Tuesday, October 28, 2008

A Web of Possibilities

Spiders, ghosts, ravens, webs, and skulls are all part of the language of either Halloween or Day of The Dead, making Carlos Amorales: Discarded Spider a seasonally timed show at the CAC. Though fortunately, this current exhibition will remain on view into March. Because most interesting, what look like large spider webs and references to ghosts have little to do with the supernatural at all.

In this exhibition, Amorales pulls together many of artistic media and genres. Furthermore, his vector drawings rely as much on the sciences and mathematics as it does on the world of art. These digital silhouettes or "ghosts" have their foundations in rotoscopy, an early animation technique. With this, Amorales investigates the fundamentals of drawing and their role in other media like video, computer graphics, performance, sculpture, and through his Psicofonias, musical compositions. It is this last musical component that impressed me most. I am always excited to follow artists on their explorations of various media, but Amorales' translation of vector points into the music rolls of a digital player piano exhibits an artistic depth seen only in single artist shows. Instead of a Halloween decoration, the spider web then is a metaphor for interconnectedness of disciplines and media as well as for the organic gallery space that defines and is defined by the art.

CAC Director, Raphaela Platow does a wonderful curatorial job of utilizing the web metaphor through programming. Intertwining this exhibition with the “Bite Me” Ball on Halloween and the Cincinnati Ballet performance of Dracula and a film series is certain to lure museum patrons into the gallery for this one-person show. Rather than frightening, the "ghosts" are enlightening.