Art professor’s work examines space and race
Colette Gaiter, associate professor of art, has created an interactive multimedia art installation, titled “Space | Race,” which is part of a traveling art exhibition, “Space Is the Place.”
The primary theme of the exhibition is outer space, but “Space Is the Place” also reflects issues related to the technological, environmental and sociopolitical forces affecting life on Earth in relation to space. In “Space | Race,” Gaiter links the space program with the civil rights movement, both of which occurred within the same time frame in the United States.
Describing her work, Gaiter writes, “Space and race—they seemed divergent and parallel at the same time and...had to share some common elements of our societal character. I started listing them. People hadn’t given up, despite huge setbacks. Each mission had a kind of religious fervor. Masses of people were involved, although a select few became heroes.”
Gaiter concludes by writing, “I made ‘Space | Race’ to challenge the idea that any point of view about the space program or race relations is definitive, neat, clean or unchangeable....My work...offers an opportunity to take some memories of the 1960s off the shelf...and look at them with new eyes.”
Museum-goers can see her work on a computer screen. Her interactive piece juxtaposes space and race events, such as the screen titled “marchwatch,” showing civil rights marchers and people watching a space launch.
The exhibition, sponsored by Independent Curators International, is being shown at the Bedford Gallery in Walnut Creek, Calif., through May 27, with later showings at the Scottsdale (Ariz.) Museum of Contemporary Art and the Hudson River Museum in Yonkers, N.Y. “Space Is the Place” is curated by Alex Baker, curator of contemporary art at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, and Toby Kamps, senior curator at the Contemporary Arts Center in Cincinnati.
View Gaiter’s work at [www.digadiva.net].