Past Exhibitions
Art House Santa Fe

Exhibitions at Art House in Santa Fe change annually. Information about past exhibitions at Art House is available below.

Mouse in the Machine: Nature in the Age of Digital Art

Mouse in the Machine (Marina Zurkow, Mesocosm (Wink, TX), 2012)
Marina Zurkow, Mesocosm (Wink, TX), 2012. Courtesy of bitforms gallery.

June 10, 2016 – May 31, 2017

Mouse in the Machine: Nature in the Age of Digital Art features 15 digital and software-based artworks by 12 artists from the Thoma art collection to examine the intersection of technology and nature. Using customized software and code, the artworks simulate lifelike biological and ecological systems to emulate the passage of time, seasons and lifecycles.

The exhibition features a video art aquarium by Nam June Paik, realtime generative computer animations by John Gerrard and Marina Zurkow, an interactive augmented reality conveyor belt by Rafael Lozano-Hemmer, and drawings produced by the world’s first and most successful artificially intelligent painting machine, created by Harold Cohen.

Artists included: Alan Rath, Bruce Nauman, Daniel Canogar, Daniel Rozin, Harold Cohen, James Nares, Jim Campbell, John Gerrard, Marina Zurkow, Nam June Paik, Rafael Lozano-Hemmer, Stephen Wilkes.

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Luminous Flux 2.0: New + Historic Works from the Digital Art Frontier

Sabrina Gschwandtner, Camouflage II, 2015. Courtesy of Shoshana Wayne Gallery. Photographer: Tom Powel.

July 24, 2015 – April 30, 2016

LUMINOUS FLUX 2.0: New + Historic Works from the Digital Art Frontier is the second iteration, and a refresh, of the original exhibition at Art House, an exhibition space in Santa Fe, New Mexico, dedicated to sharing works from the Thoma Foundation collections. The exhibition features technological artworks from the Carl & Marilynn Thoma Art Foundation collection spanning over fifty years of the digital art genre, including computer, light-based and electronic artworks from pioneering experimenters and contemporary innovators, such as a film quilt by Sabrina Gschwandtner, an internet-based painting automaton by Siebren Versteeg, and Leo Villareal’s animated LED sequence. Luminous Flux 2.0 is curated by Jason Foumberg, Thoma Foundation curator.

With the digital boom. artists immediately grasped the potential of electronic media, often before it became commercially available. They applied cutting-edge computer engineering and software coding skills, such as algorithms, circuits, digital video, Internet search engines and interactive biometrics, in order to create visual expressions.

The earliest works in the exhibition, drawings from the 1960s by Desmond Paul Henry, made use of a pre-digital analog computer. The artistic impulse to collaborate with machines continued through the 1970s with Jean-Pierre Hébert’s precisely coded algorithmic drawings, and into the present as digital media becomes more ubiquitous and complex. A special focus of this exhibition is how artists create images and visual experiences in the digital age. As many of these artworks heighten or alter perception using new technologies such as LEDs, custom-built circuits, and the virtual world within the computer screen, it can be said that artists invent new ways of seeing.

The title and concept of Luminous Flux comes from physics; it is the measure of light energy, or brilliance, perceived by the human eye from a light source. The exhibition adapts this term in order to highlight the interactive experience of engaging optically stimulating artworks. In other words, the artwork is complete when a viewer experiences.

Artists included: Alan Rath, Anne Morgan Spalter, Björn Schülke, Craig Dorety, Jean-Pierre Hébert, Jim Campbell, John F Simon Jr, Leo Villareal, Manfred Mohr, Paul Desmond Henry, Peter Sarkisian, Rafael Lozano-Hemmer, Sabrina Gschwandtner, Siebren Versteeg.

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Luminous Flux

Jim Campbell, Home Movies, Pause, 2014. Courtesy of Bryce Wolkowitz Gallery.

September 24, 2014 – March 21, 2016

Luminous Flux, the inaugural exhibition at Art House in Santa Fe, NM, features innovative computer, digital, interactive, video and electroluminescent art from the Thoma Foundation collection, including stimulating works by Leo Villareal, Jim Campbell, Rafael Lozano-Hemmer, Manfred Mohr, Anne Morgan Spalter, John F. Simon, Jr., Daniel Canogar, Sarah Frost, Teo González, Howard Mehring, Paul Reed, Jason Salavon, Peter Sarkisian, Björn Schülke, Federico Solmi and Roman Verostko.

Over the past 30 years, Carl and Marilynn Thoma have built a diverse collection dedicated to several major art movements, one being contemporary artists who embrace emerging technologies. The Thomas believe that electronic and digital art reflect the essence and progress of contemporary culture. Luminous Flux showcases significant artworks from computer and light art pioneers, as well as their optically radiant precursors in abstract painting from the 1960s. The evolution of algorithm-based visual art, from Op Art through today’s creative expressions of software, is a story not often told in art history. Notable in this exhibition are the artists who have mastered the craft of computer art, its circuitry, and coding, as an extension of the rule-based painting systems that dominated geometric art in the twentieth century.

Artworks chosen from the Foundation’s collection shed light on topics such as color perception, the abstraction of the human body via digital media, the computerization of drawing practices and the occasional anxiety induced by rapidly changing technology. In sum, the exhibition is intended to inspire viewers to think about life in the digital era.

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