PALO ALTO, CA– As part of the Palo Alto Art Center’s Season of Play activities, Portland, Ore.-based artist Michael Namkung will engage the community in a unique residency project, A Real Conversation, In Two Parts, which combines drawing and movement. His residency, taking place now through December 12, will involve a changing installation in the Art Center galleries.
"We are delighted to expand the Season of Play with a community engaged residency that incorporates playful movement and drawing,” says Karen Kienzle, Art Center Director. “Michael Namkung has demonstrated a compelling body of work that incorporates movement and play—we are delighted to include him in the Play! project.”
A Real Conversation, in Two Parts is a new iteration of Namkung’s Drawing Gym project that moves conversation out of the head and into the body. Started in 2008, Drawing Gym represents an ongoing art project that engaged hundreds of community members in drawing and movement. Combining Namkung’s interests in drawing, physical exercise, and athletic performance, the project has involved small and large workshops, individual coaching session, collaborative drawing installations, and a performance group. By creating opportunities for people to move their bodies, and draw in new ways, Drawing Gym highlights the unique power of mark making.
Namkung will conduct his artmaking activity during the Art Center’s Tropical Holiday Family Day on Sunday, December 10, 2-4:30 p.m., and during his general residency. The days and hours for his residency at the Art Center are: Thursday, December 7, 1-4 p.m.; Friday, December 8, 1-4 p.m.; Saturday, December 9, 1-4 p.m.; and Sunday, December 10, 1-4 p.m.
“Play is the way we step out of our composed lives and make ourselves vulnerable to push against the boundaries of who we think we are,” says Namkung. “It’s the way we work on transforming ourselves into who, deep down, we’re striving to become. When we play together, we open new lines of communication and converse on the edges of a language we’re inventing moment by moment.”
Comprised of two interactive physical drawing and writing installations, A Real Conversation, in Two Parts gives two people working together an opportunity to communicate from a deeper place within themselves, he adds.
About the Artist:
Michael Namkung is an interdisciplinary artist based in Portland, Ore. Drawing on the language of sports training and athletic performance, Namkung’s work explores the sensory experience of drawing under physical strain. Through performance, video, installation, and the participation of others, he investigates questions of process, materiality and perception, specifically in terms of their relationship to the body. Namkung holds an MFA in Drawing and painting from San Francisco State University. He has performed and exhibited at venues such as SFMOMA, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, and Headlands Center for the Arts.
About The Palo Alto Art Center:
The Palo Alto Art Center is your place to discover art. See, make, and be inspired because everyone is anartist. Created by the community, for the community in 1971, the Palo Alto Art Center provides anaccessible and welcoming place to engage with art. We serve approximately 120,000 people every yearthrough a diverse range of programs.
The Palo Alto Art Center, Division of Arts and Sciences, City of Palo Alto is funded in part by grants from Silicon Valley Creates and the Palo Alto Art Center Foundation. The Palo Alto Art Center Foundation gratefully acknowledges support from the David and Lucile Packard Foundation, The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, Yellow Chair Foundation, private donations, and members.
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