Andrew Edlin Gallery is pleased to present To Many Men Strange Fates Are Given, a sculpture and animated film by Brent Green. Exhibition dates are May 5 – June 23, 2012. It is the gallery’s second solo exhibition for the artist/filmmaker who recently debuted his first feature-length film, Gravity Was Everywhere Back Then, to museum, gallery and festival audiences around the US, Europe, South America and Australia.
Continuing his tradition of applying new technologies to his staunchly DIY, American folk roots, To Many Men Strange Fates Are Given is built with deconstructed LCD screens, an elaborate welded steel frame, polarized lenses and sets of delicate machine-milled wooden audio horns, all serving as a platform for a new hand drawn three dimensional animation displayed on two layered panels simultaneously, harkening back to the tradition of animating on glass. The animation can only be seen when the viewer looks through the polarized lenses located at three stations on the sculpture. Otherwise, Green’s film is invisible.
The story centers around the tale of the woman who sewed the spacesuit for Laika, the dog sent into space by the Russians in 1957. Pulsating with the intensity of the artist’s own signature narration, the sound track articulates themes of progress and insight, of invention, wonder and faith. To Many Men echoes the ideas of British poet and novelist Stevie Smith (1902-1971) and former Soviet Premier Nikita Krushchev (1894-1971), awakening these seminal voices in 20th century art and politics with a new message of hope and expectation as seen through the eyes of Green’s singular contemporary artistic voice.
Brent Green’s visual universe is distinct, crossing through both the film and art worlds. His Appalachian upbringing has decidedly influenced his new take on an American Gothic sensibility that relates as much to Walt Whitman and Bob Dylan as it does Joseph Cornell. To Many Men demonstrates both the technical and formal progress in Green’s artistic journey and reflects the increasing deftness with which he handles humanistic themes in his storytelling, carving out from his self-taught roots a new and sophisticated handmade aesthetic, sustained by a stark political agenda that runs through his lyrically composed allegories.
To Many Men Strange Fates Are Given was completed while in residence at the Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center (EMPAC) in conjunction with the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (Troy, NY). To Many Men premiered at the New Frontiers exhibition at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival (Park City, UT) and will be exhibited in conjunction with the San Francisco Film Society in Fall 2012.
Brent Green (b. 1978) is a self-taught animated filmmaker living and working in the Appalachian hills of Pennsylvania. A 2005 Creative Capital grantee, Green’s sculptures, films, live performances and drawings have been exhibited in venues ranging from rooftops across the globe to renowned art institutions such as MoMA and The J. Paul Getty Center. Recent solo shows of his work include large scale installations at Site Santa Fe, the Berkeley Art Museum and DiverseWorks Art Space (Houston, TX) along with various stagings of his last feature film project, Gravity Was Everywhere Back Then, including exhibitions at the ASU Art Museum (Tempe, AZ), Art Without Walls (Louisville, KY) and Andrew Edlin Gallery (New York). Live performances of Gravity were held at The Kitchen (New York), The Boston Museum of Fine Arts, The Hammer Museum, the Walker Art Center, The Indianapolis Museum of Art and the Wexner Center for the Arts, to name just a few. His next feature film project, Anatomical Maps With Battle Plans, will interpret the mythic tale of his grandfather in collage, live action and animated form.