Recology San Francisco Artist in Residence Exhibitions: Work by Jenny Odell, Chris Sollars and Roger Ourthiague Jr.
San Francisco, CA 94134
Exhibition and reception for current artists-in-residence Jenny Odell, Chris Sollars, and student artist Roger Ourthiague Jr. on Friday, September 18 from 5-9pm and Saturday, Sept 19, from 1-3pm. Additional viewing hours will be held on Tuesday, September 22, from 5-7pm, with a gallery walk-through with the artists at 6:00pm. This exhibition will be the culmination of four months of work by the artists who have scavenged materials from the dump to make art and promote recycling and reuse.
The Bureau of Suspended Objects
Jenny Odell’s Bureau of Suspended Objects is a fictional combination of bureaucratic office, investigative government agency, and academic archive. As Chief Archivist, Odell has been a solitary force working diligently to research and record each object she has scavenged at the dump, posting her information at www.suspended-objects.org.
Odell’s art both exists in and draws from the internet. Web searches have enabled her to track down information about each object’s manufacturing, distribution, popularity and use, resulting in detailed dossiers on each dump find. Her online archive provides Google street views of manufacturing plants, videos of TV commercials for products, and links to other historical or anecdotal information. Each trashed object suddenly becomes a dynamic find, and enthusiasm for its history may connect to the excitement one might have experienced when initially purchasing it. Odell’s work demonstrates that even the most cheap, disposable items have a vast and complex history, and brings attention to the resources, time, and energy used in these objects’ production and consumption.
Odell will exhibit archived objects with scanable QR codes, photographic collages of items grouped using statistical data, related video, and interactive media. To get the most out of your gallery experience Odell suggests downloading the QR Reader app and Layar app (both free) to your phone in advance.
Odell received an MFA from the San Francisco Art Institute. She is the recipient of a San Francisco Arts Commission Individual Artist Grant, and has exhibited at Intersection for the Arts, White Walls, and SOMArts in San Francisco, the New York Public Library, and in Dubai, Paris, and Barcelona. Her work has been featured in publications including, The Economist, WIRED, Frieze, and The Atlantic.
For Chris Sollars, whose work has often incorporated or called attention to refuse, a residency at the dump has provided access to an unlimited supply of materials and inspiration for video and sculptural works. While at Recology, Sollars has turned cast off objects and scavenged garments into outfits, tools, and sets for imagined worlds. Wearable sculptures utilize backpack frames that support unusual cargo, and a series of double ended hand tools transform axes and shovels into humorous, existential dilemmas.
The enormity of available materials has enabled Sollars to create elaborate environments as sets for filming and use discarded video and electronic equipment both to record and present his videos. Sollars himself serves as the protagonist in these productions and doesn’t shy away from playing the trickster in order to bring attention to the absurdity of what gets thrown away.
Sollars was awarded a 2013 Guggenheim Fellowship and has been the recipient of a San Francisco Arts Commission Individual Artist Commission Grant, a Eureka Fellowship Award, and a Headlands Center for the Arts Residency. He received an MFA from Bard College and is an assistant professor of art at Mills College. His work has been exhibited nationally and internationally, and is in the permanent collection of the Berkeley Art Museum.
Roger Ourthiague Jr.: Weight of it All
Impacted by the detritus he encountered while scavenging, student artist Roger Ourthiague Jr. investigates ideas of unhealthy consumption in its various manifestations—from obsessive lottery playing to shopping addictions—in sculpture and installation. Ourthiague transforms red vinyl dinner booths into large sharpened teeth that consume an alphabet of store signage letters, and crafts small amulets from lotto tickets. Separate work highlights his drawing skills, including a large-scale drawing installation that commemorates a single discarded object.
Ourthiague will begin his final year as an undergraduate at San Jose State University this fall. He is an interdisciplinary artist whose practice is rooted in drawing. He has shown his work at Maker Faire in San Mateo, at California State University East Bay’s Emerging Artists Showcase, The Martin Luther King Jr. Library in San Jose, and at the National Veteran’s Art Museum.
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