Overlapping Memories explores what was left behind | Features | Pittsburgh | Pittsburgh City Paper

Overlapping Memories explores what was left behind

A dominant mode of the show suggests that we remember as in dreams, details jumbled by some collage artist of our subconscious

Art by David Pohl
Art by David Pohl

At Space Gallery, guest curator Carolina Loyola-Garcia offers Overlapping Memories. Its 15 works reflect an exchange between 19 artists in Pittsburgh and Quart de Poblet, Spain, exploring memory and introspection through digital forms of collage, from video to prints.

A dominant mode of the show suggests that we remember as in dreams, details jumbled by some collage artist of our subconscious. Thus "Interestratos," a video by Andrea Racciatti and Juan Bobbio in which a sleeping woman's happy dreams (of personal experiences) mingle with nightmares (largely of a war-obsessed world).

Loyola-Garcia's own "Random Excavations via Berlin" takes a pseudo-narrative approach, with nicely integrated (if, indeed, random-seeming) sequences invoking time, transience, love, tourism ... and zombies (?).

The subconscious also seems to rule Lorean Garcia Mateu's pretty, surreal paintings, and even, amusingly, six prints from David Pohl's series "I Will Survive: Phantasmagoria in the 1970's." Pohl's icon mashups include Muhammad Ali KOing the smiling Jungle Book bear, and a black Casper the Ghost and a white Casper each whispering into one of Richard Nixon's ears.

Meanwhile, Teresa Tomas' "Viento" ("Wind") is a rather beautiful 3-D animation starring birds built from musical instruments, a contemplative piece that uses color gorgeously: memory as fantasy.

By contrast, Brooke Schooles' video "mmry conqrs tm nd spc," depicts a single, slowly degrading image. And in Delanie Jenkins' "Sky Portraits" photo series, hard blue sky is flecked with the odd cowboy-hatted head or streetlight — memory distilled to a lone, sharp detail. More pointed is Andrew Ellis Johnson's "Elementary Excursions," a wall-mounted trading-card bestiary of animals, from pigeons to tigers, superimposed on war-scarred urban landscapes and embellished with Arabic letters.

How some works fit the show's theme is uncertain, like Christina Ghetti and Emanuele Mazza's "Folding_Pattern One," a pleasantly trippy op-art animation. And Teresa Foley's slide-show of her putting a ventriloquist's dummy into online chatrooms is about experiencing the moment, rather than plumbing memory.

Then there's Moisés Mañas' "The Band," comprising black-and-white video of a rock band. The manipulated soundtrack is nearly white noise; as with the visuals, the same short clips are played over and over. The piece suggests, drily, memories of a band one would rather forget one had joined.

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