[ISEA97] Artist Statement: Jessica Irish – Lap

Artist Statement

This installation questions the role of information technology, both in relation to the body, and for its intentional function as a means of communication. Within a darkened space, a chair and laptop computer are suspended in the center of the room, in a pre-morphed state. The walls surrounding the chair are images of telephone poles and connecting lines, which were manually stamped on the wall in binary code. The chair itself dates roughly to the beginning of the 20th century, and was modified to accommodate the insertion of the laptop computer: the seat compacted to the scale of the laptop, and the legs slightly crippled. The screen is positioned in an eroticized relationship to the chair, and runs an animated personal text loop. This eroticism is ambiguous in its relationship to the chair subject: it may be seen as an imposition of the technology itself, or an extension of the users desire. In reading the text from behind, the viewer is placed within a voyeuristic context, within this techno-antique hybrid state. The information that is questioned within the text loop is evidenced on the surrounding walls; the irony of the digital code, itself so unseen and immediate, manually labored into strings of information that connect or collapse upon themselves. jessirish.com/lap

  • Jessica Irish (U.S.A.) is a Los Angeles-based artist and educator working in digital, video and installation media. Her cur­rent work addresses issues of technology, corporality, gen­der, industry and information. Recent exhibitions include: The Fifth Annual Digital Salon, School of the Visual Arts, NY; Techno Seduction,The Cooper Union School of Art, NY; Stimus Transmit, Bay Area Video Coalition, San Fransico; and LA Freewaves, Griffith Contemporary at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles. She is a lecturer in the art department at University of California, Santa Barbara. http://jessirish.com/