Jimmy James Canales @artpace

Jimmy James Canales

Exhibition: Sep 11 – Dec 28, 2014

What is this project you are doing for Window Works?

My project is an evolving durational performance installation. For the four-month time
period of the exhibition, I will present a new art piece regularly. I see the space as my
base camp, open laboratory studio, website data center, and experimental gallery.
Viewers will have the opportunity to experience the works in real life at Artpace and also
through online documentation at jimmyjamescanales.com, Facebook, Instagram, and
Twitter. It is understood that we live in a technologically hybrid society where we
experience the world around us not only through our own faculties, but also and
sometimes only through digital mobile technologies. I approach this exhibition with this
contemporary idea of hybrid presence (offline/online, on-site/off-site) and interaction.

You talk a lot about Survival. What role does it play in this exhibition?

In this exhibition I am focusing specifically on the mnemonic keyword “S.U.R.V.I.V.A.L.” as
seen in many wilderness survival manuals. Each letter of the word references a guide to
action. In this exhibition it provides a thematic structure for my process. During the first
month of the show in September, I will “Size up the situation” and “Use all my senses.” In
October, I will “Remember where I am” and “Vanquish fear and panic.” For November, I
will “Improvise” and “Value living.” For the final month of December I will “Act like the
locals” and “Live by my wits.”

In terms of concept, “S.U.R.V.I.V.A.L.” provides an entry point for the ideas and
experiences that I am interested in talking about, specifically the complex relationships
between culture, nature, and technology.

What role does the window play in your exhibition?

Artpace’s Main Avenue windows function as my visual interface to the outside and to the
viewer. Viewers can physically come at anytime, look into the windows, drive past the
windows, see my evolving installation, and possibly see me. For me, this 24/7
asynchronous environment is a little like a mix between the always-open Internet and a
jaguar exhibit at the zoo. Sometimes you will see the wild beast (the artist) in its natural
habitat (the gallery), and sometimes you will just see the habitat (the installation).

Can you describe the online component of this exhibition?

Yes, in fact it is almost as important as the physical art in the gallery. Viewers can access
my project via my website at jimmyjamescanales.com, social media, as well as a link on
my artist page on Artpace’s website. Users will be able to see documentation of
performances, installations, sculptures, and videos that I will do in the Window Works
gallery. I am very interested in this hybrid interface between the art and the viewer that
takes place in a real physical space and its representation online.


Jimmy James Canales

San Antonio, Texas

As legend has it, Jimmy James Canales was born and raised here in San Antonio Texas, earned a BFA at the Museum School of Fine Arts, Boston and a MFA at the University of Texas San Antonio.
Among his many adventures Canales has romanced a cactus, walked across San Antonio twice, sacrificed a low-rider bicycle, survived a dual with the infamous Mat Kubo, eaten a bluebonnet, conjured Mapache Man, and invented Knife Skin Boots.

See More