artist statement

"The unconcious is structured like a language" - later clarified by the statement "structured like the assemblages in question in set theory, which are like letters." - Jacques Lacan, clarification in Seminar XX

We learn the alphabet so we can read. We read information published on a medium - books, screens, billboards, notes. Reading means we're not interacting directly with a person, hearing their voice, taking in their gestures.

Media - tokens passed from hand to hand. Are smartphones our telepathy? When we watch video shot in Beijing, China, is a part of us there? Fall into its perfection, high definition, escape. When do we remember it is created? How complete must the image of myself be on this network? Shh something important is happening on screen. Don't text in the theater you'll disturb the other audience member's participation in the spectacle.

We remember it is created when it breaks.

Why a brokenAlphabet? You and I use our vocabulary to communicate (like this). Computers are programmed with language possessing regular vocabulary, syntax, grammar. The titles of the work in the gallery space play with those conventions. Language works when all parties share a vocabulary of expected meaning, when behaviors, gestures, and known history align with conveyed text in that shared vocabulary. brokenAlphabet clips are the result of manipulating video codec. The illusions make themselves.

[ art as performative unconsciousnesses ]

Each of you will bring your personal vocabulary to the work on view in the gallery. These works evolve and change over time in ways that painting cannot. As programs they aestheticize a set vocabulary of images and text. I have set up the rules by which these works perform the art over time. 

Jessica Fenlon, 2017

detail, portableNeurosis.perfectionism
processing sketch projected from raspberry pi