Thursday, 13 November 2014

Cyane Tornatzky at ISIS Arts

Cyane Tornatzky has been artist in residence at ISIS Arts for a month, and she concluded her stay by giving a short presentation about her work.

'Cyane Tornatzky is an artist using digital mediums for creation, documention and output of her artwork. Tornatzky is a currently based in Colorado as Associate Professor of Electronic Art at Colorado State University.'

Before arriving in Newcastle, Cyane had planned to

"create a series of site-specific installations that incorporate performance. Inspired by her previous research on Robert Owen’s New Lanark Mill in South Lanarkshire, Tornatzky will examine the lives and working conditions of historical and contemporary women textile workers. She will also be looking for present-day corollaries to the disenfranchised of the historic Luddite movement. The historical/contemporary duality of the subject matter will be underscored through the use of old and new medias in construction of the installations. Examples of old technologies can include: camera obscura; stereoscopes; mutoscoptes, new technologies include digital fabrication techniques coupled with video projection."

She spoke honestly about how her experience of being in a different culture had a major impact on the work that she made whilst on the residency. She felt a desire to move away from her background of New Media, and get into some physical making using 'stuff' as opposed to pixels. I can relate to this feeling greatly as I feel as though we spend lots of time working on computers and digital equipment, and so when it comes to making art, I want to play with actual physical material.

She adapted to the slower pace of life, and enjoyed spending time getting to know lots of interesting people. She was given a photograph of a textile worker and used this as inspiration to make some small macquettes of toy-like figures with moving joints who were doing forms of manual labour. Her work had a sense of wonder and playfulness, but also commented on important social issues.

For more information about Cyane visit

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