Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

8 Ways to See, Think at Mattress Factory

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

8 Ways to See, Think at Mattress Factory

Article excerpt

New media, new technology and new perspectives, both concrete and cerebral, feed eight thought-provoking installations at the Mattress Factory.

The finger of a disembodied hand scrolls down the face of an iPad through a literally and figuratively mindless flow of information.The landscape projected from eight joined, floor-to-ceiling monitors tilts unnervingly, providing viewers a drone's-eye view. An electronic forest of trackers turns in unison as they follow an object beyond the line of vision. The subtle scent of olive leaves sets up sensory contrast with a field of barbed wire.

They're part of exhibitions at the museum's main building and satellite gallery, "Factory Installed @ 1414 Monterey Street," continuing through Feb. 12, and "Factory Installed @ 500 Sampsonia Way," through May 28.

All have in common, with one another and with countless others shown over four decades, their installation format and that they were created by artists living in temporary residence.

Otherwise they vary greatly in style and concept, drawing visitors into shifting conversations inspired by our accelerating global linkages.

Dichroic film over the windows gives a fuchsia cast to Pittsburgher Kevin Clancy's "IRIS_SIRI," wherein cat figures sit on pedestal-mounted laptop keyboards in front of colorful patterned screens. The aforementioned hand continues to acquiesce to the hypnotic allure of web feed, and U.S. greenbacks tumble in a carnivalesque cube.

The palindrome title "references Iris, the goddess of the rainbow, and Siri, the goddess of the smart phone," writes the artist, who claims to embrace both utopia and oblivion in the piece. Which visitors embrace is probably dependent upon their definition of progress, but overall, in contemporary America, it seems a combination of cats, computers and cash can't lose.

Christopher Meerdo of Chicago explores information provided by new technologies and the possible misreading of that information due to a lack of familiarity with its peculiarities, for example, inconsistency in presenting linear time. …

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