The American video and installation artist Frank Gillette with his work "Riverrun" stands (2017–2018) at the center of this evening. Interested in the empirical observation of natural phenomena, his early work integrated the viewer's image with prerecorded information. He has been described as a "pioneer in video research [...] with an almost scientific attention for taxonomies and descriptions of ecological systems and environments".
The video installation, consisting of a three channel video projection, will be shown in Europe for the first time this evening. D.J. Hellerman, curator of the Everson Museum of Art, Syracuse / New York, will introduce to the work.
The Screening is connected to the international symposium “Questioning the Non-Human Other. Political Potentials of Living Beings in Art”, which takes place from the 17th till the 19th of October 2019 at Graz University. As part of the research project “Naturally Hypernatural”, since 2014, the professorship for Modern and Contemporary Arts at the Institute of Art History of the University of Graz / Austria (Sabine Flach) in cooperation with the BFA Fine Arts Department at School of Visual Arts in New York City (Suzanne Anker) have held various international conferences that highlight different approaches to “nature” in contemporary art and theory with diverse emphases. Current trends in contemporary art reveal a "rediscovery" of nature and its relevance for art. Significantly new, however, is the way nature appears in art, how the relationship between nature and art is re-thought. It is precisely this breaking point where the research project “Naturally Hypernatural” is located. This year’s symposium focus current theoretical and artistic discourses, which have been seeking access to the world independently of man by focusing on the non-human other, which in the course of demarcation also forms the (human) own. Under this emphasis the upcoming conference unites international renowned artists with researchers in the fields of art history/ art science, philosophy, biology, human-animal studies and media theory, in order to gain a deeper understanding of the current trends in art and culture.
Frank Gillette’s work is represented in numerous private and permanent public collections including the Museum of Modern Arts, New York; Whitney Museum of American Art, Tate Modern, London and the ZKM | Center for Art and Media, Karlsruhe, Germany. Gillette has received awards from the Rockefeller Foundation, Guggenheim Foundation, New York State Council on the Arts, National Endowment for the Arts, and the American Academy in Rome. He is on the faculty of the School of Visual Arts in New York City.