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‘Bi’ the way


Charles Martin January 12th, 2011

Take a guided tour of the ‘Biennale,’ an ambitious, international art show spread across downtown.

2010 Creativity World Biennale

11 a.M. aND 3 p.M. fRiDaY-SatURDaY thROUGh JaN. 8 [aRtSpaCE] at UNtitlED 1 N.E. thiRD WWW.aRtSpaCEatUNtitlED.ORG 815-9995 fREE

City leaders rolled out the red carpet for innovators worldwide as hosts of November’s Creativity World Forum, which garnered more attention in the business, education and cultural sectors than it did in the general public.

Jon Burris, [Artspace] at Untitled executive director, hopes to change that by offering free guided tours of the “2010 Creativity World Biennale,” an ambitious international exhibition sprawling across several venues along downtown’s Automobile Alley.

The tours are offered Fridays and Saturdays before the exhibit takes its final bow on Jan. 8, 2011.

With a focus on new media, “Biennale” was the city’s contribution to the tradition of representatives from the 12 Districts of Creativity around the globe who assemble once a year and share ideas about utilizing innovation to make the world a better place. The invitational exhibition features artists from those districts, with a heavy emphasis on using cutting-edge technology to create art.

Because the project was so expansive, it couldn’t all fit into Untitled, 1 N.E. Third, so additional businesses donated space. A pair of playful interactive installations from Denmark are tucked in TAP Architecture, 415 N. Broadway. “Projected Poetry” utilizes motion sensors and projection to allow viewers to manipulate words on the wall, while “The Mejlby Stone” is a dazzling light show projected onto an artifact telling the story behind the inscription chiseled into the stone.

1101 N. Broadway contains a handful of different installations, including glowing cubes, a light show that reacts to viewers’ breath and a winding sculpture first created in a computer. Among the works at Untitled is Oklahoman Sarah Hearn’s multimedia project. Titled “An Unnatural History,” it plays with fact and myth as she documents an expedition to explore rare marine life.

The challenge of maintaining the exhibit for the two months following the forum is part of why Burris decided to give guided tours.

“Essentially, I am giving the tours that last approximately 20 to 30 minutes at each venue,” he said. “I discuss the art and talk a little about the artists.”

Several possible collaborations emerged during talks at the forum, such as a site-specific sculpture downtown. The 13 artists who attended the event were so impressed by the local community’s support of “Biennale” that they discussed future events.

“The artists asked if Untitled might be interested in organizing another new media exhibition,” Burris said. “They believe it might be an interesting concept if Oklahoma City, being in the ‘center’ of the U.S., could become a ‘center’ for new media art so that ideas about new, developing art get generated from the center of the country, instead of having to work inward from the coasts, as is typical.”

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