Artist: Alexandre Castonguay
Tafel consists in a chalk drawing machine mounted on a blackboard. It takes its input from the texts produced by the participants for the Pure Data convention and creates schematics based on a comparison of these texts to a database of Joseph Beuys' writings. It puts into play the diagrammatic representation of visual programming with the schematic drawings produced by the artist during his Tafel lectures / performances. The contents of the convention, while mostly technical and thus far removed from Beuys thinkng, are embodiments of the democratisation of access to knowledge, of a certain utopian vision for art that he shared. The self-mythologizing artist' handwriting was made into an HPGL font that is used alternately with a non-descript Hershey sans-serif font. The chalk drawing head makes an uncanny and robotic attempt at translating the authentic gesture of the artist. While acknowledging the spirit of Beuys' lectures, the indexical relationship of writing serves to undermine the authorship of the figure of the artist. Tafel was realized with the help of Christian Klippel, Mathieu Bouchard, Pascal Audet and Ken Campbell. More information, code and schematics can be found at : http://artengine.ca/acastonguay/tafel
Castonguay's practice is based in digital and conceptual art, his works uses obsolete technology and open source software. His installations and photographic work have been presented in Canada and abroad in New York, Beijing, Madrid, Berlin, Beyrouth, São Paulo and Graz. His works are included in the collections of the Canada Council Art Bank, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Montréal Museum of Fine Arts, the Musée d'art contemporain de Montréal, the Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec, the Canadian Museum of Contemporary photography as well as private collections. He is represented by the gallery Pierre-François Ouellette art contemporain (http://pfoac.com). Professor at UQAM's École des arts visuels et médiatiques in Montréal, he studied at the University of Ottawa (B.F.A. 1991 and B.A. 1993) and at Concordia University, Montréal (M.F.A. 2004). He is a founding member of the not-for-profit media lab Artengine.
4th international Pure Data Convention 2011 Weimar ~ Berlin