Image descriptions: Four photographs in a grid, left to right, top to bottom: Everest Pipkin, a white nonbinary artist, stands in front of a cottonwood tree in a field. They have short brown hair, glasses, and are wearing a striped sweater. It is a sunny day. A photograph of Jaehoon Choi by Steven Pisano; a portrait of artist Kristin McWharter sitting in her studio; and Léwuga Tata Benson, a Nigerian-born artist from Buffalo, New York.
Squeaky Wheel announces Spring 2024 Workspace Residents
Fenruary 9, 2024
Media Contact: Ekrem Serdar, email@example.com
Everest Pipkin, Kristin McWharter, Jaehoon Choi, and Léwuga Tata Benson will receive support for media arts projects and lead public events and workshops as part of the Workspace Residency
BUFFALO, NY — Squeaky Wheel is pleased to announce four awardees of the spring 2024 Workspace Residency. From Friday, April 12 through Saturday, April 27, 2024, the residency will provide Everest Pipkin (Truth or Consequences, NM), Kristin McWharter (Chicago, IL), Jaehoon Choi (Troy, NY), and Léwuga Tata Benson (Buffalo, NY) with tailored access to equipment, technical and curatorial consultations towards their work on new and ongoing projects at Squeaky Wheel, including essays on video games, and media art installations that explore notions of language and translation, historic children’s games and locative sound, and the devastating effects of oil extraction.
Researcher resident Everest Pipkin will be working on The Fortunate Isles: Fragment Worlds, Walled Gardens, and the games that are played there, a speculative essay about the edges of space within video games. Based on a talk Pipkin gave at the 2023 Roguelike Celebration, the essay will focus on the concept of the walled garden, expanding it to include games and games spaces. It looks at ornamental gardens, cloisters, isolate spaces, and even mythological or utopian fantasies of worlds, and goes beyond to where the garden stops and a wildness of bugs, errors, logical failures and edge cases begin. The essay seeks to connect the logic of potent isolation to the games we make and play.
Jaehoon Choi will be working on an untitled media art installation on the intermingling of translation and language through light and sound. Influenced by the work of Karen Barad, the artist will be working with mylar film, projection, and audio from speech recordings in various languages. The work is latest in a series of installations that delve into the artists concern, the first of which, “Hello. hEllo! heLLo? hellO” was created and showcased at EMPAC in May 2023.
Kristin McWharter will be working on Marco Polo, an interactive sound installation, based on the children’s game where one player, with eye’s closed, calls out “Marco” and listens for the location of other players who call out “Polo” in response. McWharter will be adapting the children’s game in a new work that incorporates megaphones, RF transmissions, and a series of sculptural beacons for audiences to engage with locative sound. Noting the Italian explorer’s role in shaping racist notions of Western superiority, the project reflects on the history of trade route landscapes and the consequences of western culture’s history of continuous evasion and pursuit.
Léwuga Tata Benson will be working towards their exhibition Fueling Change: A Multimedia Exploration of Niger Delta’s Oil Crisis that will open at Buffalo Arts Studio on July 26, 2024. Utilizing oil drums, video, and audio, the project focuses on the oil industry’s effects upon the people of the Niger Delta in Western Nigeria and the social, economic, and environmental consequences of unregulated oil extraction practices.
“It’s a testament to the richness of media arts – and the resources and conceptual space our residency provides – to welcome such a diverse range of projects and practitioners. I’m grateful to our panelists who selected these wonderful artists and researchers, and cannot wait to welcome them from Buffalo and beyond to of one of our organizations signature programs, now in its 9th year.” said curator Ekrem Serdar. Panelists for this session of the residency were Anneka Herre, Carl Elsaesser, and Elenie Chung. Biographies of the residents and panelists can be found below.
The public will have the opportunity to attend an artist talk with the four residents on Friday, April 19, 7 pm ET, which will also be broadcast online. ASL interpretation will be provided. Workshops with the residents are to be announced.
Squeaky Wheel’s Workspace Residency is a residency open to artists and researchers working in art and technology, and provides support for new or ongoing projects in collaboration with our partners. Launched in 2016, the program has supported projects by nearly 50 artists, filmmakers, scholars, and curators. Applications for the Summer 2024 session are now open through March 8. Learn more here: squeaky.org/workspace-residency
Biographies of the residents
Everest Pipkin is a game developer, writer, and artist from central Texas who lives and works on a sheep farm in southern New Mexico. Their work both in the studio and in the garden follows themes of ecology, tool making, and collective care during collapse. They hold a BFA from University of Texas at Austin, an MFA from Carnegie Mellon University, and have shown and spoken at The Design Museum of London, The Texas Biennial, The XXI Triennale of Milan, The Photographers Gallery of London, Center for Land Use Interpretation, and other spaces. When not at the computer in the heat of the day, you can find them in the hills spending time with their neighbors— both human and non-human.
Jaehoon Choi is a computer musician / sound artist / researcher based in New York and Seoul. His practice involves embodied experimentation through a technical medium, which involves both the process of making and bodily engagement. As a researcher, he is interested in how a creative practice that involves embodied experimentation with a technical medium can suggest a different form of techne and contribute to technodiversity. His works have been presented at Venice Biennale, MATA Festival, NEW INC, San Francisco Tape Music Festival, NIME, ICMC, CeReNeM, ECHO Journal, ZER01NE, Dunkunsthalle, EIDF, Visions Du Reel, CEMEC, and etc. He is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in Electronic Arts at the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and graduated from Stanford University’s Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics (CCRMA) as a Masters.
Kristin McWharter uses performance and play to interrogate the relationship between competition and intimacy. Her work conjoins viewers within immersive sculptural installations and viewer- inclusive performances that critically fuse folk games within virtual and augmented worlds. Her software installations and performative objects incorporate experimental technologies and playful interaction to produce performances that speculate upon alternative forms of social behavior. Inspired by 20th century sports narrative, collective decision making, and technology as a contemporary spiritual authority, her work blurs the boundaries of intimacy and hype culture to challenge viewer relationships to affection and competitive drive. Her work has been exhibited at The Hammer Museum, Walt Disney Concert Hall, Bangkok Arts and Cultural Center, Ars Electronica, Museo Altillo Beni, and FILE Festival among others. McWharter received her MFA from UCLA in Design Media Arts and is currently an Assistant Professor in Art & Technology Studies at SAIC.
Léwuga Tata Benson: As an interdisciplinary artist and filmmaker, my work bridges cultures and explores the dynamic interplay between identity, environmental sustainability, and human connection. Rooted in my Ogoni heritage in Nigeria, I draw inspiration from our tradition of repurposing to prevent waste. This ethos infuses my art, as seen in installations like “The Land Gives Until It No Longer Can, 2022,” “Hang in There, 2022,” “Traces of Displacement, 2023,” “Carrying Identity, Carrying The Weight, 2023,” and “Fueling Change, 2024.” In Ogoni storytelling, we engage all the senses, integrating songs, dance, and props for a holistic experience. My artistic practice seamlessly incorporates these traditions to create immersive narratives that provoke thought, foster empathy, and celebrate cultural richness. My journey has been marked by awards and accolades, including the NYSCA 2024 Grant and the Gregory Capasso scholarship for outstanding work in film, underscoring my commitment to the arts.
Biographies of the panelists
Anneka Herre is a curator and art educator based in Syracuse, New York. She is the Program Director of Light Work‘s Urban Video Project (UVP), which publicly presents time-based and electronic media through architectural projections and events. She has served on several committees, including a three year term on the New York State Council on the Arts Electronic Media and Film peer review committee and the Media Arts Assistance Fund artists’ grant review committee. She has taught in Film and Media Arts at Syracuse University since 2009 and has overseen Urban Video Project since 2010.
Carl Elsaesser is a Brooklyn- and Maine-based artist whose films have been screened at festivals and exhibition venues including the Berlinale, New York Film Festival, Bucharest International Experimental Film Festival, Cinéma du Réel, Walker Museum of Art among many others. He is the recipient of the 2022 Media Art Award of the German Film Critics Association at the European Media Arts Festival; the Barbara Aronofsky Latham Award for Emerging Experimental Video Artistat the Ann Arbor Film Festival. In his practice, Elsaesser mixes genres and materials to produce work that “critically investigates the overarching presence of the historical without losing sight of individual experiences of human connection.”
Elenie Chung is a filmmaker and artist, born and raised in Trinidad and Tobago and currently based in Los Angeles, CA. Her films use female relationships as a method of illustrating cultural disconnection and ancestral amnesia and have screened and exhibited internationally. Currently she is working remotely with Women Make Movies, a non-profit feminist media arts organization based in New York City and with film organizations and collectives in Los Angeles to amplify under-recognised films by international and non-white filmmakers.
Squeaky Wheel’s Workspace Residency is supported by the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, County of Erie and County Executive Mark Poloncarz, the National Endowment for the Arts, New York State Council on the Arts with the support of the office of Governor and the New York State Legislature, and individual members, businesses, and supporters.