All Articles
All Articles

Sundance 2014: SPACE and 1MSQFT


Sundance 2014: SPACE and 1MSQFT

Curator Ken Miller leads the art pack in Park City, Utah

by David Graver
on 20 January 2014

Amid the clattering bustle of a small resort town packed street-to-screen with the film industry, two art galleries are providing a different option for the artistic influx that temporarily inhabits Park City, Utah. This year at Sundance, pop-ups "SPACE" and "1MSQFT" are delivering divergent experiences linked by the same curatorial team. The former, a serene reprieve showcasing breathtaking landscape photographs, and the latter, with bright and powerful works across multiple media, were conceived by acclaimed curator Ken Miller and art advisor Elana Rubinfeld. Their work together on "SPACE" ultimately led Miller to additionally curate "1MSQFT" with Rubinfeld's help.


For "SPACE," the duo united 10 leading contemporary photographers—from world renowned Nan Goldin to celebrated fashion photographer Juergen Teller—for a group showcase of one image from each artist. Rubinfeld observes that "even the most well-known photographers still do sunset portraits." The idea of capturing landscapes still appeals to professional lensmen, and when complemented by Park City's mountains just outside, the team believed it would be an apt subject that would appeal to the worldly Sundance goers. Rubinfeld tells CH, "Photo speaks so nicely to film. We weren't sure if anything would come of this but we thought it would be nice to try and offer it. It's a peaceful place in the midst of all of it." Miller continues the sentiment, explaining that "there's an audience here and no one has done a photo show."

The two met each other through Rubinfeld's previous gallery position and by having mutual friends in the art world. Miller has previously curated multiple museum-quality photo exhibitions on a global scale, while Rubinfeld has organized exhibitions for MoMA PS1 Contemporary Art Center to The Tel Aviv Museum of Art, with a specialization in contemporary works. With "SPACE" their interests and background functioned hand-in-hand to produce more than just a photo show.


Together, they intended to craft a meditative space that would reflect the natural beauty of a city's landscape—seeking something both low key and intimate. The space within "SPACE" is exactly that. A big, broad window defines the front façade, filling it with natural light. Just inside, a wooden block seating area provides respite. "It's so hectic outside and you come in and look at this landscape or an intense mountain and you feel better," Miller notes. The selected works span multiple generations of photographers—all with different backgrounds. Landscape photography has had a historic impact on art and visual language. To see drastically different viewpoints side-by-side demonstrates the full depth and breadth of nature portrayed within art.


Miller was also tapped to curate the artists for Microsoft's "1MSQFT" pop-up in a slender, ever-unfolding gallery space. This is the second iteration of the art series (the first debuting at 2013's Miami Art Week), and the temporary exhibition continues to deliver vibrancy and encourage engagement. Miller pulled in a few artists he has worked with before and believes in, and the three installations—one each by ConfettiSystem, Hisham Bharoocha and Carlo Van de Roer—connect by way of their ability to dazzle with a hyper-modern approach to art making.


Carlo Van de Roer's impact was felt twofold. His contribution, "The Portrait Machine Project" is both an exhibition and an invitation to have your own photograph taken with a Polaroid aura camera. Each large-scale image morphs and warps color, re-imagining the subject surrounded by an energetic aura. The muted color explosions and distortion beautifully embody an almost spiritual element, while the makeshift portrait studio questions the nature of artistic authorship and ownership. The subject has a say, the camera builds the aura, yet Van de Roer orchestrates it all.


With "Churn," artist, musician and designer Hisham Akira Bharoocha greets all who enter. The massive, geometric art piece lies flat against the wall, positioned opposite the entryway. There's balance and chaos, conveyed through small patterning, found within expanding concentric octagons all trapped within a circle, being pierced by two triangles. The use of color soothes as the shapes challenge. As thoughtful as it is, it's also easily beautiful.


"Complex Fringe Wall / Crystal Pinata / Tassel Garland" by CONFETTISYSTEM contributes an air of celebration. The work lends itself as a performance space for two musical acts, but more than that, it drapes the space in shimmering, wondrous waves. Theirs is the type of art begging to be touched.

The drastic differences between both gallery environments demonstrate Miller's prowess. Two locations, two shows, one city; each distinct in content and message. "SPACE" aims to offer a spatial mind-break with beauty as the pathway, while "1MSQFT" encourages active involvement with a pop of color, a twist and a turn, and even an aura. And there is most certainly value in both.

Lead image courtesy of Space Gallery, "1MSQFT" facade image courtesy of Thomas Prior, all other photos by David Graver

The CH25 is a showcase of creators and innovators from a broad range of disciplines who are currently working to drive the world forward.

Lulu Mickelson

A civic leader bringing change to NYC through design

Read More
Human-centered design is one of the many tools that we can use to better engage the public

Vanessa Newman

Redesigning pregnancy for the post-gender generation with Butchbaby & Co.

Read More
I want my customers to feel comfortable and unchanged, in that becoming pregnant didn't take away from or compromise their identity

Meredith Perry

How searching the Internet helped a 22-year-old invent wireless electricity

Read More
It’s not about where the information is, it’s about how you use the tools

Marcus Weller

Using technology to turn motorcycle helmet design on its head

Read More
I was taken aback both by the number of people that doubted it, and by the equally large number of people that got behind it

Joshua Harker

Pushing the boundaries of sculpture with intricate 3D printing

Read More
My intent was to explore and depict the architecture of the imagination, to interpret and share forms evident in the mind’s eye

George Arriola and Monohm

An heirloom electronic for the post-smartphone era

Read More
We agonized during the design process as all hyper-obsessed craftspeople should

Tarren Wolfe

The next-generation appliance making kitchens greener—literally

Read More
Our goal is to provide food for everyone in the world, and the best place to start is in our very own community

Corinne Joachim Sanon

The chocolatier bringing social change to Haiti and bean-to-bar chocolate to the world

Read More
Seeing the poverty surrounding me and the lack of jobs and opportunity bothered me

Eelke Plasmeijer

The locally driven restaurant that’s upending Balinese food culture

Read More
We really try to keep things simple and let the produce do the talking

LaToya Ruby Frazier

Documenting the slow, troubling change in Braddock, Pennsylvania

Read More
I am not a journalist, I am a conceptual documentary artist using my visual expression for building narratives that are unseen and unheard

Jonathan Sparks

Reinventing electronic music by inventing multi-disciplinary instruments

Read More
Recorded music is becoming so cheap, so the value of music is now in live performance

Sabine Seymour

A future where smart clothes are as ubiquitous as zippers

Read More
In the future you will not buy a piece of 'functional' clothing without SoftSpot

Melissa Kushner

Addressing the needs of orphans and vulnerable children in Malawi through microenterprise

Read More
Poverty is complicated, there is an increasing temptation and pressure in the development space to oversimplify things

Cynthia Breazeal

How an emotional, empathetic robot named Jibo stands to revolutionize communication

Read More
The thing that's so provocative about social robots is that it's fundamentally a community technology

Leopoldine Huyghues Despointes

The young filmmaker and non-profit founder who just wants people to follow their dreams

Read More
I feel confident and ready to accomplish so much more, the movement is on

Tal Danino

The bioengineer who’s programming DNA to fight cancer

Read More
[Manipulating genes] is very new, people are just learning how to program these organisms

Roxie Darling

From un-shampoo to transgender identity, the NYC colorist boldly defining the next chapter of hair

Read More
Hair color is as much a science as it is a craft

Alex Kalman

The tiny museum in Manhattan that’s redefining museums

Read More
The mission is to put this small simple and powerful tool into the hands of as many people as possible

Kegan Schouwenburg

Revolutionizing orthotics through 3D-printed insoles

Read More
What orthotics do is they effectively change the geometry of what your alignment is like

Dan Barasch + James Ramsey

A quest to make the future brighter—underground

Read More
We both share a passion for groundbreaking technology and a shared love of New York

Matt Kenyon

Fusing art and technology to disrupt concepts of corporate America

Read More
I want the work to live in the world and circulate, so it can generate more dialogue

Pauline van Dongen

The Dutch designer blazing the wearable technology path

Read More
I’m fascinated by concepts of change, movement, energy and perception; since they are closely related to the way we experience the world

Kathleen Supové

The NYC performance artist who’s radically reinventing the piano recital

Read More
I like pieces that are virtuosic, that show off the piano and what it can do, and are awe-inspiring

Sarah Kunst

The entrepreneur single-handedly changing the landscape for women in tech

Read More
People who live on a planet that is half women but can never seem to find any when they need one, I have solved your problem

Douglas Riboud + Justin Guilbert

How a mission to create great coconut water led to a whole new way of doing business

Read More
We’ve made a conscious decision to be as transparent and honest as we can, and let people decide for themselves
Loading More...