BUILT-IN : Chapter 1

NAVEL presents

BUILT-IN : Chapter 1
Carmen Bouyer, Colleen Hargaden, Aaron Meyers

organized by Hunter Shaw

Thursday, April 19th 2018
7:00 - 10:00 PM

1611 S. Hope St. 90015

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HUNTER SHAW FINE ART is pleased to announce Built-In: Chapter 1, the first in a series of collaborative events initiated by Nicolas Grenier for NAVEL. Grenier has constructed a site-specific ensemble of modular space dividers which function as a dynamic and malleable presentation device for screenings, lectures, performances and other forms of public engagement. The inaugural event, organized by Hunter Shaw, celebrates artists bringing new perspective to “real life” applications such as infrastructure, building, land use and environmental stewardship.

The program will commence with a collective experience imagined and orchestrated by Carmen Bouyer. The artist will position Grenier’s modules to enable intimate interpersonal exchanges and the sharing of memories. In groups of two to three people, the participants will be invited to share stories of how they relate to the land and its non-human inhabitants in the Los Angeles cityscape and its vast surroundings. These interactions will be facilitated by cards and objects made available by the artist to help the audience remember and convey their personal relationships with non-human forms of life and intelligence. The simple elements, introducing emotions, senses, landscape archetypes, etc. will be distributed throughout the room, inspiring conversations about the nature of the world that lives inside and around us. Throughout this interaction, a sonic installation will be activated, playing sounds recorded at the nearby Santa Monica Bay, Los Angeles River, and Ballona Wetlands ecosystems. This experience is designed as a collective exploration of the language and emotions that emerge from describing of our sensorial connections to the local earth. The oral narratives that spring from such sharing practices invite us all to attune to one another and to the land that encompasses us. The cities we inhabit are embedded within larger, living landscapes - mountains, forests, oceans, rivers, plains - which shape and inform everything about our lives, from the climate they create to the plants and animals they welcome alongside our own species. By voicing our perceptions of the multi-faceted, multi-species world we are embedded in, we can communally nurture our awareness and respect of the infinite diversity and interconnectedness of all life forms.  

In the conceptual sculpture project Tiny HouseColleen Hargaden explores low-impact dwelling and self-reliance in the Information Age. Utilizing the internet as a primary resource, Hargaden learned everything required - from techniques and materials, to zoning and regulations - in order to design and build a fully-functional “tiny house” from scratch. The work draws attention to the extreme economic and ecological pressures of contemporary life which have motivated the current “tiny house” movement, while simultaneously presenting the finished product and the process of its construction as an exercise in self-reliance and liberation. Tiny House is a modest, yet attractively viable adaptation of the American Dream to contemporary circumstances. For Built-In: Chapter 1, Hargaden will present a performative lecture detailing her process, alongside a screening of documentary video footage of the construction. Hargaden will also make available custom USB drives containing instructional, diagrammatic drawings and information on how to construct a “tiny house” according to her research.

Idea for a Clay Fired Brick by Aaron Meyers consists of the prototype for a masonry unit invented and designed by the artist, accompanied by a suite of schematic drawings illustrating the brick and several possible uses for it. The proposed utilities range from the decorative to the practical. For example:  a floor or ceiling made of this material can span unsupported areas, or, an arch can be constructed without cutting. Smile is a 12 x 18 ft inverted arch made from a different modular unit designed by the artist. The structure utilizes internal tension from its custom hardware to prevent the arch from collapsing outward in this orientation, which would certainly occur by any other construction method. Both works function as simple design propositions, inviting the viewer to imagine possible forms and functions for these unusual units of construction.

Carmen Bouyer received a Master in Design from Ecole Nationale des Arts Décoratifs in Paris, FR and participated in the Environmental Studies program at Parsons The New School for Design in New York City. Since 2015, Bouyer has worked with Pioneer Works Art Center in Red Hook, Brooklyn to develop local organic food access and environmental education programs, in addition to landscape stewardship and environmental art installations in and around Red Hook. In 2017, she developed storytelling and environmental arts activities for the University of Coahuila, Saltillo, MX, the activist group Works On Water, and the STEW-MAP (Stewardship Mapping and Assessment Project) in New York City.

Colleen Hargaden received a BFA with Distinction from Art Center College of Design, Pasadena CA and is currently completing an MFA at Milton Avery Graduate School of the Arts, Bard College, NY. Recent solo exhibitions include Tiny House (End of Build), Deep End Ranch, Santa Paula, CA (2016); Tiny House (Mid-Build), and Tiny House (Pre-Build), both at Fine Art Gallery, Art Center College of Design, Pasadena, CA (2015). Recent group exhibitions include EX-CORPSE, AWHRHWAR booth at Other Places Art Fair, San Pedro, CA (2018); and GROUP SHOW VIDEO SHOW, Henderson's House, Los Angeles, CA (2017). Hargaden is also the co-owner of Roger's Office, an artist-run gallery in Los Angeles, CA.

Aaron Meyers received an MFA in Sculpture and Extended Media from The University of Texas at Austin, and a BS with Honors in Mathematics from Bucknell University, Lewisburg, PA. Recent solo and two-person exhibitions include (L,W,H), Big Medium at Fusebox Festival, Austin, TX (2015); and Alex.Chitty Aaron.Meyers, Permanent.Collection, Austin, TX (2014). Recent group exhibitions include Strap Your Hands Across My Engine curated by Camille Schefter and Thomas Linder, Tin Flats, Los Angeles, CA (2018); and I Will Go On..., Montserrat College of Art Gallery, Beverly, MA (2016).