Marc Lafia is an American artist and filmmaker whose work emerges with network culture as it changes the nature of the image and the circulation of cultural objects. An early innovator in the “post-internet,” he turned to it often incisively and humorously in his computational games, prints, films and installations to reexamine art and its history as an ecstatic artifact. He has been exhibited at the Walker Art Center, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Tate Online, the ZKM, the Centre Pompidou, Anthology Film Archives, International Film Festival Rotterdam, The Minsheng Museum of Art in Shanghai and most recently at the Shenzhen Sculpture Biennale 2014. He has taught at Stanford University, the San Francisco Art Institute, Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, Pratt Institute and Columbia University His book 'Image Photograph' comes out this Summer on Punctum press.
Marc's work in print, installation, painting, video and performance, reconsiders varied histories of art, photography and cinema and the embodied and situated space and event of art as it is made and remade, through and in, networked and social media. In the “post-internet,” the centrality of the network, changes the nature of the image and the circulation of cultural objects, from the politics of participation to new understandings of materiality. Networks change our relationship to knowledge, ourselves, our memories, our bodies from one of representation to presentation; from contemplation to new modes of embodiment, producing new subjectivities and new ways of going in the world.
His work has been exhibited and shown at the Walker Art Center, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Tate Online, the ZKM, the Centre Pompidou, Anthology Film Archives, International Film Festival Rotterdam, the Minsheng Art Museum in Shanghai and most recently at the Shenzhen Sculpture Biennale 2014. He has taught at Stanford University, the San Francisco Art Institute, Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, Pratt Institute and Columbia University.
Marc's work emerges in the context of net art, in the condition of the global network and how new technologies and computation bring forward new processes, new metaphors, new social arrangements that refigure our sense of ourselves.
His varied works include, 'This Battle of Algiers' a commissioned work from The Tate Modern and The Whitney Museum of American Art, 'The Memex Engine, or Lara Croft Striped Bare by her Assassins Even' exhibited at The Walker Art Center and Georges Pompidou, 'Ambient Machines' which premiered at the Rotterdam Film Festival and the SFMoMA and 'Variable Montage' exhibited at the Beijing Art Academy.
In his many films including 'Exploding Oedipus', 'Love & Art', 'Confessions of an Image', 'Revolution of Everyday Life', 'Paradise' and 'Hi How Are You Guest 10497', '27' as well as numerous smaller computational films, he probes what it is to construct an image, to forge systems of representation, to see and represent ourselves.
These works have been exhibited in seminal exhibitions including 'Net Condition', 'Future Cinema' at the ZKM, Germany, the ICC Tokyo, Node-L, The Canary Islands Biennale for Architecture 2007and other international museums, art centers and Festivals including Anthology Film Archives, Rotterdam, SFIFF.
He has re-written in software the film projector as a computational engine to examine the still image and its relation to duration and movement, in a series of works entitled, 'Computations' which are each time, played differently and of indefinite duration. Marc has created a new all-at-once, poly temporal cinema with his whimsical and beautiful ongoing series called 'Permutations' which allow for a continual resounding of multiple and simultaneous image tracks.
He has also examined the photograph as an index of the performative both in the archive of the web and as an inscription device as the camera has been rewritten by the digital creating a new kind of recording and indexing event. In his works, 'The Event of the Image', 'Memories of Photography', 'American Flags', ‘Still, an Image’ and his recent project, 'F4, The Photography Desktop Collective' he asks us to read the imaging event as much as the image. For Lafia images are also thoughts as well as they are productions of inscription devices. There are no images per se only image formation. Images becoming.
Marc's aim is to make things visible, to make and unmake systems, relations and events. His interest is authoring machines, their context and meanings, their relations in social systems. His work re-writes, re-invents enunciation through rewriting forms.
His recent solo exhibition, Eternal Sunshine at The Minsheng Art Museum, Shanghai, 2012 critiques this new cultural order as an ecstatic artifice. His vivacious work involving print, sculpture, video and audience participation brings together a number of techno-social concerns that have been central to his career as artist, filmmaker and information architect.
Marc has taught in the graduate schools of Stanford University, the San Francisco Art Institute. Pratt Institute of Design and Art Center College of Design in Pasadena. He will be teaching at the New School this spring with Chiari Bottici a course on Philosophy and Images. He has also won numerous awards as an information architect, music video conceptualist and exhibited experimental and long form films internationally. He was founder of art+culture.com. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.
Images at a glance.
My Tumblr blog, The Esthetes