Presented by Upgrade! Chicago
Tuesday, October 4, 2011
Chris Cuellar is a Los Angeles (previously Chicago) based new-media artist, writer and provocateur. His works occupy various media simultaneously including www, installation, social-media and printed texts. His pieces, occasionally brain-busting but often conceptually simple, deal with themes of digital identity, distribution of information, labor, spam, networks and telepresence in a way that never fails to incite a re-evaluation of these issues. He has worked and performed for the Austin New Music Co-op in Austin, TX; the School of the Art Institute of Chicago; the Hyde Park Art Center; the Red Rover Reading Series in Chicago; and Diapason Gallery in Brooklyn.
Chris Cuellar will be presenting on a series he recently organized for the Art21 blog where he transformed the guest column into “a practical art-making resource” as well as a “vehicle for the undistribution of existing works.” He asked a small group of artists to give away their secrets in the form of online tutorials. “Each how-to is meant to give the reader enough information to accurately reproduce the project presented.” Furthermore, “in order to reduce issues of artistic ownership, each artist’s contribution has been more or less ‘anonymized’ before posting, with as many overt references to the the individual artist or original project removed as possible.” Cuellar asks why display a work when you can use a work? Why distribute copies when you can distribute a process? “Why buy a work, when you can just make it yourself?”
Upgrade! Chicago is the local Chicago-based node of the international Upgrade! network, an emerging network of autonomous nodes united by art, technology, and a commitment to bridging cultural divides. Its decentralized, non-hierarchical structure ensures that Upgrade! (i) operates according to local interests and their available resources; and (ii) reflects current creative engagement with cutting edge technologies. Upgrade! Chicago presents new media projects, engages in informal critique, and fosters dialogue and collaboration between individual artists. Upgrade! International functions as an online, global network that gathers annually in different cities to meet one another, showcase local art, and work on the agenda for the following year.
Filed under: new media, video