Carleton Art Exhibit Documents The Artistry Of Everyday Human Existence

Lifeloggers: Chronicling The Everday

A new art exhibit at in the Carleton College Perlman Teaching Museum takes the seemingly mundane elements of human existence and presents them in a manner that reveals the beauty in the paradoxical banality and complexity of our everyday lives. Featuring works by twelve contemporary artists, “Lifeloggers: Chronicling The Everyday” demonstrates how these artists document their creative process and, as a result, uncover the artistic complexities of human existence.

The exhibit opens Friday, Jan. 17 in the Weitz Center for Creativity, with a special opening reception from 7 to 9:30 p.m. that will include refreshments, an artist-curator dialogue, and winners of the “Umali Awards.” The opening reception, as well as admission to the Perlman Teaching Museum, is free and open to the public.

“Lifelogging” is a term used to describe the extensive archiving of one’s personal experience. We use this natural human impulse to track, map, and graph our lives—and the result is not only often used for scientific research, but also creatively animates the artistic practice.

Throughout history, artists have used a variety of techniques to document life in a systematic way in an effort to examine the ontological impulse. By focusing on a particular aspect of their lives, artists mediate and synthesize their experience in concrete objects and conceptual projects. Some chronicle the passage of time, some record belongings or surroundings, some chart their movement through the world around them. Some create graphs, diagrams, or lists, others create image inventories, and some translate their data into new and unique formal systems.

“Lifelogging: Chronicling The Everyday” explores our universal chronicling impulse through works by contemporary artists Elise Engler, Leona Christie, Jennifer Dalton, Clive Smith, Suzanne Szucs, Richard Garrison, Stephen Cartwright, Katie Lewis, Nathalie Miebach, Renato Umali, Jorinde Voigt and Madelyn Roehrig. For these artists, residents in the US and abroad, self-chronicling is not an uncritical record of every second lived, but rather a thoughtful approach to revealing the complexities of human existence. The artists have created self-portraits, mapped and marked personal rituals and relationships, and investigated connections between personal possessions and identity.

The Lifeloggers opening reception will include a presentation entitled "Curating Lifeloggers: A Dialogue" by exhibit co-curator Nadine Wasserman and Carleton professor of art David Lefkowitz at 7:30 p.m. in the Perlman Teaching Museum, followed by "The Top Umali Award Speeches of All Time" in the Weitz Center Commons from 8 to 8:30 p.m. Renato Umali, a Milwaukee-based artist will contribute to the festivities with highlights from his own humorous personal award ceremony. Each year, the Umali Awards acknowledge all the small and large events that make up his life, such as "Most Consumed Beer" and "Best Dining-Out Experience." The highlight of this ceremony is the much anticipated DIWITTY (Days In Which I Talked To You) awards, given to the ten people he talked to most often throughout the year.

 “Lifeloggers: Chronicling The Everyday” was curated by Nadine Wasserman, independent curator, and Rachel Seligman, assistant director for curatorial affairs at the Tang Teaching Museum. The exhibit will be on display in the Perlman Teaching Museum January 17 through March 12, 2014. Museum hours are: 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday-Wednesday; 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., Thursday and Friday; and 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. The Weitz Center for Creativity is located at 320 Third Street East in Northfield. For more information, including disability accommodations, call (507) 222-4469.


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