COHOST is an annual exhibition that utilizes 50/50 as a whiteboard for exercising artists' collaborative capabilities. This curatorial exploration and it's outcomes will change from year to year based on the chosen artists. COHOST is 50/50's version of a 'solo' show, exhibiting one local and one national artist.
2015's iteration of COHOST focuses on two artists that utilize half digital and half analog processes. Kristin Walsh (NY) constructs mirrored acrylic objective and non-objective sculptures and projects Google Earth landscape videos onto them. Together, the sculptures are installed in response to the exhibiting space to create Critical Topographies. Alongside Walsh, Robert Howsare (KC) responds to the gallery space with his installation, IV Phases. In this work, Howsare silkscreens CMYK patterns onto 16 mm film, and runs through a vintage sound projector. The pattern and color dictates the images and sounds created, and is dependent on the original silkscreen.
Today, artists like Howsare and Walsh have digested the art of the net-art generation, to move forward into a terrain that can exist both in the physical and digital sense. This is neither said in rejection nor acceptance of the post-internet art era, but rather a chronological digestion and moving forward in history. Artist and theorist Ian Wallace states:
Instead, in the same way that postmodern artists absorbed and adapted the strategies of modernism-fracturing the picture plane, abstraction, etc.- for a new aesthetic era, post-Internet artists have moved beyond making work dependent on the novelty of the web to using its tools to tackle other subjects. And while earlier Net artists often made works that existed exclusively online, the post-Internet generation (many of whom have been plugged into the web since they could walk) frequently uses digital strategies to create objects that exist in the real world.²
Why is it important today for artists to use half digital and half analog processes? Is a digital presence to be ubiquitous now, after the age of the digital to make art that is tied in some part to a digital predecessor? Is it inherent and therefore, and now void? Is that why it is uncomfortable to discuss, and "embarrassing"³ to mention?
COHOST will work through these strategies, and the collaboration between Howsare and Walsh will provide a starting point to the discussion. 50/50 will continue to work through the themes of providing half digital and half physical or analog representations through yearly programming. 50/50 provides an exclusively online curatorial platform through the Digital Archive. This archive documents the exhibition and provides subsequent information including didactics, studio visits, artist profiles, polls, hashtags and a wiki format. As 50/50 is half local and half national, this program provides extensive information to a national audience who are not able to visit the gallery in person. The archive is an evolving model and program and is open to the public for participation. Yearly, the archive will culminate into a book that will be published to produce revenue for the following exhibition year.
Acrylic Mirror, Google Earth, Landscape Video Projection
Optical Sound Projector, 16mm Film, Ink
- Baudrillard, Jean. 1994. Simulacra and Simulation. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press.
- Wallace, Ian. "Trend Report: What Is Post-Internet Art? Understanding the Revolutionary New Art Movement | Artspace." Artspace. March 18, 2014.
- Droitcour, Brian. "The Perils of Post-Internet Art." Art in America, October 30, 2014.