Complexity in Clear View at D+M Biennial
In an eye-opening exhibition, grad students in Digital + Media investigated a wide range of social and scientific phenomena.
Make Your Own Dream Girl, a multimedia installation by Joon June Yoon MFA 20 DM, offered a sensorily overwhelming critique of how women are objectified in online environments and communities.
In the field of space exploration, the overview effect refers to a shift in thinking and feeling that some astronauts experience in observing Earth from outer space—an overwhelming realization of their place in a much larger universe.
In Digital + Media's 2019 biennial exhibition, 16 grad students investigated this idea through a provocative collection of time-based, interactive and sculptural work.
On view earlier this month at Sol Koffler Graduate Student Gallery, Overview: objects are closer than they appear illustrated how the program's emphasis on multidisciplinary research manifests across diverse creative practices.
For instance, in the two-channel video installation Magnified Observations, Gonzalo Galetto MFA 20 DM invited viewers to concentrate on two slowly unfolding microscopic phenomena, while Elise Stephens MFA 20 DM (who curated the show with Ji Yoon Jen Chung MFA 20 DM) shared an interactive, audiovisual recording of a coal mine.
First-year students Ollie Rosario MFA 21 DM and Xinyu Li MFA 21 DM conveyed botanical themes (among other things) in distinct ways, with Rosario's On Settings projecting slowly unfolding natural imagery, while Li's Halfway to Nowhere juxtaposes clearly stated information and amorphous, abstract animations.
By contrast, other artists explored (semi-)private beliefs and behaviors as belonging to larger cultural systems.
In showing her ongoing Death Messages project, Hannah Suzanna MFA 21 DM invited guests to anonymously share their thoughts and feelings about mortality and then presented them as a sentimental network.
Joon June Yoon MFA 20 DM also set viewers' sights on darker subject matter with Make Your Own Dream Girl, a multiscreen deluge of text and images depicting how women are dehumanized in online communities and across media.
Though her piece stood out for its critical social commentary, it also contributed to the biennial's central goal of magnifying and amplifying the stuff of everyday life that goes unnoticed.
Since opening last fall, the spatial audio studio above the library has helped advance sound studies at RISD.
Students in a fall semester Digital + Media studio explore the potential and pitfalls of new technologies.
Digital media fellow Rocio Delaloye MFA 16 DM helps the RISD Museum reach new audiences with bold creative content.