A life, pocket cameras, and a studio practice.
Posting twice a week and sometimes more!
Wednesday, February 25, 2009
Lisa Mona, Jon Lisa, Mona Berge, Jon Berge, Mona Lisa
I was remiss in not including my friend, Jon Berge, in the Mona Lisa column. I'd forgotten he did a wonderful piece on the Mona Lisa. Berge showed a poster of the Mona Lisa to 100 inner-city children aged 7 to 14 and asked them to explain what the portrait of the Mona Lisa looks like to someone can't see or feel.
The project was created to be tactile, so that the visual aspect of the piece is not the focus. The tactility of the piece is further reinforced by the use of materials in their natural state.
The children's responses are incorporated into the piece in multiple ways. All 100 statements are thumb-tacked to the wall, forming a horizontal rectangle. In addition, four of the statements were translated into Braille, and mounted on birch wood panels. Each of those panels is the same size as the "original" Mona Lisa. The panels are hung in a horizontal row floating above the statements, held by a pair of bronze hands. All the panels are placed on the wall at the eye level of children and of people in wheelchairs. In addition, touching the piece activates a digital recording of the children reading their statements.
Susan Shaw is an internationally exhibited painter and photographer. Private and public collections include the Museum of Modern Art and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Shaw is the recipient of two New York State Artist’s Fellowships and 2007/2009 residency fellowships at the Vermont Studio Center.
Kurt Hoss is a freelance photographer capturing the exuberance of
New York City for 35 years. A favorite project has been documenting life in south western Louisiana, culminating in two recent books, Going to Lafayette and Bosco Swamp.
Shaw and Hoss recently received an AVA gold award for video production, as producers of The Mermaid Parade.