UMBC's Center for Art, Design and Visual Culture (CADVC) presents CODEX, featuring works by Brandon Ables, Jason Charney, Mandy Morrison, and Adan Rodriguez, four emerging visual artists from the Baltimore/Washington region. Encompassing a wide range of technologies and materials, their works embody the elements of social practice and community involvement as well as critiques on contemporary culture. The artists are 2020 recipients of MFA degrees in Intermedia and Digital Arts and were to be featured in an in-person exhibition originally scheduled for spring 2020; their works are now presented in a virtual environment.
In One Man Trance, Brandon Ables recreates his studio apartment, demonstrating how he primes his subconscious by scoring everyday gestures with visual accompaniment. Different areas of the installation can be activated when viewers stand in front of the bathroom mirror, lie in bed watching TV, stare into the kitchen pantry, exercise, and practice one-man band coordination.
The four works in Jason Charney‘s reciprocation reimagine loudspeakers (featured image), transforming them from “invisible” aural channels into sculptural objects to interrogate interpersonal relationships, (mis)communications, and the kinetic phenomenon of sound. While recorded audio is used to drive the loudspeakers and implicate the viewer-listener’s body, the heard sound is an artifact of the materials activated by the speakers’ movement.
Mandy Morrison‘s multi-channel video installation, Spirits of Promise and Loss, uses photographic images of the Old Town Mall in Baltimore as a backdrop for the animated ghost-like characters that populate this former model of utopian possibility. The Old Town Mall, now mostly shuttered, was one of numerous experiments across the U.S. in pedestrian mall development that strove to bring suburban shoppers back downtown.
Adan Rodriguez’s A Necessary Haunting blurs the line between reality and fiction, highlighting film’s effect on community tourism and the perpetuation of legend. Presented through a narrative short film, documentary, and accompanying physical media, the artist encourages travel to locations where alleged supernatural events took place.