Charlotte Street's Urban Culture Project Presents FRONTIER, A Solo Exhibit By Jeremiah Ariaz, Opens 12/4
Charlotte Street Foundation's Urban Culture Project is pleased to present Frontier, a solo exhibition of recent work by Louisiana based artist Jeremiah Ariaz. The exhibition opens at UCP's la Esquina venue with a reception on December 4, 2009, 6-9pm, and remains on view through January 7, 2010.The exhibition features a new three projection video installation, Frontier, which was filmed in rural Kansas. Shot by three cameras aligned side by side, the piece presents a panoramic view of open sky and prairie, amidst which the artist attempts to "run West" for a duration of 24 hours. As one quickly realizes that the figure, dressed in blue jeans and cowboy hat, is making no progress but rather running in place, the work becomes both a quiet meditation on the land and a portrait of unfulfilled desire. The adventure-seeking, possibility-laden American call of "go West young man" is here answered with futility and exhaustion, with the outcome of his action being a scar carved in the earth. The video installation builds upon Ariaz' 2008 installation, Shadow Root, which takes the historic Santa Fe Trail as its entry point for contemplating time and place. First exhibited at the Good Children Gallery in New Orleans and reconfigured for this show, Shadow Root specifically draws inspiration from ruts in the earth left by wagons, mules and oxen following the trail - "a physical resonance of westward expansion" -that remain visible near Ariaz's hometown of Great Bend, Kansas. Through drawings, color photographs (presented as slide projections), and sculpture (a wooden wagon wheel acquired by Ariaz as he retraced the trail upon which the drawings are based), Shadow Root considers the trail, the people who travelled it, and the larger ideas that it represented. The installation further explores multiple forms of mark-making -as cumulative process, collective action, personal expression, physical gesture, material residue, index of presence, and marker of absence. About the artist:
Jeremiah Ariaz received his MFA in photography from University of New York at Buffalo in 2005, and his BFA in printmaking from Kansas City Art Institute in 1999. His work has been presented in solo exhibitions at venues including Good Children Gallery, New Orleans; Cambridge Galleries, Cambridge, Ontario; Buffalo/Niagara International Airport, Buffalo, NY; and UB Art Gallery, Buffalo, NY, as well as in group exhibitions including "Earthly Objects" at Hagedorn Foundation Gallery, Atlanta, GA; "Environs/Examined" at Louisiana ArtWorks, New Orleans, LA; "IRevealer" at Naomi Silva Gallery, Atlanta , GA; "Our Environment: The Good, Bad, and the Ugly" at the Center for Fine Art Photography, Fort Collins, CO, and "Vision/Revision" at Contemporary Arts Center, New Orleans, among many others, including several groups shows at the Dolphin Gallery, Kansas City. Ariaz currently teaches at Louisiana State University, where he is Assistant Professor of Art. Urban Culture Project is an initiative of the Charlotte Street Foundation, an organization dedicated to making Kansas City a place where artists and art thrive. Urban Culture Project creates new opportunities for artists of all disciplines and contributes to urban revitalization by transforming spaces in downtown Kansas City into new venues for multi-disciplinary contemporary arts programming. For more information, visit www.charlottestreet.org.