Ever Gold [Projects] is pleased to present The Internet Archive’s 2019 Artist in Residence Exhibition, an exhibition organized in collaboration with the Internet Archive as the culmination of the third year of the Internet Archive’s visual arts residency program. This year’s exhibition features work by artists Caleb Duarte, Whitney Lynn, and Jeffrey Alan Scudder.
The Internet Archive is a San Francisco based nonprofit digital library providing researchers, historians, scholars, people with disabilities, and the general public access to over 15 petabytes of collections of digitized materials, including websites, software applications/games, music, movies/videos, moving images, and nearly three million public-domain books, as well as the Wayback Machine archive (an archive of almost 300 billion websites preserved over time). The Internet Archive visual arts residency is organized by Amir Saber Esfahani, and is designed to connect emerging and mid-career artists with the archive’s collections and to show what is possible when open access to information meets the arts. The residency is one year in length during which time each artist will develop a body of work that utilizes the resources of the archive’s collections in their own practice.
Building on the Internet Archive’s mission to preserve artifacts of culture and heritage, artist Caleb Duarte’s project is concerned with recording oral histories and preserving related objects. Duarte’s work is intentionally situated within networks peripheral to the mainstream art world in order to establish an intimate relationship within the greater public. His work is produced through situational engagement with active sites of social and cultural resistance and strives to extend the expressions of marginalized communities through a shared authorship.
During his residency at the Internet Archive, Duarte visited communities in temporary refugee camps that house thousands of displaced immigrants in Tijuana, Mexico. By recording oral histories and producing sculptural objects, participants exercised their ability to preserve their own histories, centered around the idea of home as memory, and the objects that represent such a place. Using the Internet Archive, Duarte was able to preserve such stories of endurance and migration that otherwise would be subject to the ongoing processes of erasure. The preservation of these memories required transferring the objects and oral histories to a digital format, some of which are carefully and thoughtfully curated into the Internet Archive’s collections for the public to access.
For the exhibition at Ever Gold [Projects], Caleb has created an architectural installation representing ideas of “human progress” using the same materials from Home Depot that construct our suburban homes: white walls, exposed wooden frames, and gated fences. These materials and the aesthetics of their construction is a direct visual link to the incarceration of immigrant children. This installation is juxtaposed with raw drawings on drywall and video documentation of sculptural performances and interviews created at the temporary refugee camps in Tijuana.