Henry Behind the Scenes: Circuit Training with Lacy Draper

Artist and recent UW MFA graduate Lacy Draper is offering an unusual experience at the Henry this weekend: an exercise series in which participants physically interact with our exhibitions.

Conditioning the Conditioned MFA Thesis Show by Lacy Draper

Lacy designed her MFA thesis show to fill the Henry’s unique architecture.
Photo by Lacy Draper

Conditioning the Conditioned MFA Thesis Show by Lacy Draper

Lacy’s sculpture was an interpretation of a strong man’s log as featured in her accompanying video piece at the MFA show.
Photo by Lacy Draper

Lacy came in last week to discuss the similarities and differences between the piece she showed the 2013 MFA + MDes Exhibition this past spring and her new interactive series Circuit Training.

Henry: Thanks for joining us, Lacy. Let’s start with your MFA Thesis, what is Conditioning the Conditioned?

Lacy:  The show featured video and sculpture using the specific architecture of the building. The relationship between instruction and construction, and the process in which it is filtered through in the form of performance serves as a stimulant for my work. I am drawn particularly to social construction; it’s routine conditioning to conform one to reality, which is also a manifestation of conditioning. The video portion focused on repetitive movements and how to reduce them as shown by myself and old footage of strongman competitions.

Henry: From my understanding, Circuit Training also makes use of repetitive movements as well, what is involved in the set-up of Circuit Training?

Lacy: For my MFA I created the experience to be left and experienced in the Henry over time. Circuit Training is a bit more intangible. No equipment to set-up or store. I am here in person to lead discussion and repetitive movement as a way to physically engage people in other artists’ exhibitions. It’s all a huge experiment.

Henry: Has this been very different for you than creating sculpture and video? What are the main differences?

Lacy: I have enjoyed making in this new way and am excited to see what’s next. Each week I choose a focus piece from each of the four main exhibitions. Then I select a repetitive movement that I feel represents the exhibition. At each of the exhibitions we spend a few minutes talking, then a few minutes repeating the motion.

Henry: What are you hoping people take away from this experience?

Lacy: How they document their experience in the space. How does their body feel and how did it affect their relationship to the art – do they blame David Hartt for being sore now? I want them to notice what’s happening in their body during the movement or maybe tomorrow if they are sore and say “That David Hartt was hard.”

Henry: It looks like you got your wish – we got this feedback already from Facebook:

Dudes… go check this out! Lacy’s workout is fun, thoughtful, creative, and leaves your body feeling more viscerally connected to the art work you view together. She invites you to experience and learn about the work in a more kinetic/embodied and deeper way.

Lacy: That’s great!

Henry: Thanks for joining us, Lacy, and we look forward to hearing more from attendees after this week’s session of Circuit Training.

Lacy: Thank you, Henry, for letting me experiment and having me back! I enjoy working with you.

Join Lacy this Sunday and experience Circuit Training for yourself! Sign up HERE.

 

Check out her other work on Flickr.

Henry Behind the Scenes: Museum Education & the UW Community

This morning, the Henry welcomed students from the UW Bothell campus for a tour of our external art installation Sanctum.

Courtesy of the Henry

Museum Education Coordinator Feney Perez gives a talk on Sanctum to UW Bothell students.

Museum Education Coordinator Feney Perez led the tour and discussion about Sanctum for UW Bothell School of Interdisciplinary Arts and Science Professor Carrie Bodle’s course BISIA 374: Video Art.

Courtesy of the Henry

Feney explains the how Sanctum was installed inside the museum’s front entrance.

“Part of the course asks these students to examine new art forms and new art experiences in relationship to body and electric technology,” Feney explained. “Sanctum was a perfect opportunity to tie in these questions alongside a larger discussion about building a narrative, developing processes from concept to completion.”

Sanctum employs surveillance systems to generate cinematic narratives with social media content that matches the demographic profile of passers-by. The artists James Coupe and Juan Pampin are both associate professors in UW’s DXARTS program, an interdisciplinary degree-granting center designed to support the emergence of a new generation of hybrid artists. The installation opened this past May.

Courtesy of the Henry

A view of the students from behind a Sanctum monitor

Following their visit to the Henry, the UW Bothell students will develop and create their own media-based project for class.

“By unpacking the art themes that are central to Sanctum, we also discussed the install and the proposal processes that began back in 2010,” said Feney. “This gives [the students] a professional development perspective, along with inspiration for their own research and representation of new ideas.”

 

Would you like to bring your class or group for a tour of the Henry? We offer guided tours for groups of all ages. Please contact Feney Perez at tours@henryart.org or by visiting our online application http://www.henryart.org/tours.

Public drop-in tours are held every first Thursday at 7 pm and every Saturday at 2 pm.  Join us!

Wynne Greenwood at the Frye

Thursday October 25, 11 am – 7 pm & Friday, October 26, 11 am – 5 pm
Mirrors and Dresser Live Video Recording with Wynne Greenwood
Frye Art Museum
Free Admission and Parking

As part of the programming for the Frye’s new exhibition, Mw [Moment Magnitude]Henry Art Gallery performance artist and Stranger Genius Award Winner Wynne Greenwood will be live video-recording a music video project called Mirrors and Dresser. In this performance, Wynne will be re-creating The Women’s Spa, an installation she originally made in 2011 to explore security, transformation and isolation. The set is intended to encourage the public performance of a private process.

The Frye is also offering anyone who identifies themselves as a Friend of the Henry a 15 percent discount on coffee/espresso drinks during Wynne’s live video recording.

If you haven’t seen Mw [Moment Magnitude] yet or even if you have, these events are not to be missed!

Here is Wynne’s Artist Statement:

About Mirrors and Dresser

 When I think of women’s spas (my own experience with women’s spas being limited to the Olympus Spa in Tacoma, WA), I think of a place to rest, and to witness rest. A space has been created whose function is to allow communal relaxation. Now, that being said, the spa costs a minimum of $35 to enter, and is limited to women who were born with female bodies. From my experience, the majority of customers are white. I mention these details and observations because I’m interested in, and concerned with, who has access to transformative processes, and why.

 

For Mirrors and Dresser, popular cartoon characters and mythic figures, like Pebbles Flintstone, Betty Boop and Medusa, will hang out in the women’s spa on spa maintenance day, watching each other have a body, holding space for becoming space, and praying for an end to isolation through nostalgia.

 

Pebbles has been a happy baby for 50 years. Medusa has been the monster for hundreds. How tiring. These are characters we insist upon, myths that we replay again and again. Why? Is it comfortable? Why do we seek comfort? Can we let our icons and our myths change? Can we let even the role or function of “icon” and “myth” change? Did you know Medusa was a mother? She gave birth out of her neck to twins, Pegasus and a giant, as she was beheaded.

 

I’m choosing these characters to talk about cultural exhaustion. I’m also choosing them to help me perform. To act out and then challenge my own cartoony definitions, to allow performance itself to expand by first exaggerating its boundaries and then letting them relax, stretch out, soak and rest. Not necessarily seeking comfort, but transformation and a more complicated existence.

                                                            –Wynne Greenwood