ArtFiction: Ten Fictional Modernists from Texas Curated by Rino Pizzi

September 9, 2016 – October 22, 2016 John M. O'Quinn Gallery

ArtFiction is a collaborative project developed by Rino Pizzi and involves exchanges between writers, visual artists and actors/performers. This project addresses a broad range of cultural perspectives on the relations between art production and critical narratives and the effect of artists’ biographies on the public perception of their work. Ten writers were invited to write about ten fictional Texas artists supposed to be living and working any time between the 1940’s and the early 1980’s. Ten actual artists responded by creating work that could be attributed to the imagined artists, and ten actors sat for photographic portraits of the fictional personas. Ten actors studied the biographies and impersonated the artists for photo sessions in photographic styles current with their time and consistent with their personas. There are two distinct contexts for ArtFiction. One relates to the historical experience of art—its institutions, its established professional and intellectual cultures, its modes of production and circulation, and the conflicting claims in terms of value, authorship and historical relevance. The second is specific to the cultural landscape and the communities where the project will be presented. In the broad landscape of Texas modern art history, the narratives of the various fictional artists will create a symbolic counterpart to for the actual historical experience, which to date is still far from being fully researched and assessed.

Participating writers: Janis Bergman-Carton , Edward Carey, Annette DiMeo Carlozzi, Robert Faires, Pete Gershon, Saundra Goldman, Steve Harrigan, Kurt Heinzelman, Kirk Lynn, Mary Mikel Stump and Katie Robinson Edwards

Participating artists: Leon Alesi, Stella Alesi, Brett Brookshire, Jules Buck Jones, Rick Mansfield, Amy Morrow, Jana Swec, Liz Ward, Steve Wiman, Caroline Wright and Sydney Yeager

Participating actors: Jennifer Balkan, Florinda Bryant, Cami Calys, Teresa Elliott, Van Harrison, William Hoover, Jeff Mills, Amy Morrow, Nadine Mozon, Jason Phelps and William Tucker