Mobank’s Crossroads location at 125 Southwest Boulevard in Kansas City, Missouri debuts four new large-scale commissioned images by artists Brandon Forrest Frederick and Michael Converse as part of its ongoing Artboards series. Installed on the exterior, double-sided billboards rising above the bank, the Artboards are visible to the public all hours of the day and will remain on view for three months. For more information about Mobank’s Artboards series, please visit https://www.mobank.com/About-Us/Culture/ Artboards or www.charlottestreet.org.
Brandon Forrest Frederick, Untitled, to be displayed on the west-facing billboards
The west-facing billboards display images of work by artist, Brandon Forrest Frederick. In selecting these images, Frederick wanted to offer the viewer a “space of contemplation. He explains, “This image acts to strip these individuals from the landscape they inhabit, while focusing on their humanistic relationship to each other. The repurposing of the advertisement space with this abstracted view of public life is a means to open a discussion on how we interact with each other on a daily basis. It usurps the nature of the advertisement, in how it works against our undivided presence in the spaces we inhabit.”
Through these images, Frederick manages to portray the way a viewer can step in and out of reality when looking at a photograph. “Photography has a certain strangeness, a character of being that drifts between reality and our perception of reality,” he explains. “It can reveal only so much as it touches what was already inside of you. Because it can move between a visual sense of what we see but omits so much it offers us a space of contemplation, a space of thoughtfulness for us to dwell in.”
Michael Converse, Untitled, to be displayed on the east-facing billboards
The east-facing billboards display work from visual artist, Michael Converse. Converse said, “I would contend that the works submitted, while obtuse, oblique, caustic and non-linear do have a radiant quality created with an eye towards patterns and color relationships that are actually pleasing and highly engaging visually. That being said, once engaged, the individual is left to their own personal experience with the work. I personally find the compositions a reflection of the different facets of reality and a deeper example of our actual experiences, day to day, week to week, etc.”
Converse continues, “The pieces are not intended to be interpreted in any particular manner, but are intended to suggest that the linear constructs and answers that we develop are actually filters of an existence that we cannot comprehend or fathom. We exist in an active dynamic that is expanding exponentially and is tempered by the cycle of regeneration. From this point of view one easily concludes that all “statements” and “answers” are relative constructs and temporary in nature. The notion of permanence on any level (including an afterlife) is complete delusion. To this end, the works themselves have a delusional and disorienting nature, suggesting the familiar and recognizable, yet subverting them with seemingly disjunctive relationships. Such is life. Such is the mystery. Such is the void.”
The Artboards will be on display June through August, 2017.
ABOUT THE ARTISTS
Michael Converse (b. 1968) attended the Yale Summer School in 1989 and graduated from Kansas State in 1991 with a bachelor of fine arts in painting and printmaking. After college, he lived for a while in Seattle, but made his mark as an artist when he returned to Kansas City in 1996. After appearing in numerous group shows across KC, in 2004 Converse received one of KC’s biggest honors, a Charlotte Street Foundation Award. He was a collaborator in the Whoop Dee Doo artist collective in the mid-2000s. In 2005 he participated in the prestigious Art Omi Residency in New York and in 2007 his drawings were added to the Museum of Modern Art’s Artist Archives.
Brandon Forrest Frederick (b. 1988) is an interdisciplinary artist, educator, and organizer based in Kansas City, Missouri. In his visual work he pinpoints the overlooked objects and images that surround people—the text on bottom of a tray, a pizza box logo, or debris on the street—and reinterprets them into photographs, videos, and sculptures that offer viewers a new way of seeing: optimistically critical. Frederick is the Co-founder of Archive Collective, a regional fine arts photography collective that celebrates and contributes to the democracy, versatility, and ever evolving critical discourse of photography and lens based media. In the past he has taught the Photo Scholars program at the Nelson- Atkins Museum of Art, acted as the Darkroom Instructor at an after school arts program run through the Jackson County Prosecutor’s Office called MyARTS, and taught continuing education classes through the Kansas City Art Institute. From 2011-2013 he Co-founded the Roost, an alternative gallery and performance space in the West Bottoms. He received a BFA in Photography and Digital Filmmaking from the Kansas City Art Institute, and currently works as the Program Supervisor and Community Arts Specialist at Imagine That!, an innovative non-profit art studio for adults with developmental and intellectual disabilities.