Artist Statement- Gabriela Schutz
I’m fascinated and at times apprehensive, with the way technology, information, communication and consumerism are increasingly shaping our life. I am disturbed by the vast amount of time we are spending on our phones, physically present yet mentally elsewhere.
In my work I focus on our relationship with our phones and surroundings while examining the visual noise we are exposed to. We communicate, given instructions, and operate things by icons, emoji and symbols. We flick through endless scrolls of images on social media platforms. We take photos, upload them and portray our 'successful' life- We market ourselves, seeking for the quick gratification of being ‘Liked’ by other people. All this we are doing alone.
Through drawing ‘blogs’ on location, from observation, I try to defy the tendency to flick through, not to look properly. By inviting people to participate in my etchings of an analogue ‘Facebook’, I aim to create a non virtual contact with my viewers as I feel that the physicality of things, is slipping away from our daily experience.
By painting, drawing, printing, sculpting, creating installations and involving the viewers in taking part in my works, I try to counter the fast, impatient continuum of noisy information while enjoying discovering it's aesthetics.
In the Holyland series, I am looking at how the architecture and demography of a place reflects on its social, cultural and political agendas. Looking at Israel as an Israeli who no longer lives there, I am attempting to view the subject as Romantic painters viewed and depicted the Holy Land, and explorers of the Enlightenment period attempted to record the world as accurately as possible. With the curiosity of an outsider but with the insider’s knowledge of what to focus on, the seemingly pastoral works reveal the strong emotions and tensions.
© Gabriela Schutz