Dana Ellyn   www.danaellyn.com

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"Lady Brain Space Mind-Meld"
Washington, DC
February 2003


I created this piece for the "Lady Brain Mind Meld" exhibit organized by the District of Ladies. The show explored process by breaking down the two main stages of creating art: the moment of inspiration and then the route to final execution.

Angela Jerardi started this piece by supplying me with a photograph she took at Lake Bita Hai, one of the best protected natural areas of Yunnan Province in China. She gave me 4 prints, that when assembled, comprised one whole scene of the lake, trees and a boat blanketed in snow. The image personified serenity. The peacefulness was both comforting and a source of conflict to me.

The emotions currently weighing most heavily on my psyche are the threat of terrorism and the mayhem surrounding emergency preparedness. The photograph was a welcome escape from that stress. So I wanted to create something which synthesized those thoughts.

The faces on the couch are watching the news that's being fed to them on American television, expressing something between hysteria and stupidity. They are ignorant to the history of deception and propoganda used to persuade us to support war. They can't see the reality beyond their couch. They represent the public's current confusion and fear about the terrorist attacks. The window brings to mind all the talk about sealing up our homes with duct tape and plastic. And the scene outside reminds us of the beauty that still exists outside. There is a tear in the screen which reveals a photo of a dead pigeon - this is the reality that death will find you eventually.

Press Release:
New DC Alternative Arts Collective Opens Art and
Film Exhibition at MOCA DC
The District of Ladies (DOL) show "Lady Brain Space Mind-Meld"

Opening Reception: Friday, February 21, 6PM - 8PM 2003
Exhibition Dates: February 21 - Saturday, March 8th, 2003

The District of Ladies (DOL) will give Washington, DC arts and film enthusiasts a dose of radical art-making at their debut exhibition "Lady Brain Space Mind-Meld" . The show which features photographers such as Cynthia Connolly (Banned in DC) and Lely Constantinople (Lady Fest DC), filmmakers Anni Lou Bayly (Art-O-Matic) and Allyson Kapin (DC Underground Film Festival) along with sculptor Mary Early and installation artist Vanessa Kamp will explore the process of breaking down the 2 main stages of creating art the moment of inspiration and the process to final execution. DOL is a women-based arts and film collective that organizes innovative and thought-provoking community art exhibitions, film series, and performances. The group emerged as an extension of the empowerment, spirit, and solidarity felt by members of the Ladyfest DC Visual Arts and Film committee.

By fostering a collaborative environment where 2 artists are teamed together the artists in the exhibit are invited to become a segment of the process thus allowing a study of the journey of making art. The first artist starts the piece symbolizing the moment of inspiration. The second artist completes the final phase of the artwork. Artists working in a variety of media ranging from painting to 3D to film will present a body of work that is influenced by their surroundings and materials yet manipulated by the concept of chance.

The art exhibition closes Saturday, March 8th with the DC debut of the HiLo Film Festival tour at MOCA DC from 5 PM to 7 PM San Francisco-based film fest will feature low budget films ranging from animations to short narratives and abstract imagistic-explorations to micro-features, documentaries, and uncategorizable creations.

Photos from Opening Reception
February 21, 2003