The Lamar Dodd School of Art will present a lecture by installation artist Bernie Lubell March 19 at 5:30 p.m. in Room S151 of the art school. The lecture, part of the Visiting Artist and Scholar Lecture Series, is free and open to the public.
“We wanted to bring Bernie to campus because he is a true interdisciplinary thinker and because of the comedic depth of his work,” said Adriane Colburn, assistant professor of art. “He is a mad scientist, engineer, performer, craftsman, poet and artist all wrapped up into one.”
A set designer and artist who holds a master’s degree in social psychology alongside his studies in physics and art, Lubell has been awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship, a Gottlieb Foundation grant and an award of Distinction for Interactive Art from Ars Electronica. His works include a Stone Age computer, a rainstorm of chaos and nostalgia, room-sized simulations of the human heart and a giant cooperative knitting machine.
His installations have been shown internationally since the early 1980s and are significantly dependent on audience participation. In his 2010 installation in the San Jose Institute for Contemporary Art, “Conversation of Intimacy,” for example, visitors could crank, rock and create sounds with the work and thereby access what the artist described as “the vast reservoir of knowledge stored in each of our bodies” and become active participants in the execution of the work.
Lubell’s lecture, “The Etiology of Innocence,” which begins with a detailed discussion of his room- sized heart simulation, is a tour of 13 of his interactive wood machines. He will draw on the 19th-century physiologies of Etienne Jules Marey and evolutionary theory, question the nature of time, explore the palpable contributions of touch and the importance of accidents and failure.
In addition to his lecture, Lubell will meet with graduate students from various studios and lead a workshop on failure.