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Mayers, Leah

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1907 S. Halsted St., Unit 1
Website: Vespine

Leah Mayers is a founding member of the Vespine Studios and Gallery collective. She is a book and paper maker and a teaching artist with an MFA from Columbia Collegeâ€"s Book and Paper Center and a MEd from the University of Illinois at Chicago. She currently works as an Artist in Residence for Columbia Collegeâ€"s Project AIM and a part-time faculty member in Columbia Collegeâ€"s Educational Studies Graduate Program.

I am interested in exploring and exposing the dissolution of the line between public and private space. This work documents and exhibits the conversations of riders on the elevated train and the scenery outside the train cars along the Brown Line route as an exploration of the individualâ€"s exposure to the private lives of others in the public sphere.

I am both intensely annoyed and fascinated by modern technological devices (e.g. cell phones, social networking sites, blogs) that are intended to foster connection and community but which increasingly seem to serve as tools of narcissistic exposure, exhibitionism, false celebrity, and/or isolation from real human interaction and intimate connection.

Specifically, I am most interested in the experience of riders or bystanders who are unwillingly subjected to personal telephone conversations which, in the not-so-distant past, would have been held in the privacy of peopleâ€"s homes.

The content of this installation will include video footage along the route of the CTA Brown Line train and an audio collage of overheard cell phone conversations taped during multiple train rides.
Click thumbnails to enlarge.

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