Pathways poster | 2014

Pathways: Past / Present

As a part of the curatorial project, Pathways: Past/Present, I ran a series of four workshops for ten high school students from the greater Burlington, Vermont, area. Students produced original artwork for the show that investigated the past and present of the Moran Plant, an abandoned electric plant on Burlington’s waterfront. We then used motion tracking technology and custom software to integrate the drawings into a larger, interactive narrative. We projected the drawings into and onto the Moran Plant for viewers to interact with during a one-night show on May 31, 2014.

The show also included six invited artists from the greater New York and Boston areas who created original work for and about the Moran Plant during a three-day residency in Burlington. I coordinated community housing for the visiting artists and provided technical support for the development of their work.

I secured funding for the project through a Champlain Valley National Heritage Partnership Grant, a successful Kickstarter Campaign, and a donation from Kingdom County Productions. Burlington City Arts donated space for the workshops and provided press for the event. Use of the power plant was obtained through negations with Burlington City Economic Development Office.

SHOW DOCUMENTATION

building

The Moran Plant

crowd

Visitors mingle under banners created by invited sculptor, Tamara Johnson.

insideMoran

Student drawings projected inside of the plant. The students’ work explored the cyclical relationship between nature and industry.

ians

Writer Ian Hatcher interviews himself about the nature of power in “Videogaenger: The Interview,” a performance that he developed in collaboration with video artist Ian McAlpin.

stormy

Choreographer and dancer Stormy Budwig performs a 90 minute dance piece that interrogates our notions of progress.

studentArt

Students’ original drawings were on display in the plant’s boarded up windows as well as incorporated into interactive projections that were shown inside of and on the building itself.

meAndEric

A visitor dances with an interactive web designed by Eric Rosenbaum and Catherine Siller. The web visualizes connections between people and place.

monster

Children play with the interactive “smoke monster.” The smoke monster shoots fire at visits as they approach his “industry mountain.” Drawn by a South Burlington freshman, the smoke monster represents the pollution that the plant emitted that terrorized Burlington residents.

Greg Mahoney and Nathan Swanson shot video documentation of the show, and Nathan Swanson edited the documentation, creating the short film “Let’s Not Pretend This Isn’t Weird.” Both artists themselves, Mahoney and Swanson sought not only to document the evening’s events, but also to bring the Moran Plant to life through their documentation.

WORKSHOP DOCUMENTATION

I developed the curriculum for the workshops, which took place on the four Saturdays leading up to the event. For the workshops, I recruited art, theater, and computer science students from Burlington High School, Champlain Valley Union High School, and South Burlington High School.

matt

A South Burlington student pretends to be smoke during a recruitment demo in their art class.

Testing Projection at Moran

Students test out projection inside the Moran Plant during our site visit.

Students work on drawings and photo collages for the interactive projections.

Students work on drawings and photo collages for the interactive projections.

workingOnProjection

A South Burlington student and a CVU student work on the custom software for the interactive projections.