(re)Production in Appleton Art Center

Stacey Day

A new exhibit, titled “(re)Produced,” opened May 8 in the Appleton Art Center, located just a few blocks down College Avenue. The exhibit features the work of Lawrence’s very own Andy Kincaid.
Kincaid, a senior studio arts major with minors in art history and physics, might be best known on campus for his profuse beard and accompanying head of curls or for his role as president of ORC. However, Kincaid is no dark horse on the Lawrence art scene; he was interviewed in The Lawrentian’s “Artist Spotlight” as a sophomore in 2007.
He lives up to his self-description as a quiet person, conceding, “Recently I have been what I study.” Currently Kincaid is studying hard at finishing his honors project, related to his very exhibit on display downtown.
In “(re)Produced,” Kincaid tried “to address different interpretations of reproduction, not only sexually, but artistically, industrially and also in media reproductions.”
When asked about using the concept of replication and reproduction as a starting point for artwork, Kincaid cited inspirations such as Andy Warhol and Jeff Koons, concluding, “I don’t know if self-expression is the artist’s deal these days.”
The piece in the exhibit most overtly connected to sexual reproduction consists of two artist’s molds for sperm and eggs, suspended above their creations, lying on top of a glass floor, steel cable and chains. With this triple entendre of physical, artistic and industrial reproduction, Kincaid said, “I’m just showing them all together so that people can make their own connections.”
Another eye-catching piece is a large photograph of the Grand Canyon, pixilated into RGB strips like those on a television screen. The photograph is filmed by a camera, which in turn projects the image onto a television in the bottom left-hand corner of its view, in front of which complacently sits an empty recliner.
Kincaid said this piece was inspired by his own first trip to the Grand Canyon: “The everyday person’s experience of the Grand Canyon is in these tiny mediated images, and as I looked out and saw the real thing, I saw not only what was actually before me, but also all these other images from what I thought I should be seeing or what I had read about or heard about.”
Standing erect in the gallery are two life-size, three-dimensional replications of the standard male and female symbols – the female symbol in a triangle skirt, both sporting circular heads and thick, rounded limbs. These ubiquitous, innocuous images appear bizarre and even mildly threatening in this format.
Kincaid intended nothing less: “These images are so overlooked, and become our reference point for gender on an everyday basis, and they might be the most universal symbols just about anywhere. My piece allows viewers to confront that depiction of gender, and the power such an omnipresent image has.”
When asked what he wanted of his viewers, Kincaid denied that his work has an overt agenda of changing people’s day-to-day behavior: “I think we like to divide things up and compartmentalize them – we get absorbed in the stories on TV without realizing that the television is working, or how.”
He continued, “I’m trying to show all these connections between these things people don’t see in everyday life. I might be looking for a change in mindset I guess, but not in action.”
The exhibit will be on display in the Appleton Art Center until July 2.