written by Eddie Arroyo
When we talk to our family, friends, and acquaintances – expectations of what would be acceptable is what’s conveyed. After all, an individual does not want to be seen in a bad light or perhaps they do. The internet and social media has brought about the notion of identity in a way which requires new perpectives to readdress these old concepts. These are decisions are being brought more into consciousness.
A.G. Viva’s production addressed artistic representation of self awareness in context of situations for The Night Club’s third installment entitled Call Time: 7 PM. The overall structure of the show functions as the backstage to an event. Four artists, Jillian Mayer, David Rohn, Antonia Wright, and A.G. Viva himself prepare how they will represent themselves to the public stage. A series of photographs will be published on Cultured Magazine’s fall issue – as documention of the project. The result is an exhibition that’s casual, festive, and interactive with a dash of urgency for what is to come.
video by Mandy Martin
photos by Mandy Martin
Jillian Mayer’s practice has constantly found new methods to expressing identity through bombastic means and approaches. From a number of viral video’s posted on You Tube to her piece entitled “Life and Freaky Times of Uncle Luke” which is a adaptation of the 1962 French short film ‘La Jetee’ have been a staple to Mayer’s sensibility. It was neat to witness her prepare for her new obsession with memes, which is basically used to give “pseudo-academic gravitas to stupid viral shit.” A grin shoots across my face as Mayer had a face painted on her ass. This is all part of the final product which resides behind a curtain where she is pulled to get her photo taken.
One of David Rohn’s works consists of a series of personas and archetypes which are excessive or accurate depending who you ask. I was greeted by Petal who boasts about all her adventures in celebrity culture as she prepares for her photo shoot in front of the mirror dashing some lipstick on. It was the first time I spoke to Petal. She was captivating, beautiful, and carried herself with grace and class as she was ushered off to get her image taken for posterity. Briana Saati from The Cultist quoated her as she said, “Being famous and being an artist is very much about exposing yourself and exposing your vulnerabilities… It’s great that people realize that it’s culture.”
It was a curious thing to witness the set piece on the corner of the room. A number of people were having eyes painted on their… well eyes. On the surface it seemed unremarkable especially in the light of the presence everything else in the room. In fact, it seemed to be the most appropriate piece and blended into the background. That is until I was invited to participate. What was not expected was what was obvious. I could not see.
This was very strange.
I was in a room filled with people talking and having a good time with a number of visual distractions. I could not see any of it. Initially, this was uncomfortable and then Antonia Wright introduced herself and began to paint the eyes on my eye lids.
She explained the intent was to minimize the consumption of information in order to open the possibility of being more creative. This was based on her own practice, when she can simply subtract all the noise that surrounds her and simply focus on what is important. I found myself doing just that – listening, imagining what was surrounding me, the paint dried, and people I didn’t know would talk and fuck with me. It was wonderful.