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February Issue 2010

701 Center for Contemporary Art in Columbia, SC, Features Works by Gwylène Gallimard and Jean-Marie Mauclet

701 Center for Contemporary Art in Columbia, SC, is presenting the exhibit, Gwylène Gallimard and Jean-Marie Mauclet - Olympia, featuring an installation containing sculptural renditions of Olympia architecture, a train track, a gravel pit, a wall drawing, a public square, a library and other elements. The installation reflects the artists' research into the industrial, architectural, historical and cultural aspects of the Columbia, SC, mill village. The exhibit is on view through Feb. 21, 2010.

Gwylène Gallimard and Jean-Marie Mauclet have worked independently and collaboratively for 30 years in the field of visual art in France and the United States and have lived in Charleston, SC, since 1984. Their collaborations include two community-oriented "Fast and French" restaurants, one of which is still on Broad St. in Charleston. They also have created a variety of permanent and temporary art installations with subjects such as the health food industry and the fast food phenomenon. In 2007 their project "Why do they want to be rich without us?" was part of "The Changing Face of Charleston" and "Shifting Planes" at Space One Eleven in Birmingham, AL.

The installation at 701 CCA is based upon research undertaken during their October ­ November 2009 artist-in-residence program at the center and is in five parts: The Olympia Village, a representation of the five original house types mixed with newer dwellings, including trailers; The gravel pit and an impression of the constant passage of trains today; The Olympia and Granby Mills, represented, as one piece, in their various states of development, from the largest cotton mill in the world to condominiums and students' residences; The library, where visitors will find documents, pictures on canvas and books on art, art history, and material relevant to the show. A book swap will be included; and A public space with tables and chairs meant to be used for performances, community gatherings, conversations, art presentations, and other activities that at one time gave meaning to the building.

Olympia will be bustling throughout the exhibition like 701 Whaley, the home of 701 CCA, once did as the neighborhood's community center. "The many functions of the 'Pacific Community Association Building', which is now 701 Whaley, have influenced the lay out of the show," Gallimard and Mauclet say. "As artists we are researchers, fabricators and community stimulators. The many activities in and during the installation are not simply activities in conjunction with the exhibition but social activities as an integral part of the installation." Spoken word and music artists performed during the opening reception. Community groups can meet in the installation's public "square." The library of donated books and documentation will provide a free book and picture exchange.

Each Wednesday night, there will be a lot of talk. An expert will discuss whether this is art at all. Olympia villagers will share their memories. An anthropologist will talk about mill village culture. Gallimard and Mauclet will discuss how they developed their art business as socially engaged installation artists. The artists also will discuss with the public why and how they did what they did in and for the exhibition. Columbia citizens get to speak out about what they would like the city of Columbia to do for the arts. And at the end, everything has to go! During a live auction, individual parts of the installation will be sold. In the exhibition, and eventually for sale, will be a large, solid but transparent sculpture in three parts made of polyurethane resin, a liquid rubber. Embedded in the parts are architectural elements with images transferred onto them representing physical and human components of Olympia and Granby Mills, 701 Whaley and the Olympia neighborhood.

Olympia Village will consist of a small "forest" of wooden sculptures with small buildings whose physical characteristics extend to their relatively tall base, which forms an integral part of the object. Included are the quintessential shot-gun shack, a duplex home, a mobile home and the heavily buttressed union building at Olympia Park. Those sculptures will also go on the auction block.

Editor's Note: We received this press release on Jan. 22, 2010, so unfortunately many of these programs will have taken place by the time this is published on Feb. 1, 2010.

Exhibition Events:
Thu., Jan 7, 7 ­ 9 pm, Opening Reception, with spoken word and sound artists Omari Fox and Bill Carson.
Wed., Jan 13, 7:30 pm: But Is It Art? A guided tour by South Carolina State University art historian Frank Martin.
Wed., Jan 20, 7:30 pm: I Remember When... An evening of memories of Olympia and storytelling lead by Doug Schueler.
Wed., Jan 27, 7:30 pm: Art and the Culture of Mill Villages. A presentation by USC anthropologist Jonathan Leader.
Wed., Feb. 3, 7:30 pm: Galleries? What Galleries? Based on their own approach, Gallimard & Mauclet discuss art business beyond the gallery.
Wed., Feb. 10, 7:30 pm: But Why Did You? Gallimard and Mauclet answer your questions about their exhibition.
Sat., Feb. 13, 11 am ­ 5 pm: Voices and Visuals From the Mills. Songs about the mills from the Smithsonian Institution collection; short films about the South; and a film about the 1934 mill strikes by Tom Terrill with discussion afterwards.
Wed., Feb. 17, 7:30 pm, What I Want The City Of Columbia To Do For The Arts Is..., Columbia citizens take five-minute turns at an open mic to explain what they want the city to do for the arts.
Mon., Feb 22: Everything Has To Go! Selling off parts of Olympia by live auction.

701 Center for Contemporary Art is a non-profit visual arts center that promotes understanding, appreciation and enjoyment of contemporary art, the creative process and the role of art and artists in the community. The center also encourages interaction between visual and other art forms.

For further information check our SC Institutional Gallery listings, call the Center at 803/238-2351 or visit (www.701cca.org).

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