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window • re/production | re/presentation (Recent News and Current Projects)
Above Image:  McLean Fahnestock, Hidden Hall of Pacific Bird Life: Fiji, 2013

McLean Fahnestock 
January 5 through April 6, 2015

Artist Talk and Reception To Be Scheduled for Spring, 2015 


Window (re/production | re/presentation) is pleased to present McLean Fahnestock’s, Hidden Hall of Pacific Bird Life: Fiji, from her ongoing project, The Fahnestock Expedition.  The scanned image that comprises the work was sourced from the Ornithology Archive Room at The American Museum of Natural History in New York, where Fahnestock engaged in research around her grandfather and great uncle’s involvement in scientific expeditions during the 1930’s and 1940’s.  The photographic document depicts a portion of one of the four dioramas attributed to their journeys throughout the South Pacific. Fahnestock’s work seeks to “[reclaim] information from the media and history [and] re-present it in a way that leads us to address the truth of a situation versus the myth that has been perpetuated.” (Fahnestock)
 
These aspects are enhanced upon careful viewing of the work. Rather than offering a finely detailed, high-resolution image, Fahnestock instead allows the deterioration introduced via each generation of reproduction to remain visually present.
 
“The diorama, itself a representation of a real location, functioning as a presentation media and attraction for museums, derives its power and factive nature from its sanctioned site. The shift in dimensionality is also intriguing. From 4-dimensional reality to a 3-dimensional simulacra to a 2-dimensional image in a folder on a desk and then flattened again digitally.” (Fahnestock)
 
When corresponding with Fahnestock about this piece, we engaged in conversation around the discrepancies between presumed or expected visual clarity upon first glance, and the actuality of the digital noise and scanning artifacts that slightly veil the soft-edged archival photograph and its surrounding surface.
 
“Because these photographed dioramas are behind plywood, I only had access to poor reproductions of photographs taken to document the dioramas in the early 1940s. The images where then scanned with a hand scanner which accounts for the softness of the edges of the photo and the grain. The hand scanner also bent the image slightly as it moved up the photo. The artifacts, color bands, glitches, and bending are all intentional and a product of the act of research.
 
Gathering visual information on not only the subject but on the process as well, [I used] a hand scanner and phone camera scanner respectively to collect data, flattening the research and the location of research in one photograph. Being limited to these few photographs available in the archive, a reproduction of a reproduction of a reproduced space, I embraced the loss that occurs in the images. I am interested in this as an illustration of research and presentation of information from secondary versus primary sources.” (Fahnestock)

 
About the Artist

McLean Fahnestock is a media artist who works in video, sound, sculptural installation, and photographic prints. McLean reclaims material from the media and institutions, seeking out footage, images, and items that carry the weight and specificity of their prior lives, ties to history, or presentation technique.
 
McLean received a BFA from Middle Tennessee State University and MFA from California State University Long Beach. Her work has been exhibited and screened across the United States and Internationally in Ireland, Canada, Belgium, Germany and Japan. She has received an ARC Grant from the Durfee Foundation, two Hoff Foundation Grants, and was awarded a Professional Artist Fellowship from the Arts Council for Long Beach. Her work was included in a DVD compilation of short videos by the LA Film Forum. She was a finalist for a 2012 Vimeo Video Award and was recently named “Most Promising New Artist” at MADATAC 05, in Madrid, Spain.
 
McLean lives and works in Sango, TN, USA.
 
About the Project
Conceived of as a site-specific minimalist exhibition space, Window aims to stimulate thoughtful discussion around timely issues within contemporary art in the local community and beyond. The primary focus is upon works that repurpose found or archival source materials, challenge notions of originality and authenticity, stimulate perceptual phenomena through reiteration or duplication, implement re-photography as a critical component, or embrace re-production as essential to the work. 
 
A tightly curated inaugural season set the tone for the project (visit our Past Exhibitions page for more info), and we are now accepting submissions via an open call (click HERE for guidelines). This project was conceived of by artist and educator, Dawn Roe, who lives part time in Asheville when not teaching at Rollins College in Winter Park, Florida.  She also serves as the curator for the space. Window is generously hosted and sponsored by Henco Reprographics, 54 Broadway, Asheville, NC  28801.

For more information visit http://www.windowcontemporary.org
 

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