Don Relyea 
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Don Relyea's Blog

I like to write about interesting art projects, so give me a heads up if you have new project and I'll write about it.

Don Relyea plain old photo
Don Relyea

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Sun, 27 May 2007

Hairy Dick Cheney

hair delay gone tomorrow
Hairy Dick Cheney (click to enlarge 800k jpeg)

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Tue, 22 May 2007

Junior/Senior Prom: 500X Gallery's Annual Open Invitational Photos

The 500x Open Show: May 12 - June 2.

This years open show had a very large response in comparison to last year. While the work still spans the gamut of students and seasoned artists it seemed better than last year, at least for me. There were many more large works this year as well. The sheer volume of work is a bit overwhelming. I kept wandering around and various works kept catching my eye. I spoke with one of the member artists Nancy Brown, she indicated that the reception was packed. I was unable to attend the reception since I was on family vacation.

If you have not had a chance to see this show you should. I only had an hour to wander around and it did not feel like enough time to take it all in. Overall the show was really good with an unusual high quality of entries for an open invitational. Clearly a lot of work was put in by the gallery members getting ready for this show, so a big thanks to them.

I have posted several more close up photos of some of the works that caught my eye by Alejandro Trevino, Bill Barter, Criselda Saenz, Harmony Padgett, John Bell, Jung Ok Whang, Laura Jennings, Mark Pease, Nancy Brown, Nicole Neeley, Richard Ross and Erick Maybury. The complete review is here.

500x open show 2005 panoramic shot 01
500x gallery downstairs

500x open show panoramic shot 02
500x gallery downstairs peering into the project room

500x gallery open show 2007  panoramic shot 03
500x gallery downstairs

500x gallery panoramic shot 4
500x gallery downstairs by the front door

500x gallery downstairs by the front door

alejandro trevino
500x gallery upstairs

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Sat, 19 May 2007

Big Alligator


We just got back from vacation last week in South Carolina. The kids had a great time and so did we. We saw all kinds of nature on vacation, crabs, birds, turtles, dolphins, big fish, and this alligator.

Every day I kept telling the kids to look in the lagoons for alligators as we would drive by and we never saw any. They stopped believing me that there were alligators in the lagoons. The last day we saw this big 6 footer out tanning on the shore of a lagoon near my grandmothers place. They believe me now =)

I went to go check out the open show at 500x today too. It was much bigger than last year and almost overwhelming. It is most definitely worth checking out, I will try to post my pictures with a brief review soon.

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Mon, 14 May 2007

KNIFE.HAND.CHOP.BOT by 5voltcore

Dangerous art has always intrigued me. I love this project, it most likely has drawn influence from the painstation project and the movie Aliens. It also has a man - machine trust element that can cause the user to get hurt. There is a video of the thing in action on the site below, be sure to check it out.

knife hand chop 5 volt core

5VOLTCORE built a self-fulfilling cybernetic system, that plays with the senses and perceptions of the User and the sensors and the processes of the Machine.

The Robot is equipped with a knife that the Machine uses to s(t)imulate the test of courage - a kind of game known as "Mumblety-Peg". The User puts his/her hand into the Machine and starts the knife game at the push of a button. The knife starts to hit the space between the fingers, first slowly then continually getting faster. The Machine knows where to chop by receiving signals of a sensor that guides the knife to the place between the fingers.

Electric contacts are mounted on the support block of the Machine, where the hand is situated. These contacts are activated as soon as the first "nervous sweat" appears that turns the skin into a conductor. Subsequently the computer becomes disturbed by the electric current that is now transmitted via the skin.

This has two effects: on the one hand, sounds are generated by the closure of the contacts (circuit bending) that can either be interpreted as warning or act as an additional source of stress. On the other hand, they can have an effect on the position of the knife which is controlled by the computer and thereby hurt the potential perpetrator of the disturbance.

Essential to the set-up is the the feedback loop i.e. the circularity between computer, robot and User. It instantiates the notion of a self-fulfilling prophecy:
The human is right by assuming that the Machine can fail. The Machine can fail because the human assumes.

This puts the courage or mettle of the User to the test. In case the User can't keep their trust in the Machine and start to sweat, this "embodied rationality" causes fear and sweat that pertubates the function of Machine.

The work is about the a fascinating paradox that results from this close relationship between humans and artifacts. A fascination that tries to run a risk and avoid it at the same time.
Therefore we like games that, by playing them, put their rules to the test.

...from Rhizome Raw

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Tue, 08 May 2007

new space filling curve piece for 500x open show

untitled space filling curve art 2007
Untitled, Space filling curve art project 2007 (click to enlarge)

This is a new print on canvas I created for this years's 500x open show. The wayward youth below the picture is my youngest son. He crawled up to the print to get a closer look.

From what I could tell there was a lot of good work laying around the gallery when I dropped my piece off. This year's show should be a good one. If you are in town you should go check it out.

The 500x Open Show: May 12 - June 2. Reception Friday May 12th 6-9pm.

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Thu, 03 May 2007

Baby Turtle better picture

baby slider turtle

Ok, so I had to get a better picture of the turtle since the previous one was very grainy. So here it is for all the people who tried to convince me there was some sort of loch ness creature in my pond.

Today I rounded up the kids and went to white rock lake to get some washed up driftwood for a turtle log. The kids are thrilled with this new turtle visitor to the pond and they have named it Aiden.

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Wed, 02 May 2007

Baby Turtle

turtle and snake

turtle and snake
Baby slider turtle (left) and young water snake (right).

This morning while sipping my first cup of coffee, I squinted into the barely lit morning around 6:45am and noticed what appeared to be a small turtle shape on a rock in the pond I built for my kids. The turtle is a small slider turtle only about the size of a half dollar.

I got the camera, went outside and reached around the corner with the camera to take a shot of the pond without scaring the turtle away. I got the turtle although it was so small it appears a little blurry. I also inadvertently captured a juvenile water snake hiding in the fountain.

I am really excited to see this kind of wild life making our pond home. I have no idea how the baby turtle managed to get in this pond, it had to have scaled some steep rocks to get in there. There is a drainage creek that runs through the back yard but it is down about 30 feet in an eroded canyon. If the turtle decides to stay it will be a source of great entertainment for my kids. I may have to make a trip to white rock lake tomorrow to get piece of driftwood for the turtle to perch on.

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Tue, 01 May 2007

newmedia fix!

new media fix

I was clicking around the internet looking for something to blog about and and I checked out the FEATURES: Selection of Recent Online Projects, Part 1, May 07 on NewMedia Fix.

The first project listed looks very interesting, it is an audio visual project by Mendi + Keith Obadike called Big House / Disclosure. It is a 200 hour mashup of audio interviews conducted by Northwestern University students with Chicago-area citizens about slavery and elements of Chicago house music. Musical events in the sound installation are triggered by custom-designed software tracking the real-time rise and fall stock prices of several corporations that have admitted to profiting from slavery.

While I was reading further down the list to my surprise I noticed some of my space filling curve work listed! So go check the article out when you get a chance.

FEATURES: Selection of Recent Online Projects, Part 1, May 07

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