Mass: an installation project about creating visual disruptions in places of mass.
The way we consume images perpetuates the abyssal production-consumption cycle. This has contributed to a flattening of space and culture into “non-places,” as evidenced by the proliferation of the “Big Box” store (supercenter, superstore, or megastore). Mass is a series of installations that capitalizes on and intervenes in an ecosystem of already existing objects within the retail landscape. Components for site-specific installations are culled from products in the store and arranged for their formal relationships--repetition in color, form and type. The products are altered only in their relative position, yet their actual context remains the same. Using the very environment of their economy without permission or purchase temporarily lends them an aesthetic, punk quality, but this disruption has a very short lifespan before being dismantled and restocked by store staff and/or shoppers, dissolving back into the consumer goods lexicon they emerged from. The installations are photographed prior to being disassembled, printed in the store’s photo department, placed in unpurchased frames and staged as unsanctioned exhibitions in the store’s home department. Any given exhibition contains images of dozens of different installations; the longest running show being 30 minutes before the frames were ultimately purchased by attendees--i.e. consumers.
Unlike art objects that function similarly in a market of purchasable goods, Mass installations are cannibalizing the environment of these products and isolating them in their native non-space of consumer capitalism. They exist within their intended context and market, and the items ultimately serve their intended use: to generate profit and perform for consumers--something that in the end is unhindered by their fleeting life as art snapshots. Mass highlights, uses, and ruptures this system from the inside, without a net loss or gain and takes advantage of the ready-made showroom floor that is the florescent lights and endless aisles of the consumer landscape.
all work © carson davis brown 2017
Guate International Photo Festival
Nation Public Radio
Month of Photography LA (show)
Visual Supply Co. (VSCO)
Humble Arts Foundation/New Space Center for Photography (show)
Humble Arts Foundation (feature)