Our Memories @ Naumburg Bandshell in Central Park

Date: April 20th, 2018
Time: 10 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Location: Naumburg Bandshell, Central Park (~70th Street and mid-park), New York, NY, 10019
Filming All Day
Press Release PDF Our Memories in Central Park
Our Memories is an evolving audience participatory installation. Recognizing the need to record one’s personal experience, these neuron inspired sculptures contain cavities in which the participants place a color-coded “memory stone”. Viewers recall a powerful memory and then share the memory by depositing it in a sculpture. The “memory stones” are color-coded into six emotive categories: joy, anger, love, sadness, fear, and surprise. New sculptures are being created for the Naumburg Bandshell and Thomas Paine Park installations and they will be exhibited along with the sealed Governors Island sculptures. The Our Memories project is both a collective memorial, made complete by thousands of individual memories from people all over the world, and an experience that connects us to our core and to one another.

After the Central Park event on April 20th, the seven filled sculptures will be moved to Thomas Paine Park in Downtown Manhattan for a 10 month installation and Opening on May 4th.

Special thanks to the NYC Parks’ Art in the Parks program, and to the contributions of private donors in making this exhibition possible.

For over 50 years, NYC Parks’ Art in the Parks program has brought contemporary public artworks to the city’s parks, making New York City one of the world’s largest open-air galleries. The agency has consistently fostered the creation and installation of temporary public art in parks throughout the five boroughs. Since 1967, NYC Parks has collaborated with arts organizations and artists to produce over 2,000 public artworks by 1,300 notable and emerging artists in over 200 parks. For more information about the program visit www.nyc.gov/parks/art.

Our Memories @ Art Park 21 Proposal on view Open Space Visitor Center

Exhibition: Art Park 21 Finalist Proposals.
Date: March 3rd – April 22nd, 2018.
Location: Open Space Visitor Center in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Art Park 21 Website

Our Memories Proposal Rendering

A 21st Century Art Park
The AP21 team is in the process of establishing a 21st-century art park in the Albuquerque – Santa Fe corridor.  A key element in the groundwork for establishing this park will be a temporary exhibit of multiple outdoor installations that fit the theme of the park.  The park will feature eco-centric installations that take 21st-century views of what could be possible in an art park, and of our relationship with our environment.  Installations that are the product of collaboration between one or more artists/artisans and an engineer/scientist/researcher/technician will be welcome, as would artworks that make use of new knowledge, materials, techniques or technology and place a value on a sustainability.  Potential themes and scopes of artworks could include those that incorporate atmospheric elements such as wind, rain, sunlight, humidity; artworks that incorporate plant life, recycled or repurposed elements; artworks that generate electricity; interactive artworks; artworks that explore the interface between three-dimensional art and architecture.

The Open Space Visitor Center in Albuquerque has invited the Art Park 21 team to exhibit drawings and renderings of proposed temporary art installations consistent with the theme of the envisioned art park. Through a call to artists which was juried by Nancy Zastudil, we have a body of fourteen proposals by twelve artists which will be on display at the center March 3 through April 22, 2018. Opening reception is March 3, 2-4 pm. All of the concept proposals that are included in the exhibit will be published in a catalog to accompany the exhibit and on the ArtPark21.org site. Proposals that are approved by the Open Space Advisory Board will be eligible to be realized on the grounds of the center in 2019.

Our Memories at Art Park 21 
Our Memories at Art Park 21 manifests as an audience participatory outdoor installation of translucent, neuron-inspired sculptures that contain cavities for participants to place color-coded “memory” stones.

The acrylic memory stones are classified into six primary emotions: joy, anger, love, sadness, fear, and surprise. Contributors transform the sculptures by recalling a powerful memory and then depositing its representative stone in a sculpture. The sculptures will take on the colors of the collective “memories” and transform as the piece comes to life and stores more memories. This action is intended to visually incite participants to consider the concept of the interior self, particularly how our experiences and memories are encoded and stored. This active act of recollection not only stirs up personal memories, it also physiologically generates a new “collective memory”. The work is both a collective memorial, made complete by hundreds of individual memories, and an experience that connects participants to their present moment and to one another. The larger vision is to add new and distinct memory sculptures with each installation, ultimately collecting emotions and memories from people all over the world.

Our Memories and Art Park 21 are both committed to innovative community building that connects people to their surrounding environment and to one another, and it is my belief that this collaborative memory making experience will leave a lasting impression on park visitors.

Fundamental Filaments in Sculptural Form, February 2018

Author: Excerpts from prior published articles
Publication: Cardiovascular Diagnosis and Therapy
Published: February, 2018
Article PDF: Fundamental Filaments in Sculptural Form
Article link: http://cdt.amegroups.com/article/view/17315/18607

Judith Modrak’s art has focused on the hidden, yet deeply experienced aspects of the human condition. Her subjects—the origin of emotions and instincts, the location of memories, and the cellular anatomy of the brain—are esoteric and often intangible concepts that she seeks to translate into three-dimensional, emotive forms. The interior landscapes that are revealed during unguarded moments or hidden deep in the recesses of the brain drive her work, their mysteries a continuous source of inquiry. Modrak’s work is a series of investigations—the texture of memory, the repetitive nature of experience with age, the physical experience of vulnerability or mortal decline. Jungian archetypes, folk stories, and creation myths converge with the biochemistry of neurons and neurotransmitters. Her sculptures are often hauntingly familiar to their audience; by mirroring their beholders with a pronounced stance or curve, they offer deeply human embodiments of psychological and emotional states.Within this realm of anthropomorphic, three-dimensional form and gesture, deeply tactile surfaces mimic the encoding of memory and experience. All of the sculptures are formed by hand, clay, and plaster, imagining the obscured terrain of the human experience (Figures 1,2).

Figure 1 Familial Memory and Family of Memories, 2016—investigate the nature of memory formation and family dynamics. 44”×28”×30”, plaster cast and oil; 37”×36”×24”, plaster cast, pigment and oil on plaster base.

Figure 2 Here and ThereHere and There, 2015—amplifies and reimagines bipolar disorder from a neuron’s perspective. 88”×12”×14”, plaster cast, pigment and oil on wood base.

The great neuroscientist Santiago Ramon y Cajal once described the human brain as “a world consisting of a number of unexplored continents and great stretches of unknown territory.” Modrak reflects on Cajal’s view of the brain’s unexplored continents, asking herself what these hidden parts of ourselves look like and what they tell us about our internal composition and one another.

Our Memories, an interactive audience participatory sculptural installation on Governors Island, addressed the nature of memory and experience through the creation of a collective memorial piece.

Our Memories first unveiled in the fall of 2016 in the form of an outdoor installation composed of three translucent sculptures involving the audience in unexpected ways. Recognizing the need to record one’s personal experience, this neuron inspired, humanesque sculptures contained cavities in which the participants placed a color-coded acrylic “memory” stone. The viewer recalled a powerful memory and then shared the memory by depositing it in a sculpture. Memories were color-coded into six primary emotive categories: joy, anger, love, sadness, fear and surprise. The sculptures took on the colors of the collective “memories” and transformed as the piece came to life and stored more “memories”. The larger vision is to add new memory sculptures with each installation, ultimately collecting emotions and memories from people all over the world (Figures 3-7).

Figure 3 Our Memories sculpture, 2016—explores the recollection and storage of personal and collective memories. 54”×22”×24” and 60”×16”×24”, fiberglass resin casts on metal bases.

Figure 4 Our Memories sculpture close-up, 2016—explores the recollection and storage of personal and collective memories. 54”×22”×24” and 60”×16”×24”, fiberglass resin casts on metal bases.

Figure 5 Our Memories on Governors Island, 2016—visitors adding color-coded memory stones to the empty sculptures. 54”×22”×24” and 60”×16”×24”, fiberglass resin cast on metal base.

Figure 6 Our Memories on Governors Island, 2016—sculptures with memory stones storing personal and collective memories. 54”×22”×24” and 60”×16”×24”, fiberglass resin cast on metal base.

Figure 7 Our Memories on Governors Island, 2016—sculpture filled with thousands of collective memories. 54”×22”×24” and 60”×16”×24”, fiberglass resin cast on metal base.

About the artist

New York sculptor Judith Modrak is fascinated with scientific advances that increase our understanding of the mechanisms that trigger and regulate thought, action, memory and feelings. Her sculpted figurative forms, embedded with messages of hope and despair, seek to decode inner psychological and emotive worlds as she tackles universal issues of empathy, cognition, aging and mental illness. Her work has exhibited in solo and group shows in galleries and museums throughout the United States including Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions, the Trenton Art Museum, Point Park University, the Palm Beach Art Armory, the Woodstock Museum, the Hartnett Gallery and is represented in many private collections.

Modrak has received a chashama/National Endowment for the Arts grant and two gold medals in sculpture from the National Association of Women Artists, among other awards. Her work has been featured and reviewed in literary, scientific and news publications, including The Seaside Times, The Gothamist, SciArt, Sculpture Magazine, and The Pittsburgh-Tribune. For more information about Modrak and her work, visit www.judithmodrak.com and Instagram/Facebook @JudithModrak.


Acknowledgements

Photographs of sculptures in studio taken by Metin Oner; Installation photos of Our Memories on Governors Island taken by Judith Modrak.


Footnote

Conflicts of Interest: The author has no conflicts of interest to declare.

Cite this article as: Modrak J. Fundamental filaments in sculptural form. Cardiovasc Diagn Ther 2018;8(1):118-120. doi: 10.21037/cdt.2017.10.10