Residency in Altos 06/05/2015
In my 10/11 week stay at Altos de Chavon I produced a large amount of work and was able to explore different mediums. When I look back at this time I feel very positive about my time spent in the Dominican Republic, even difficult experiences were transformed into positive outcomes.
We visited a Davidoff Farm where, I videotaped and recorded sounds of the tobacco leaf harvesting in the fields and the machinery used to make cigars. From this experience I was able to produce the sound for a video performance created with the Danza Popular Danzante of Nereida Rodriguez.
As an outcome of this trip I have a new proposal for future prints.
Adriel Vargas, a student from the School of Art and Design served as my assistant during the project. He collaborated with me on the sound portion of the project. For Adriel, this proved to be a good experience; he was exposed to a new world of possibilities with interdisciplinary media.
I gave a printmaking workshop at the School of Art and Design. For the workshop I donated all of the solar plates, the transparencies, specialized Stabilo pencils, as well as consulting time. The result was quite wonderful. In the process of doing this I met another student named Carlos Thomas. He assisted me with my printing project and I taught him how to restore the press bed and roller so that it could be used for further projects and classes.
I especially enjoyed that each artist worked at such a high level of thought. I am grateful for my interaction with the other artists and hold them quite high in my thoughts.
My only regret is that I did not spend more time in the capital to get to know the Dominican everyday life. We should spend time in Santo Domingo, and interact with the artists in the area. I hope that there may be a future opportunity to revisit and continue to create the work that was started on this residency.
Thanks to this residency I was able to have ten weeks of concentrated thought and experimentation. The time and space to think and create without distraction was extremely valuable to me. I was able to reflect on the work I had made prior to the residency as well as explore new concepts and media.
My interdisciplinary practice of printmaking, installations, painting and sculpture are built upon my research based on travels to specific locations.
A most recent project called ALMA inspired by a visit to the Atacama Large Millimeter Array Observatory in Chile’s Atacama Desert is such an example of my practice. This observatory searches for the building blocks of the universe. Exploring the intersections between technology and the environment provides the point of departure for all of my work. Although this project began in a high-altitude desert, which is nearly devoid of life, I believe it is vital for me to explore the visual ideas it inspired in an environment that reflects the richness of the natural world, one that harbors the raw materials that I use to
complete my vision.