|Geneva by Dave Detrich|
Gertrude Herbert Institute of Art 506 Telfair Street
Augusta, Georgia 30901-2310
Tuesday - Friday 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
About the Juror:
Don Kimes is currently artistic director in the visual arts for the Chautauqua Institution, New York, and a professor of art at American University, Washington, DC. One of the only visual artists ever nominated for the position of Chair of the National Endowment for the Arts (2001), Kimes has exhibited his work in more than 150 solo and group exhibitions, both in the United States and abroad. His many awards and honors include Medici Medals at the 2001 and 2003 Florence International Biennale of Contemporary Art and grants and residencies through institutions including the US Department of the Interior, the Eisenhower Foundation, and the Instituto Nacional de Bellas Artes. Kimes holds an MFA from City University of New York, with additional studies at the New York Studio School, the University of Pittsburgh, and the Corcoran Gallery of Art. He currently divides his time between New York, Italy, and Washington, DC.
My practice as an visual artist evolves from the conditions of irony and paradox. I am influenced by the framework of Hegel's theory of the dialectic where thesis, in proximity to antithesis, leads to synthesis. "Geneva" is a synthesis of the political and poetic; two seemingly disparate locations merged into one.
"Geneva" is one of several works from a series entitled "Mantra's for the New Millennium" which seizes on common, often over-used catch phrases used in our public news media. In the "Mantra's for the New Millennium" series the visual takes the place of the written/spoken so that a new, yet problematic, relationship is formed.
These common phrases are cleverly transformed into Rebus puzzles or pictograms so that they are visually "read" from left to right, very much like a written sentence structure. In "Geneva" the political becomes poetic in an intersection of oppositions. The word "Geneva" which typically prompts The Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949 and its relation to the protection of civilian persons in time of war, provides a clue for the resolution of the puzzle which is the word "Terrorist".
The historically fixed definition of the term "Terrorist" has become problematic in recent years on many personal, local, regional and national frontiers. The word is deconstructed into two (visual) syllables; "Terra" as Earth, represented by the globe and "Wrist" represented by the x-ray of a human wrist. The work is reflective of this condition yet takes no position. That part rests with the viewer.
The sculptural context for the work is a softly lit cabinet affixed to the wall which beckons "domestic" fixtures and figures found in a curio cabinet collection in a private living room. I contend that language becomes a part of what we inherit and also collect.