Gabe Michael Kenney I.On art installation

The Jackson Dinsdale Art Center is hosting the installation work of Gabe Michael Kenney in the critique gallery of the building. Kenney, based out of Columbus, Ohio, uses installation and performance art through the lens of science fiction to immerse the viewer into a setting that promotes question and wonder in his show, “I.On.”

The installation is a combination of light, props, material exploration and found objects that all come together to set the stage for Kenney’s performances. Kenney gave this setting interactive performance at the opening reception on the evening of Oct. 5. Kenney’s goal is to move the viewer into thinking on a deeper level through abstract thought. This is done by putting viewers in a surrounding that causes them to question a variety of topics that are the foundations for living limitations and societal constructs, such as the perception of time.

“The newly-created space is used to facilitate a conceptual investigation into thought. What does it mean to think, to wonder?” Kenney asked. “… The creation of these new time machines, we are collectively dared to search for meaning and purpose within our space and time. What are the possibilities of projecting the future with our imaginations, what is the value of pondering the past through memory? How do we choose our thoughts? What do we do with our choices? As designers of reality, these questions are beckoned to be taken much more seriously.”

“I.On” is a continuation of the artist’s series in “elabo-labs” and time machines. This series focuses on the ability to question constructs through the use of installation by atmospheric lighting and material boundaries but is mainly done so by the medium of found objects.

“Much of the components (found objects) hold sentimental value, like my grandfather’s old timing light or gifts from dear friends. Other materials are for structural integrity or pure functionality, like wood, light, tripods, etc. I tend to only purchase new material when absolutely necessary. The majority of the materials are an up-cycled found object, discarded from their original owners and taken away from their original purpose,” Kenney said.

The show itself acts as a stage for the artist. This stage is comprised of found objects, but also the imagination and immersion of the viewer. Kenney performs within these spaces, using the material to aid in his narrative and logic.

“As a material, performance work allows me to interact with the audience in real time.  As humans, our response to one another calls for more intimacy, patience and understanding. Performance works allow me to communicate in a way not commonly accepted in a non-gallery setting,” Kenney said.

Kenney’s “I.On” and his work in general works to embody human curiosity and exploration into a realm that has no clear answer in the current time period.

The exhibition will be on display through to Nov. 2.