Murmur is installation originally created for the Project Space at Redline gallery in Denver. A sculptural object created by Justin Beard and Katie Caron dominates the space, with a spotlight trained onto a small director’s chair and microphone. Visitors are encouraged to sit, speak and activate the sculpture and it’s projection. Words are translated, displayed and the conversation expands to the digital ether of social media. For a few moments, a small utterance has been amplified into a large, booming presence, both visually and through sound.
A note from curator Charmain Schuh,
“Redline Resident artists Justin Beard, Katie Caron and Bryan Leister team up to construct a mystifying environment where the audience is essential in creating an immersive and interactive art experience. The exhibition Murmur exemplifies its definition and brings to light the instantaneous effect that a simple word creates in today’s social media world. Murmur is defined as a low sound when many people are speaking or a quiet expression of an opinion or feeling. The artists create a setting and ambiance where murmuring exists and thrives. The gallery contains an overwhelming, funnel-like organic form that resembles a giant human ear or seashell or internal eye designed by Justin Beard and Katie Caron. The viewer is enticed to enter the spotlight in front of a microphone. They are now on a stage and the center of their own universe. The individual speaks a single word. The word resonates through the form and creates flowing images that project onto the wall. Through a code designed by Bryan Leister using Twitter as the foundation, the word locates others thinking about that same word in real time.
This exhibition explores Karl Marx’s concept of ‘Commodity Fetishism’ that includes his
theory about social connection. The idea that social relationships bring value to things, not the things themselves. There is so much monetary value in social media companies, even though they literally create nothing. Social media is becoming a fetish; an object that holdsspiritually charged substances.”