Ray Rapp: I Spy
Press Release / November 21 - December 20, 2008
BLACK & WHITE GALLERY is proud to present I Spy by Ray Rapp – a new series of site-specific digital video assemblages exploring the illusory notion of one's 'seeing something' as a claim to one's 'knowing something'.
Taking as his starting point a popular English children’s game from the 1950’s “I Spy” where the players receive points for identifying specific people, places and objects seen in everyday life, Ray Rapp engages with subject matter – both referential and formal – around him.
Assemblages of images on LCD screens and electrical equipment extended through the space of the artwork create an incredible variety of structural shapes closely related to painting where the marks of the digital artifact become much like the marks and textures of paint.
Rapp records images with a variety of digital video cameras in existing light; they articulate multiple routine activities reflected in the titles: Serial Model, Serial Shopper, Boy Playing In Fire Hydrant, Boy Drinking Coca Cola, Park Ranger Dancing, Exercise. Interested in the repetitive movement associated with a particular activity freed from the surrounding environments where the activities take place, Rapp goes beyond the use of the video camera as the sole support and turns the video selections into simple animations. This allows the artist to experiment with yield and potency of background colors as well as the subtractive process of scenery-changes. The scenes become at once introspective and direct, revealing both the individual and the systemic aspects of daily activities. They invoke disorientating a-temporal spaces in which myriad possible narratives emerge.
Ray Rapp is an artist originally from the Bay Area who is now living and working in Brooklyn, NY. He has shown extensively in New York, as well as nationally and internationally. His work is included in the collections of The Brooklyn Museum, Musée du Petit Format, Belgium, and the Library of Congress. This is his first exhibition at Black & White Gallery.