With his second exhibition at the Ronald Feldman Gallery, titled Seeking Motion Hidden, Eric Dyer presents interactive sculptures that dazzle the visitor with their electrifying kinetic energy of animated images. Inspired by pre-cinematic devices to address contemporary themes, Dyer makes animation tangible, inventing new forms beyond the traditional one-dimensional celluloid form. Obsessed with the expressivity of motion, Dyer believes that complex collages of sequential images reveal secret kinetics hidden in stasis related to the everyday world around us.
Within the darkened gallery space, the exhibition presents fourteen 47” x 47” wall-hung works, each depicting digitally collaged and highly detailed sequential imagery. When the sculpture is spun, a strobe is activated, and the artwork comes to life, animating the still images for a hypnotically kinetic experience of pulsating kaleidoscopic images. Gravity is suspended, scale is upended, and perspective dissolves.
The works explore a variety of subjects. Eadweard’s Menagerie reanimates selected Muybridge motion studies of female subjects, suggesting the photographer’s hidden agenda; Mud Caves #2 reveals motion hidden in the stillest of places; dramatic perspective changes bring California desert formations to kinetic life. Williamsburg Bridge collages structural patterns, MTA trains, and perspective-shifting video sequences to form a mandala-like moving portrait of the iconic landmark. Shabamanetica #1 and #2 mash-up Shanghai, Baltimore, Panama, and kinetics in both title and imagery. Inspired in part by the recent expansion of the Panama Canal, the artworks consider the death and rise of industrial eras within a collage of the isthmus’s natural and industrial wonders. With S.P.O. (short for Sausage, Peppers, and Onions) and A Temporal Comparison of Apples vs. Oranges, Dyer makes use of strata-cut animation. This process of sequentially slicing through static objects reveals mesmerizing, surprising, sometimes grotesque, and often beautiful motion hidden in the familiar.
Eric Dyer’s work has been widely exhibited at events and venues such as the Smithsonian National Gallery of Art, the London International Animation Festival, the screens of Times Square, and the Venice Biennale. He has been honored as a Fulbright Fellow, Sundance New Frontier Artist, Creative Capital Artist, and Guggenheim Fellow. His first exhibition at the Feldman Gallery in 2014, Copenhagen Cycles, presented a series of Dyer’s hand-crafted zoetropes, circular spinning sculptures of layered rings of tiny cutouts, viewed through special shutter glasses that reanimate the still images.