The title of What Does It Mean? is in reference to a popular video posted to youtube in January, 2010. Titled, Double Rainbow, the video became a hit and has since been viewed over 40 million times. In it we see a handheld camera, capturing the uploader’s ecstatic response to seeing a double rainbow in his front yard somewhere outside of Yosemite National Park.
Undoubtedly, it was his over the top reaction, not the actual rainbow in the video, that caused it to go viral. Like so many attempts to record nature, the end product usually falls short of the real thing, and all we’re left with is a shaky video of one man’s experience of the natural world. Yet despite the absurdity of the video, there is something moving in it; perhaps part of us wishes we could see the world as the videographer does, in complete bewilderment of nature’s presence. Near the middle of the video he asks “what does it mean?”, a response many of us might have upon seeing such a rainbow, whether it be in a national park or one created in the basement of an art museum.
soil, grass seed, grow light, steel, foam, plaster, video projection
Two, three foot diameter circles crest out of the ground in a dark room. One has been planted with grass seed and grows with the aid of a high powered plant light. The other shows a looping video, displaying subtle movements of a grass covered lawn.
Is Always acts as in investigation into our fascination between technology and nature, and our idealization of the future and the past.
A large mound of stone rises from the ground, while a blue light emanates from its center. Part volcano, part well, the object invites and requires closer investigation. The source of the this light is buried inside, and only upon climbing the mound will one find the appearance of an amorphous shape displayed on a monitor. The curious will find the image to be interactive, shifting mysteriously with the wave of an arm.
Allegheny Center: Over and Over (2014) Video Silk-screened glow-in-the-dark prints Set of three 8” x 8” images Edition of Five
The Lower Hill: Over and Over (2014) Video Silk-screened glow-in-the-dark prints Set of three 8” x 8” images Edition of Five
…Over and Over are illustrations based on maps from the past, present, and proposed future designs of two Pittsburgh neighborhoods, Allegheny Center and The Lower Hill. The two locations have shared similar histories; once centers of thriving business districts, they fell victim to the urban revitalization schemes of the 1960’s. Once again, both have proposed revitalization plans, featuring much of what existed previously. The printed images appear and disappear with projected circles of white light; as the light fades, the image appears, revealing the glowing print. …Over and Over questions our ideas of progress, the future, and nostalgia for the past.
7” lathe cut vinyl record Hand screened 8-gauge clear vinyl sleeve Digitally printed transparency insert
6 minute run time (45 RPM)
In conjunction with the 2014 exhibition, Artists In Residence, Bracken has made an edition of 50 seven-inch lathe cut clear vinyl records. Featuring music composed in and for the gallery space, the records extend the exhibition’s investigation on the limits of technological mediums, our relentless affection for the physical world, and our idealization of the past and future. The records were hand cut in real time, packaged with digitally printed inserts inside of silk-screened sleeves, and have been hand numbered and signed by the artist.
What it was and the way it is (2011) Tree stumps, video, sound
Presented as part of Environmental Aesthetics Fe Gallery, Pittsburgh PA
What it was and the way it is acts as an inquiry into how we might take advantage of the possibilities that new technology provides while still staying connected to the natural. It is an exploration of overlapping layers of the natural and unnatural, an investigation into how we perceive and interact with these layers.
What You Can See From the Light (2010) (Excerpt) plywood, quadraphonic sound, HD video projection
Part of Gestures 14 at the Mattress Factory, Pittsburgh, PA
What You Can See From the Light is comprised of a high-definition video projection of two hands, hiding and revealing an overpowering light that glows behind them. As these hands interact, textures of sound envelop the viewer, and crescendo in relationship with these movements. Through subtle cuts, a floor to ceiling wooden wall reveals the grains of an enlarged fingerprint, echoing the intricacies and imagery of the projection, whose light filters through it.
Home Maker I & II are two wall mounted video sculptures. Made from scrap wood and aluminum ductwork, each object houses a small video screen, playing portraits from everyday life. Paired with continuously looping musical clips, the images themselves are non-linear, endlessly playing the repetitions of human activity in a home.
Home Maker I & II are investigations into our desire for a sense of place and belonging. Images of reading a book, eating soup, and playing music bring to mind the warmth and pleasures of home, while the chopping of food, brushing of teeth, and laying of brick convey the routine and repetition of everyday life. The objects become tunnels into a private world and the small apertures provide for a personal interaction with the viewer.