Still image from Cloud Mapping by Debra Swack
Harlem, NY … Public Art Curator Savona Bailey-McClain is presenting FRESH EYES, an exclusive, site-specific Harlem Digi-Tour for FRIEZE WEEK 2015. She is curating videos from a select group of artists and will lead this location-based tour in the Mt. Morris Historic District, that’s FREE to the public. Two tours will be given Saturday, May 16, 2015 at 1 p.m. on the southeast corner of 125th Street and Lenox Ave. and again at 2 p.m. Participants must have cell phones or tablets that can scan QR codes.
FEATURED FILMS Cloud Mapping by Debra Swack Even Gray Feels Blue by Negin Sharizadeh What We Were, What We Are, What We Will Be by Bryan Christie
ARTISTS BIOS Bryan Christie, Negin Sharifzadeh, Debra Swack
BRYAN CHRISTIE’S explores the spectrum of human experience and inner workings of the human body. “Our lives start with trauma as we are brought into the world from the safety of our mother’s womb. We eventually die, experiencing the loss of all that is dear to us. Yet transcendence and the experience of the sublime are rooted in this fleeting material existence. The divine is made evident through tangible and sensual experience; without our physical selves, we would not experience moments of wonder and the mysterious.”
Christie’s paintings are created from multiple layers of silk bound together with encaustic, mounted on wooden panels. Many of the figures’ poses are derived from ancient classical sculpture and Renaissance paintings. His video works involve 3D renderings that are layered like his paintings to create new appreciations of the worlds within the human body. Christie is fascinated with the interplay between our flesh-and-blood existence and something less tangible—our soul.
NEGIN SHARIZADEH is a multi-disciplinary artist, performer, and filmmaker based in New York. Growing up in Iran, one of the world’s most historically and socially complex regions, in the wake of revolution, she is fascinated by the mechanisms and interplay of different natural, emotional, and political systems. She has explored these themes through multiple mediums of drawing, sculpture, performance and more increasingly combining all through stop-motion animation. Sharifzadeh’s short animated film, Even Gray Feels Blue, has been featured in festivals, galleries and museums around the world, receiving numerous awards in New York film festivals and Video art competitions.
Sharifzadeh has had solo exhibitions and performances in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Sao Paulo and Tehran, and has been part of numerous international group exhibitions. She received her BFA in Sculpture from Tehran University in Iran in 2002, and her BFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in Performing Arts in 2010.
“Even Gray Feels Blue” investigates the nature of melancholia and solitude, translating these intimate and deeply personal feelings into their aesthetic essences. The echoes of the individual moves into collective realities. Sorrow becomes social malaise.
DEBRA SWACK is a Fulbright Specialist and Phi Theta Kappa in computer science who began exhibiting new media and sound art in the early 90s at Xerox Parc while doing software testing and technical writing for PolyGram Records/Universal Music Group. She is mentioned in Art and Innovation at Xerox Parc, published by MIT in 1999, and works with immersive and interactive environments in addition to all traditional media. She has received three co-production grants from Banff Centre (95 Chimes, Carousel and Digital Maze Symmetry Project) and was awarded a Summer Artist Residency by Creative Capital in 2012. Her last article on The Emotions after Charles Darwin, a project on the universality of emotions to aid international neuroscientists in autism research, was published by Leonardo Electronic Almanac/MIT Press in 2013 and will be featured in Binghamton University Magazine in 2015. Animal Patterning Project; a software derived, synthetic bio-art animation was published in Infinite Instances, by Random House in 2011 and exhibited at the Binghamton University Art Museum and Offline at Central Booking Gallery in NYC in 2014. In summer 2014 she was a visiting artist at the American Academy in Rome and also presented Cloud Mapping Project at the Pera Museum in Istanbul, which will be published in an upcoming issue of Leonardo Electronic Almanac by MIT Press and presented at Banff Centre for the Arts in August 2015. She is also collaborating with evolutionary biologist Monica Gagliano on Bloom, a bioacoustics sound-art installation that will also be published in Plants and Us by Lexington Press.
Cloud Mapping Project is a real-time interactive animation installation and soundscape about the cloud, its significance and history in science and computing, as an enduring subject in art and music, to its unforeseen consequences as a tool for surveillance. Is the trade-off of having technology at our fingertips worth its ability to directly influence and contribute to the growing obsolescence of individual privacy along with increasing our vulnerability due to the inherent problem of one’s cloud not being managed by oneself and the potential of one’s cloud data falling into the wrong hands?
ABOUT THE CURATOR
SAVONA BAILEY-MCCLAIN currently lives and works in New York City. She is an independent curator and producer. The range of McClain’s practice has included sculpture, drawings, performance, sound, and mixed media. McClain is the Executive Director & Chief Curator for The West Harlem Art Fund, Inc. a seventeen year old public art organization and curatorial collective serving neighborhoods around the City. Her public art installations have been seen in the New York Times, Art Daily, Artnet, Los Angeles Times, Huffington Post among others. McClain has installed works in Times Square, DUMBO, Soho, Governors Island and Harlem. Noted works include The H in Harlem, Counting Sheep, Story Piles, East River Flows and Loosely Coupled. McClain is now developing new digital installations and location-based interventions using a tour platform.
ABOUT THE MARCUS GARVEY PARK ALLIANCE
The Marcus Garvey Park Alliance is a not-for-profit 501C3 community organization that was formed back in 2000 to make improvements to Marcus Garvey Park. Today the MGPA advocates for the park and the residents of the surrounding communities of East Harlem and Central Harlem. We are inspired by the creative culture that Harlem is famous for and work to support the arts in Marcus Garvey Park. Because the park is surrounded by residential homes, schools and day care programs, we dedicate a lot of our efforts to make sure the children have the best possible park experience. Everyone is invited to get involved and become a member of the Marcus Garvey Park Alliance.