Friday, July 2, 2010

why I like to drown...

wall 4 institute du loop (detail)

The institute du loop's premier international exhibition debuted last night in the hive gallery within the Fayetteville underground to a First Thursday packed house. It was a thrill for me to be able to talk about the institute's work with the crowds and to explain my involvement in the project. I was so pleased to witness the moment that some of the viewers connected with the work, taking the time to look and explore, to absorb the music that the artist had especially composed for the photographs, and to read the artist's words about why he had created these images. I felt pride in my ability to bring the project to fruition and to expose Fayetteville's residents to this talented artist that I admire.

There were many questions about the work, the artist, and my role in the project so I am going to try to answer some of those in today's post. The institute du loop is an individual who currently lives in Taipei Taiwan, he is an English born sound and visual artist. He has lived in Taiwan for 2 years and feels that he has truly found his home in the world and his artistic identity on the island.

I met the artist via myspace two and half years ago and was very taken with his work, and we became friends and have stayed in contact via email about art and life over the years. I have always encouraged him in his work and even before I was an artist in the underground, I was attempting to find him a space locally for an exhibition. I know how important it is to have someone in your corner supporting your work, and I also know how important it is to have deadlines and a focus for your work, so an exhibition is always a good thing. I wasn't even sure if he would be interested in showing his work in Fayetteville Arkansas but when I proposed it, he was excited about the opportunity. Over the years we have developed trust in each other and our artistic sensibilities and knew we could pull this off. I had never curated a show of this magnitude or involvement before, and this was my first experience curating an international exhibition. The artist and I have been working on this exhibition for months via hundreds of emails and msn chats. Talking about the content of the exhibition, logistics, expenses, gallery dimensions, design, display and pricing, we discussed and worked out every detail, compromises were made, and we both learned a lot because of the experience.

The exhibition arrived on the two flash drives, and the one hundred twenty-four photographs were printed here and each hand stamped with the loop stamp the artist had designed for the occasion. They were hand cut and meticulously mounted flush to the wall in a grid pattern.The institute picked the order of the photographs and which images would go on each wall. There were limited edition posters, postcards and booklets to design and print, and Cd's of the soundtrack to burn after the mounting of the exhibition. All of this to complete the artist's well thought out vision. There were many late, sleep deprived nights leading up to the show. I even moved my sleeping bag into the gallery and put a note on the gallery door asking not to be disturbed as the images were installed. It was such a thrill to remove the black paper from the glass walls of the gallery and see the exhibition as a whole. I contacted the artist after the installation was complete and told him I felt he needed a larger budget, a museum and a book deal as I was so impressed with what he had created.

People have asked me what I get out of this or if I get paid for doing this. The answer is, no I don't get paid for this work. I do this work because I believe in the power of art and I believe in this artist's vision. I do this work because I feel that I am part of a global arts community and I am to fortunate enough know some of the most amazing artists on the planet and if I have the ability to shine a little extra light on them, or encourage them by offering them an exhibition then I am going to do it. I also believe Fayetteville deserves high quality art from around the country and the world. I am very fortunate that I have the trust of the Fayetteville Underground and the artists I work with. I feel honored to be able to do this type of work, it expands my vision as an artist and it keeps me involved in the bigger picture. In August, Christian Demare from Paris France will also be featured in the Hive gallery, and in September Thomas Petillo from Nashville, Tennessee will be in the hive as well. These are photographers I love and I can't wait to share their work with folks who don't already know it.

institute du loop: a place to drown
on display through July 31.
Hive gallery Fayetteville Underground
gallery hours W-F 12-7 and Saturday 10-5

Photographs are $30 per image (open edition) and they are also priced by the wall collection. There is a booklet with a different set of images and words by the artist for $ 15.00 and the limited edition exhibition poster for $25.00. The soundtrack composed by the artist is also available for $10.00. Near or far, please contact me if you would like more information about this exhibition at

I will close with a few words from the institute:

"After all the longing and drowning, after all the decisions about the layers of images and sequences, the "image pools" are on the walls..." -institute du loop

institute du loop: a place to drown from Megan Chapman on Vimeo.


  1. Fantastic.
    Pure Talent all round.

  2. the show was a cool dip into consciousness. Mine or his. or ours. I can't wait to come back and sit longer in it.

  3. Bravo...a wonderful concept and a bold share.

  4. Fayetteville is lucky to have someone who brings such wonderful, innovative and high
    quality beautiful art for everyone to drown in.
    This is an amazing exhibition & the way it has been divised & brought together is an inspiration of technology versus distance.
    I love every aspect of this.

  5. No doubt, you’re a true artist. You have the heart of a great artist. I know that someday your shine will come. Good luck on your journey.