This is a Studio #2: Flex Space Residency
_ture is a suffix that provides a for(u)m for ongoing conversation between artists Meghan Moe Beitiks, Marissa Lee Benedict, Liz Ensz and Lindsey French. The artists come together to discuss their overlapping interests in the complexities of sites, systems, ecologies, communication, matter, and relevant social histories. By immersing themselves in conversation, the artists concurrently produce work that deconstructs and reassembles these dynamic realities. Beitiks, Benedict, Ensz and French believe in the potential of this form to produce a more complicated understanding of the world: _ture is a space for examining the boundaries of individual action within larger, interdependent systems.
Drawing from their individual practices and perspectives, the artists present their work collectively as performative lec_tures, screen cap_tures, cofea_tured exhibitions, and documented investigations into environments and architec_tures. The artists consciously allow for cross-pollination within their individual practices and between resonant disciplines. Their ven_tures, along with their collective research, are archived as a cache of video, sound, writing, and pertinent research.
While in residence at the Hyde Park Art Center, Benedict, Ensz and French will be processing materials from a December 2015 residency at the Center for Land Use Interpretation’s Desert Research Station. The artists will produce video, sound, writing, performance and sculpture that will be publicly presented as a series of performative lectures, conversations and screenings categorize under the title Conjec_ture, and held at the Hyde Park Art Center during February and March 2016.
A native of Southern California, Marissa Lee Benedict is a sculptor, writer, lecturer and avid amateur of many fields and disciplines. Motivated by a deep curiosity about the function and dysfunction of social, ecologic and industrial systems, her practice is one of active observation; of engagement; of instigation; of experimentation. Currently based in Chicago, IL, Benedict lectures at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC) in Fiber & Material Studies and works as the Program Coordinator for the Arts, Science & Culture Initiative at the University of Chicago. She has shown most recently in Chicago at EXPO Chicago, threewalls (threewallSOLO), the DePaul Art Museum, Chicago Artists’ Coalition, Harold Washington College, Columbia College, Mana Contemporary, the Sullivan Galleries; in NYC at the Cue Art Foundation; and in Brussels at Contemporary Art Brussels. She received her BFA from the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) and an MFA in Sculpture from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC).
Meghan Moe Beitiks works with associations and disassociations of culture/nature/structure. She analyzes perceptions of ecology though the lenses of site, history, emotions, and her own body in order to produce work that interrogates relationships with the non-human. The work emerges as video, performance, installation, writing or photography depending on what arises from her process of research and improvisation.She received her BA in Theater Arts from the University of California, Santa Cruz, where she studied playwriting, acting, movement and scenic design. She has an MFA in Performance Art from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, where she studied Bio Art, Social Practice, Environmental Chemistry, and performance methodologies. She has presented work in California, Chicago, Brooklyn, Wales, London, Latvia, Australia and Russia. She has been a Fulbright Student Fellow in Theater to Latvia, a MacDowell Colony Fellow, an OxBow LeRoy Neiman Fellow, and the School of the Art Institute of Chicago’s recipient for the Edes Foundation Prize for Emerging Artists.
Liz Ensz was born in Minnesota to a resourceful family of penny-savers, metal scrappers, and curators of cast-offs. She received her BFA in Fiber from the Maryland Institute College of Art, and her MFA in Fiber and Material Studies from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Her work presents a comparative study of the mass-cultural investment in disposability and the human desire to imagine permanence through emblems, monuments, and commemoration. At the heart of her practice lies a determined material engagement, scavenger impulse, and a sincere hope for the rethinking of the valuation of people, resources, the environment, and living things. Ensz has exhibited her textiles and sculpture nationwide, including Franconia Sculpture Park, Shafer, MN; Smack Mellon, Brooklyn, NY; Roots and Culture Contemporary Art Center, Chicago, IL; Boston Center for the Arts, Boston, MA; The Sub-Mission, Chicago, IL; Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ; and Goucher College, Baltimore, MD. She has been awarded residencies at Salem Art Works, Salem, NY: Playa, Summer Lake, OR; LATITUDE, Chicago, IL; and Blue Mountain Center, Blue Mountain Lake, NY; and has been the recipient of The Creative Baltimore Fund Grant, The Gilroy Roberts Fellowship for Engraving, The Clare Rosen and Samuel Edes Fellowship Semi-finalist Prize, and The Jacques and Natasha Gelman Travel Fellowship.
Lindsey French is an artist and educator whose work engages in gestures of communication with landscapes and the nonhuman. Embracing a number of mediation strategies, her projects materialize as texts written in collaboration with trees, video performances of attempted dialogues with the landscape, and sound installations of distant and displaced forests. She has shared her work in places such as the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago, the Chicago Cultural Center, the Chicago Perch, the Pico House Gallery in Los Angeles, Flying Object in Hadley, MA and in conjunction with the International Symposium of Electronics Arts in both Albuquerque and Vancouver. Her work has been featured in an essay in Leonardo and discussed on podcasts for Creative Disturbance. French currently teaches courses that explore new media practices and site specific research at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in the Art and Technology Studies, Sculpture, and Contemporary Practices Departments.