The Department of Art welcomes Andrew V. Uroskie, associate professor of modern art and media, and the graduate director of the MA/PhD Program in Art History and Criticism at Stony Brook University (NY).
He will present a lecture entitled "Beyond The Whole Earth?: David O'Reilly’s Everything (2017)."
Uroskie’s scholarship focuses on postwar and contemporary artists working in film, video, sound, performance and installation, his writing explores how durational media have helped to reframe traditional models of aesthetic production, exhibition, spectatorship, and objecthood. His essays on modern and contemporary art, film and media culture, performance, and sound studies have been published in academic journals and anthologies in the United States, England, France, Italy, Spain, Brazil and South Korea, and have been translated into five languages.
He is currently engaged in two book projects: The Kinetic Imaginary, winner of the 2017 book grant by the Creative Capital/Arts Writers Foundation, is a revisionary history of the idea of movement across postwar American painting, sculpture and film. Remaking Reality, from which this talk is taken, focuses on contemporary video art that takes up the transformation of narrativity, affect, fictionality and realism in the era of social media.
Over the last 15 years, the Irish artist David O'Reilly has produced a body of aesthetically innovative experimental animation that has accomplished the rare feat of achieving both popular and critical acclaim. Working both inside and outside of industry, he has produced short films independently and for Cartoon Network, created video walls for concerts of the Sri Lanken Tamil musical artist MIA (Mathangi Arulpragasam), and has produced animated sequences for "indie" Hollywood films such as Her (Spike Jonze, 2013).
Most recently, he has produced the experimental, quasi-interactive animated "games" Mountain and Everything, the latter of which has spawned the first videogame trailer ever to be nominated for an academy award.
Despite his popularity and critical acclaim, O’Reilly's body of work remains largely untheorized, yet seems to offer a wide range of new ideas for the conceptualization of the moving image in the present age of social media.
From the beginning, his work has mined online "meme" culture for its iconography and structure, and his recent foray into game-design has radically challenged banal notions of interactivity still rife within this burgeoning field. O'Reilly's Everything is a work of the present that is nonetheless conceptually rooted in that past: its premise conjoins Charles and Ray Eames’ 1968 iconic animated short Powers of Ten with a soundtrack culled from hundreds of hours of taped lectures by the late philosopher Alan Watts, perhaps the most influential popularizer of Non-Western philosophy from that era.
My talk will focus primarily on a reading of this new work as model of quasi-interactive cinema that challenges us to think differently about still pervasive models of narrativity and spectatorship in our theorization of the moving image, as well about emerging hybrid forms of practice that traverse the traditionally segregated fields of fine art, experimental film, social media, and game design.