Word Up: The Intersection of Text & Image | NC Museum of Art | Arts | Indy Week


Word Up: The Intersection of Text & Image

When: July 22-Jan. 20 2013

The terms "media culture" and "Internet age" are thrown around enough in the art world that they no longer provide any specific context for work. Rather than making decisive curatorial statements that aspire to grab the semiotic steering wheel, exhibitions now tend more to serve as snapshot commentaries upon the here and now in public discourse. Word Up: The Intersection of Text and Image, on view at the NCMA, provides a status report on how six North Carolina artists—Mathew Curran, Lincoln Penn Hancock, Nathaniel Lancaster, Shaun Richards, Gabriel Shaffer and Derek Toomes—are dealing with informational, commercial and political text in their work. We're not just inundated with text; we're inundated with mentions of our inundation with text. Consequently many of these artists use text as a substrate, building image and blur on top of aestheticized printed copy rather than wresting authorial authority for themselves. The curatorial elephant in the room is that all six artists in Word Up are male, something that CAM Raleigh will provide a foil for with its GirlTalk: Women and Text show opening in September. —Chris Vitiello

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