Chaffey College and the Wignall Museum of Contemporary Art are pleased to present Even Better Than the Real Thing: The Art of the Uncanny, curated by Jennifer Frias, August 23 – September 25, 2010. The reception will be Tuesday, August 24, 6-9 p.m., with light refreshments and entertainment featuring dj Trickmilla. The reception will be held in conjunction with the Chaffey College Center for the Arts building dedication and reception from 5-7 p.m. There will be a curator’s walk-through with Jennifer Frias on September 22 at 6pm.
Even Better Than the Real Thing: The Art of the Uncanny observes the edges of perception. It takes into account the notion of “defamiliarization,” or the artistic technique of forcing the audience to see common things in an unfamiliar or strange way in order to enhance perception of the familiar by making the everyday uncanny. While the procedure to achieve such realistic and hi-tech qualities may appear mass-produced, the objects in the exhibition were constructed meticulously by applying basic, traditional art and handcraft techniques, such as painting, drawing, sculpting and sewing. The works selected for Even Better Than the Real Thing posses characteristics that are visually arresting, seductive, and at times, disturbing. The results undertake an unsettling realism and issue a challenge to art’s alleged dedication to the world of appearances.
Even Better Than the Real Thing will feature the work of: Jon Bonser, Joe Davidson, Ben Jackel, Kiel Johnson, Nina Katchadourian, Rebecca Morales, Kristen Morgin, Kaz Oshiro, Derek Parker, Andy Ralph, Laura Splan, and Stephanie Syjuco.
Guest Curator Jennifer Frias is the assistant curator of UCR's Sweeney Art Gallery. Her curatorial projects focus on contemporary art, with special emphasis on the exploration of identity, pop culture and technology. She has organized exhibitions such as "Will Connell: Hollywood Noir" (2003), "When Nature Takes Its Course: Natural Disasters from the Keystone-Mast Collection" (2004), "Material Witness" (2007) and worked alongside Tyler Stallings on "Your Donations Do Our Work: Andrea Bowers and Suzanne Lacy" (2009). In 2008, she was guest curator at the California Museum of Photography for the exhibition, "And These Natural Things: Works by Melissa Martinez" (catalog). Her current projects include an exhibition (August 28, 2010 ) for the Begovich Gallery at Cal State Fullerton entitled, "Metadataphile"(catalog), a group exhibition of contemporary works that focuses on appropriating, hacking, re-purposing and regenerating visual information. She is also currently working with the artists and curators collective, SixPackProjects on numerous southern California phantom gallery exhibitions scheduled for fall 2010 and winter 2011.