Joshua Bricker, M.F.A.
Visiting Assistant Professor (Temp)
I received my M.F.A. in Fine Art from Parsons School of Design. As a winner of the first Guggenheim YouTube Play open competition, I exhibited my work at Guggenheim Museums in New York, Berlin, Bilbao, and Venice. More recently, my video work was featured in UCLA's Game Art Festival held at the Hammer Museum; Game Video Art: A Survey, at IULM University in Milan, which was the largest exhibition of digital game based art ever held in Italy; and at the British Film Institute as part of Born Digital: Raised by the Internet. I have also been an artist-in-residence at the Wassaic Project in New York and contributed writings to artinprint.org and thevisionmachine.com.
As a multidisciplinary artist, my work manifests in various different mediums, including video, photography, collage, drawing, painting and sculpture. I use formal strategies of appropriation and détournement to investigate the military- industrial-media-entertainment-network. To that end, I frequently repurpose mundane cultural artifacts: toys, games, video, found objects, and photography in an attempt to use materials that embody the living tissue of history. My approach is an inductive process that is inextricably linked with my personal background as a soldier in the United States Air Force and a childhood spent in a small, working-class town in California dominated by pop culture, chain businesses and high school sports.
My video work embodies the egalitarian potential that virtual communal spaces provide. Every piece of footage and sound is intentionally culled from video sharing sites such as Vimeo, WikiLeaks and YouTube, highlighting their potential as cultural archives fit for artistic investigation. Constructed to emulate viral videos, my videos reject the conventional relationship of the static viewer consuming traditional media; instead, they act as a challenge to the highly regulated nature of consumer capitalism. Rather than viewing each of my works as discrete and finished, I view them as developing, unstable forms of research. Because I post all my work on YouTube — a fundamentally interactive and unstable platform — there is a real possibility for anyone to appropriate my work from the site, transform it and re-circulate it as a new work. Situated within this ideological framework, my videos and praxes can be seen as a meditation on cultural poaching, to use military parlance, as a “force multiplier”.
My latest body of work fuses drawing, painting and sculpture to investigate the nature of perception. By drawing into an impasto surface with a pencil I create hybrid objects that are equal parts drawing, low relief sculpture, and oil painting. On one level their hybridity functions as a kind of Rorschach test, but here the act of interpretation is harnessed to take one from a state of "recognizing" as Dewey described it, to one of "perceiving", making visible the epistemic nature of seeing. More plainly, sight is transformed from a passive, instrumental activity to an active, consciously aesthetic one. Revealed is the ruthless efficiency with which we navigate and categorize the visual world.
On another level, they are a response to overstimulation and its effects: adrift in the ever-present digital flow of information and images we have lost our tolerance for boredom and contemplation. Placed within this digital milieu, my violently boring analog objects offer a potentially nourishing reprieve by subtly rousing the forgotten and complementary pleasures of looking, boredom, and contemplation. Look. Be bored. Think.
- Art 1223 Black and White Digital Photography
- Art 1083 Color
- Art 3352 Digital Art Foundation
Education and Certifications
2010 MFA, Parsons School of Design, New York,NY
2007 BA, Fine Art, California State University Channel Islands, Camarillo,CA
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