Artist mines video to explore personal journey

March 15, 2013

By MIKE CHAIKEN
EDITIONS EDITOR
As art, video is here to stay, says artist Evan Mann.
By now, he explained, it’s as much a part of the artistic canon as painting, sculpting, etc.
Mann is one of two artists featured in the latest exhibit, “Light and Illusion,” at the CCSU Art Galleries in New Britain. The show, which opened with a reception on March 7, continues through April 11. Astrid Toha also is featured in the show.
Evan is a video artist and has three pieces projected on the walls of the gallery. They are “Catharsis,” “The Body,” and “Relationship.” The three looping videos take different approaches to the art form. For instance, “Body” uses stop motion techniques. “Catharsis” is more a capture of a performance. All are live action and nothing, however, is computer generated.
Video with its ties to technology… such as cameras and computers (for editing, at least) seems as if it is very much of the moment. And Evan was asked how he tries to make it “timeless” like older art forms as painting or sculpting.
Evan said he didn’t think videos was just of the moment, and it had earned the right by now to be timeless like other art forms.
“Like computers, the internet, or smart phones, it’s not just a fad,” said Evan. “Video will remain with us.” He compared it to the technology of printmaking, which was adapted by artists as well.
“Video is the new technology for art making,” said Evan. “I don’t think it ever will be obsolete or considered an archaic form of art… It’s very much progressive. It merges performance, theater, cinema, and fine art… I see video bringing everything together in one basket.
Evan was a late arrival at the art form of video. He was not exposed to it as an option for art until he was a graduate student at the Rhode Island School of Design. Prior to his arrival as a convert to video, he worked on creating otherworldly, fantastical images in 2-D work. He learned, however, that video provided a better method of producing the visuals in his head.
As for what kind of response he sought from patrons viewing his work, Evan said he had nothing set in his mind.
For him, his work is essentially his own journal and journey. “A lot of my work is about faith and post-modernism.”
If anything, Evan said, he wants those who view his work to “process their own faith and where their faith is placed.”
Essentially, Evan said, he is asking the big questions that have been asked through the centuries But, he is doing it through video.
“I’m processing my own life and this is a means to do this,” said Evan. “I hope the observer digs through their own layers and find their meaning.”
“Light & Illusion” featuring Evan Mann and Astrid Toha continues at the CCSU Gallery through April 11. The gallery is located on the second floor of Maloney Hall in the Samuel S. T. Chen Fine Arts Center at Central Connecticut State University, 1615 Stanley St., New Britain.
The gallery is open Mondays to Fridays 1 to 4 p.m.
For more information, go to Art.CCSU.edu/ Gallery.html

Evan Mann makes some adjustments to his video projections at the CCSU Gallery in New Britain. Mann is one of two artists featured in ‘Light & Illusion,’ which is on display at the gallery through April 11.

Evan Mann makes some adjustments to his video projections at the CCSU Gallery in New Britain. Mann is one of two artists featured in ‘Light & Illusion,’ which is on display at the gallery through April 11.

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