An Immaterial Survey of Our Peers presents installation images of an exhibit that never physically took place. Using digital compositing techniques, we have re-imagined the process of browsing through a Google Reader by adding art to images of the Sullivan Galleries’ empty walls. This presentational gesture of conflating scrolling with strolling is meant to question the ongoing tendency to believe material interaction with art is mandatory despite living in an age of utter dependency on the digital image as an informational source. Like the Argentinean Communication Media artists before us, we have cut out the middle-man (objects) and inserted the image as our final product, aware that the documentary media art receives plays the most pivotal role in defining its public discourse anyway. To expedite this process of media exposure, An Immaterial Survey is simultaneously being debuted online in addition to its projection in Chicago, confusing the boundaries of when and where the exhibit took place.
It is an intentional choice to offer no objects and no work of our own as our final display at SAIC. This is in part a tribute to the decentralized network of artists who comprise An Immaterial Survey. To present art online is an act of selflessness; the creator forfeits stringent control over their work’s meaning in favor of allowing the most generous opportunity for global viewership possible. For this we are thankful and indebted to the names that comprise our list of participants. We choose not to present sellable goods because we are fully aware of the irony of the BFA Exhibit itself; four years of a Feminist-Marxist education culminating in a grand celebration of luxury goods and the willful commodification of artist identity brands (best exemplified by the entire shelving units dedicated to freshly printed business cards). It is our intent to use this opportunity not for our own market assimilation, but for the praise of others and the criticism of art’s hierarchy of material value still present in our digital age.
An Immaterial Survey of Our Peers includes work by:
Initiated by Brad Troemel / Lauren Christiansen
Via The Jogging