The exhibition opening took place at Alfred University within the Frederick-Nelson Gallery at Alfred University on March fourth between seven and nine pm. The exhibition, Variantology, containing the work of the Division of Expanded Media faculty, is aiming to develop an appraisal of concepts of media. Variantology, the movement, seeks to cross the bridge between sciences, arts, theology and the like to combine it into a new meaning of media.
The exhibition itself is effective because it combines unorthodox uses of technology to create artwork. For example, there is a projector set up. On this projector is a program that, in real time, displays an image randomly, painted across the screen in rapid repetition in random orientations. The effect was nearly akin to graffiti art. In fact, that is what it first appears like before the viewer concentrates and sees the actual image. It is a character of some sort. It is entrancing to watch the image be repeated on the screen in such a varying way.
Another piece that really stood out was a barrage of colored insect images. Blocks of brightly colored squares, containing the image of insects, lined up along the wall from the ceiling to the floor. The colors certainly vibrated. This was exemplified by the buzzing noise. The impression was that the still images were bugs twitching and buzzing. It combined still images effectively with sound, bringing the two mediums together. It was if a giant bug zapper had been hung on a wall.
Overall, whole gallery seemed to have aims similar to that of the Postmodern art movement. They are crossing bounds of media and weaving together new concepts of what media is. Postmodern is vary similar in that it brought together media that wasn’t previously considered art. The concept of art had thus been expanded and variantology appears to be doing that for media.
The overall feel of the exhibition was that of experimentalism: there were many different media types present. Some combined with others. For example: a man was doing martial arts movements, an art in itself for the performance, with cameras attached to his wrists. It combined performance with video that was more than just documenting the movement. The viewer became a part of his movement; they had a sense of the movement outside of just seeing the man move. They can feel it. It is outside the bounds of typical video of a performance. This is akin to when brushstrokes of painting became more visible during the modern art era. The viewer was given the sense of the brush moving on the canvas. They saw more than just a polished piece and there was more freedom for expression. It exposed more of an experience for the viewer.