An installation with music and paintings. Part of the 2018 SMFA Senior Thesis Exhibition, "In Search Of Coalescence"
Motel Papa speaks to the outdatedness of prepared spaces that have been perpetuated since the 1960s. The work addresses this on two levels; first by questioning the perpetuation of the 60s style motel room which is prepared the same way everyday with the same aesthetic. Then, it shows the relationship which queer identifying individuals have with the prepared spaces of gender and sexuality ideals, which boomed in the 1960s through film and entered domestic spaces through television. The work functions through the divide between the motel space and the white cube gallery space. Upon entering the room, guests negotiate with how they should be acting in each part of the divide, becoming aware of a conflict with the different roles they are taking on. By sitting or laying on the bed, visitors become completely immersed in the wood paneled space. This was to show that becoming passive or comfortable would mean becoming complacent to the outdatedness. The conventional gallery space with portraits on the walls, and how viewers try to make assumptions about the sitters' identities, was meant to draw a parallel to the kinds of assumptions these four people meet always. The from-life portraits reference a photographic process called chromatic aberration - an effect resulting from dispersion in which there is a failure of a lens to align all colors to one convergence point. This was made to recall to the ways in which parts of their identities go unrecognized or mistaken.
From a vintage Crosley radio in the corner of the room, a fake radio announcer aired a fake radio special on the best hits of a fake band called "The Nickies." As it played quietly, guests had to listen carefully to hear the 60s style band croon about love and outdated, failing systems.
The flyer was distributed before the night of the exhibit. It was important that the 60's aesthetic, chromatic aberration effect, and bifurcated set up in the installation itself all showed in the promotional material.
Upon entry, the first forty guests received a room key which they could take with them. "The Best of the Nickies" albums were available as giveaways.