitehill Clowes Charitable Foundation, The Anonymous Fund, The Efroymson Family Fund, Deer Zink Foundation, KEJ Foundation, The Indianapolis Foundation, The Tracy Haddad Foundation, The Netherleigh Fund, The Indiana Arts Commission, The Arts Council of Indianapolis, The Murphy Arts L.L.C.,  Penrod Foundation, and Big Car Art + Design.

Click here to see photos from the opening reception.

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August 2 - September 21, 2013
In The Name Of Love

Slava Mogutin and Brian Kenny. Curated by Karla Romero.

iMOCA is proud to present In The Name Of Love, a solo exhibition by Slava Mogutin, showcasing a series of 24 recent medium format portraits produced by the artist as traditional analog C-prints.

“For over a decade Slava Mogutin, a New York-based Russian artist and author, has been known for a photographic body of work that ranges from highly stylized, iconographic images to portraits that blend the boldness and honesty of police mug shots with the fantasy and desire of vintage pornography.

While still inviting voyeurism, his recent work hinders the viewer’s ability to see and decipher an image. He merges landscape backgrounds, which seem to be based on vernacular conventions and snapshot photography of people in front of scenic landscapes, with human forms. Nuanced explorations of changes in atmosphere are obtained by transforming a simple observation—a deer skull on a chair—into a complex photographic experience describing perception and the passage of time. It is as if the artist has carefully stitched together different moments in time.

Lushly colored images test connections between the descriptive clarity of photography and the haze of memory. Layered shots of people and nature come together and seem to blend into or grow out of nature itself. The work has become more optical and doesn’t have a static composition. It implies movement both by the camera and whatever activity that is motivating the image.

Throughout the exploration of the formal aspect of his work, Mogutin continues to look for other ways to use the camera as a voyeuristic tool. He explores the character and emotion of his subjects and simultaneously exposes their insecurities and vulnerabilities. The pictures’ success lies in the fact that Mogutin continues to tell stories of real people and real experiences and that, throughout his work, he remains a true poet.”  –Jimi Dams

Also part of the exhibit is Entropy Parade, a collaboration with Brian Kenny. Mogutin and Kenny created a series of multi-layered collages based on photographs, drawings and text. Kenny says on the series, “An ‘entropy parade’ is like a parade that just degenerates into more and more chaos. I feel like this idea goes well with the series because it’s a parade of beautiful boys in ever more ridiculous outfits (no pants, thongs, and crazy props on their heads), with chaotic drawings and collages that further degenerate any sense of order into a more chaotic (and thus exciting) vision.”

All our programs and exhibitions are made possible with support from The Allen Whitehill Clowes Charitable Foundation, The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts (Wynn Kramarsky Freedom of Artistic Expression Grant), The Efroymson Family Fund, Deer Zink Foundation, Halstead Architects, KEJ Foundation, the Indianapolis Foundation, The Tracy Haddad Foundation, The Netherleigh Fund, the Arts Council of Indianapolis, the Murphy Arts L.L.C., Penrod Foundation, and Big Car Art + Design.

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August 2 - September 21, 2013
Ted Oonk

Curated by Karla D. Romero.

Ted Oonk’s work expands on the culture of societal constraints, such as what is normal vs. abnormal and the categorization and power of stigmatization. She explores these concepts in her piece, This is not about you #2, part of an ongoing project that started in 2005 with a similar name, This is not about you.

In this piece, Ted projects a moving image of her sister, Pim, who has Down syndrome. Here, the viewer is directly exposed to a simplified moving image and what the artist calls, easy to understand metaphors.

Oonk is a Thailand-born, Dutch female artist based in Belgium.

All our programs and exhibitions are made possible with support from The Allen Whitehill Clowes Charitable Foundation, The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts (Wynn Kramarsky Freedom of Artistic Expression Grant), The Efroymson Family Fund, Deer Zink Foundation, Halstead Architects, KEJ Foundation, the Indianapolis Foundation, The Tracy Haddad Foundation, The Netherleigh Fund, the Arts Council of Indianapolis, the Murphy Arts L.L.C., Penrod Foundation, and Big Car Art + Design.

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October 4 - November 16, 2013
Come Here Architekt: Jan Rutenhberg

Simply put, Jan Ruhtenberg is the greatest architect you’ve never heard of. And after two years of research, on October 4th 6- 11 p.m., will open the retrospective of Ruhtenberg’s work, Come Here Architekt. Ruhtenberg’s accomplishments are astonishing. He was an apprentice and colleague of Mies Van Der Rohe during his most significant projects; a close confidant of Philip Johnson who helped introduce modernism to America; a man who escaped Nazi Germany to design projects for Herman Miller, Greta Garbo, Nelson Rockefeller and the Swedish Royal family.   However, as Jan approached the pinnacle of his profession, he was outed as a gay man in conservative 1950’s America. Jan’s commissions disappeared and he all but vanished from the history of modern architecture.

This exhibition begins a process of reintroducing the world to one of its great architects and designers and was made possible by The Efroymson Family Fund and Tracy L. Haddad Foundation. Curated by Vess von Ruhtenberg and Jeremy Efroymson.

iMOCA’s new hours are: Tuesdays, Wednesdays 5-8 p.m. and Thursday-Saturday 1 p.m. to 8 p.m. All our programs and exhibitions are made possible with support from The Allen Whitehill Clowes Charitable Foundation, The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts (Wynn Kramarsky Freedom of Artistic Expression Grant), The Efroymson Family Fund, Deer Zink Foundation, Halstead Architects, KEJ Foundation, the Indianapolis Foundation, The Tracy L. Haddad Foundation, The Netherleigh Fund, the Arts Council of Indianapolis, the Murphy Arts L.L.C., Penrod Foundation, and Big Car Art + Design.

Click here to view the publication.

Click here to view a video slideshow.

Click here to see images from our reception.