’ Rose at upfor.digital



It seems that more and more galleries are being set up to showcase internet art and digital works. For example: Serpentine Gallery established its digital commission programme fairly recently, as has New Museum; The Current Museum of Art, a non-profit institution and exhibition space devoted to digital art launched its first exhibition earlier this month; Transfer Gallery in New York and Upfor Gallery in Portland both opened in 2013.

The latter is holding its inaugural online exhibition via the website upfor.digital. The current exhibition, ’ Rose is a group show that displays work by Morehshin Allahyari, Leah Beeferman, Kate Durbin, Faith HollandBrenna Murphy and Megan Snowe. It is curated by Valentina Fois and includes writing by artist Kimmo Modig. The works are thematically connected through conversations around online identity, the embodied experience of the digital space, and the tensions between ephemerality and longevity of content on the web. The exhibition is navigated in a linear format—your only choice is to click one the arrow at the bottom right-hand side of the page to be taken through the artists’ contributions one by one. An icon of a rose on the bottom left-hand side brings up a text blurb written by Modig. Modig’s pieces feel like a loose, colloquial, stream of consciousness style excerpts from a thought wall of possible responses to the work in question. Sometimes it connects to the artwork in obvious ways, at other times it drifts to something peripheral.

Brenna Murphy’s lattice-like digital constructions and morphed photographic wallpapers are accompanied by a female figure. Her visually compelling pieces create mythical labyrinths of digital depths. Kate Durbin’s walks through the city made up a la Yayoi Kusama and followed by a group of topless men who continuously take selfies. The performance is as comical as it is thought-provoking in the way it highlights the lack of balance between the depiction of male and female bodies, here demonstrated through selfie culture. Moreshin Allahyari creates a 3D conglomerate of things that are banned in Iran. The ability to interact with the model is a welcome interlude in the passive viewing experience. Faith Holland’s gifs are another favourite. They feature various digital screens zoomed in on skin, and being interacted with by truncated fingers and make up applicators—a close up of our increasingly intimate relationships with our devices.

Check out the full exhibition here.