May 2010- July 2010
KaBe Contemporary is pleased to present “Words”, the most recent solo exhibition by Yucef Merhi. The exhibition comprises a group of works that deal with the use of language and technology in a variety of media. By means of video-games, web interfaces, slide projectors, floppy disks and other materials, Merhi presents a surprising approach to experience poetry; a novel conception of a perfect language; and a thoughtful relationship between humans, words and machines.
Some of the works that will be on view are “Super Atari Poetry” (2005), a networked game installation made with Atari cartridges that enable people to play and create up to one thousand poems; “Versos Versus Versos” (2008), a web-based projection that shows animated verses running non-stop to create hundreds of eloquent random poems; and “Light” (2010), a synchronized light projection that displays the word lightin more than 20 different languages.
“The philosophical underpinnings of Merhi’s process-driven artmaking invest even his tongue in cheek work with serious purpose. Issues of globalization, cultural identity, and technology hum beneath the surface of these visual poem-experiences. Working in multi-linguistic channels-not simply English, Spanish, Hebrew, but also in computer programming languages of various sorts, he is able to merge poetry and art, language and vision, science and humanism into provocative new harmonies. This new and profoundly optimistic production follows Duchamp’s example in putting art in the service of the mind.” (Donna Gustafson, Hunterdon Museum of Art)
Yucef Merhi’s artistic production began in 1985. He has been recognized as a New Media pioneer and the first Digital Artist of Venezuela. His career includes a world wide exhibition record in places such as the New Museum of Contemporary Art (New York); Bronx Museum (New York); El Museo del Barrio (New York); Orange County Museum of Art (California); De Appel (Amsterdam); Museo Michetti (Rome); Borusan Culture & Art Center (Istanbul); Paço das Artes (São Paulo); Museo del Chopo (Mexico DF); Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Yucatán (Yucatan); Museo de Bellas Artes (Caracas); Museo de Arte Contemporáneo (Caracas); Science World British Columbia (Vancouver); among many others. He also participated in the official selections of the 7th International Festival of New Film, Split, Croatia; the 2007 Bienal de São Paulo – Valencia; and the 10th Istanbul Biennial.
Merhi has been recipient of several awards, including the Eladio Alemán Sucre Prize, 58 Salón Arturo Michelena (Valencia, 2000); Turbulence.org – Jerome Foundation ‘New Media Commission’ (New York, 2001); Eyebeam ‘Film and New Media Commission’ (New York, 2002); Finalist in the Seattle Central Library Commission (Seattle, 2003) and the Rockefeller New Media Fellowship (New York, 2003). In 2004 he was selected by the Bronx Museum of The Arts to join the 25th AIM program. In 2005 he obtained the First Prize of the 3rd Salón Hebraica (Caracas) and the Orange County Museum Artist’s Residency (California). He was recently awarded with the 2009 New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship in Digital / Electronic Arts.