Looming…Dripping…Listening… | Outvert Gallery | Ísafjördur Iceland | 2023
Diana Chester & Gary Markle:
2.12 – 24.12 2023
Artists Diana Chester and Gary Markle returned to Iceland to collaborate on an installation that expands their independent artistic research begun at a month-long artist residency at ArtsIceland at Ísafjörður in the summer of 2022.
Chester is an American sonic artist/educator based in Australia; Markle is a Canadian artist/ educator living in Estonia and working in the area of expanded fashion. Their point of intersection has evolved since the shared experience they had investigating the WestFjords region in 2022. In particular, the Littoral Zone, where land and sea meet, proved to be a fertile space of imagination that they both responded to deeply. Initial exploration from their time in Iceland and further reflection on their experiences have resulted in this collaboration at the Outvert Gallery.
In this installation, Intricate geophone recordings are housed in a rough hand-knit structure made from industrial plastic yarn. Evoking a subterranean shoreline conflated with a primitive sauna-like environment. Welcoming visitors to engage, listen, feel, and dwell “with(in).” A space to reflect on connections between boundaries, liminalities, of worlds which can and can not be seen and heard.
Listamennirnir Diana Chester og Gary Markle snúa nú aftur til Íslands til að vinna saman að innsetningu sem byggir á og útvíkkar listrannsóknir þeirra sem hófust á mánaðarlangri listamannadvöl hjá ArtsIceland á Ísafirði sumarið 2022.
Diana Chester er bandarískur hljóðlistamaður og kennari með aðsetur í Ástralíu; Gary Markle er kanadískur listamaður og kennari sem býr í Eistlandi og vinnur á sviði ,,þróaðrar“ tísku (expanded fashion). Sameiginlegir snertifletir vinnu þeirra hafa þróast í framhaldi af því að þau dvöldu samtímis við rannsóknir á Vestfjörðum sumarið 2022. Sérstaklega reyndist strandsvæðið, þar sem land og sjór mætast, vera frjósamt rými ímyndunarafls sem snerti þau bæði djúpt. Upphaflegar rannsóknir frá veru þeirra á Íslandi og frekari hugleiðingar sem byggja á reynslunni sem þau urðu fyrir, hafa nú skilað þessu samstarfsverkefni í Gallerí Úthverfu / Outvert Art Space.
Í innsetningunni eru flóknar landslagsupptökur geymdar í grófum handprjónuðum strúktúr sem búinn er til úr garni úr iðnaðarplasti. Þetta framkallar e.k. neðanjarðar-fjöruborð sem blandast saman við frumstætt gufubaðslegt umhverfi sem býður gesti velkomna til að taka þátt, hlusta, finna og dvelja innan þess. Rýmið er til að ígrunda tengsl milli landamæra, takmarkana, heima sem bæði er hægt og ekki hægt að sjá og heyra.
Gary Markle is a Canadian artist, researcher and educator based in Tallinn and Helsinki. He uses the lens of expanded fashion to examine narratives of (be)longing in more-than-human worlds. He holds a BFA in fashion design from Parsons School of Design, NYC and an MFA in textiles from NSCAD University, Halifax, Nova Scotia. He is an Associate Professor of Craft in the Textiles/Fashion Department at NSCAD. He is pursuing a Doctor of Arts in the School of Arts, Design, and Architecture at Aalto University. His practice-led design research investigates the question: Do we make craft or does craft make us?
Gary Markle is a Canadian-born artist living in Tallinn and Helsinki whose practice examines the intersection of cloth, costume and performance. These mediums inform Markle’s research/creation praxis focused on expanded fashion as a lens to contemplate aspects of metamodernism. This research/creation provides a site for solo explorations and collaborations with other artists, cultural communities and environments. Markle holds an MFA in Craft from NSCAD University, Halifax and a BFA in Fashion from Parsons School of Design, New York City. He has participated in several performances and gallery exhibitions, most recently contributing to the group exhibition: Pikem suhe – A Long Engagement at Kondas Centre, Viljandi, curated by Marta Konovalov. Markle is an Associate Professor of Fashion at NSCAD University and a Doctor of Arts candidate at Aalto University.
Chester is an internationally recognized digital media artist, educator and researcher using sound to explore more-than-human dimensions of understanding existence in the time of the Anthropocene. Their work uses sound, animation, and photography in conversation with ethnographic and archival materials, to convey ideas of pasts, presents, and futures. Driven by an intense desire to re-presence story and memory, Chester uses personal narratives as a method to voice to the world around them. To do so they fluidly explore multilingual, inter-environmental, and data generated soundscapes, finding rhythmic cadences and synergies from the natural world, and placing them in conversation with visual materials to compose “listening stories” that compel humans to think more deeply about inclusive ideas of place and belonging.
Current projects include the study of sound and culture focused on religion and the environment, the audio essay as a form of sonic scholarship, and new artistic methods and practices to sonify scientific data sets. Chester is the author of Sonic Encounters: The Islamic Call to Prayer, which gives a glimpse into the creative, methodological, and artistic implications of a 10-year research project making field recordings of (adhan) the Islamic call to prayer at mosques around the world. Chester’s broader body of work includes numerous journal articles, sonic compositions, and solo exhibitions in the United States, Australia, India, Sweden, Iceland, Mongolia, and the United Arab Emirates.
Chester is Senior Lecturer in Media and Communication at the University of Sydney and has held visiting academic positions at NYU’s TISCH School of the Arts and Duke University. Chester has been commissioned by the Smithsonian, been resident artist at Inter Arts Centre in Malmo, Sweden (2019), ArtsIceland in Ísafjörður, Iceland (2022), and Red Corner International Artist Residency in Mongolia (2023). Chester has been the recipient of a Sydney Environment Institute Collaborative Fellowship, has been named a Powerhouse Research Fellow at the Museum of Arts and Applied Sciences, and currently holds a visiting scholar appointment at the Oxford Center for Life-Writing and the University of Oxford.