February 28 - April 1, 2012
University Galleries has invited six artists to realize An Experiment in Collectivity through their formation of a temporary collective. Informed by 20th century movements such as Dada, Situationist International, Surrealism, and Fluxus, collaborative approaches to art making during the past decade have received much critical attention.
For this artist-directed exhibition, Daniel Bainbridge (New York, New York), Jennifer Gustavson (Brooklyn, New York), Melanie Hunter (Bloomington, Illinois), Tim Kowalczyk (Minonk, Illinois), Colin Nesbit (San Diego, California), and Beatrix Reinhardt (Astoria, New York) will make work in response to the space of University Galleries, acting as both producers and collaborators. Each artist must negotiate working method, content, and flow of space within parameters set by the group. The project embraces unpredictability and explores how an inter-artist dialogue—rather than curator-artist dialogue—manifests itself, and whether it may facilitate a new approach to exhibition-making.
For the past several months, the artists have interacted virtually through Skype and a private group blog, fostering the conversations critical to the project's development. Through email correspondence, they developed a promotional image that draws on the Surrealist exercise, “exquisite corpse,” and features segments of each artist’s work placed in response to the others’.
The exhibition's installation will demonstrate not only the artists’ varied practices but will also highlight possible relationships between art and the institution in which it is exhibited. Artistic processes range from installations using books borrowed from ISU's Milner Library; to figurative sculptures incorporating trash collected on site; to trompe l’oeil ceramic works referencing the specific packing materials the artists are using to ship their work to Normal; to installations of photography. University Galleries will function as a site of engagement during the installation of the exhibition. The doors of the gallery will remain open while the artists are working, encouraging visitors to observe the artists’ processes and to interact with them.
All six artists graduated from Illinois State University's School of Art. Daniel Bainbridge (MFA, 2006); Jennifer Gustavson (BFA, 2005); Melanie Hunter (MFA, 1993); Tim Kowalczyk (MFA, 2011); Colin Nesbit (BFA, 2003); and Beatrix Reinhardt (MFA, 2001).
This exhibition co-sponsored by the Theatre of Ted Alumni Guest Program.