Artist Duo JEFF&GORDON present new video and sculptural work plus a performance at Beyond Baroque Literary/Arts Center, Venice, CA
Reception: Saturday, May 5, 2012, 5-8 pm
( ( ( ( Performance at 6:30 pm ) ) ) )
Exhibition: May 5 to May 21, 2012
Open Friday 11 am - 6 pm, Saturday & others by appointment
What's in a name? That which we call a NASCAR driver by a slightly different name would be an artist group. Such is the case with JEFF&GORDON, the artist duo comprised of Jeff Foye and Gordon Winiemko; and Jeff Gordon, the charismatic NASCAR driver (#24). The ampersand—the symbol for the Latin word for “and”—is all that separates the artist duo from the driver. Such a small detail can be easily overlooked, or so it would seem by the number of Jeff Gordon NASCAR fans who mistakenly “like” the artists’ Facebook page. Used with Deceit examines public identity and fan culture; JEFF&GORDON has taken these incidents of mistaken online identity as a point of departure, appropriating Jeff Gordon Youtube videos posted by fans and altering them in various ways to conflate the artists with the titular subject. Into NASCAR video game footage featuring Jeff Gordon's car, the artists insert themselves driving around the block multiple times in defiance of a "no vehicular cruising" law; into a clip of the race car driver and his mother cooking with a family recipe on the Rachael Ray show, they insert themselves having a curious encounter with a fried egg; into a fan video of Jeff Gordon winning a race, they insert themselves performing everyday tasks while wearing identical Jeff Gordon masks. JEFF&GORDON will ultimately deposit these (and more) clips back onto Youtube; this exhibition will be their public premiere.
Beyond Baroque is one of southern California’s leading literary/arts centers. It houses a theater, an art gallery and a bookstore specializing in poetry and alternative writing (the perfect venue for an exhibition that examines the ampersand). The center is based in Venice’s former town hall; the building has a long history of community interaction and JEFF&GORDON will tie all of Beyond Baroque’s areas of interest together with one exhibition including sculpture, video installation and a performance in the center’s theater on the evening of the opening.
Winiemko further explains the group’s inspiration for this new work: “Being mistaken for Jeff Gordon [the driver] on Facebook pointed us towards working with the arbitrariness of identity. We just happen to be mistaken with a race car driver. And in this 15-minutes-of-fame world, who gets to use the identity of Jeff? And Gordon? And JEFF&GORDON?”
Exhibition curated by Carleton Christy