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Blank Space Gallery
October 2013 - “The Dirty Art - A Celebration of Norwegian Street Art”
Ink on wall.
«What are you doing here?» is a street-art project by artists Anders Gjennestad /Strøk and Tone Emblemsvåg in collaboration with the youth in Groruddalen in spring of 2011. Who are the young people that recides in Groruddalen and what is important to them? What makes som places important, and what makes them stand out?
By leaving visual marks on the streets, on the walls and similar spaces street art highlights an ownership to the public space, the right to express oneself in public as well as a more art-oriented discussion about what art is, and where and when it should be presented.
Adidas Originals White Space Project invites Originals girls from around the world to share their passion and showcase their creative skills. In Norway adidas Originals and the magazine "Det Nye" launched a competition earlier this spring, and chose five contestants for the final. The contest evolved around the question: "What would you do with a white empty space and a budget of 35000,- NOK?" Elisabeth Larsen aka Dj Liz, founder of "Oh Mama", an all female Dj Crew was voted forth as the winner. Her idea was to fill the empty space with entrepreneurial women within creative fields of work. Such as; dancers, designers, musicians, artists, dj´s and so on. To create a space for inspiration, motivation, entrepreneurship & networking. And the result of her idea became a big event on June 9th at White Light Studios in Borggata 9, Oslo. The event was separated in two parts. Part one is was an entrepreneur workshop for creative girls. Girls that has succeeded in starting their own business based on their passion is sharing their stories. And girls who want to succeed in doing the same was invited to participate in the 4 hour workshop with storytelling, dialogue, discussions and networking. There was also two inspirational talks from two girls with research background on female leadership and entrepreneurship. Speakers: Elisabeth Larsen aka Dj Liz (Oh Mama) Carina Steiro aka Keiko (Urban Tribe) Ida Østby Nielsen (KASSERT) Tone Emblemsvåg (Tonee) Camilla Bogetun Johansen (Juvente & Youth in Action) Ide Katrine (Kine) Birkeland (Doctoral Candidate at BI Norwegian Business School)
3 Light and video installations
Fairytales by the river Alna (Eventyrlige Alnaelva)
The locations are Hølaløkka, Haugenporten and the Alnapark.
1/12 2011–5/1 2012 på Oslo S av Kate Pendry og Tone Emblemsvåg
En aktuell og tankevekkende julekalender på Oslo S.
Kunstprosjektet Rom for kunst har preget fasaden på Oslos S gjennom ti år.
Enten man haster forbi og kun kaster et blikk, eller har tid til en lengre kunstpause, har kunsten på stasjonen skapt undring og opplevelser.
Fasaden i desember 2011 viser Rom for kunst sin julekalender skapt av kunstnerne Tone Emblemsvåg og Kate Pendry. De har blant annet hentet inspirasjon fra glassmalerier og John F. Kennedy i sitt verk 24:thinking. De to kunstnerne ønsker å gi folk en opplevelse som pirrer nysgjerrigheten, gir rom for ettertanke og samtidig sier noe om tiden vi lever i.
De tar for seg andre merkedager enn dem vi tradisjonelt forbinder med julen; slik som Verdens Aidsdag, Fredsprisutdelingen og Internasjonal dag for avskaffelse av slaveri.
Dramatiker Kate Pendry har skrevet 24 tekster til julekalenderen der hun blant annet griper fatt i disse internasjonale merkedagene. Hun presenterer en ny tekst hver dag på fasaden og i lyddusjer inne på Oslo S. Her gir hun publikum en mulighet til å reflektere over vår egen samtid, sammen med Tone Emblemsvåg sin visuelle tolkning. Verket til Emblemsvåg viser en rund klode med et barneansikt bestående av ulike symboler. «Jeg valgte å bruke det uskyldige barnet som symbol. I stedet for et tradisjonelt glassmaleri som har en religiøs madonna eller Jesus avbildet, er jorden gjennom barnets ansikt vår madonna i kunstverket. Det er hun som formidler sine tanker om sameksistens og globale spørsmål.» sier Emblemsvåg om sitt visuelle verk, som også blir «levende» om kvelden med ulike videoprojeksjoner på fasaden.
«Rundt oss i samfunnet får vi hele tiden så mange beskjeder om hva som skiller oss mennesker; hudfarge, religion, kulturell bakgrunn, arv, elite kontra folk flest, etc. Men som John F. Kennedy sa: “ …our most basic common link is that we all inhabit this planet. We all breathe the same air. We all cherish our children’s future. And we are all mortal….”.
Det er inspirerende sagt. Mye av det vi lager til denne julekalenderen har et globalt element som forener oss mennesker. Det er også derfor vi har brukt engelsk, som er et internasjonalt språk» sier Kate Pendry.
Produsent og prosjektleder: Kulturbyrået Mesén
Oppdragsgiver: Rom Eiendom AS
Montering: Carle Lange, Frode Myhr og Montage
Løpertekstskjerm fasaden: Deichmanske bibliotek og to-be-more
Lyd design: Harald Wingård og Kate Pendry
Produsert ved Studio Ultrasound, Oslo
Julian Rasmussen Podolski
Mai Lise Rasmussen
The Pre-Vinylette Society at the Chicago Art Department is an inspiring exhibition with a vibrant display of over 60 women sign painters from nine countries around the world.
CHICAGO — In 2012, people worldwide received an intimate view into the American industry of sign painting with the release of a book that profiled over two dozen contemporary painters.
Authors Faythe Levine and Sam Macon then followed up with Sign Painters, a documentary of the same name that showcased how the tradition is making a comeback to combat the banal lettering of vinyl applications. But while readers and viewers were increasingly appreciating this ubiquitous yet often overlooked art form, others found the information circulating problematic for one aggravating reason: the artists profiled were almost all men.
Filling that gap is an exhibition that recently opened at Chicago Art Department. The first of its kind, The Pre-Vinylette Society: An International Showcase of Women Sign Painters is inspiring, with a vibrant display of over 60 women sign painters from nine countries around the world.
Its curators are two women with their own hand-painted sign shops: Meredith Kasabian, co-founder of the Boston-based Best Dressed Signs, and Shelby Rodeffer, of the Chicago-based Finer Signs. Kasabian also started the Pre-Vinylite Society, a loose network of sign painters and enthusiasts, a few years ago; the exhibition’s title riffs off its name with a play on the suffix “ette” — a morpheme that tends to also suggest that women are inferior to men, as the curators explain.
In this thoughtful show, it’s women on top, with a wide range of artists represented. There’s work by women who have been painting since the ’70s as well as by those with just a few years of experience under their belts. While a number have followed the more traditional route of attending a trade school, others are self-taught, and a number even switched gears from graphic design. Many, like the curators, own their own businesses.
As you might expect, most of the signs on view assert female power and women’s rights, from a springing deer by Kelly Golden emblazoned with the demand, “Listen to Women” to the many visualizations of phrases popularized in the Trump era — a “Stay Nasty” sign by Brooklyn-based design firm Dirty Bandits; “The Future is Female” by California painter Ashley Fundora“; and the Audre Lorde-inspired “Women are Dangerous and Powerful” by Rachel Millar, who hails from Glasgow. Signs in all forms are to be found here: aside from conventional wall pieces, there’s a condom machine that Marissa Cianciulli painted with a cheeky message as well as a massive mobile by Remedios Rapoport comprised of multiple signs. The Portland-based artist’s slow-turning structure dangles demands like “Vote” and “Make Love, Use Birth Control” over your head, revealing new messages every few seconds.
And beyond the gallery space, three dynamic murals by Rodeffer, Tone Emblemsvåg, and Anna Frederick announce the show to passersby.
Feminist messages or not, these works all assert a woman’s rightful place in the sign-painting business. Aside from being part of a male-dominated trade, women sign painters are often in a male-dominated space. During a panel last weekend, many of the artists mentioned that they are almost always the sole woman on a team working on a commission.
In Kasabian’s experience, she often encounters “little micro-aggressions that happen almost every single time I’m on a job site” — from a man asking if she knows how to use a harness to the very frequent lack of access to a toilet. “And they build up,” she said. “It is hard to assert yourself too, because if you assert yourself then you’re a bitch. It’s a really hard thing to balance.”In other words, gender performativity is a near-constant, and at times, even necessary. As Omaha-based painter Sharon Davis put it, “The job you’re on might get you the next job. So you always have to think about how you’re presenting yourself — in a different way than guys even have to think about.”
The tradition of American sign painting is male-dominated, but it’s typically also very white — a makeup this exhibition reflects, with less than a dozen artists of color included.
The demographic is largely the result of barriers to access to apprenticeships and trade schools; sign
painting’s culture of secrecy, in which techniques are closely guarded and passed to trusted students, doesn’t help the diversity issue, either.
Rodeffer and Kasabian addressed this problem during the panel, and asked the artists what they can do to improve accessibility to people from diverse backgrounds. Volunteer to teach workshops at a local arts center, Davis suggested, particularly one that caters to low-income communities. LA-based painter Nisha Sethi emphasized the value of the prison-to-school pipeline, describing how sign painting classes at Los Angeles Trade-Technical College include many students of color partly because of the college’s programs for formerly incarcerated individuals. The conversation was brief, but made clear that while the gender gap is shrinking, other disparities are prevalent.
LA Trade-Tech is now the last remaining trade school for sign painting, but individuals are stepping in to fill the roles institutions once provided.
Increasingly, with the aid of the internet and social media, secrets are being shared, and sign painters are supporting each other across geographic borders.
The Pre-Vinylette Society is a feminist show, but it’s also more than that. It stands as an assertion of sign painting as a thriving and evolving trade — one that comprises a growing network of artists across generations and regions, who are literally making it their business to improve their communities with one-of-a-kind creations.
As painter Kelley Bell, who runs a business with her daughter, simply said, “It’s so nice to see all these young women and older women … I don’t feel so alone.
lim·bo 1 [lim-boh] noun, plural lim·bos.
1. (often initial capital letter) Roman Catholic Theology. a region on the border of hell or heaven, serving as the abode after death of unbaptized infants (limbo of infants) and of the righteous who died before the coming of Christ ( limbo of the fathers or limbo of the patriarchs)
2. A place or state of oblivion to which persons or things are regarded as being relegated when cast aside, forgotten, past, or out of date: My youthful hopes are in the limbo of lost dreams.
3. An intermediate, transitional, or midway state or place.
4. A place or state of imprisonment or confinement.
The bird cage, where your first pet lived and died, you haven’t had a bird since you were eight, yet the cage has been carried with you on every move, simply because you once loved a bird with all your heart. Your grandmother’s lace curtains, carefully hand-made, and your most prized possession at 22, they haven’t served their purpose as curtains for years. A then state-of-the-art travel television set, the very first thing you bought with your first pay check, now just looks comically large and outdated . An old mirror. A cat mask. These items all have a story. They are currently in limbo. As human beings we tend to project our hopes and dreams into inanimate objects, perhaps thinking that a new table will make us happy, an expensive bag will express who we truly are, or an inherited dress will bring back happy memories. But what happens when we stop projecting our dreams into these items? What do we do when their value drops on our internal stock market? Some of these items are broken, cheap, without any emotional value, and we discard them, throw them away without afterthought. Others, like the items in this exhibit, end up in limbo. They are too beautiful, too valuable, or carry too much nostalgic importance to simply get rid of–but they don’t fit into our current lives or apartments.This exhibit explores what happens when you stop projecting into these items, and instead project onto them. Scents and textures trigger memories, and assign new values to old items. As do sound. Using three projectors, a digital mapping system and Merete Mongstad’s sound design, artist Tone Emblemsvåg lets the items in limbo tell their story. Left in an old attic in an abandoned house their value is reassigned, and they slowly come back to life. Tone Emblemsvåg (f. 1973) is an illustrator, set designer and VJ. She is currently moving for the first time in 13 years. While working with this exhibit, she has brought a new item from her attic every day, and added it to the installation. Visual artist Audun Notevarp has contributed to the video mapping, and SM Mongstad has designed the soundscape.
Text by Ellen Lyse Einarsen
Slipstream longboards commisions designers and illustrators for each collection. I was part of the collection in 2011 and 2012.
Slipstream longboards was founded in Gothenburg, Sweden, 2002. Their mission is to constantly push their products towards new limits in order to bring superb longskates to longskaters all over the world.
Work from my atelier.