28 November 2011


artobj-cult.biz is a collaborative exhibition project between Emilie Gervais and Lucy Chinen. Two artists are invited to create new work using objects or materials preexisting in various online stores. Emilie & Lucy have answered some questions and tell us more about this great exhibition format. See more;

About Emilie Gervais: 

About Lucy Chinen: 

How did it start?
artobj(ect)-cult(ure) started while working on a piece for "Becoming Not Being" Speedshow. We chatted a lot about the way an average person uses the internet, new media curation, online stores, historical & cultural objects, and accessories that we would love to have. We purchased the domain artobj-cult.biz and had numerous chat exchanges, mostly via facebook and used google docs to communicate how we wanted the site to function.

Works by Arran Ridley and Stefan Moore are currently on view. The website officially launched on November 6th. The next exhibition will feature work from Chris Collins & Justin Bochek.

What kind of work can the site support?
The depiction of the items can be rendered in any way as long as the artists are aware that they are sharing a browser window. Collaborations are welcome. The works are viewed visually online but are meant to be thought of physically because all the materials have already been produced and exist tangibly in the world, which is why listed dimensions are of what the work would measure in physical space.

We started with the assumption that projects would relate to sculpture and installation but we now realize that it could be any medium as long as the materials exist for purchase somewhere online and can be displayed in a browser window. For example a performance via Groupon. It is more about creating a context, a format in which artists can play and create a piece within a specific but simple structure. Inviting two artists a month was a decision we made to show the variety of ways an artist could approach the project and bend the rules. Each time we realize the potential for the project to morph.

What are the links at http://artobj-cult.biz/about/?
The links found on the /about page are an objective representation of the ideas behind the project; a curated internet, citing your sources, linking, online shopping, ecommerce, object history and the readymade. Since we ask artists to create a piece via search engine behavior, it was important for us to also use this method to define artobj-cult.biz

How do you determinate the prices?
Prices are determined by the total of all objects chosen by the artist. Upon purchase, the buyer owns the directory of the piece and is provided with all the physical objects. Our “art object tax” is a logistical term for making something more expensive because its art. In reality one could just purchase all the items themselves to recreate the artists work to avoid the tax, but then I guess they would become the artist or they would just have a bunch of stuff. We are playful with the idea of money and buying. Art commerce is a culture in itself.

How do you link art with shopping?
Essentially, none of the objects are “original” objects. We curate artists to curate objects. It is commonplace for artists offline and on to use premade elements in their practice. It is just another method of production. Works can function poetically even if they are just an aesthetic arrangement of materials. Linking is an important part of the project, in a way it devalues the aesthetic arrangement to be just that, just more stuff.

The structure and language of the site is meant to resemble shopping. You see something, you grab it (click) to look at it more closely and how much it costs. When you have this ability to see where an artist has retrieved a material, it lets you know more about the object via the type of store it came from, its monetary value, how it is normally used and what type of people use it; the culture of the object. Who said shopping isn’t an art?