Studio Fuse is excited to present a studio visit and conversation with artist Audra Wolowiec Wednesday, August 4th, at her studio in Brooklyn.
Much of Audra Wolowiec’s work is related to sound, often considerering sound in relation to understanding language. At times Audra creates silence and absence where there was sound or content. In her audio piece, private space in a public time, Audra recorded Vito Acconci’s text, Public Space in a Private Time, read it aloud, and then edited out the middle of each spoken word. The result is a sound piece of breathy noises separated by short intervals of quiet. In a simlilar vein, for the Sound of Silence Audra has sanded smooth the Simon and Garfunkel single rendering it recording-less.
Often Audra’s work does not implicitly utilize sound but is indexical to it. In some of her sculptures she has created objects from spaces that hold, carry, or buffer sound. She cast the negative space within a megaphone and cast squares of sound absorbing foam in concrete, a material that has been used to reflect sound in military and industrial applications. During her studio visit, Audra also presented works on paper featuring shapes similar to these sculptures. The screened concrete prints seemed to function as supporting material for the sculptures or as quiet notes on their own.
In another project Audra clipped images of lips from a daily newspaper reconfiguring the mouth gestures as small collages. These pieces are meant to be read as musical sound scores as much as they are visual compositions. As scores, the compositions have been performed by singers, musicians and acted out by the artist. During the studio visit they were presented as visual context only. When collaborating with others Audra likes to give over as much control as possible to her collaborators laving the experiences and outcomes open-ended. The group discussed interpretation when discussing this work; “Where is the work in the instruction or in the interpretation of a given project?”
Audra is moving towards inviting or creating experiences in a space. There is a fine line between what is given by the artist and what is required of the viewer. The group discussed the delayed experience of the slow read of some of Audra’s work and questioned whether her approach involves a building up or paring down when conceiving and creating her projects. She responded that her process involves paring down her ideas and methods; she is aiming for a point that is just enough information to communicate an idea or feeling.
During the studio visit and discussion participants brought up a range of other topics and ideas that are related to communication such as reading micro-expressions, speech analysis, coding, ransom notes and transcription.
Audra Wolowiec’s multidisciplinary artwork mines themes of communication, voice, and ephemeral moments of the everyday. In recreating phenomena and trace effects, she explores the idea of a fading connection to create an elusive but shared experience.
Her work is often collaborative in nature and includes a series of performance scores that have been performed in New York and Los Angeles. She also works under Studio AND, a collaborative project with the artist and designer Niels Cosman. Together they have shown work at Flux Factory, Conflux Festival, and their project Urban Meteorites will be featured in Issue 38: Futures of Threshold Magazine by MIT Press.
Audra received an MFA in Sculpture from the Rhode Island School of Design in 2007 and BFA in Textiles from the University of Michigan in 2002. Her work has been shown at Art in General (New York), Pocket Utopia (Brooklyn), and the Museum of New Art (Detroit).