School of Art visiting Fulbright scholar

Andrea ChesterLeave a Comment

The School of Art is hosting Pablo Garcia, a Fulbright scholar, for the next 6 months. Originally trained as an architect, he works across a range of disciplines and is an A/Prof in the Department of Contemporary Practices, School of the Art Institute of Chicago. He is keen to engage with colleagues far and wide. Please feel free to contact Pablo if you are interested – pgarci@artic.edu

Pablo’s interests are outlined below:

1. Art & Technology Blends between analog and digital, with a specific interest in history. Projects like the Profilograph Series (one After Dürer and the other After Muybridge) merge modern computation with pre-digital art-historical artifacts. Webcam Venus draws parallels between art-historical contexts and contemporary imagery. NeoLucida is a media archeology project, reintroducing the obsolete camera lucida to modern audiences. Paris Street; Rainy Day is new scholarship done with the Art Institute of Chicago conservation team to investigate possible optical technology used in Caillebote’s masterpiece. Some projects, like High RiseEndless RendezvousStrange Weather  and Here, There, EverywhereHighSpeed PhotoBoothGig Faces, Gig Spaces, are works experimenting with/applications of technology in contemporary art (in some sense, showcasing I know how to creatively use software, hardware, and computational platforms).  I’ve lectured on the nature of fakes and copies in the digital age in “Short Tales of Fakery” at TEDxVienna and “Context is the Only Medium that Matters” at KIKK Festival, Belgium. All my talks would easily be adapted/updated/expanded for RMIT audiences. 
2. Optics/Simulation/Illusions/VirtualityThe applications of lenses, geometry, physiology, mathematics to making art, usually in service of verisimilitude. I like making illusions, specifically anamorphosis. It is a mathematical technique, and it is site-specific (unlocking it requires a spatial vantage point). This appeals to my technical and architectural nature. I’ve made large-scale versions like Windows. I’ve made small, whimsical ones, like Memento Mori (Catoptric) and Memento Mori (Tattoo). They often have a relationship to modern life, applying the 16th/17th C technique to mobile phones as in Memento Mori (Selfie Stick) and in t-shirts in Vantage Tees. [I wouldn’t mind crafting a large site-specific anamorphic illusion on RMIT campus, btw… 🙂 ] I lecture on the history of imaging technologies and simulation methods, all under the umbrella of outlining a “history of the virtual.” “Adventures in Virtuality” (See my website’s Lecture section) is an overview of imaging and simulation methods from ancient times to the digital as an introduction to my work. 
3. DrawingWhat is drawing? Why do some people “fear” learning to draw? What does the act of drawing tell us about creativity and human experience? The NeoLucida gave me new contexts for thinking about drawing. Not merely contemporary drawing and art history, but also the “layperson” attitude about drawing. “People who want to learn how to draw” has become a constituency for me, and I have become increasingly fascinated by the mechanisms (physical ability, brain wiring, learning methods) of drawing. I’ve lectured on the history of Drawing Machines, as well as have been curating/cataloging the history of drawing tools on drawingmachines.org  It’s currently in a holding pattern, but this is deep research that has not yet been published and would benefit from a cohort of drawing professionals/educators to share with. I taught a first year elective called “What is Drawing?”, encouraging cross-disciplinary approaches to drawing. Almost every creative field draws, from fine art to design sketches to wiring diagrams to fashion patterns. Drawing’s universality is becoming a large topic of research for me. I also draw and build drawing machines. See Ubi Sunt and Machine Drawing Drawing Machines
4. Creative Independence We’re not startups, so “entrepreneurship” methods don’t always apply. This is the reason I’m here, and I welcome the chance to learn from students about their evolving views on their future practice. It may also be useful to speak with Alumni about their creative practices, but that may be at a later date. Most of what you need to know is in my Fulbright Proposal (copy attached below)
5. Art & Design Pedagogy, Introductory Curricula What are the evolving issues in teaching creative fields? I teach in Contemporary Practices, our school-wide curriculum for incoming students. We spend a lot of time refining and revising pedagogy in response to evolving needs, new practices and technologies, and possible futures for creative people in culture and society. But it all is in service of an educational question that continues to hold my attention: “How do you introduce young students to creative concepts and techniques?”

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