Michael Bell-Smith



Mark Leckey – GreenScreenRefrigerator (2010)

Image Employment

On view September 5–October 7, 2013

Not on view: September 6, 9 (de-installation period);
September 15—26 (NY Art Book Fair)

Invoking the growing convergence between labor, consumption, and that which propels them, Image Employment examines different ways artists use moving image work to investigate contemporary modes of production. The selected works illustrate various approaches to the subject, from observational films that avoid participation in capitalistic image creation, to videos that engage corporate omnipotence by employing its processes, as well as works that complicate these two tendencies.

Many of the films in the exhibition take an oppositional approach to commercial image making. In Kevin Jerome Everson’s Quality Control, African-American workers from an Alabama dry-cleaning factory are shown relentlessly carrying out their jobs in real time. Everson explores the duration and physicality of labor through a series of lengthy shots that draw attention to particular tasks such as working the pant press or ironing shirts.

Alternately, many video works in this exhibition employ corporate processes and communication by reiterating corporate imagery and intervening into sites of emergent industries and globalized consumption. DIS’ Watermarked I Kenzo Fall 2012, for example, arose out of a paid commission for Kenzo’s seasonal menswear collection. The work reflexively dramatizes the commercial advertisement form through the absurd excesses of the actors’ expressions, the politically correct racial composition, and a stock media infused aesthetic.

Week 1: September 5-8: Workers Leaving…

Workers Leaving The Factory
Auguste and Louis Lumière, 1895, 1 min, 35mm to video, b&w, silent, France

Workers Leaving the Factory
Harun Farocki, 1995, 36 min, video, color and b&w, 1:1,37, Germany

Workers Leaving the Googleplex
Andrew Norman Wilson, 2011, 11 min, HD video, color and sound, United States

Workers Leaving the Job Site
Kevin Jerome Everson, 2013, 6:30 min, 16mm to HD video, color, silent, United States, Courtesy of the artist; Trilobite-Arts DAC and Picture Palace Pictures

Program duration: 54:30 minutes

Screening schedule: 12:00, 1:00, 2:00, 3:00, 4:00, 5:00

Week 2: September 12-14: Long Takes / The Object of Labor

Long Takes

Quality Control
Kevin Jerome Everson, 2011, 71 min, 16mm to HD video, b&w and sound, United States, Courtesy of the artist; Trilobite-Arts-DAC and Picture Palace Pictures

Lunch Break
Sharon Lockhart – TBC, 2008, 83 min, 35 mm transferred to HD video, color and sound, United States

The Object of Labor

Sack Barrow
Ben Rivers, 2011, 21 min, 16mm to HD video, color and sound, United Kingdom

Unstable Object
Dan Eisenberg, 2011, 69 min, HD video, color and sound, U.S./Germany/Turkey

Screening schedule:

Quality Control: 12:00

Lunch Break: 1:15

Sack Barrow: 2:40

Unstable Object: 3:05

Quality Control: 4:15

Week 3: September 26-30: Dream Factory

Stealing Beauty
Guy Ben-Ner, 2007, 18 min, SD Video, color and sound, Israel

The Trainee
Pilvi Takala, 2008, 13 min, HD Video, color and sound, Finland

A New Product
Harun Farocki, 2012, 36 min, HD video, color and sound, Germany

People’s passion, lifestyle beautiful wine, gigantic glass towers, all surrounded by water
Neil Beloufa, 2011, 10 min, HD video, color and sound, France

Watermarked I Fall 2012
DIS, 2012,  2 min, HD Video, color and sound, United States

Harm van den Dorpel, 2011, 5 min, HD video, color and sound, The Netherlands

Green Screen Refrigerator
Mark Leckey, 2010, 17 min, HD video, color and sound, United Kingdom

Michael-Bell Smith, 2012, 3 min, HD video, color and sound, United States

Hito Steyerl, 2010, 30 sec, HD single channel video, color and sound, Germany

Ryan Trecartin, 2009, 33 min, HD video, color and sound, United States

Program duration: 2:18 minutes

Screening Schedule: 12:00, 2:20, 4:40

Week 4: October 3-7: The Movement of Capital

Part I:

The Financial Crisis
Superflex, 2009, 12:23 min, HD video, color and sound, Denmark

Open Outcry
Ben Thorp Brown, 2013, 15 min, HD video, color and sound, United States

Unsupported Transit
Zachary Formwalt, 2011, 14:25 min, HD single channel video, color and sound, United States

Works courtesy of the artists.

Curated by Aily Nash and Andrew Norman Wilson.

MICHAEL BELL-SMITH ” I Thought It Was a Pull, but It’s a Push”

August 31 – September 27, 2013
Center of Ongoing Research and Projects
Columbus, Ohio


For his project at COR&P, Michael Bell-Smith presents “I Thought It Was a Pull, but It’s a Push”. The project continues his ongoing investigations into the systems of digital media production and the language of commercial design. The show centers around a video Bell-Smith created utilizing a strict template-based structure of his own design. Shuttling between various permutations of “content” within a visually dense looped structure, the video exists as a work of its own as well as an open-ended system for creating other moving and still image-based work. Embracing the framework of the one-click “defaults” found in graphics software used by amateurs and “creative professionals” alike, the work explores the potential for individual expression within the tools that dictate the language of our contemporary environment.

In conjunction with the exhibition, COR&P is publishing Claps / Applause, a 12” record created from 911 audio samples of “claps” and one audio sample of “applause.” The record functions both as a catalog of Bell-Smith’s recent research, indexing files from his own collection, and as a tool for creation and re-appropriation, recalling DJ tool records and cinema sound effects albums of the pre-digital age.

– Text from Center of Ongoing Research and Projects website

– Note from contributor, Gina Osterloh: The images contributed here are images I shot at the opening, with permission of Michael Bell-Smith and COR&P. I will update this post with new images as Michael sends me more info. Happy to be able to attend the opening here in Columbus, Ohio.




Michael Bell-Smith at COR&P



Installation images of projection onto custom screen inside COR&P.



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Vinyl Records “Claps and Applause”

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Post cards in vitrine

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Amy Youngs (artist and Professor of Art & Technology at OSU), Michael Bell-Smith (exhibiting artist based in Brooklyn), Ingrid with Kris Paulsen (writer and Professor of contemporary art with a specialization in time-based media) and Ryland Wharton (artist and co-founder of COR&P with Kris Paulsen).

video stills from Michael Bell-Smith

video stills from Michael Bell-Smith






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Video stills – Courtesy of Michael Bell-Smith