Superpositions and Hyphens

One of the beautiful things artists do is open up this doorway of thought that invites us, compels us, inspires us, challenges us to think about our way of being in the world, our way of looking at the world, our definition of ourselves as it relates to the world and to each other.

Sometimes perhaps we stride through that doorway eagerly. Other times maybe we’re sucked through it by forces beyond our control or comprehension.

We think, just perhaps, some of the artists on our coming season will create both scenarios. It’s an interesting idea, this concept of self-definition, of connection to space and time, to memory and to other people.  It’s already happening to us as we’ve launched our upcoming season and begun talking to each other and audiences about what is to come.

Very few humans would define themselves as one thing at one time.  We are all many things simultaneously, constantly (hopefully) shedding preconceptions and habits and developing new ones as we learn and experience new things.

Artists are very good at shaping things– at inhabiting more than one concept, one artistic medium or expression at a time.

Through art we find our personal and collective superposition—that concept of a combination of two or more physical states to form a new physical state.

Why shouldn’t art make us think in terms of quantum physics like this? Art often agitates us in more than one state of being—often inspiring simultaneous emotional and intellectual reactions.  It’s marvelously esoteric to think about, and yet also a concept that will come to life visually and viscerally when we present the L.A. solo debut of Japanese sound artist Ryoji Ikeda, whose piece superposition uses the concepts of data—of the literal 1s and 0s that make up digital communication and explodes it into a source of poetic thought comprised of sound and visuals.

Ryoji_Superposition (4)

This train of thought also leads us to Art Speigelman, who in his presentation Wordless! will use words and music to explore the evolution and power of the graphic novel format.

Art has described himself as a hyphen between words and visuals. A thing that simultaneously creates space between two words and also connects them to form another word with a new or different meaning—a superposition.

As a presenter, that’s an apt description of us too. We hold that space between an artist and the audience that experiences it. At the same time, that space is what builds the bridge that connects the two, creating in that moment its own unique position in time.

And there are many such moments to come. We’re looking forward to it.

Join us.