Claudia Hart has been active as an artist, curator and critic since 1988. She creates virtual representations that take the form of 3d imagery integrated into photography, animated loops, and multi-channel animation installations.
The Alices (Walking) A Sculptural Opera As Fashion Show In Three Acts
Eyebeam Center for Art and Technology
March 6,7, 8, 2014
To celebrate the Armory Show at Piers 92 and 94 in NYC
A piece by Claudia Hart
Produced by: The IMC Lab and Gallery
Ellen Sandor / art(n)
The School of the Art Institute of Chicago
With Music by Edmund Campion
Featuring a performance by Mikey McParlane With wearable art-directed by: Claudia Hart and Vincent Tiley, and created by Claudia Hart, Sophie Barrett-Kahn, Mikey McParlane, Negin and Harold Moss / FlickerLabs, Vincent Tiley And Cuisine by Claudia Hart, Michele Thursz, Carrie Elston Tunick
Augmented Production: IMC Lab +Gallery Responsive Video: Nadav Assor
With Special Performances and live art and music also by Edmund Campion, Cassandra Jackson and Miao Jiaxin
And the Alices! - Jane Jerardi, Natalia Nicole Nicholson, Mikey McParlane, Yaloo Pop, Christine Shallenberg and Amanda Van Valkenberg
The Alices (Walking)is a sculptural opera in the guise of an experimental fashion show about the breakdown between the natural and the technological and the melding of identities between machines, people, animals and plants. It is a performance about cloning, duplication, mutation and transformation, and therefore about death and rebirth and the ambivalent desire by human beings for eternal life.
The Alices Walking emerges from a piece developed in workshop and performed live at The Arts Club of Chicago on June 18, 2013 and curated by Janine Mileaf. It was produced with funding by The Illinois Council of the Arts and Ellen Sandor and was conceived of as an installation piece - a tableau vivant cum opera - which has at its center two works of art that both use and also comment upon the culture of high technology.
The first of these objects are the Nue Morte, a special porcelain dishes using custom-designed augmented reality software that allows a viewer to see a perversely erotic illusion: a naked woman lying across one’s food. Viewed through an “augmented” app installed on smartphones, the tossing and turning body of the Nue Morteevokes early Surrealist cinema, here overrun by “artificially intelligent” cockroaches - an intentionally paradoxical contradiction in terms.
The second work is a piece of conceptual software created by designer Alon Zouartez. Zouartez’s Spinabook ware takes an original text and legitimate plagiarism, substituting words with their synonyms to create a legal but unethical clone.
In The Alices, Claudia Hart has spun a short excerpt of Lewis Carroll's original Alice in Wonderland, to create a text that slowly devolves as it is repetitively cloned. After six variations, the excerpt comes to mean its opposite - a succinct demonstration of the perversion of truth that occurs when things “go viral” on our public media.
The celebrated composer Edmund Campion, co-director of the Center for New Music and Technology at U.C. Berkeley, composed a special score for the Hart’s spun Alices. Campion performed his work on the Arts’ Club Steinway with denoument vocalization by Mikey McParlane, countertenor and contemporary performance artist, using custom feedback audio-software designed by Campion. The music was accompanied by a living “performance sculpture” featuring six cloned Alices consuming augmented reality “live” projections: illusions that appear fantastically on the Nue Morte augmented reality dishes.
The performance was completed by a fantastic dinner, in which the audience was served parti-colored mixed drinks, salads made from wild flowers, tiny roasted pigeons, and ENORMOUS mushroom along with tiny tiny baby peas.
After graduating from New York University with a BA cum laude in art history in 1978, Claudia Hart studied architecture at the Columbia University Graduate School of Architecture and received a MS in1984. She then practiced as an art and architecture critic. In 1985-86, she was Associate Editor of ID (then Industrial Design Magazine) where, along with Senior Editor Steven Skov Holt, she redeveloped it into its present form, ID: the Magazine of International Design.
Hart has published her critical writings widely, and then went to Artforum magazine where she served as Reviews Editor until 1988. She continues to write critically but in the academic context, presenting papers at the past three College Art Association conferences with a new paper, “Baby doll: Boys and Their Virtual Toys,” scheduled for the National Womens Studies conference in Denver this November. She continues to publish theoretical papers in academic journals such as Media-N, the New Media Caucus journal, Bad Papers and Byte Shark.
In 1988, Hart showed multi media work with the Pat Hearn Gallery in New York, moving from critical to artistic practice. At that time, she exhibited paintings and installations inspired by the visionary architecture from the French Enlightenment. After receiving an NEA Fellowship in 1989, she shifted her practice to Europe where she spent ten years and received numerous fellowships, including the Kunstfond Bonn, Stiftung Kulturfonds, the Stiftung Luftbrueckendank Grant, the Arts International Foundation Grant, the Kunstlerhaus Bethanian grant and two fellowships from the American Center in Paris.
In Europe she exhibited widely with galleries and museums. Her work from this time has been collected by the Museum of Modern Art, NY; The Metropolitan Museum, NY; The MIT List Center, Cambridge; The Vera List Center for Art and Politics, New School, New York; The San Diego Museum of Contemporary Art; the Museum of Contemporary Art, Berlin; and the Sammlung Goetz Museum, Munich.
Hart returned to New York in 1998 to publish two illustrated books, originally catalogs for her exhibitions. She wrote, illustrated and designed A Child's Machiavelli, published by Abbeville, Penguin and Nautilus, and Dr. Faustie's Guide to Real Estate Development, published by Nautilus. Hart then studied animation at NYU's Center for Advanced Digital Applications with the intention of animating her illustrated books. Instead she developed a body of work consisting of 3D-animated installations that she thinks of as hybrids between structuralist films and temporal paintings.
Her contemporary art consists of designs for sublime landscape gardens often containing expressive and sensual female bodies meant to interject emotional subjectivity into what is typically the overly-determined Cartesian world of digital design. Her work has been seen at various public institutions including PS 1 and PS 122, biennial Zero1 in San Jose. and had the first one-woman show presented at the Wood Street new media galleries in Pittsburgh.
Hart is currently an Associate Professor in the department of Film, Video, New Media and Animation at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. She is represented by bitforms gallery, NY. Her new works are part of The Sandor Family Collection, Chicago, the Teutloff Photo + Video Collection, Cologne, and the Borosan Collection, Istanbul, among others.