Revelator is excited to announce that we’re now an official Exhibitions Sponsor of The Contemporary Austin! We view The Contemporary Austin as an invaluable part of our creative community, and are always captivated by the renowned exhibitions they bring in from around the world. They work with some of the most engaging artists working on a global stage today, and we feel fortunate to play a small part in helping bring them to our home state. We began working with The Contemporary last year, and have been privileged to be included in projects for artists such as Ai Wei Wei, Wangechi Mutu, Rodney McMillian and Ragnar Kjartansson.
The exhibits showcased at The Contemporary reflect the values and mission of its founders to embody an eclectic and collaborative spirit. Though it is based in Texas, the museum allows visitors to travel the globe as they experience the art of creators from around the world. The museum strives to showcase artists from a variety of perspectives and disciplines to offer members a well-rounded look at the current state of contemporary art. They don’t shy away from new, and sometimes controversial, artists when selecting the work they show. Museum goers can expect to not only enjoy the art on display, but to be challenged by it.
The Contemporary Austin has created a culture that is focused around community. They are committed to collaborations within Austin, with a focus on arts education and outreach programming. We have been honored to have been welcomed into that community and we enjoy exploring every aspect of the museum’s programming. In addition to working with world-renowned artists, the museum strives to foster the next generation of talents. The Contemporary’s educational branch invites children and students into the world of contemporary art through a variety of summer learning programs and school outreach. Our first collaboration with The Contemporary brought us to Galveston with video artist, Mark Lewis. Mark Lewis is a Canadian visual artist, now based in London, who makes short, non-narrative films that focus on the urban environment. Lewis has been working with film based installations since the mid-1990s. His films feature slow, gliding camerawork and often highlight urban architecture and infrastructure from unexpected viewpoints. In the past he has featured cities such as Beirut, London, Paris, Sao Paulo, and Toronto in his work. For his latest piece, he turned the camera on Galveston, Texas.The film was commissioned by the museum and explores Galveston’s complex, layered history which then becomes the backdrop and undercurrent for the film.
Behind the Scenes with Mark Lewis in Galveston
Later in 2017, Revelator signed on to produce another commissioned piece from The Contemporary, this time with German artist, John Bock. Bock’s “uncanny musical”, Dead + Juicy, was an exciting new challenge for the team at Revelator. The film combines an array of outlandish characters with abstract, interactive sculptures created by Bock. After documenting The Contemporary Austin’s Ai Weiwei installations, we partnered with TCA again to create a video for their Wangechi Mutu exhibit. Wangechi Mutu is an acclaimed contemporary artist, working between Nairobi and New York City. Mutu’s new solo exhibition at Laguna Gloria and the Jones Center featured her recent work in video, action painting, and sculpture. For the video, interviews with museum audiences and a curator’s commentary were shot to give context to Mutu’s work. Before going into the interviews, we wanted to have an idea of how they would cut together with the images of the exhibition. Our intention was to introduce the interviewees by seeing them onscreen, but then primarily use their voices in combination with images of Mutu’s art.
On February 1st, The Contemporary opened their inaugural exhibition for The Suzanne Deal Booth Art Prize presenting work by this year’s award recipient, Rodney McMillian. The prize will be awarded biennially by an independent advisory committee comprising of renowned curators and art historians. Each recipient will receive a solo exhibition at the museum’s downtown venue, the Jones Center, with the option to extend the exhibition to the museum’s fourteen-acre outdoor site, the Betty and Edward Marcus Sculpture Park at Laguna Gloria. A publication will also be released, focusing on the content of the exhibition. For McMillian’s exhibition, Revelator was contacted to create a video installation piece with the artist. The exhibit explores themes of race in American politics, the body, and architecture in relation to myth, memory, and historical texts. The video, entitled Untitled (neighbors), is on display at the Jones Center and will run as a part of the larger exhibition until August of this year.
Our most recent collaboration with The Contemporary involved a performance piece by artist Ragnar Kjartansson. Ragnar’s kinetic sound sculpture S.S. Hangover, 2013, consists of a hand-painted boat sailing on the lagoon, occupied by a formal party of six brass musicians performing ethereal music by Kjartan Sveinsson. It’s an incredibly touching, funny, and surreal experience, so check back soon to see a video documenting the project. We’d like to extend a big thanks to The Contemporary Austin for inviting us to be a part of their eclectic and collaborative spirit, and look forward to being a small part of bringing new work to our city.