Voyage Corps Store is a 1971 Shasta Compact travel trailer that I have converted into a mobile art studio. For the purposes of this installation, the trailer was further converted into a small store of products. Visitors to the store were able to enter and peruse the inventory, as well as purchase items at affordable prices ranging from $1.00 to $12.00.
Coming from a culture of touring the country with musical groups, Voyage Corps Gifts and the Voyage Corps Store offer the “merch table” experience in an art gallery setting. In its previous incarnations, these products have worked as sketches and mockups for future works in print, sculpture, and installation. The store works as a proving ground, test market, and fundraising venture to simultaneously offer affordable art, raise money for future projects, and gauge public interest in experiments utilizing different materials, subject matter, packaging, and presentation.
The installation in the trailer mimics both the salon-style hanging of art galleries and the visual frenzy and eclectic, sometimes “slap-dash” organization of dollar store displays, working to over-stimulate the viewer in the claustrophobic space inside the 6’ by 9’ dimensions of the trailer.
This installation was shown at Maspeth’s World of Wheels on June 21, 2014 at the Knockdown Center in Queens, NY, and at the 2014 Truck Expo at the ICEBOX in Crane Arts Building on July 5, 2014 in Philadelphia, PA.
What follows are documentation photos of the trailer installed and then photo “ads” that played on a loop on a small digital picture frame inside the trailer during the exhibit. The soundtrack playing inside the trailer during the exhibitions can be found here.
A large scale reenactment of the table-top dice game of strategy and luck
a collaborative installation by Lauren Pakradooni and Mark Rice
The original game of 10,000 requires six standard dice and a pencil and paper for scoring. Each player starts out “off the table” with a score of zero. Players collect points in a variety of ways during their turn, either adding those points to their cumulative score, or “risking it all” by continuing to roll with a possibility of loosing all points they have accumulated in that turn if the correct scoring combination is not achieved. The first player to reach the score of 10,000 wins!
10,000 is a game taught verbally, passed from person to person at a party, a bar, a classroom, or other places where people congregate. As people learn the game they develop their own terminology for the types of scoring, methods of play, as well as variations on the name of the game itself. We introduced this game to attendees of Artscape 2014 in Baltimore, Maryland as a part of the interactive art exhibition “Field Day.”
Our submission for the Field Day exhibit was be a large-scale adaptation of this game. We constructed several sets of dice, the largest being six foam 12” cubes wrapped in silkscreened fabric . The usual playing surface of a bar or picnic table was transformed into an astro turf court with seating for spectators. The usual scoring device of napkin and pen was traded for a large chalk score boards. The usual exclusivity of the table-top version of the game was exchanged for an interactive and inviting environment for both players and spectators to learn the rules and cheer on their favorite players. Handmade prizes were awarded for top scoring players!
The installation was accompanied by a small gift shop where visitors to the installation can peruse and purchase souvenirs including dice-themed sportswear, silkscreen posters, patches, tote bags, and original miniature game sets.
Pictured below are documentation photos of the installation in action and on site at Artscape 2014, followed by photos of the products conceived for the gift shop, and then some shots on the work in progress.
This series of thirteen prints were created using a process called color reduction relief printmaking. The prints reference memories and stories associated with the ephemeral experiences of dating. This printing technique utilizes a single printing block to make an edition of multi-colored prints. For each color represented on the print, more of the surface of the block is cut away and its surface inked and printed. The imagery and color of the print are slowly built up with each successive printing, while the printing surface is being permanently removed. At the completion of the print, the linoleum block is all but carved away and can therefore never be reprinted.
All prints measure 4 inches by 6 inches and are hand-printed on rice paper in an edition of 5. The residing place of these prints is in a custom red portfolio.
Finished prints are pictured next to the final state of the linoleum block from which they were printed.
Additionally, a “postcard pack” was manufactured and released by Voyage Corps Gifts. It is available while supplies last and is pictured at the bottom of the page.
The Gamma Tapes is a series of prints, drawings, and painted sculptures about the early life of my immediate family: my father, mother, and sister. Being that we are all living in different parts of the world right now, I found that this was a way to continue work on childhood stories and imagery, but to focus the attention away from myself as the subject, therefore learning, relearning, reinterpreting, and reconnecting with stories from my family’s past.
The project began by carving a visual portrait of each member of the family. Soon following this, I interviewed each person about instances in there formative years that were not necessarily important, but were “memorable,” specifically in the visual sense.
All text was translated from English to Rungish, and then combined with the imagery from the stories. These works reference both the subject, the subject as narrator, and myself as illustrator.
Many stories contained a certain amount of “unattainable information.” These instances are marked with a reference number and relegated to the library of gamma tapes (an out-dated and unplayable media format) that the viewer may reference at their leisure. Many of the tapes are out of order, missing, or damaged, but otherwise in good condition. Each tape label is written in Rungish, with a corresponding gouache painting, all tucked inside a silkscreened tape case.
Below is photo documentation and reference photos of two installed iterations of this project entitled Yung Mail Tails: Another Reading Room Annex. The first was at the Hampden Gallery at UMASS Amherst in October of 2013 and the second was part of a exhibition called “Kodachromia & Perspectrum” at the Hastings College Gallery in Hastings, Nebraska in March of 2014.
REAM is a collaboration between Mark Rice (Philadelphia) and Lou Joseph (Baltimore), which was installed at the new Station North Chicken Box on the corner of Charles and North Ave in Baltimore, July 19 to 28, 2013.
Lou and Mark began with 500 sheets of office paper mailed back and forth over a ten-month period, each artist adding and subtracting layers with ink, paint, collage, stickers, spray paint, etc, to come up with 500 individual drawings. Using those images as raw materials, they have edited these drawings and reworked them into large-scale digital prints which were displayed in frames to create a large flowchart, which both explain and obfuscate the various meanings and processes behind the work.
Thanks to Station North Arts District and Towson University for their support in the realization of this project.
What follows is a selection of photos at various stages of the process documenting the progress of the works. These photos are followed by documentation of the exhibition, and then photos of the works individually.
an exhibition by Lou Joseph and Mark Rice
421 N. Howard St. Baltimore, MD
August 4 to 19, 2012
opening reception Aug 4, 6-9pm
closing reception Aug 17, 6-9pm
The work in this show addresses the cycles and dead ends of history, exploring cultural redundancy, political shame, apocalypse predictions and conspiracy theories. To this end, Rice and Joseph use reenactments, cover songs, footage of dangerous pursuits, and catalogs of the initially meaningless, but ultimately important.
Mark Rice’s homemade games employ elements of intentional repetition, loss, and optimistic redundancy. In these videos, advertising lures viewers and promotes the games, but the works are also wrung though alternative theories of living and changed by the repeated process of telling and retelling.
Lou Joseph uses a variety of processes to reproduce online images of fracking sites, contrails and fortune-tellers of doom. Signs of decline are presented in a frank, non-narrative, non-persuasive fashion, leaving open the question of mass response or (lack of response) to events that expand beyond the control of their witnesses.
This show presents equipment from Mark’s “Spray the Hooray” games, as well as video documents of the games in play. Lou shows three new series of drawings, paintings and prints. A collection of projects that the artists have collaborated on over the last ten years is also included.
All non-circular posters by Pete Shreiner. Thanks, Pete!
FLF is a book by artist Mark Rice which contains his thesis work in printmaking at the Rhode Island School of Design. It is an illustrated creation myth about the artist’s own philosophy towards art making. This book is written from the point of view of a man named Kevinator in the invented language of Rungish. It works as a posthumous account of Kevinator’s final months after a large explosion traps him in his place of employment. He deals with his own issues of fear, originality, and inspiration while battling his new caged environment. Symbolically, it is a parafictional, metaphorical, and exaggerated account of Mark Rice’s two years of graduate school at the Rhode Island School of Design.
This project originally took the form of a portfolio of thirty-six prints, with three separately printed appendices, with a total print count of eight-eight. Copper and wood engravings that documented previous projects in drawing, sculpture, print, installation and music illuminate the story. Influenced by a study of early book projects like the Nuremberg Chronicle and the Hypnerotomachia Poliphili, the size and scope of the project was intentionally vast. The appearance of engraving references its initial usage in the documentation of sculpture, jewelry, and paintings. These prints are displayed as documents, in direct reference to their preceding and intentionally absent sculptural counterparts. The inherent discrepancies between these reproductive engravings and their original artwork are large, and this discrepancy is used as a metaphor of the subjective quality of memory and objective documentation.
The invented English dialect of Rungish accompanies the illustrations in this text. This dialect of English was created for those with a distrust of language’s inherent ability to disseminate and demystify. This language demands an empathetic collaboration that bears a striking similarity to the relationship sought by this artist in speaking through images. It seeks a slower and more reflective read as a method of reestablishing trust in the mutual responsibilities of communication for author and reader, artist and viewer. Both the mediation of reality through expressive documentation and the usage of a restrictive text call into question the current expectations we have for modern communication. Rungish works to briefly suspend understanding in exchange for a moment of visual contemplation.
Pictured below is the portfolio of prints in chronological order and the packaging of the portfolio. This is followed by documentation of the digitally-printed catalog.