PITTSBURGH CULTURAL TRUST PRESENTS
AN EXHIBITION EXPLORING GUNS IN OUR CULTURE
February 13 – April 26, 2015 | SPACE | 812 Liberty Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA—The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust announces the opening of UNLOADED, a multimedia group show that explores historical and social issues surrounding the availability, use, and impact of guns in our culture. The exhibition opens at SPACE in the Cultural District, Friday, February 13, 2015, and it is on view through April 26, 2015, with a closing reception during the April 24, 2015, Gallery Crawl.
The works in UNLOADED consider age, gender, race, mental health, political affiliations, and philosophical stances as factors surrounding our attitudes and uses of guns. They reflect a number of perspectives, though none endorse the gun as a means to an end. UNLOADED is organized by Susanne Slavick, who is the Andrew W. Mellon Professor of Art at Carnegie Mellon University.
“For over a decade, my work as an artist, and more recently as a curator, has dealt with violence, primarily the violence of war and its aftermath,” Slavick says. “UNLOADED shifts the focus to violence on the home front where guns play an enormous role in wounding the well-being of society, whether through the tragedies of domestic violence, suicide, or homicide.”
UNLOADED includes the sculpture Cross for the Unforgiven by Mel Chin that configures eight AK-47s as a Maltese cross. Frozen in perpetual opposition, they are rendered dysfunctional, unable to exact a drop of blood. With ironic sentimentality, the assemblage Baby’s First Gun by Renee Stout commemorates a developmental milestone, while James Duesing’s Dog—a projected video of a hot dog holding a gun—offers a wry rendition of machismo. For the Homeland series, Nina Berman travelled the country photographing military weapons displays, SWAT team training, and drills designed to prepare for hypothetical terrorist attacks, in order to portray the evolution of the “American security state.” Resistance to the power of guns is embodied in Vanessa German’s sculptures, signs, and spoken word performances and in Jessica Fenlon’s ungun, a video composed of degrading glitched images of instruments of violence.
The exhibition features work by local and national artists, as well as artists working in China and Germany. Artists include Lauren Adams, Nina Berman, Joshua Bienko, Casey Li Brander, Anthony Cervino, Mel Chin, Cathy Colman, Dadpranks, James Duesing, Jessica Fenlon, Vanessa German, Jinshan, Andrew Ellis Johnson, Jennifer Nagle Myers, Adrian Piper, Don Porcella, Susanne Slavick, Renee Stout, and Stephanie Syjuco.
For an exclusive interview with Susanne Slavick and Vanessa German, visit TreadingArt.com. Treading Art is a visual arts media partner for 2015 exhibitions being presented by the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust. Immerse yourself in stimulating dialogues and editorials on art and travel, glimpses into select enclaves, and a weekly listing of curated events. Treading Art’s events-based marketing service fosters business development through capturing new audiences, strengthening brands, and increasing patronage.
SPACE is located at 812 Liberty Avenue. Gallery Hours: Wed & Thurs: 11 a.m.–6 p.m.; Fri & Sat: 11 a.m.–8 p.m.; Sun. 11 a.m.–5 p.m. The gallery is free and open to the public. SPACE is a project of the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust. For more information about all gallery exhibitions featured in the Cultural District, please visit TrustArts.org.
Pittsburgh Cultural Trust
The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust has overseen one of Pittsburgh’s most historic transformations: turning a seedy red-light district into a magnet destination for arts lovers, residents, visitors, and business owners. Founded in 1984, the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust is a non-profit arts organization whose mission is the cultural and economic revitalization of a 14-block arts and entertainment/residential neighborhood called the Cultural District. The District is one of the country’s largest land masses “curated” by a single nonprofit arts organization. A major catalytic force in the city, the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust is a unique model of how public-private partnerships can reinvent a city with authenticity, innovation and creativity. Using the arts as an economic catalyst, the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust has holistically created a world-renowned Cultural District that is revitalizing the city, improving the regional economy and enhancing Pittsburgh’s quality of life. Thanks to the support of foundations, corporations, government agencies and thousands of private citizens, the Cultural Trust stands as a national model of urban redevelopment through the arts. For more information, visit TrustArts.org.