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.
Puzzle Tout Nouveau are one-of-a-kind paintings executed on salvaged and reassembled puzzles.
Puzzles are found, assembled, and then the image is rendered on the completed puzzle.
Finally, the puzzle is disassembled, and re-boxed in a salvaged and repurposed container with a reference photo and convenient viewing window.
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.
During the summer of 2012, I commenced a new series of work with a large mural in Bloomington, Indiana, and several unsanctioned mini-residencies in strip malls across the midwestern United States. The mini-residencies were performed in a 1971 Shasta Compact travel trailer that I have transformed into a mobile art studio. During my time in residence, I camped, photographed, wrote, and sketched the landscape from in my little mobile aluminum cabin.
These “residencies” yielded a new series of paintings, drawings and sculptures offering a playful commentary on the advertisement and vast environment of the assorted strip malls and shopping plazas that populate the American roadsides. The immense scale and screaming color of the advertisements and signage in these areas contrasts greatly with the logos that conform to familiar layout, offering a feeling of anonymity to the potential shopper/camper/artist. While these areas have a dullness, emptiness, and overall sameness that makes them forgettable, it is this sameness, evenness, and familiar anonymous quality that allow these areas to generate a safe mental respite with an ominous potential for danger.
A simplified color palette and mixture of common, low-cost, and scavenged materials works to instill a high-art veneer that is thin-skinned. The creation of these compositions is considered as quick, fleeting, and disposable as the lifespan of the subjects they reference. These images present a type of picture that is aware of its own inability to achieve objectivity, as the Kodachrome snapshot or the text message. They revel in their own brevity and lack of subtle commentary as they address an environment focused singularly on a short-term existence.
The first installation shots in this photo set were part of a exhibition called “Kodachromia & Perspectrum” at the Hastings College Gallery in Hastings, Nebraska in March of 2014.
This work was also shown in Baltimore….Bloomington, Illinois…..and Spartanburg, South Carolina.
Thanks to those artists and organizers who put those shows together, and the folks that attended.
“Breaking Away 2” is a privately-commissioned mural measuring roughly 45 feet in length and at points exceeding 20 feet in height. It is located on the western facing wall of 114 East 6th Street in Bloomington, Indiana.
It was conceived over the summer of 2012 and executed over a period of six days in late July 2012.
“Breaking Away 2” is an auto-biographical venture, being painted from the point of view of a 10+ year resident of the city. It revisits and updates consistent themes in Bloomington’s history, shows the passage of time through the appearance of out-dated media, and serves as a reenactment and sequel to the film from which it draws its name.
The photos that follow document the preparatory drawings and mock-ups, the process, and finally, the finished work.
(The entire mural cannot fit into one shot, so the final documentary photograph is a composite of several shots, at times altering the perspective and scale of some of the subject matter.)
Photographic assistance by William Winchestor Claytor.
Special thanks to Chris and Ben Swanson.
This is slide show of photos documenting the transformation of a 1971 Shasta Compact into the “MOTHERSHIP” or “M.A.R.C.” (Mobile Artist Residency Camper”) as well as photos documenting the travels of a corresponding “mobile artist residency” between May and August of 2012.
music by THIT
Musical assistance by Eric Kocher and Steve Snell