Portraits from an Ark

//Portraits from an Ark
Portraits from an Ark 2017-01-23T16:29:36+00:00

Project Description

Portraits From an Ark is comprised of 55 videos of different people being painted to look like animals. Halfway into each video, after the painting is finished—the sitter is told—for the first time – what animal they have been painted to look like. At this point, they’re asked to enact the creature using only their head, face and minor hand gestures. The transitions and transformations each person goes through—from their everyday selves to painted subject to their creative creature-product to, finally, themselves once again—has more to tell us about humans and human creativity than it does about animals. The painters and actors/actresses have, for the most part, only a vague impression of the animal they are trying to imitate—and so we witness the excitement that comes from doing spontaneously what one doesn’t know exactly how to do.

 

Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - ZEBRA
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - Peacock
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - WHALE
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - WALRUS
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - TIGER
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - VAMPIRE BAT
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - TURKEY
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - DOG
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - SWAN
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - STINGRAY
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - SQUIRREL
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - SPIDER MONKEY
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - SPIDER
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - SLOTH
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - SHEEP
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - SHARK
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - ROACH
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - SALAMANDER
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - RATTLESNAKE
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - RAT
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - RACCOON
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - QUAIL
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - POLAR BEAR
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - PIG
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - PEACOCK
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - PARROT
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - PANDA
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - OSTRICH
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - MOUNTAIN GOAT
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - LION
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - LEOPARD
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - LADYBUG
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - IGUANA
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - HYENA
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - HORSE
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - HARE
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - HALIBUT
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - GRIZZLY
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - GRASSHOPPER
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - HOUSEFLY
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - FAWN
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - ELK
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - ELEPHANT
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - EEL
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - CROW
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - COCKATOO
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - TROPICAL FISH
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - CHIPMUNK
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - CHIMPANZEE
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - CHICKEN
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - BUTTERFLY
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - BLOWFISH
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - BADGER
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - ANTEATER
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - ALLIGATOR
Goatsilk - Portraits From an Ark - ANT

 

Each video is treated with a simple, customized digital effect and soundtrack that works to evoke more of the animal. Additionally, these same effects advance the range of visual and sensual transformations always critical to artworks. The digital elements used to create the artificial nature in the videos begin to resemble the structure of nature itself, posing the always inspired philosophical question: do we unconsciously create in technology what we see in nature, or is nature itself consciously evolving into a different—in this case, digital—form.

In its final state, this collection of videos is placed on a database that uses voice recognition software, allowing gallery visitors to initiate projections of the video—to make them “happen” by saying the name of an animal into a microphone. This format allows the gallery viewer to partake in the work with creativity—the essential theme of this work—as well as to experience something of the immediacy of the original painting sessions. When shown in large projection format inside a gallery, the rough, goopy paintings done on the living, 3-D surface of the face highlight the connections between painting, video, and other new media formats.