Flat Screens: The Artistic Experience meets the Digital Age

These true “flat screens” evoke a sense of the past while still maintaining the reality of our digital, global, expansive existence.

poster for Siebren Versteeg

Siebren Versteeg "Flat Screens"

at Meulensteen
in the Chelsea 22nd area
This event has ended - (2011-11-10 - 2011-12-23)

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In Reviews by Loren DiBlasi 2011-11-17 print

In Flat Screens, a new exhibition at Meulensteen Gallery, Siebren Versteeg delves into what is old and what is new, creating an unconventionally contemporary method of making art.
[Image: Siebren Versteeg Untitled (2011) light box and canvas 75 ¾ x 43 ½ in.]
Versteeg, born in 1971 in New Haven, Connecticut, seamlessly blends twentieth century tradition with twenty-first century utility in his third show with Meulensteen. The exhibition opens with numerous works that highlight the viewer’s entrance into the gallery, like dozens of televisions just switched off, still glowing with a slightly eerie, dark teal light. These small scale, dynamic works feature still images, photographs, and colorful lines, swirls, and scribbles. Today’s Paper, a fifty inch display with a birds-eye view of a glowing newspaper on a dirty industrial floor, maintains both a cinematic drama and the fluorescent quality of a toy ‘Lite Brite’ screen. These true “flat screens” evoke a sense of the past while still maintaining the reality of our digital, global, expansive existence.

It is communication, after all, which functions as the beating core of the exhibition. To create his works, Versteeg wrote computer codes that could mesh language with image in digital space. Influenced by philosopher Vilem Flusser’s Into the Universe of Tehnical Images, Versteeg flips the idea of the visual replacing the linguistic on its head; he equally engages both.

The highlight of the exhibition, placed grandly in the back wall of the gallery, are two large scale inkjet prints. Taped and tacked to the wall like bedroom posters, expressionistic masses of color and line protrude from their backgrounds of blurry New York Times text. These are not, however, the result of a paintbrush and paint, but of algorithmic programming. Just like our lives, how truly digital.

See technology and the artistic process redefined with Flat Screens.

Loren DiBlasi

Loren DiBlasi. Loren DiBlasi is a freelance writer/art and culture aficionado. Born in NYC, she is a recent graduate of Marymount Manhattan College as a double major in English and Art History. In addition to art of all shapes and sizes, she is also passionate about music, film, and fashion-- and writes about it all. She can be contacted at lorendiblasi@gmail.com. » See other writings

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