The life of the visual artist is a solitary one, requiring long days and nights spent in a studio huddled over canvas or sculpture or the like. Of course, we neophytes who gather to gawk at the products of this labor while downing free glasses of wine don’t see the blood, sweat, and repetitive stress injuries produced for the works. “Working Conditions” makes this process more transparent. During the run of the exhibition, nine artists devote 15 hours per week to toil in a large, shared space for all to see. It’s an exploration of conventional notions of artistic production as well as an opportunity for outsiders to see how the each paint daub coheres. There are five so-called Hump Day Happy Hours on Wednesdays in which observation occurs. Watching these works-in-process isn’t entirely a passive proposition. While she prepares work for her next exhibition, painter Jennie Ottinger invites observers to join in by rendering underdrawings and mixing colors. Charlene Tan welcomes onlookers to take part in her research installation and ad-hoc think tank by joining the ongoing discussion on cultural identity. For folks who prefer to hang back and enjoy the complimentary happy hour libations, there’s plenty to observe, such as Ethan Worden’s ever-evolving wooden sculpture installation, Simple Building of a Staggering Wreck, and Wafaa Yasin’s presentations of labor as a form of performance.
Tuesdays-Saturdays, 6 p.m. Starts: Dec. 7. Continues through Jan. 7, 2011