Saturday, January 17, 2009

SPACES Artist in Residence Honors 50th Anniversary of “Day the Music Died”

SPACES Artist in Residence Honors 50th Anniversary of “Day the Music Died”

Leonardo Marz

(Monterrey, Mexico)

SPACES World Artists Program


December 17, 2008–February 11, 2009

Exhibition Dates:

January 30, 2009–April 3, 2009

Opening Reception:

Friday, January 30, 2009 @ 6–9 p.m.

Free admission, free parking

Cleveland, OH, January 15, 2009 – In a culture so steeped in commercialism that originality often gets buried under remakes, cover songs and pre-fab models, what is the artist’s role? SPACES World Artist Leonardo Marz (Monterrey, Mexico) confronts this sticky issue in three separate projects during his eight-week Cleveland residency.

Leonardo Marz is a master collaborator. Using a variety of resources and tools, such as video, plastic sheeting, popular music and kitsch DIY products, Marz responds to the work of both peer artists and faceless companies. Each of Marz’s individual projects rely on the act of consuming someone else’s art to make a new product. His work rethinks how he, as an artist, and the public engage with the media, commercial products, art, the music industry and fame.

Marz co-opts Juan Pablo Macias’ The Spit Machine, 2006 in his own piece entitled The Spit Machine Returns, 2008 . One video projection screen features Macias spitting at the camera while Marz’s video on the opposite screen shows himself as the recipient of Macias’ saliva. Along the same lines Marz’s Yoku Yatta = よくやった!= great job! = sounds like /yo-koo-ya-taa/ uses DIY art projects that proclaim anybody and everybody an artist. This work also incorporates the work of Mark Nakamura, whose hand made inspirational posters are meant to be hung in the studios of his fellow artists. Marz will have the poster in the exhibition space as inspiration for his assemblage of DIY art projects thereby joining the two projects into a single collaborative venture. These two installations open on Friday, January 30, 2009.

Later in his residency, Marz will work with three local musicians to create In the Airplane Over the Snow, an homage to the upcoming 50th anniversary of the tragic plane crash that killed Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, The Big Bopper and the pilot. On February 3, between 12:55 a.m. and 1a.m. (the exact date and approximate time frame that the plane crashed within minutes of takeoff), Marz and the musicians will hold a private recording session in the gallery. The artist will remix chopped loops from the legendary celebrities’ hit songs and the musicians will respond to the music being played simultaneously. By splicing together the most popular music of Holly, Valens, The Big Bopper and the local musicians’ response to the originals, Marz is able to inject himself into the music, mythology and commercial product of these stars. Visitors are invited to view the “evidence” from the private performance later in the morning on the same day (the installation will be on view through April 3). The recording produced by Marz and the musicians will be available shortly thereafter.

Marz comments, “Much of my work is presented as an assembly of post-process relations. I am fascinated by the phenomenon of the object disappearing and becoming the support for further works/processes.” The artist explores the blurring between the producer and consumer by illustrating how we participate in these interchangeable roles. In a culture that places high value on streamlining, efficiency, and mass appeal, where do we locate the individual within our society? Is the individual the producer, the consumer or both? When does the producer disappear into our greater culture?

Marz has won numerous awards, including Young Creators Grants in 2006 and 2008 in Mexico and the Fundación/Colección Jumex grant. His work was included in the Emergency Biennale in Chechnya (part of the Istanbul Biennale 2007), and he has exhibited throughout Mexico. His art has also been shown at the Museo de Las Americas in Denver and Chelsea Gallery Space in New York.

SPACES gratefully acknowledges the National Endowment for the Arts and the Nimoy Foundation for their generous funding of this art residency.

Also on View at SPACES


Eileen Doktorski presents Oblivion (on view January 30 through February 27, 2009), an installation that examines the current state of consumer culture through juxtaposition of the forces of nature versus the will of man.

Following Doktorski’s SPACELab exhibition, Yoshiko Kanai transforms the experimental project space into an installation that explores emotions connected to the familial archetype and the inevitability of change experienced in the life of an immigrant. Kanai’s installation, Listen to Utopia, is on view March 6 through April 3, 2009.

Main Exhibition:

SPACES recognizes the talents of artists in our backyard, side yard, front yard, and driveway in Flash Forward (on view January 30–April 3, 2009), an exhibition featuring Northeast Ohio college graduates who jump creative fences in the contemporary art scene while continuing to live and work in the region.

Related Events:

Friday, January 30, 2009, 6–9pm

Opening Reception

Free and open to the public