Spread Art and PLAYGROUND DETROIT are happy to announce Michelle Matson, as the NYC artist resident participating in our Spring 2013 Detroit Artist Residency Exchange. Born 1981, she currently lives & works in Brooklyn, NY. She has had various solo shows in New York, including “Cactus Milk” (2012) at theYouth Group Gallery, Brooklyn and “Rise“ (2012) paper sculpture installation in Soho, NY at Issey Miyake’s Pleats Please.
Local Bushwick heavyweights 3rd Ward and Bushwick Daily have profiled her, citing her 3-D work as, “really impressive… [and] engaging to look at. As a creator, Michelle has great sense of humor…” Even NY Art criticJerry Saltz is in her corner; while working with her as a contestant on Bravo TV’s “Work of Art: The Next Great Artist” Season 2, having said that,
When around her, I often found myself in a strange awe of her artistic grace. I believe Michelle has a real future in the real art world.”
After reviewing many other applications received, PLAYGROUND DETROIT curator Joe Jagos alongside Thomas Bell and Christina deRoos, Co-Directors of Spread Art are excited announce Matson as the first participant for the Detroit-based residency program. Her unique medium and sense of “PG adult humor” sets her art apart from other artists and we welcome her back to the city she never got to know giving her the opportunity to re-aquiant with the city as it is now.
Continue to full post to read the Playground Detroit interview with Michelle.
Spread Art has officially launched its 2012/13 Detroit Artistic Residency Experience, hosting international artistic platform and performance group Konic Thtr (Barcelona, Spain) for a two week artistic development residency. Kònic thtr is an artistic platform based in Barcelona dedicated to contemporary creation at the confluence between arts, new technologies and science. The main activity being focused on the application of interactive technologies to artistic projects. Konic Thtr will be in residence at Spread Art from September 28th through October 14th to develop their new multidisciplinary interactive project, Cuerpo_SMS.
As part of the residency activities:
Konic Thtr will present two excerpted performances of Cuerpo_SMS:
Friday Oct 6th at Whitdel Arts during the opening of “Engage – An Interactive Exhibition”
Friday October 12th at Tank Gallery in Hazel Park.
Both performances at 8:30pm.
There will also be a technology demonstration and Artist Q&A:
Friday October 12th at Tank Gallery at 6:30pm before the performance.
Performances will invite audience interaction through a variety of technologies, such as cell phones, tablets, live video feeds, and/or light sensors. Prior to the performance at Tank Gallery the artists will present a demonstration of the platforms and interactive tools they have developed, while placing Cuerpo_SMS in context as related to their previous work in performance and installation and within the greater art & technology genre. Cuerpo_SMS is a multidisciplinary project that brings together live performance, audiovisual creation, and interactive technology. Cuerpo_SMS refers to the changes of perception in interpersonal communication mediated by new technologies, and to the spaces that this mediation generates, a recurrent theme in Kònic Thtr’s work, and that we have explored more recently in our performance “Before the Beep.” The piece confronts the body with these same communication technologies, and explores how these re-write the body and change our understanding of place and the idea of presence. In Cuerpo_SMS several technological devices, such as cameras, tablets, light and movement sensors, are controlled by the audience to affect the visuals and create part of the music used in the dance. Cuerpo_SMS is a space to collaborate with local artists, presenting a site-specific event every time it is performed. Building from the initial materials brought by the company, the background and knowledge from collaborators expand the possibilities of the initial proposal. Kònic Thtr is collaborating with Detroit artists, Christina deRoos and Thomas Bell to enhance the visuals and sound elements of the piece. The full performance of Cuerpo_SMS will be shown October 26, 27 and 28th at the Center for Performance Research in Brooklyn, NY.
Kònic Thtr www.koniclab.info
is an artistic platform based in Barcelona (Spain) dedicated to contemporary creation at the confluence of art, science and new technologies. Kònic Thtr’s work has been presented, among other places, in: MACBA, Mercat de les flors, Medialab Madrid (Spain), Institute of Contemporary Arts, Ikon Gallery, Tramway (UK), V2 (Netherlands), ZKM, Podewill (Germany), Centre Pompidou / IRCAM (France), Centro de la imagen, CCE, (Mexico), SESC Pompeia & File Fest (Brazil), Tsekh, Proekt Fabrika Moscow (Russia), 3-Legged Dog Art & Technology Center, EMPAC, New York (USA), Fringe & DanStorm Int. Fest., Shanghai & Beijing (China). In their last projects Kònic thtr have been exploring the possibilities of the Internet as a platform for distributed creation and with audience participation. The projects e_pormundos (Kònic thtr_Catalunya/Spain - GTMDA_Brasil / 2009-2010) and Dance-Net (Kònic thtr + Digitalent / 2010-2011) allowed us to develop languages and tools for creating distributed in distributed locations (physical or Internet). In 2011 we presented our work ‘Before the Beep’ in Brazil, China and the US, each time with different artistic collaborators.
Rosa Sánchez and Alain Baumann lead the conceptual, creative and technological lines of Kònic Thtr. They both have long professional trajectories related to new technologies applied to installation, interactive stage projects, dance and theater. Rosa Sánchez. Multidisciplinary and multimedia artist, performer & choreographer. Artistic director and co founder of Konic thtr. Alain Baumann. Musician, multimedia artist and researcher of new systems for producing sound. He is in charge of the interactive systems used by Konic thtr. www.koniclab.info
Christina deRoos: Christina deRoos is a visual artist whose work is at the intersection of photo/video, installation, and mixed-media. Most recently she has focused on real-time video mixing, collaborating with experimental musicians in improvised group collaborations to present integrated sound and visual landscapes. Her work has been presented recently at Whitdel Arts (Detroit), 555 Gallery (Detroit), Grace Exhibition Space (NY), The Tank (NY), Center for Performance Research (NY), Bronx Art Space (NY), Arts@Renaissance (NY), Art Gotham (NY), Samson Projects (Boston), and in a variety of festivals including Electro Music Festival (NY) and Bent Festival (NYC), and online platforms, such as Dimanche Rouge. www.christinaderoos.com
Thomas Bell: Thomas began studying music at age seven receiving instruction on guitar, electric bass, piano, flute, trumpet, percussion, trombone, music theory, composition, and vocal studies through high school and continued his instruction while studying jazz performance at Berklee College of Music and ethnomusicology at Florida State University. He has been primarily involved with improvised music, electronic music and computer music for the last decade, and founded the Oxygen Music Collective in Seattle in 1999 and has since produced numerous music environments and events in Seattle and New York, bringing together hundreds of musicians from around the world to collaborate in improvised settings. Currently, his main focus is on collective improvisation, multi-media integration and collaboration between artistic disciplines. www.thomasbellart.com
DiStefano (NY Performances Only):
Magic Distefano is a highly diverse performance artist, who was trained in Modern, contemporary and classical dance at the Joffrey Ballet school of New York. He has acted across from Toni Colette and Jon Corbit in The United States Of Tara, and has performed in Gelsey Kirkland's rendition of the Nut Cracker. Magic has street performed throughout Europe, Australia and the United States. His travels through Europe allowed him to delve into other crafts like physical comedy, the corporal mime, and juggling. Among other artists of note Magic has worked with Alexandre Proia, Stephan James Back, and Stephan Haves. For the past year Magic has been dancing for Pilobolus dance theater. You can read more about magic at Magicdistefano.com
CREDITS CUERPO SMS_Detroit / NY / US
Technological direction: Alain Baumann
Dance (NY Performances Only): Paul (Magic) DiStefano
live AV-performance: Rosa Sánchez, Alain Baunmann,
(Detroit Performances only): Thomas Bell & Christina de Roos
Alain Baunmann & Thomas Bell
Video and Computer Graphics: Adolf Alcañiz, Rosa Sánchez & Christina de Roos
Software: Alain Baumann, audio and interaction development Miroslava Moreno & Eduard Gomez, Internet interactions
Costumes: Carme Puigdevall
CO-PRODUCTION: Chez Bushwick, NY & Spread Art, Detroit
Special thanks to Living Arts, Detroit
With the support of: Spain Culture New York- Consulate General of Spain- & Spain Arts & Culture. ICUB, Ajuntament de Barcelona(SP), Ramon Llull Institute (SP), Departament de Cultura de la Generalitat de Catalunya (SP)
The ‘You Are Here’ festival, takes place in New York City approximately once every two years. The festival consists of 4 weeks of performance and time- based arts events in a life size maze installation.
Trouble, Sam Hillmer and Laura Paris – the art duo responsible for ‘You Are Here’ - designs and builds an actual maze into a gallery space accompanied by light, projections, sound, sculpture, and of course, a myriad of performance and time-based arts events.
The ‘You Are Here’ festival interrupts the performance rituals of the arts communities it inhabits. Artists who present are, primarily, members of these communities. Audience members arrive at ‘You Are Here’ with the intention of catching a particular presentation, but intentions are frustrated and transformed by the labyrinthine construction the festival provides. Artists and audiences alike are invited to question the expectations that arise around performance in the context of community.
Performers this year include Laurel Halo, Miho Hatori's New Optimisim, Ann Liv Young, Dustin Wong, Hunter Hunt Hendrix, Noveller, Mick Barr, Jack Quartet, Lucky Dragons, JG Thirlwell, Babycastles, Extralife, and many others...
Read more here.
PLAYGROUND DETROIT sat down with the duo behind the organization, Thomas Bell and Christina de Roos, to ask them about Spread Art and their recent re-location from Bushwick, Brooklyn, to Corktown, Detroit. The two are originally not from Detroit, or NYC, both growing up elsewhere.
PD: When was the first time you visited Detroit? What was your experience and impression of the city like?
After 4 and ½ years of successful exhibitions, events, workshops, and residencies, Spread Art has wrapped up activities at 104 Meserole Street in Brooklyn as of July 1st 2012. It has been an amazing time with many wonderful memories and we would like to thank all of the artists who were a part of Spread Art’s events, exhibitions and residencies during our time in Brooklyn. As one door closes however, another is opening and in a big way. Spread Art has moved its headquarters to Detroit and has taken on a much larger physical space. This transition enables Spread Art to continue working in collaboration with artists and spaces throughout Brooklyn and New York City, while also expanding operations and activities in Detroit.
In January 2012, Spread Art laid down roots in Detroit’s creative Southwest district and now occupies a new 4000 sq ft creative space available for residencies, workshops, classes, events, performances and exhibitions. The new Spread Art location is housed in a 3- story turn of the century storefront space on Michigan Ave and 18th St in the historic Corktown neighborhood, minutes from downtown and two blocks away from the renowned Michigan Central Station.
Co-Directors, Thomas Bell and Christina deRoos are hard at work getting the new space set up and ready for use. The ground floor offers an 900 sq ft light filled multi-use space space with a full wall of mirrors that is perfect for dance, yoga and other social gatherings. In addition to 20 ft ceilings the ground floor storefront offers two rather large window installations that will certainly be changing often. The downstairs space is comprised of a 1600 sq ft gallery and performance space with an 18ft bar, projector and sound system, a 350 sq ft residency room, 750 sq ft of studio space, a bathroom, washer and dryer and the Spread Art offices.
Over the next few weeks we will be announcing our residency opportunities beginning in the fall of 2012, updating our website and posting information about new partnerships that are developing with organizations in Detroit.
The former Spread Art location at 104 Meserole is in the exceptionally creative and capable hands of Esther Neff and Brian McCorkle of Panoply Performance Laboratory, and Valerie Kuehne of SuperCoda. Esther, Brian and Valerie were the final three Spread Art ‘Artists-In-Residence’ at the 104 Meserole St location in Brooklyn (May - June 2012).
Spread Art Summer Group Show V
Spread Art’s 5th annual “Summer Group Show” will include the works of multiple visual artists working in a variety of mediums and feature the works of Spread Art’s current artists-in-residence,Thomas Bell, Christina deRoos, Valerie Kuehne, Brian McCorkle,and Esther Neff. Also on display will be works by , Ventiko, Erin Partridge, Erika Sabel, Panoply Lab, Jorge Rojas, Nicholas, Burgess, Aimee Chappell Hertog, Alix Maubrey, Justin Orvis Steimer, Christian Stolarz, Abigail Weg, Lara Goetzl, Michael Blase, Michael Pawlus and more. Installations, Photography, Painting, Video, Street Art, Drawing, Sculpture, Mixed Media.
Expanding on the single performance at last year’s Summer Group Show, Spread Art will host performances on Friday night from 8pm to 10pm and Saturday from 4pm to 10pm. Performances are curated by Spread Art’s artists-in-residence and include Live Music, Performance Art, Sonic Works, Live Video Streams and more. Participating performers include: Elinor Thompson, Esther Neff, Heather Warren Crow, Felix Morelo, Valerie Kuehne, Brian McCorkle, Kanene Holder, Rafael Sanchez, Miles Pflanz, Amy X Neuburg, Jane Gabriels, Diamond Terrifier with Visuals (Trouble).
You can watch the Live Stream Feed on Spread Art’s U-Stream Channel. http://www.ustream.tv/channel/spread-art-bklyn
Dates & Times
Friday June 1st, 2012, 6pm - 10pm (performances at 8pm - 10pm)
Saturday June 2nd, 2012, 12pm-10pm (performances at 4pm - 10pm)
Sunday June 3rd, 2012, 12pm-6pm
"Spread Art Outdoors" at The Morgan Stop
“Spread Art Outdoors” will bring the art to the people!
Beginning on Saturday at 1pm, “The Parade of Art” will gather outside the Morgan stop L train on Bogart st and make its way to The Animamus Art Salon at the Starr Street Studios above the Bushwick Starr (207 Starr St 3rd floor) Come Join the Parade of Art Work and the ‘Speaker of the Dead’ gypsy brass folk punk band as we march throughout the neighborhood. To participate please email: Thomas@spreadart.org.
“Live Stream Interviews” will be happening during “The Parade of Art” as well as in and around the Morgan L stop on Saturday from 3pm to 4pm and on Sunday between 12 and 7pm enjoy, "Speading Art Outdoors. Join Spread Art Founder and Co-Director, Thomas Bell as he interviews festival attendees, artists and just about anyone else he sees on the streets. You can watch the Live Stream Feed on Spread Art’s U-Stream Channel. http://www.ustream.tv/channel/spread-art-bklyn
Begun at the first Bushwick Open Studios in 2006 and continued for Beta Spaces in 2009, for the third installment of “Bushwick Is…”, let us know what Bushwick is! When you see the “Live Stream Interviews” happening, that is your time to let Spread Art and the world know what you think “Bushwick Is…” in 2012.
There will be also be Live Performances both days in and around the Morgan L train stop!
Dates and Times:
Saturday June 2nd, 2012, 1pm - 1:30pm and 3pm -4pm
Sunday June 3rd, 2012, 12pm - 7pm
The Parade of Art
Beginning on Saturday at 1pm, “The Parade of Art” will gather outside the Morgan L train stop on Bogart St and march to The Animamus Art Salon at the Starr Street Studios above the Bushwick Starr (207 Starr St 3rd floor) Come Join the Parade of Art Work and the ‘Speaker of the Dead’ gypsy brass folk punk band as we march throughout the neighborhood. Live Performances along the way! The Parade of Art will also be streamed live to the internet. You can watch the Live Stream Feed on Spread Art’s U-Stream Channel. http://www.ustream.tv/channel/spread-art-bklyn
Dates & Times
Saturday June 2nd, 2012, 1pm -2pm
Thomas Bell, Christina deRoos, Anya Liftig
April 29, 2012
Bronx Art Space
Part of ITINERANT: FESTIVAL FOR CONTEMPORARY PERFORMANCE ART
March 30th - May 12th, 2012
Brooklyn, Queens, Manhattan, Bronx, Staten Island
New York City, USA
QMAD, Queens Media Arts Development is pleased to present ITINERANT, the annual festival for Contemporary Performance Art initiated by artist, Hector Canonge in Queens in 2011. This year’s festival is a citywide program to be presented in collaboration with galleries, artist-run spaces and public institutions in the five boroughs in New York City. ITINERANT 2012 focuses on live performative works that treat notions of intimacy, self-reflection, and introspection. Artists working in performance art were selected to participate from an open call that attracted more than 175 local, national and international submissions. Forty five artists will present new and existing works exploring the program’s theme over a period of five weeks, March 30 - May 12, 2012.
February 11th, 2012 at Vaudville Park - Brooklyn, NY
Thomas Bell and Christina deRoos - part of PERFORMANCY FORUM XX: Con(Text). Thank you Esther Neff, co-director of the Panoply Performance Laboratory (PPL), for including us in this opportunity.
PERFORMANCY FORUM XX: Con(Text)
Thomas Bell & Christina deRoos!
Established in New York by Thomas Bell in 2008, Spread Art is an artist-run center that seeks to foster international collaboration between artists and institutions through residency, exhibition and performance opportunities, and by encouraging “kids and adults to explore their creativity and increase self-awareness through art.” Bell and co-director, Christina deRoos, answered a few questions by email on the origins of Spread Art and their participation in the community.
Please tell me about the origins of Spread Art and your own backgrounds as artists and art workers.
After curating exhibitions around New York prior to 2008, Founder and Co-Director Thomas Bell found a storefront space that was perfect for both an artist studio and exhibit gallery. After a month of building out the space, Spread Art opened on February 29th 2008. During the first year and a half, Spread Art served mainly as a gallery, hosting various group shows, fundraisers and performances. In the summer of 2009 Christina deRoos joined as Co-Director. In early 2010, Spread Art began it’s Artist Residency program and the focus shifted to providing artists with low cost live/work space and producing events off site while still having the occasional performance and exhibit on site.
Thomas has been an artist his entire life beginning with music training at age 7, going on to study Jazz and Ethnomusicology in college. It was then that he began exploring the visual arts, transferring his improvisational training in Jazz over to his visual work. Thomas works primarily with acrylics, found objects, collage, installations and multi-media collaborative projects.
Christina deRoos is a visual artist working in photo/video, installation, mixed media and time-based forms. She frequently performs with experimental musicians and performance artists to collaboratively improvise integrated sound and visual landscapes. She splits her time between Brooklyn and Detroit.
Prior to moving to New York, Thomas and Christina began organizing and curating both visual and musical events with Gemini Artist Productions, which they founded in Seattle in 2001. Thomas and Christina moved the company to New York in 2003 and continued to work on events and productions, including the 2005 NYC Wide Open Studios. Gemini Artist’s last production was the organization of the first Bushwick Open Studios in Oct 2006. Christina went on to be a co-founder of Arts in Bushwick in 2007 and Thomas Founded Spread Art in 2008
Part of the mandate of Spread Art is to support emerging artists. What is it about the Bushwick community that helps you to actualize that goal?
The community is full of emerging artists so there are limitless opportunities to include them in exhibitions and performance events that we present on site or in other locations. We also work with early-career curators as often as possible. Part of Spread Art’s goal is to support work that otherwise may not be seen, which includes supporting experimental and challenging art forms and content.
What made you set up in Bushwick versus another neighborhood in the five boroughs?
When we moved to NY from Seattle in 2003 we initially had a live/work space in Dumbo. We participated in a number of art events and festivals in that community, including the annual Art Under the Bridge open studios. We were fortunate to have a series of inexpensive live/work sublets and residencies which helped us keep costs low when we first arrived, so we were immediately able to show not only our own work but host group exhibitions and include artists who otherwise didn’t have a space to show.
We were excited to move to Bushwick because it felt full of opportunity and energy. There was a multicultural vibrancy in the neighborhood that inspired our creative thinking and doing. We rented a space in the 950 Hart building and continued to host group shows and help foster new events. Right away we were involved with NYC Citywide Open Studios, which was an ambitious undertaking by Jesse Lambdin, with open studios events in every borough over the course of one month, with one borough featured each weekend.
Do you have any concerns about the neighborhood and the role art institutions play in the changing landscape of Bushwick?
Absolutely. There are many wonderful contributions that the creative sector makes to any community landscape. The contribution to gentrification is not one of them in our opinion. Bushwick is not unique in this and art institutions are not the only driver, but it is a part of the picture. A major motivator for our move to Detroit was to participate in and learn new ways of exploring community advocacy through the arts. Detroit has the creative energy and multicultural vibrancy Bushwick did in 2005, but on a much larger geographic and community scale. Detroit has, and will continue to have, a lot to share with other areas that seek a thriving creative community that develops from the bottom up is infused in all aspects of the city. There are top down initiatives at work as well, similar to NY and other areas that are evidenced by development-driven renaming of communities for instance. Yet the positive “all means all” spirit of the creative community here is predominant for us. We’re grateful to have an opportunity to learn from those who have been living and working in Detroit for decades, and to continue to learn from those living and working in Brooklyn.
How are you participating in this year’s Bushwick Open Studios?
Spread Art is a Hub Space this year as well as a sponsor. We are going to have the Summer Group Show V, which has been held every year since 2008 during BOS. There will also be performances here during the exhibit. Spread Art is also working on a BOS archive project and we will be interviewing artists and festival goers all week long in the streets and studios to be included as part of the archive. Finally, we are re-launching a project that Gemini Artist Productions did during BOS 2006 titled, “Bushwick Is… .” It should be a pretty busy BOS for Spread Art this year.
Any memorable moments from past Bushwick Open Studios you’d like to share?
During the lead up to the 2006 Bushwick Open Studios we had no idea how much participation would occur, and we made a conscious decision to define success in ways that didn’t include numbers of artists or attendees. It was about the process of putting on the event and thereby connecting individuals in the community. We started with things like “Bushwick Open Studi-Oh?” to capture the curiosity of whether we would have 1 studio participating or more. We used “Bushwick Open Studios – Make Of It What You Will” to keep the process-oriented, participant-driven, uncurated approach at the forefront. Ultimately we had a stellar response from artists in 21 days of registration and ended up with “Bushwick Open Studio-OH!” in some of the final fliers. The planning was a fun social exploration and a collaborative art project in itself.
I T I N E R A N T
Sunday, April 29th, 2012, 6 - 9 pm
BRONX ART SPACE
Join us Sunday April 29th 6pm to 9pm for the Itinerant Performance Festival at Bronx Art Space.
"playing with myself playing with yourself"
Thomas Bell (sound), Christina deRoos (video) and Anya Liftig (performance) create an intimate collaborative work while each improvises in their respective medium while simultaneously working together. Christina's video remixes of Anya's past performances, to which Anya performs along with, creates an opportunity for self reflection and introspection. The addition of live audience participation through the use of video and sound feeds creates an intimate experience between the audience members and the three performing artists.
QMAD, Queens Media Arts Development, continues the presentation of ITINERANT, a citywide Festival for Contemporary Performance Art to be hosted at various venues in the five boroughs of New York City. On Sunday, April 29th, ITINERANT will be in the Bronx to present the work of local, national and international artists performing at Bronx Art Space from 6 - 9 pm.
* BROOKLYN: Friday, March 30th, 8 - 11 pm at Grace Exhibition Space (past).
* QUEENS: Saturday, April 21st, 6 - 9 pm at Crossing Art Gallery (past).
* MANHATTAN: Saturday, April 28th, 7 – 10 pm at Floor 4 Art (featured).
* BRONX: Sunday, April 29th, 6 - 9 pm at Bronx Art Space (upcoming).
* STATEN ISLAND: Sunday, May 5th, 6 - 8 pm at Newhouse Center for Contemporary Art -
Snug Harbor Cultural Center & Botanical Garden (upcoming).
* Every Friday, April 6th – May 4th, 3 – 6 PM: “Worlds Together, Worlds Apart,” a durational
Nancy Nowacek, Lizzie Scott, and Priscila Stadler.
More information: www.qmad.org/itinerant or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
ITINERANT is an independent initiative supported by QMAD