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Ice Skating

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In my creative research, I explored ice skating as a physical representation of a calming atmosphere. Using the GoPro, I took videos from different perspectives, including the perspective from the skates, to show the vast feeling of the open rink to produce a relaxing feeling. I also investigated the idea of a “trace,” leaving behind a mark on the ice to demonstrate one’s presence in the rink. But also the fleeting nature of that mark once the Zamboni clears the ice. I will continue my study.          

The Beauty of Simplicity

By Alexandria Polanosky

Sustainability has been a trending topic in some communities, including Athens, Ohio, lately. Though it is an idea based around simplicity, transitioning to and living this way does not always seem so simple. However, one man found a way to do so simply in the pursuit of beauty and peace of mind rather than thinking only in an environmental context. Dennis Miller, a resident of Coolville, Ohio, has agreed to welcome me back onto his property and into his workshop to capture his sustainable efforts and his motivations behind them. I met Dennis through the Sustainable Living Network, a local Athens, Ohio organization dedicated to providing a space to share sustainable lifestyle efforts of any kind with other community members. Many statistics support the push toward living more sustainably. In the last 45 years, the demand for natural resources has doubled. Half of the world’s rivers are...

Visit to shanty towns

By Anh Ta

After receiving feedbacks from my thesis committee as well as examining my works produced from last year, I spent a month this past summer traveling to Lima and Mexico City to primarily visit slum neighborhoods. The purpose was to find a relationship in visual and content research between these places and my works, which were tapping into the notion of third world domestic life. I picked these locations as they are ranked as two of the largest slum cities in the world. With the resources borrowed from the CREATE_space, I was able to efficiently record what I encountered during the trip.        

Coal Production: Narratives of the Appalachian Landscape

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Appalachia has a long and controversial history of being invented, mapped and named by coal and coal mining. In order to extract coal, narratives mapped the region, wherein, “the coal industry’s priorities have determined the local economy, culture and geography” (Scott 137). Contention around this history and mapping continues amongst scholars, artists, environmentalists, industry and others about this history of coal as Appalachia transitions into a contemporary “post-coal” landscape. As the physical landscape—which has been scarred and manipulated by the coal industry—changes, so, too, does the cultural landscape. How is the history and contemporary moment of Appalachia told in this new cultural landscape? There are extremes of past and future Appalachia(s) represented and promoted as a demarcation of place. This project looks toward tourism/museums in the coalfields of West...

360 Pharma Group Promotional Video

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This summer I have been lucky enough to work with a large and growing Cincinnati pharmaceutical businesses named 360 Pharma Group. I have been asked to make a promotional video for the company that will be featured on their website, and sent out to clients in the U.S., Asia and India. 360 is made of three separate companies, each of which deals with a specific and vital part of the industry. Pharmaceutical business isn’t the most exciting thing in the world, and so I had to find a story that I thought was interesting and that would explain the nature of the company to existing and prospective clients. I discovered that the pharmaceutical business is controlled by 3 large companies, and is in many ways a locked industry. 360 has become successful because it has brought together the separate pieces of the industry: drug distribution, storage and product creation. Today 360 is in...

Boxcar Stage

By Barry O'Keefe

On February 4th, 2016, one last freight train passed Athens County before the closing of Norfolk Southern’s West Virginia Secondary Line. The freight service was no longer needed to sustain a declining coal industry. In a region that has been defined by, and defines itself with the industries of coal and rail, this final train embodies the need to embrace different lineages of Appalachian identity. The legacy of extractive industry must be respectfully laid to rest, and revised with more sustainable relationships to the landscape and to each other. Last summer, I visited a closing branch of a coal company in Southern Ohio. They had filled a dumpster to the brim with old records and maps. I was allowed to rescue a carload, and back in Athens I poured over the haul. Beautiful aerial photographs of industrial scars, ghostly blueprints of mining equipment, and mysterious ledgers of...

Polyvocal Mixtape: Positionality

By Ryan Davis

Polyvocal Mixtape: Positionality exhibited March 23-April 17th as my graduate thesis exhibition at Majestic Galleries in Nelsonville, Ohio. This exhibition consists of a series of paintings, screenprints and audio works. I create works through various formats that display an expansion of narratives within Black identity, experimenting with how physical positioning affects the ability to unravel these narratives. Each one of the fifty-seven screenprints is an image of different Black African-American individual constructed simultaneously by negative and positive compositions. These images shift based on one’s physical positioning. The images are negative composites; however, when the Black reflective surface is caught by raking light, the inverse of the negative composite can be perceived. The reflective nature of the surface also mirrors the image of the viewer if he or she is standing...

Chantier

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Chantier is a feature length, experimental film constructed by linking together a series of six short narratives. Chantier attempts to locate possible survival strategies in the replacement of the unity of the subject with an unending process of subjectification based in multiplicity and becoming. Chantier’s narratives feature the same actress playing several different characters, raising the question of how and if these women are the same, or if the uncanny resemblance is merely coincidental.   Chantier is also an experiment in filmmaking praxis. The crew consisted of only myself and my collaborator, Megan Marzec, who wrote and stars in the film. We chose to shoot the film on outdated mini-dv and hi8 tape cameras provided by the Create Space and the OU School of Film, allowing us a high degree of mobility and a budget of $0 for our equipment. The low quality of the image...

Splat! an Interactive Presentation at the Student Expo 2016

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Splat! is both a short film and an interactive film. The latter was presented at the Ohio University Student Expo for all ages to enter the whimsical world of the film in which Bubbles and Puddles are real. The project began with the image of a person stuck in the 2D plane of a puddle. Passersby ride over, stomp and poke until the Puddle Person boils in rage, sending Bubble People all throughout the air. The film was made by means of video compositing, which involves a layering of video a lot like collage. With the amazing capability of green screen key technology, we were able to eliminate swathes of the real world to build a fictional fragmented universe. The interactive version of the film was presented at the Expo April 14 2016. Community members bounced on a trampoline covered in green fabric, which was digitally remastered to appear as a reactive Puddle Person on-screen. The more...

Illuminated Gown

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For this exploration of incorporating LED technology into a stage costume I made use of an Arduino LilyPad, a small microphone, several LEDS, EL-wire, and fiber optic fabric to make a gown light up in response to sound. The microphone hidden in the front of the dress takes the input audio signal sends it to the Arduino which is running a Fast Fourier Transform. The program breaks the signal down into a range of frequencies that will trigger an LED if over a certain threshold. The CREATE_space was instrumental in providing equipment that allowed me to test the idea as well as putting me in contact with knowledgeable Arduino programmers. The initial idea of the gown was to also have it be DMX compatible. In the theatre world, the stage lights all respond to a DMX system, so it would be beneficial to have the lighting elements in the dress respond wirelessly to the same type of signal....

I Searched for Satisfaction Through Destruction

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I Searched For Satisfaction Through Destruction (2016) is a project in which I buried myself under nearly 800 lbs of quartz. My intent for this piece was to put myself in a situation where I had no control, but rather the control lied in the hands of someone else. I would be buried to the point that I could no longer move, and once fear and panic set in, I would have no other choice but to be contemplative in order to remain calm, while the assistant unburied me. But I did have control, and I could move. So it turned into a question of endurance because I felt like I was being force-fed rocks. And I tried to pull my head away from the earth that entered my mouth and the worms that wriggled on my neck But there was nowhere to go. And in that hour my body disappeared, and I became everyone else— A surrogate for humiliation, naked and convulsing in the grass. Through struggle, I aim to...

Thread for Filth

By Rachel Bender

Drag is an act of gender disruption. It mocks rigid views of gender by pulling back the curtain and forcing us to acknowledge the performative aspects of gender presentation. It parodies the social expectations placed on men and women by taking conventions to their extremes and reveling in the ridiculousness of what we’re left with. My current work explores gender, how we teach children about gender, the prejudices we all have within us relating to gender, and the incredible influence that the environments we were raised in have on what we consider to be ideal, acceptable, and improper on those topics. As a consumer of drag culture, I see the potential of using the visually stunning and attention grabbing aspects of drag as a means of enticing viewers, who may be resistant otherwise, into the conversation about our culture’s rigid parameters on gender and what is deemed appropriate for...

Cake Tent Projection

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I used a pocket projector to create projections inside of a tent for my final critique. The tent was made out of fake fur and was about 6 feet long. The observer could see the projection by looking into the opening of the tent, or crawling inside the tent. The projection was a 2-minute loop of a google search for certain photographs of different cakes. With this piece I explored liminality, personal motives, shame, ritual, and shared experience.        

Zeno

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How can we discern the exact point in time during which one moment transitions into the next? The philosopher Zeno of Elea developed four paradoxes querying the contradictory nature of space and time. If one moment can be broken down infinitely, how is transition possible? This is Zeno at its core: straddling the boundary between motion and stillness, between existence and nonexistence. Zeno combines an inaccessible, large-scale world with its microscopic counterpart, available solely through the representation of a past moment. Although the viewer’s visual access to the objects is limited he or she can nevertheless change how they are seen simply by observing them. By referencing the human body in this interaction, Zeno asks, “How does the act of observation change how we view ourselves and others?”          ...

Someone/Anyone

By Steph Wadman

Someone/Anyone acts as both the title of my MFA thesis exhibition and as qualifier for any individual that you may meet. My thesis exhibition combined object making that challenged my audience to make eye contact with each other with a textual piece gathered from Craigslist. The Craigslist project uses personal ‘strictly platonic’ seeking ads from Craigslist to highlight the vast need for human intimacy and contact, and highlights a small local percentage of people who seek to find it by divertive means. Using Craigslist ads I search the words ‘someone’ and ‘anyone’ to narrow the search down to those that are in search of basic human interaction and the possibilities that it holds. I then collect contextualized areas of the bodies of text, as well as the web addresses, and compose a poem/list out of the contextualized ‘someone’ or...

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