OSLO ART & FASHION FESTIVAL 2018

  • Mouvements (Bevegelsene), 2015-2018, film photography, variable sizes

 

MOUVEMENTS (BEVEGELSENE), 2015-2018, photography, variable sizes. Exhibitions at Vérité, Grundingen 1-3, Aker Brygge, 0250 Oslo, Norway for Oslo Art and Fashion Festival, and Akers Mek in Oslo, Norway, 100 x 140 cm, Epson Archival Ink, mounted on kapa. The exhibition was supported by Epson Europe, Interfoto Oslo, and CopyCat Fine Art in Skøyen.

 

The Mouvements series reveals nuanced details in digital imaging technology. The images are informed by tensions in oil and water. The materiality of digital imaging technology, distance in viewing, and surreal representations in water forms are highlighted by minuscule film grains amplified after film scanning. The epistemology of water or way we come to learn and understand what water, is an ongoing endeavour. To then know what we are doing with technology, requires extended looking. The way something appears can obfuscate and reveal our relationship to the looking. Oil and water become elemental allegory for technocratic times. As Umberto Eco writes in several books on late modernity, images are read and our connections and relations are realised as a malleable surfaces. The natural beauty of the water is transformed by a hypnotic colour palette tied to screen technology. Viewing distances engage viewers in a sense of movement in stillness.

 

2018 Interview on Collect Oslo Art and Fashion Website

   

Q & A:

COL: How old are you and where are you from? RW: 33 calendar years. I’ve had the good fortune to be from a loving family in Illinois. COL: What do you do? RW: In a comprehensive view: studying the proposed divide between the material and metaphysical, the dream and waking landscape. In concrete terms, a process of field recording with photographic exposures, sound, video, material, documenting and editing the documentation, studying history and the scientific properties of the materials, and representing literal translation of materials through sense phenomena through visual an installation art, privileging kinesthetic knowing. I think Descartes got things twisted and there are aspects about reality I want to make sure to emphasize, to bring value to. My goal has always been to make awe, wonder, hope, and beauty in meditative connection present in my work. COL: How long have you been doing it? RW: About 20 years. In 1999 I participated in a group field project, working with artists from neighboring towns to create a formal representation, carved with mowers into a field, visible from space. This was the first time I concretized the desire to work with vision, body, space, and landscape. COL: What’s your first artistic memory? RW: Tap, jazz, and ballet class in the gymnasium. COL: What inspired you to pursue a career in art? RW: Intrinsic motivation. The idea a career is a choice has always seemed like a post-modernist dream. There are things people can do, cannot do, and things we cannot help but do no matter what’s going on. The latter could be described as inspiration, or something else. The something else is a bit closer to the truth. If I could be inspired to be a programmer, electrical engineer, geologist, or medical doctor I would have done that. I’ve succumbed to some kind of motivation beyond a sense of I. It sounds religious, but it’s not. Terrible things happen when life goes out of its flow. COL: Do you remember your first work of art? RW: I don’t think I can. I can recall receiving local newspaper coverage as artist-of-the-month for a pseudo-cave drawing I made. Pseudo because it was paper stuffed with paper to create a visual impression of being a rock that I then drew stick human and animal figures and rudimentary shapes on. It was strange experience, because a collaged rendering of an underwater, shopping mall plan with an environmentally friendly, self-supporting ecosystem seemed more artistic than the “cave” renderings. I suppose what other people find interesting became interesting to me then: the sense of questioning “What on earth (is going on)?” COL: If you could have any piece of art in history, what would you choose? RW: I am greedy with art, so I would want to own the work of my contemporaries. The work they make boggles my mind. Space would be a primary necessity as my colleagues tend to work in various mediums. COL: What is your relationship with fashion? RW: A loving and deep relationship. Fashion has somehow been attributed to all kinds of vapid critique for being shallow. Fashion itself isn’t these things, fashion, of all things touches on life itself-the body, expression, and from a Traditional Chinese Medicine perspective, the frequency of colors permeates what we can and cannot see. On a political and economic sense, the power of choice, to support and value labor or to do the easier thing and commodify and code the crap out of slave labor. I took an independent study in freshman year of high school and turned away from fashion because I was a wimp who couldn’t handle these weighty issues, but as the years go by, I am right back in this interest, with a stronger stomach and more motivation to work through the changes. COL: What does the word “collective” mean to you as an artist? RW: For some reason I thought of communication and telegrams. I got to checking out the etymology of the word (one of my favorite things to do), and indeed, there is something about collective that is about transmission of communication for force. Nature has a way of gathering resources to creatively disseminate, and so collective feels wholly functional in terms of art. I’m also part of an international artist group, Ex Nihilo, formed by artists working literally on different continents in different countries. As a collective, we provide the support to each other necessary to keep doing our work. COL: What is the best and worst thing about being an artist? RW: The best thing is being honest-about everything and doing what’s in my heart to be done, working through the ideas, understanding where symphonies come from, reading texts and wasting very few moments if any on luxuries such as boredom. The worst thing is thinking I can ever explain how much work is involved and reminding people the value of labor. The rise of the human as an ideological individual perpetuates an archaic myth of lifestyle, which is about a flimsy narrative that somehow manages to perpetuate the ages. I still find this a “best part” in that being honest serves a performative role of describing. Describing work and life is really something that doesn’t have working hours. COL: Who do you admire? RW: This is an incredibly long list to start, and one I honestly should ask people if they mind if I bring up their names. My parents have worked hard and loved nonstop, 40 years married. I admire that. Most of my friends have moved countries, at least once, and that is considerable effort-admire that. Architects, designers, painters, people who keep doing what they do and say what’s on their mind no matter what is popular or not, I admire. Since things have gotten a bit extreme, I’ll say I admire that, save for the folk who have really gone nasty with ideological agendas. I don’t admire dogma but I don’t find heresy in times of radical political correctness to be a major offense. Authors are some of those I admire a great deal. Words are a tough medium to work in, and to attribute the ideas to their name, courageous. Sorry for dodging the question in the most direct sense, but I also want to respect the privacy of the people I admire-for I do admire them in ways words will fail anyway. COL: What can we expect to see at this year’s festival? RW: A lot of work pulled of elegantly. One of the striking features I’ve noticed in the Oslo Art and Fashion Festival is how much effort is made, how much beauty and value is given, and how enjoyable the entire experience is. The kind of effortlessness appearance always involves the most amount of work. I think if people can’t see it, they can feel it somehow by looking. Or at least I can. I can’t wait to see the rest of the festival. COL: Who are you excited to see? RW: The artists! I read their histories, see their work-but as hinted, artists are working all the time. It’s a rare occasion to actually get to see the artists themselves, and express the appreciation for their work. And, my friends. So many fun evenings and relationships are neglected from working. The festival is a chance to see awesome people I’ve missed for weeks or months. COL: How important is the ability to expose your art to you and your creative field? RW: Essential. Making for myself is about as interesting, to me, as eating alone. An activity done out of survival necessity, but really the joy is connection. From a sense of survival in the time of value/commodity exchange.  


 

ELVELANGS 2018

 

 

ELVELANGS I FAKKELLYS, Oslo, Norway, public installations for autumn 2018 & 2017

2018: Dual Site Installation: Vesper Monumenter and Et Dypt Nett, Frysja in Nordre Aker Bydel and Smelteverket in the Vulkan Mathallen.

 

VESPER MONUMENTER, 2018, 8 sculptures, tin-foil and snow-markers, lights with blue photo-gel filters for twilight frequency, “Shimmer” video projection. The Vesper Monumenter sculptures stand as pillars reflecting light in the twilight to darkened landscape, and were part of a dual-site installation with Frysja in the Nordre Aker Bydel and the Et Dypt Nett light and sculptures at Smelteverket in the Vulkan Mathallen Arena, in Oslo, Norway. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

SHIMMER, 2018, single-channel video, original musical score.

 

 

 

 

 

 

MAKING OF ELVELANGS, 2018.

 

 

 

 

 

 

ET DYPT NETT, 2018, 8 sculptures with light, Smelteverket, Vulkan Mathallen.

 

 

 

ELVELANGS I FAKKELLYS, Oslo, Norway, Elvelangs is an annual celebration and night walk for the autumnal equinox.   The public is invited and suitable for all ages. Installations were made for autumn 2018 & 2017.

 

 




 


 

MOUVEMENTS 2015 – 2018

  • Mouvements (Bevegelsene), 2015-2018, film photography, variable sizes

 

MOUVEMENTS (BEVEGELSENE), 2015-2018, photography, variable sizes. Exhibitions at Vérité and Akers Mek in Oslo, Norway, 100 x 140 cm, Epson Archival Ink, mounted on kapa.

 

The Mouvements series reveals nuanced details in digital imaging technology. The images are informed by tensions in oil and water. The materiality of digital imaging technology, distance in viewing, and surreal representations in water forms are highlighted by minuscule film grains amplified after film scanning. The epistemology of water or way we come to learn and understand what water, is an ongoing endeavour. To then know what we are doing with technology, requires extended looking. The way something appears can obfuscate and reveal our relationship to the looking. Oil and water become elemental allegory for technocratic times. As Umberto Eco writes in several books on late modernity, images are read and our connections and relations are realised as a malleable surfaces. The natural beauty of the water is transformed by a hypnotic colour palette tied to screen technology. Viewing distances engage viewers in a sense of movement in stillness.

 

Exhibition for Oslo Art & Fashion Festival at Vérité and afterwards at Akers Mek. The series is available for printing on metal, vinyl, for limited edition prints, custom facades for public art. The series is part of the book: Textures & Movements.

 


 

SOLFEGE SOUCHE 2018

 

SOLFEGE SOUCHE, 2018, single-channel video, sound composition and arrangement.

February 2019, Palazzo Michiel, Strada Nova, 4391, 30121 Campo Santi Apostoli, Venezia, Italy

June 2019, CICA Museum,Czong Institute for Contemporary Art (CICA), Gyeonggi-do, South Korea

October 2020, “The Performer”, LoosenArt, Millipiani, Rome, Italy

“I love the way the figure is emerges then blends back into its surroundings, it is how I feel in the wild parts of Skye as if I am the landscape. The light is beautiful. It isn’t like Bill Viola’s work, but it has the same emotional effect on me.” -Joan Foye, UK

 

 

A Solfège Souche is by definition the root of a forgotten connection with nature.

In our time of rapidly increasing use of technology in everyday life, we face incessant streams of new questions mirroring the ethical and moral lines. This space framed in the video asks the body questions of identity and presence: Is it dangerous if we do not know what we stand to lose? The body itself dances with the nature, merging and emerging from shadows and light. The body becomes a form for drawing lines, through movements. Binaural beats compose the soundtrack, reminiscent of tinnitus or ear trauma. The pitches register as psychological markers of physical events.

 

In an effort to portray a dynamic relationship with nature, instead of a dominance over nature, the Butoh-dance inspired movements recreate the way lifeforms which are cut down in the forest continually find a way to reach towards light. The Solfège Souche video performance is the foundation in the development of an affordance technology research project.

 

Solfège refers to a music education method developed to teach sight-singing and pitch accuracy. Originating in 11th century, music theorist Guido of Arezzo assigned six syllables (ut, re, mi, fa, sol, la) recognized now as the major scale.

 

Ut queant laxīs resonāre fībrīs; Mīra gestōrum famulī tuōrum; Solve pollūtī labiī reātum, Sancte Iōhannēs.

 

Much later, the “ut” was changed to the open syllable “do”, “sol” sometimes to “so”, while “si” (later changed to “ti”) was added for the seventh scale-note, giving rise to the modern solfège. Souche is stump (of a tree), and in Latin means root while simultaneously referring to genealogy. Souche was also a name of an unknown virus claiming the lives of at least twenty people  (une souche virale inédite a fait au minimum vingt morts).

 

Affordance is what the environment offers the individual, and refers to all action possibilities depending on users’ physical capabilities. For example, a chair not only “affords” being “sat on,” but also “thrown,” “stood on,” and so on. James J. Gibson, coined the term “affordance.”

 

 
NORSK: Solfege Souche, 2018, enkelt kanel med lyd, filmet i Maridalen, Oslo, Norway
 
En Solfège Souche er per definisjon roten til en glemt forbindelse med naturen. I vår tid med raskt økende bruk av teknologi i hverdagen, står vi overfor kontinuerlige strømmer av nye spørsmål som speiler de etiske og moralske linjene. Dette rommet innrammet i videoen stiller kroppen spørsmål om identitet og tilstedeværelse: Er det farlig hvis vi ikke vet hva vi vil miste? Kroppen selv danser med naturen, fusjonerer og dukker opp fra skygger og lys. Kroppen blir en form for å tegne linjer, gjennom bevegelser. Binaural beats komponerer lydsporet, som minner om tinnitus eller øre traumer. Banene registreres som psykologiske markører for fysiske hendelser. I et forsøk på å skildre et dynamisk forhold til naturen, i stedet for en dominans over naturen, gjenskaper de Butoh-dans inspirerte bevegelsene måten livsformer som skjæres ned i skogen kontinuerlig finner en måte å nå mot lys på. Solfège Souche-videoopptredenen er grunnlaget for utviklingen av et teknologiundersøkelsesprosjekt.
 
Solfège viser til en musikkundervisningsmetode som er utviklet for å lære synesang og tonehøyde nøyaktighet. Musikkteoretikeren Guido fra Arezzo, som stammer fra 1200-tallet, tildelte seks stavelser (ut, re, mi, fa, sol, la) anerkjent nå som den viktigste skalaen.
 
Ut queant laxīs resonāre fībrīs; Mīra gestōrum famulī tuōrum; Løs pollūtī labiī reātum, Sancte Iōhannēs.
 
Mye senere ble “ut” endret til det åpne stavelsen “do”, “sol” noen ganger til “so”, mens “si” (senere endret til “ti”) ble lagt til for den syvende skalaenheten, noe som ga opphav til den moderne solfège. Souche er stubbe (av et tre), og på latin betyr rot, samtidig som det refereres til slektsforskning. Souche var også et navn på et ukjent virus som forlangte minst tjue menneskers liv (une souche virale inédite a fait au minimum vingt morts).
 
Affordance er det miljøet tilbyr den enkelte, og refererer til alle handlingsmuligheter avhengig av brukernes fysiske evner. For eksempel, en stol ikke bare “gir” å være “satt på”, men også “kastet,” “sto på,” og så videre. James J. Gibson, myntet begrepet “affordance.”
 
 

OSLO ART AND FASHION FESTIVAL 2017

 

 

STOP BATH, 2017, multimedia installation, images from Memoria Technica, single-channel video, audio composition, at Lekter’n. View Stop-Bath video at FilmEssay.com Interview on Oslo Fashion and Art Festival. Exhibition supported by Epson & Interfoto Norge.

 

 

LEKTER`N, Stranden 3, Aker Brygge 0250 Oslo, Norway kart/map

THURSDAY  Oct 12th  FRIDAY Oct 13th 2017 –  kl. 17:00 – 20:00  SATURDAY   Oct 14th 2017 –  kl. 12:00 – 20:00 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Interview from Oslo Fashion and Art Festival Website:

 

Rachel Wolfe (b. 1984) is an American-born artist and photographer, living in Norway since 2015. Her work is realized in mediums of images, installation, drawing, painting, video, performance, and traveling objects. The Print Atelier represents images from Human Needs.

Rooted in disciplines of dance, painting, drawing, piano, voice, Wolfe has been making solo and group projects, working with land, space, light, and photography since 1999. Theories in Chinese medicine influence her work navigating themes of beauty, sense, feeling.

Awards and scholarships include: 2015 First place by the jury, Imagining New Eurasia exhibition in Gwangju, South Korea. 2015 Woelffer scholarship and 2014 academic merit award from Otis College of Art and Design, 2013 Academic scholarship for social psychology study in Matsuyama Japan, 2009 Historic Pathways winner from Indiana State University.

 

QA:

U: Who are you and what do you do?
RW: I am Rachel Wolfe I make art considering the site and utilizing materials and images of photography, including light, video, sound, and performance of body.

U: What characterizes your work?
RW: Sensory dynamics in the nature of desire. Human, felt experiences are important in a bottom-up approach to understanding versus a concept-to-completion mode of working. Beauty services the process in various forms as elements of nature are always in the work.

U: How would you describe your personal style?
RW: Based on what I am learned about style I would say everything must always be in service of dynamic movement.

U: How do your own experiences influence your work?
RW: Synesthesia is something I thought everyone has but later came to find out, they certainly do not. I use my sensory sensitivities and route them through a process of omission relative to the site, and to a history I am interested in daisy chaining with.

U: What will you be showing at the uncontaminated festival?
RW: I’ll be exposing ways of gazing upon a horizon to consider the perception of motion through time. This sense of temporality as a form of continuous movement and how that relates to bodily senses.

U: What do you want to communicate through your work?
RW: Reverence as an important tool in agency. Trade economics are sometimes spoken of as a force in opposition of life, and in the sense of hurriedness or performance anxiety, one could certainly become at odds with their lives and relationships. My work is demanding in a subtle way of slowing down, that most to gain by giving in to what is working through choices with what’s there. My hope is locating an orientation of intrinsic desire and value-to go forward from an aesthetic experience with an embodied sense of wholeness.

U: Do artists of today have some kind of social responsibility?
RW: Responsibility is such a rich space for conversation. Artists have the responsibility to keep making work, and to start talking with people in a way that doesn’t create an intellectual paywall.

U: What does uncontaminated mean for you?
RW: Uncontaminated is an idea about an ideal. For example, the idea of blue blood or a form of purity that in reality is an impossibility. For example, mud is still always dirt. That kind of aspirational dreamstate feels a lot like a mental space one could achieve through traditional forms of meditation.

U: What is the most important thing in your life?
RW: Being alive.

U: How do you feel right now?
RW: I feel like having a proper bath. Where are all the bathtubs here?

U: If you could change one thing in the world today, what would it be?
RW: Remind people the generative quality of cooperation and the value of a well-considered no.

U: What are the main reasons you are joining us for the festival this year?
RW: I am interested in art and fashion and want to connect with people to learn about what they desire-what brings people out of their homes to connect with each other in public spaces.

U: Who or what do you value as a great inspiration for you creatively?
RW: Opposing points of view from books, family, and friends. Paying more attention to noticing phenomena in nature. How many different ways can something I think I’ve seen a million times reveal something new about itself?

U: Can you elaborate on an important moment in your life where you experienced a big change, chose to make one or another event which altered your way of thinking or your approach to creativity?
RW: Deciding to be the author of my time, which is a never ending dance I still trip over my own footing with. After decades of training, the red thread is making something out of the desire to make and create value in the satisfaction of the making process.

U: How does digital and social media affect or inspire your life and creations?
RW: Being prone to affective disorders, I really try to keep an arms distance with the broadcast version of life. I wonder a lot about the ways in which the intimacy of viewing a distant life up close affects psychology and if there could be some kind of epigenetic change relative to the emotional change in media technology.

U: What do you define art?
RW: Art requires discipline, something that is worked on by an artist and through a diligent practice and vision work is made. Is Duchamp’s urinal art today? No, that was an artefact as a testament of a notion that somehow art is one thing or another-that art is about ideas or feelings or one thing or the other. Art is art. To conflate art as anything other than the word itself services rhetoric or belief-both of which I am interested in being free from. I have a great faith in people and the ability to know. Art and artefact can have a close relationship but they are different. I as one among many people practicing art today may be in a practice of making artefacts more than art, and that’s something I’m always looking closely at within my work as well. Does this diminish what artists are making; I don’t think so. I do find the conversation valuable moving forward.

U: What is your definition of artistic freedom?
RW: Discipline. Having gone through a phase of coming undone, and going in many directions, I’m in a process of refining.

U: Is there a difference for you between art and commercial/commissioned work?
RW: Commissioned work has always been easier for me, to work in a dialogue. Making art for myself entails far more responsibility which then requires a lot more time. A few months at a residency can accomplish a lot, but it is still not the same as having years to work on art.

U: Do you struggle to find artistic freedom in the span between commissioned work and your personal needs to express yourself?
RW: Personal expression is not an area I struggle with or work with in my art.

U: What do you aspire to? In the near future? In life in general?
RW: Aspire is a great word. I wouldn’t go panting after doing I do though. The question I’m often asking myself now is what is truly essential and can I live with today, tomorrow, and 50 years from now.

U: How do you feel art and fashion intervene?
RW: Aesthetics and function. The formal qualities of how something looks conveys a great deal of ideas. Aesthetics as signs of ethical choices isn’t a new concept. There’s a lot of value in considering what aesthetic choices are relative to fashion, and then wondering the function, does this work. And if it doesn’t work, ie can the body stay warm, does the systems circulate healthfully, this kind of questions have a lot to do with the intersection of art and fashion. The head and body need not be severed from the other, you know?

U: What is a great example of a fashion art collaboration in your view?
RW: I cannot look at fashion and not see art. When I see art, I have a desire to somehow become the art I see. I have seen so much incredible and daring fashion and art these past years, I am afraid I can’t call out anything specific right now.

U: Where do you think art and fashion is heading in our digital age?
RW: People are demanding more from each of their purchases. Less is not more now. More in fewer items is the thing. A lot of the digital future is already available today but not yet on a wider scale. Someone once advised me to invest in black clothing, that this pigment would become rare in the future. For some reason this stuck with me.

 

 


 

ELVELANGS 2017

 

 

 

 

9 WORLDS OF IMAGE AND LIGHT, 2017, installation, Smelteverket, Vulkan Mathallen. The concept and plan was founded between Rachel and Smelteverket and supported by Torso Kunstartikler and Smelteverket. The drawings were a shared labor between Rachel Wolfe and Katarina Caspersen.

ELVELANGS I FAKKELLYS, Oslo, Norway, public installations for autumn 2018 & 2017

 

 


 

TEKNOVISUELL EXPERIENCE

  • Digital images, 2015-2016, printed at 61,04 x 76,2 cm (24 x 30in)

 

INSTALLATION OF DETAIL #5 at OTIS COLLEGE OF ART & DESIGN engages the relationships of body & space to image technology through the clarity of the perceived image. The imaging processes themselves displace and reform pigments and images, creating fuzzy borders. The Teknovisuell Experience series represents, through images of water, aesthetic and ethical qualities technology raises in our societies.

 

 

 

TEKNOVISUELL EXPERIENCE DETAIL  #5, VIRTUAL MATERIAL SERIES, public installation, Otis College of Art and Design Admissions Office, Los Angeles, California, 2017. The Teknovisuell Experience works are part of a larger body of work titled Virtual Material.

The images in Virtual Material involve several layers in the materiality of the image, systems and processes in imaging, the vision-body relationship, and ways civilisations form understandings of nature. From an empirical, materialist philosophical standpoint, the works reflect on age-old discussions between Platonic and Sophist ideas, and the places spiritual and scientific ideas are permitted. Through the emphasis on the ethereal nature of screen-based technologies, the Teknovisuell Experience Details take-up these conversations both through the processes in which they were created and in the results of the viewers interactions and memories with images. By engaging the physical body with the vision, the distance in viewing engages viewers’ bodies in the opportunity to look at processes otherwise invisible to users of screen-based technology, but evident to builders of technology such as R&D, the coder, manufacturer and marketer. The details in Teknovisuell Experience were composed of the decomposition of images up and downloaded through social media channels; 7 times for each image. The final images reconstitute a representation, highlighting the way images become a form of cultural ritualisation. By further manipulating the image to highlight degraded visual qualities, and print at large scale or clip sections out as fragments, the various installation formats available engage viewers in contemplation of the areas in an increasingly liquid society. The scale and application of the image evokes motifs and patterns found in traditions of totems and textiles. Still images applied as wall coverings, pillars, scrolls or flags. Digital gifs of the images afford exhibition on screens and move static light reflections, creating visually ghostly movements.