Collar Works (NY), Open Call for Entries: Unseen

Collar Works (NY), Open Call for Entries: Unseen

Deadline: September 14th, 2019

From their call: The torrent of centuries rolling over the human race has continually brought new perfections, the cause of which, ever active though unseen, is found in the demands made by our senses, which always in their turns demand to be occupied. -Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin

We have all felt unseen and marginalized at some point. We overshare online to counteract our fear of going unnoticed, posting image after image, counting our tokens of approval. Our subconscious craves this positive reinforcement, and so, we post more. We choose the most flattering beach vacation photos. We glide through museums and stop just long enough to capture ourselves in front of a masterpiece. We seek validation through our social media posts. Yet, the complex algorithms that reinforce our behavior remain hidden to us. Our fear of being unseen makes us susceptible to manipulation.

The human eye can only perceive light at wavelengths between 390 and 750 nanometers, a range far narrower than many animals. Our conscious mind can process 40 bits of information per second. Meanwhile, our subconscious can process around 400 billion bits of information. The vast majority of our own mind remains unknowable to us. Since dark energy and dark matter make up approximately 95% of the universe, we can only understand our world through the remaining minute specs of matter that we can measure and observe. It is paradoxical, then, that our fear of being unseen is so prominent, when we are blind to most of the external world and most of our own inner thoughts. This should liberate us from the fear. Awe exists in the darkness. Potential emerges from the unseen.

Art has the ability to illuminate parts of the all-encompassing darkness. Art can draw out elements of the unseen and make them discernible.

This exhibition features work about what we do not see: the invisible, the hidden, the overlooked. Whether speaking to one’s relationship to digital, physical or psychological space, or to the effects of cultural blindness, the artists in this exhibition are united in their desire to unveil the unseen.

Guest Curator: Akili Tommasino , Associate Curator, Modern and Contemporary Art – MFA Boston

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About: Collar Works is a non-commission art space located in Troy, New York dedicated to the support of emerging and under-represented artists, working in any media, exhibiting challenging and culturally relevant contemporary artworks. Expanding the current art vernacular in New York’s Capital Region, Collar Works provides a venue for community dialogue focused on serious, provocative and spirited artworks.

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