ArtGrams: Framing the Elephant

nicoleeboni

Photo: Instagram/nicoleeboni

We’re sad to see Karel Appel: A Gesture of Color go, but Appel’s The Elephant remains on our corner for a bit longer! In this month’s ArtGrams, we’re sharing your creative shots of this sculpture. Share your photos in and around the museum for a chance to be featured on the blog.

francoisehazel

Photo: Instagram/francoisehazel

kac906

Photo: Instagram/kac906

esoteric_soiree

Photo: Instagram/esoteric_soiree

caseycats

Photo: Instagram/caseycats

jenniferway

Photo: Instagram/jenniferway

rejanefe

Photo: Instagram/rejanefe

efstewart

Photo: Instagram/efstewart

quicoycoco

Photo: Instagram/quicoycoco

ArtGrams is a monthly series in which we feature our favorite Instagrammed pictures taken around or inspired by the museum. Each month, we’ll feature a different theme based on trends we’ve seen in visitor photos. Hashtag your images with #PhillipsCollection or tag your location for a chance to be featured.

STAFF SHOW 2016: ANNA E. KAMINSKI

In this series, Education Specialist for Public Programs Emily Bray highlights participants in the 2016 James McLaughlin Memorial Staff Show, on view through September 19, 2016.

Anna E. Kaminski, "code"

Anna E. Kaminski, “code”

Anna E. Kaminski

Anna E. Kaminski, Photo: Rhiannon Newman

Anna E. Kaminski, Photo: Rhiannon Newman

Tell us about yourself and your work.

As an artist and activist, my work stages elaborate scenes to create political narratives. Having started in photojournalism in the midst of the Iraq War, politics, religion, and human rights are central themes in my work. I work in the realm of photography, sculpture, installation, and performance. Through curating environments that have often lived at the intersection of photography and installation, I work specifically to make audiences uncomfortable and provide a space for questioning and contemplation about our collective roles on the political stage and within the capitalist spectacle.

My work aims to question the realities we know and complacencies we accept.  I have been involved in the activist community through organizations like CODEPINK, occupy, women against military madness, and worked in the realm of homelessness and housing at DC area shelters and policy organizations. These experiences deeply inform my work.  I am currently working on a long-term project re-envisioning power politics, issues of anonymity, and complacency in Washington, D.C. and also creating new work about drone warfare. Currently, I am one of the twelve individuals in the inaugural class at the S&R Foundation Fillmore Studios program for emerging artists in Washington, DC.

What do you do at The Phillips Collection? Are there any unique/interesting parts about your job that most people might not know about?

I just recently started at The Phillips Collection as a part-time Sales Associate in the gift shop. After working with various non-profits, I am so happy to finally be working in the realm of the arts again. I am so grateful to be working in a place that values artistic contributions and with some really creative and knowledgeable people.

Who is your favorite artist in the collection?

For many reasons I would have to say Georgia O’Keeffe. Her strength, independence, and resilience as a woman artist is something I deeply admire as a feminist. I think her work helped pave the way for women like myself in the arts. Ironically, I also value the work of Alfred Stieglitz, someone who broke O’Keeffe’s heart and I think provided so much emotion that is seen clearly in her work. Also perhaps more than certain images, I value his contributions to photography and determination in shaping it into a recognized art form.

What is your favorite gallery or space within The Phillips Collection?

My favorite space in the museum is the Laib Wax Room by Wolfgang Laib. For me, it is evocative of so much and can and does provide a symbolic core of the museum. For bees, the production of wax is essential to sustaining their colonies. I find strong parallels between the human need to produce and consume culture to sustain ourselves and a bee’s need to produce and consume honey. The single light bulb, an invention that has become such a marked symbol of the beginning of the modern era, illuminating the vibrant yellow wax, also illuminates the museums’ role as a cultural producer.

What would you like people to know about your artwork on view in the 2016 Staff Show (or your work in general)?

The three photographs hanging in the 2016 Staff Show are part of a larger series of six photographs shot with a 35 mm camera as an experiment for a performance piece that has yet to be performed.  The work draws inspiration from Post-humanism and meditates on technology’s complacency in the erasure of the human. Inspired by the binary code making up photographs from predator and killer drones as well as the binary code making up images of women in pornography, this series seeks to merge the themes of women under erasure as well as technology’s capacity to swiftly disappear us.

The 2016 James McLaughlin Memorial Staff Show is on view August 14 through September 19, 2016.

STAFF SHOW 2016: JEFFERY WHITELOW

In this series, Education Specialist for Public Programs Emily Bray highlights participants in the 2016 James McLaughlin Memorial Staff Show, on view through September 19, 2016.

Jeffrey Whitelow sCrMbLd

Jeffrey Whitelow, “sCrMbLd”

 

Jeffrey Whitelow

Jeff Whitelow

Jeffrey Whitelow, “School portrait”

What do you do at The Phillips Collection? Are there any unique/interesting parts about your job that most people might not know about?

I’m a Museum Assistant and also part of the AV department. It’s interesting to see exhibits go from initial planning phase to actual show. I also enjoy meeting living artist who are in the collection. The only drawback is that when I go to other museums, I start counting how many security rules people break.

Who is your favorite artist in the collection?

Leo Villareal.

What is your favorite gallery or space within The Phillips Collection?

The Rothko Room. What many people see as just solid color in the paintings is actually, when examined, a blend of color with depth and texture. Spending hours in the galleries changes your way of seeing.

What would you like people to know about your artwork on view in the 2016 Staff Show (or your work in general)?

The view is looking into a window of a hotel lobby that has reflective blinds that are also transparent. You can see straight through and behind you at the same time. I used photo editing to enhance some the colors. I had never tried to alter a photograph before but was pleased with the results. When I look at it I think about how in cubism, multiple perspectives are going on all at the same time. I also thought of Leo Villareal’s piece Scramble with LED lights constantly in motion. When people look at the work, some say it’s a kaleidoscope; others think water. I got a Gerhard Richter comparison. The most bizarre comment was from someone who thought it was taken at a strip club. It seems to serve as a Rorschach test for the viewer. It’s an intersection moment for me.

Anything else about your work you’d like to discuss?

The relationship between music and visual art has always been of interest. I might hear some music which makes me wonder what kind of visual image would go with it. This can also work in reverse.

The 2016 James McLaughlin Memorial Staff Show is on view August 14 through September 19, 2016.