June Artist in Residence: Jeremy Bolen

LATITUDE is excited to welcome Jeremy Bolen as the June Artist In Residence!

Jeremy Bolen is a Chicago based artist, researcher, organizer, and educator interested in site specific, experimental modes of documentation and presentation. Much of Bolen’s work involves rethinking systems of recording in an attempt to observe invisible presences that remain from various scientific experiments and human interactions with the earth’s surface. He is a recent recipient of the PACT Zollverein Residency in Essen, Germany; Oxbow Faculty Artist Residency in Saugatuck, MI; and Center for Land Use Interpretation Residency in Wendover, Utah.

His work has been exhibited at numerous locations including the Museum of Contemporary Photography, Chicago;  La Box, Bourges; PACT Zollverein, Essen; IDEA Space, Colorado Springs; The Mission, Houston; Galerie Zürcher, Paris; Andrew Rafacz, Chicago; Salon Zürcher, New York; The Drake, Toronto; Untitled Art Fair, Miami; Gallery 400, Chicago; Newspace Center for Photography, Portland; and Depaul University Art Museum, Chicago. Bolen currently serves as faculty at the School of Art Institute of Chicago and is represented by Andrew Rafacz Gallery, Chicago.

Q & A

Much of your artistic practice aims to record invisible phenomena. How do you work through challenges of representing, and/or documenting the unknown?

I am interested in pushing and pulling at what a document can be, not necessarily critiquing current and historic documentary practices, but hopefully by adding to the potential possibilities of what one can be. Thinking about how invisible phenomena is recorded in the world of high energy particle physics has and continues to have an enormous influence on my work. I'm interested in extending our sensory capabilities to understand what is beyond our senses.

Throughout your work, site reappears in many forms. What led you to approach these charged environments as both a material and a production technique?

Yes, site is important to my work. For the most part each locations I work at is connected to Site A/Plot in one way or another. Site A is where the world's first nuclear reactor is buried. I am interested in documenting locations that may have been overlooked by history and where an unresolved, possibly violent energy still remains from scientific investigations, military testing, industrial pursuits, and other human inventions with the Earth’s surface.

How do you measure failure or success in your experimental art practice?

I do not really think of the work within those therms. I guess in some way I’m hoping for works to fail and succeed simultaneously.

What will you be working on during your residency at LATITUDE?

Work for my upcoming solo exhibition at Soccer Club Club, Casual Invisibility, as well as a book of unseen works from the past seven years. 

How might ideas of phenomena and geological time seen in your past work inform this new project?

All of my work really deals with these ideas, and this new body of work will attempt to play with the tension between scientific knowledge and empirical observation.

When you are not working in the studio, what can you be found doing? 

Teaching, swimming, or playing tennis.

Are there any current movies, books, magazines, or podcasts that you recommend for people to check out about art and/or photography?

I have been into the books Listening to Images by Tina Campt, Meeting the Universe Halfway by Karen Barad, Dark Ecology by Timothy Morton, and The Argonauts by Maggie Nelson. 

I have also been listening to the podcast 99% Invisible.

AIR 2018Colleen Keihm