In conversation: Jason Lujan with Rhéanne Chartrand


Join us for a conversation between artist Jason Lujan and curator Rhéanne Chartrand, discussing Lujan’s AGG exhibition Under a Star-Filled Sky. This conversation invites audiences to tour the space virtually with Lujan and Chartrand as they discuss this particular iteration of Lujan’s creative process and the ways they intersect. Lujan will explore how the exhibition fits the trajectory of his art-making, highlighting how this installation responds to place and collecting practices, while delving into his interest in the myriad of possibilities revealed when we open ourselves to other ways of looking, especially when uncovering the nuances of how different cultures approach each other as a result of travel and communication.Join us for a conversation between artist Jason Lujan and curator Rhéanne Chartrand, discussing Lujan’s AGG exhibition Under a Star-Filled Sky. This conversation invites audiences to tour the space virtually with Lujan and Chartrand as they discuss this particular iteration of Lujan’s creative process and the ways they intersect. Lujan will explore how …

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Nicole Neufeld (she/her): Hello, everyone! Welcome to the in conversation with Jason Lujan and Rheanne Chartrand.


Nicole Neufeld (she/her): We’re just gonna hold a few more minutes while people join us, but we’ll get started shortly.


Nicole Neufeld (she/her): so maybe we can get started with this evenings talk. I just like to offer a few words of welcome.


Nicole Neufeld (she/her): Thank you for joining us this evening for a conversation between artists, Jason Lujan and Curator Rheanne Chartrand.


Nicole Neufeld (she/her): My name is Nicole Neufeld, and on behalf of the art gallery of wealth. I’d like to welcome you into our virtual space.


Nicole Neufeld (she/her): So this evening Jason will offer a virtual tour of the exhibition of his work under a starfield guy.


Nicole Neufeld (she/her): He is joined in the face by Curator Rheanne Chartrand, who will be in conversation with Jason about his practice.


Nicole Neufeld (she/her): and at the end there’s also time for questions. So I do encourage you to drop any questions that you have in the chat. and we’ll certainly share with the speakers at the end of their conversation


Nicole Neufeld (she/her): as we start, though our time together this evening, i’d like to suggest a moment of pause of reflection


Nicole Neufeld (she/her): to contemplate the place where we’re gathering. yes, virtually, but also the very real places where you are joining us from. along with the place on which we live, work and create here at the Art Gallery of Guelph


as a settler who works in a cultural institution. I remind myself Nicole Neufeld (she/her): that land acknowledgments are a reminder to me to confront the ongoing effects of colonialism underpinning our institutional history.


Nicole Neufeld (she/her): The structures and the ways in which we operate Nicole Neufeld (she/her): Cultural institutions today are based on a history of deeply colonial methods of representation, and because of the ways that conventional education structures uphold institutions like ours


Nicole Neufeld (she/her): with a position of authority. The stories and narratives that we tell, have been accepted as truth.


Nicole Neufeld (she/her): truth that in turn shaped policies and practices with real implications on people’s, everyday lives.


Nicole Neufeld (she/her): And so it is important to create space to listen to stories and memories that live on in this community, to learn from ways of knowing and knowledge of this world that challenges questions and critiques. This very institution.


Nicole Neufeld (she/her): This place we now call Guelph Ontario, is on the ancestral lands of the Adwandr people, and the treaty 3 territory and lands of the Mississaugas of the credit.


Nicole Neufeld (she/her): This land, which bears rich, indigenous history, is also home to many first stations Inuit and Metis people today. and we’ll be that are here today, and we’ll be here for many generations to come.


Nicole Neufeld (she/her): I offer my respect to our Anishnnabek, Haudenosaunee, and Metis neighbours, recognizing that we have a lot of work to do to strengthen our relationship within this community, and that there are many actions that we still need to take towards reconciliation.


Nicole Neufeld (she/her): So i’d like to invite you to join me in offering respect to the elders who stored the plans of the past, present, and future. and and think and pause and reflect on the actions that we can all take towards truth and reconciliation.


Nicole Neufeld (she/her): And from here i’d also like to turn things over to my colleague, Sabi, Sally, freighter, who who is the curator here at the Art Gallery of Guelph.


Nicole Neufeld (she/her): and also curator at the exhibition that Jason and Ron will be discussing this evening under a star field sky. So


Nicole Neufeld (she/her): please join us for you when you can.


Sally Frater: I’m going right now. Thank you. Sally Frater: and thank you to everyone who is joining us this evening Late last year I participated in a two-week curatorial exchange that began with a visit from Dr. Heather, a tongue who is the Director of Curatorial Affairs at the first Americans Museum in Oklahoma City.


Sally Frater: That period ranks among the most impactful and transformative experiences that I have had in my career to date


Sally Frater: through conversations with artists, curators, and site, visits to museums and galleries.


Sally Frater: I encountered ways and frameworks of being in dialogue with community and visitors that propose myriad ways


Sally Frater: that museological sites can exist as spaces in which decolonial action can unfold and multiple re-imaginings of the present and future can occur.


Sally Frater: heather, and I spent time with tonight’s speakers during this visit. and we also had the opportunity to see Piano Shah’s wonderful exhibition. We are made of stardust at the Mcmaster Museum of Art.


Sally Frater: The show which featured 24 artists and was rooted in indigenous cosmologies and astronomy


Sally Frater: featured art works that visually expressed how indigenous peoples


Sally Frater: make there make sense of their Sally Frater: place in the universe Sally Frater: through relating to and reflecting on, the sun, the moon, and all the celestial beams in the night sky.


Sally Frater: It was her work and thoughtfulness around this installation. along with her substantial cosmological knowledge


Sally Frater: that spurt us to invite man to be in dialogue with Jason Luhan


Sally Frater: to discuss his art Gallery of Wealth Exhibition under a starfield sky. Jason’s mixed media exhibit of 2 and 3 dimensional work


Sally Frater: also touches on indigenous cosmology. Sally Frater: but it also leads us to think about the construction of installations


Sally Frater: and the intricacies involved in, and the possibilities that are revealed when we open ourselves to the active looking.


Sally Frater: I am very much looking forward to their dialogue this evening. Sally Frater: Brian Chartsong is a Metis curator based in Hamilton, with over 10 years of experience in


Sally Frater: curating interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary exhibitions, showcases, and festivals, She has served as the curator of indigenous art


Sally Frater: at Mcmaster Museum, of art for the last 6 years. Sally Frater: Her curatorial work focuses on the practice of survivors indigenous epistemies, relational aesthetics, representational politics and gratitude.


Sally Frater: Rayan is a co-founder of the shish kateo Shuk Kateo Collective an equity Seeking and Advocacy Group organizing on behalf of Metis artists and arts, workers to increase metis representation, capacity, and flourishing within the Canadian arts meal, you 2,


Sally Frater: and previously she served as the board member with the indigenous curatorial collective from 2,018 to 2,022.


Sally Frater: Jason, who is originally from Mark, is a multi disciplinary artist who works in assemblage, print, making, painting, and bead work. Among other media explores. The idea of or explores the idea


Sally Frater: or the exchange rather of ideas, meaning, and values, that STEM from engagement between different cultures.


Sally Frater: As a result of travel and communication Sally Frater: he has shown his work in solo and group exhibitions internationally, including the Amon Carter Museum of American Art. The Art Museum of Toronto Mercer Union.


Sally Frater: the Center for Book Arts, New York. Smithsonian Arts and Art Arts and Industries Building Western Front The Curateiba International Biennial in Brazil


Sally Frater: Center 3 for Artistic and Social Practice Sally Frater: The Museum of contemporary native art in Santa Fe and the Herd Museum in Phoenix.


Sally Frater: His work is currently on his his work is currently on view at the Denver Art Museum as part of the touring Exhibition. Speaking with light contemporary indigenous photography.


Sally Frater: An associate professor in the Faculty of Design at Ocad University in Toronto Luhan is represented by Mkg. 127,


Sally Frater: and by Patel Brown Gallery as a member of Native Art Department International.


Sally Frater: So I will turn to the floor over to.


Jason Lujan: Okay. Jason Lujan: here we are. So we’re trying a few. We’re going to try something different today where we have man and myself.


Jason Lujan: And as you can see we have our 2, which is still in this. We’re going to move around the space, and hopefully will follow us along. But there may be a few things. This is not like television.


Jason Lujan: It’s just like Zoom Meetings. So hopefully to be generous with how we do things moving in and out of frame. How are you? I feel like I’m on a Japanese game, so I think I want to start off by talking about.


Jason Lujan: Well, first say thank you for coming, my CD. Would be here, but also to the the Hg. Staff, Sally.


Jason Lujan: and on those of you who are taking time on you already. Jason Lujan: Wednesday.


Jason Lujan: to spend time with us here as it goes through some of the key objects of this exhibition Jason Lujan: today is not a big of start meeting, so we’re going to do it. It’s an assistance of works in this shop, too. Cloudy. Right? Yeah.


Jason Lujan: Yeah. Jason Lujan: Okay. I


Jason Lujan: The idea for the show started several years ago. Maybe 2,011, 2,012.


Jason Lujan: I was in Chicago. I went to the Field Museum, and there was a


Jason Lujan: but it was.


Jason Lujan: I started thinking about this. So


Jason Lujan: why not? Jason Lujan: And then let’s i’ll. I’ll try to walk through my thought process for myself. Okay. So the thing about us.


Thank you. Jason Lujan: Is that?


Yes. Jason Lujan: when I saw the map, it was actually laying the and for some reason you really love showing


Jason Lujan: heights flat or all that, I think that’s a whole of the conversation. Jason Lujan: I started thinking about how we see space and how we see the land, and for a map of your terrain looking at it automatically moves you into an abstract perspective. We don’t move through the earth that way. We’re not


Jason Lujan: hummingbird or dragonfl. You like this, but one of the things about this is that is that from the star, Mac.


Jason Lujan: It is actually almost a literal way of how we look up, and as we do it under the sky, and it’s over us. This is still how we see things. So I really like that. So then I decide what I want to do is maybe talk about that through making an art where.


Jason Lujan: as you look 6 days, we’re actually looking for stars. So I made a the details of this map


Jason Lujan: so that way we can literally look through space. So i’ll talk to you a little bit about this.


Jason Lujan: One of the things I want to point out is some of the iconography. This is where we can start. It’s pretty prominent, and we have that


Jason Lujan: start going through the America. You know the 4 Point stars. But there’s also this line here which is the Milky Way.


and Jason Lujan: I did some reading, and there’s there’s some common analysis with the looking for it. He has. It divides the sky, but it’s also seen as the pathway of


Jason Lujan: Yeah, that it’s it’s the bridge between


Jason Lujan: the human plan. So I really like that. It is represented here so commonly.


Jason Lujan: but Jason Lujan: because I was thinking about how you you know, and that’s what it forward to me about putting this on a, so that you can see through, and then we can. Technically, we want it to walk the whole exhibition looking through the stars literally looking through space.


Jason Lujan: What’s really interesting about this is it does speak to what you were saying about.


Jason Lujan: You know Jason Lujan: it to grasp an iconography on


Jason Lujan: on high, on in time they were warm back to around something. They weren’t business always necessarily they flat. So I like, how do you take


Jason Lujan: something that would have been out Jason Lujan: activated. Jason Lujan: and we want people to. Actually.


Jason Lujan: it moves around. Yeah, right? Yeah. So I think that’s really interesting. I see that this one is a bit more.


Jason Lujan: How for the resolution is. It’s a different kind of goal.


Jason Lujan: This one and the other is


Jason Lujan: so. That’s just part of that. Jason Lujan: The reason I thought about using the world. This is the question I do. I get a lot of questions


Jason Lujan: just because if you say Jason Lujan: as a material, you know it’ all generated for space. So 100% of all the on this planet has come from somewhere else.


Jason Lujan: I kind of thought about that. Jason Lujan: And so I was thinking about moving through space and and golden stars.


Jason Lujan: One of the things that intriguing me about seeing carries over is part of the themes of this right Jason Lujan: we’re talking about seeing through space. We’re talking about experiencing perspectives. It’s that.


Let’s go over the shop that we’ll talk about. Yeah. Take a peaky folks with us.


Jason Lujan: We are this one. So one of the things stars is. I’ll see for the people who made that have. and this is about it. and let’s say you were to go


Jason Lujan: 300 light years away from planet Earth. Jason Lujan: and then look back at code of Earth. and with the right kind of science


Jason Lujan: we would see the people who actually


Jason Lujan: and so think of a you can maybe a local.


Jason Lujan: Let’s move in 30 35. So it’s a very strange way of thinking about these time and space. And so I wanted to explore the variation of that to my own symbols. And that’s where


Jason Lujan: these works. They’re just kind of a collection of different approaches of materials.


Jason Lujan: so that this one is Jason Lujan: this one is it’s just the black spray paint, but on a clear surface, so that you can see through the the star shape. But you don’t see the


Jason Lujan: yeah.


Jason Lujan: sure. And so there’s different. There’s


Jason Lujan: there’s just black there. There’s but they try to and render stars later for the form.


Jason Lujan: These are actually 4.


Yeah. Jason Lujan: And and what’s really interesting? That was actually a key question I had in, not only using to use both so much in this particular body of.


Jason Lujan: but just thinking about materials in general. Jason Lujan: How do you make those.


Jason Lujan: and and Why, why is gold recurring? You alluded to it being a substance that comes from space. But


Jason Lujan: i’m also saying, in terms of this luminosity, it’s, reflected this, and how does that


Jason Lujan: we talked about that Jason Lujan: this project? So yeah, because it’s, I mean with gold. It it it is a surface that obscures it. It’s it’s a matter of we need, and one of the things that I do is I go through. I’ll take discarded


Jason Lujan: the electronic.


Jason Lujan: We’re going to need this again. And so I was thinking about how to reactivate these objects


Jason Lujan: of that. The Jason Lujan: we contextualize it as an object that’s.


Jason Lujan: and that’s where I didn’t want someone to Jason Lujan: you to actually be the object. As an artist I have this bias.


Jason Lujan: I call it the touch text, where, when you see something and it’s an artist. I’m really bad, or I touch it. I want to know what it’s about. I’m not in trying to figure things out


Jason Lujan: and nothing. Jason Lujan: It’s just really Jason Lujan: kind of upsetting when I touch something that I see you as a rock, is


Jason Lujan: It’s it’s an illusion. Jason Lujan: Yeah, I don’t.


Jason Lujan: I kind of want something that’s gonna hold up Jason Lujan: past just the Soviet Times. And I think, having a kind


Jason Lujan: I like that


Jason Lujan: actually so interesting a lot of the things that you’re talking about were things I explored in my next vision from a few years ago called


Jason Lujan: It’s because we think about time as a culture that exists in the Jason Lujan: present with that right. So I like, when objects activate that truth, that


Jason Lujan: yes, they, if they want this physical play with, there is also their existence in the spiritual plan, and it’s it’s not a concurrent to us.


Jason Lujan: and I just.


Jason Lujan: you know I was looking at this, and and i’m an automatically thought for myself. So where is it intentionality in the layout of the star card? Or were you kind of? Was it just simply


Jason Lujan: kind of free for replacement? Or were you actually making reference like much of the working? You need to start making reference to specific constellations? So I just kind of wonder if that


Jason Lujan: I was thinking about stars and imagery of stars. So I want to attract different techniques when I brought this material together


that it Jason Lujan: So you can imagine some of this


Jason Lujan: there is this. What are the other things that I like? Shells of orientation, because they also have a modular, and you can spread them out. You want to.


Jason Lujan: No. Jason Lujan: And it reminds me of this many. You have a variation of the fever there, so that maybe you walk in and you will necessarily stars for this cosmology. But then you have a material that you can engage with, or what I do like the


Jason Lujan: or do you like experimentation, which Jason Lujan: so they do like


Jason Lujan: for audiences who might not be familiar with your work to kind of connected today. But I also hope that you just said about the ability to reconfigure your work, and I think there is a through line between also your interest in


Jason Lujan: like reconstituting and reconstructing things that have fallen into this piece


Jason Lujan: and and kind of just trying to to find things or give things a new life for me through new articulations, right, which I think is really foxing, because sometimes you don’t have to reinvent the wheel If you just need to turn


Jason Lujan: in a different way, which I think is also kind of interesting.


Okay. Jason Lujan: cool. I don’t know about that. Alright, let’s go. Let’s turn this around this way.


Jason Lujan: Do you hear that? Some thunder? Did it join us to the thunder. Alright. So this is the machine. I got to get up close a little bit. So okay, we’re just talking about.


Jason Lujan: I don’t need to be on the camera all the time Jason Lujan: we were. We were talking about


Jason Lujan: what I don’t know are things that maybe perhaps. or past their time. There’s another Avenue. I think of it so as an artist my interest is people like, what’s your heart about?


Jason Lujan: Why do you machines and these vintage radios and other parts of my output. Jason Lujan: Just push this back whatever you want. There we go. We need to see it. Here we go, and so here we go.


Jason Lujan: So I often think of like. Imagine you’re at Jason Lujan: the free market at the center of the universe.


Jason Lujan: Ideas, new ideas, and things that are brought in, and what these things are taken out, and as things work their way across the market


Jason Lujan: on either, or an idea object that has a particular sense of purpose here may not have the same kind of purpose there. So then, what happens to it?


Jason Lujan: People adopt it. You see it’s curious about it. And then, next thing you know you have a sewing machine that’s been turned into a


Jason Lujan: something like that. You know these items are. Jason Lujan: we work and repositions that they’re then useful wherever they at sometimes they’re taken out of a certain A,


Jason Lujan: and I was curious about it. Jason Lujan: I have no idea what it is, but this is definitely not from where i’m from. This says something about somewhere else.


Jason Lujan: and so I bought one, and this is one of the When I originally got this.


Jason Lujan: this one was really the case was destroyed. The play field is yellow, and


Jason Lujan: and nothing was polished. It’s dry.


Jason Lujan: so I ended up having to remake the case Jason Lujan: and the reward for playing field. What I got appealing to the play field. It’s like a flat surface. No, I didn’t do something with this. I I can familiarize it, but I can read craft with my own cheap hand, so that it has that bad.


Jason Lujan: So when I play it, i’m facing, and that i’m now familiar with it. I made it so it my personal interests.


Jason Lujan: And then, for this example. Jason Lujan: I haven’t once again, did you?


Jason Lujan: We replace all of these pins and and in the circular wheels. Yeah, okay, so one of the things I like to do is when I re-work is I I like it, or may have a tough time knowing what was the original.


Jason Lujan: What’s new, what I’ve done. Jason Lujan: and what was I just? And I really like that history because one of my favorite hard experiences is when you go into area


Jason Lujan: to look at art, and you don’t know where it’s part stops, or the art, and you know what’s our? And to me that feels like a really good. You’re just there. It’s like.


Jason Lujan: Is that important? So for this I just click and walk you through. Why, it is a chicken part. This part is original.


Jason Lujan: this little 2 of the payoff centers, originally the central. Jason Lujan: But I re get all of the spinners in gold, and read it the center of peace and go. I’ll read it with some brass, and they red in these 2 of in silver. But I added a little 4 point to Star.


Jason Lujan: All right, so the 2 of it is the symbol of good fortune, and it’s taken from


Jason Lujan: the 2 of the Jason Lujan: you know a fortune they don’t kind of carry over to what happened later at that. So that’s why those are called tools. and then it works, and it’s function. So here’s where I want to continue to grab this. Pull it down, and then just let it go.


Jason Lujan: and then this is where we get to find out just how noise you get. The Chief. Yeah, give it a shot.


Let’s look at it. Jason Lujan: but it’s it’s. You know it’s it’s fully functional. But then, when I redesign them, I don’t intend them to be used as toys for objects, so I remember that’s why I use precious.


Jason Lujan: I sometimes get questions about why you continue to do what is Sometimes some of your elements are from Asia


to call Jason Lujan: sources and reference points, and it said, Well, in the case of I see this as


Jason Lujan: not as a cultural experience for me. Jason Lujan: I’m not trying to imagine what it’s like to be a person from someone else. I All I know is what he doesn’t play this here and now in Canada. That’s myself.


Jason Lujan: I see it as an aesthetic experience. Jason Lujan: and that’s why I


Jason Lujan: It’s a sort of it’s kind of a a neighbouring sense of the process of not not restoring, but reimagining it. It’s a combination of both. Yeah, but also it’s just so. I think when people see these.


Jason Lujan: the you know this out here. Jason Lujan: and they’re like, what is it? Sort of? And then there’s some mystery there, that’s what I like to think. If you look closely, if you learn something about the structure


Jason Lujan: and learn more about material language now. Jason Lujan: and that is really important. Jason Lujan: Yeah. And again, the the we’re playing team of of materials.


Jason Lujan: Yes. what is that. Jason Lujan: anyway? The thing is, you can’t really see much.


you know what. Jason Lujan: So this is not an interactive piece of the exhibition. Folks can see the show, though we cannot play the


Jason Lujan: okay


Jason Lujan: to that.


Jason Lujan: Alright, so this is gonna be fun. So Jason Lujan: So this one doesn’t really show up in camera. Very well. So i’m going to ask the call to you to be a figure to call and just bring up the picture that we have for our people that see


Nicole Neufeld (she/her): you got it. Hold her. Jason Lujan: in fact, technical.


Jason Lujan: There it is. So I’ll just so. I wanted to get the things that we talked about


Jason Lujan: indigenous Jason Lujan: of the lens of the indigenous lands of the sky space and take it kind of


Jason Lujan: moving out of the room of an aesthetic into a concept kind of action. Jason Lujan: So I asked in the


there’s Jason Lujan: and then what I did was I got some part. I put some gold deep stars on it. but they didn’t look too much like Christmas wrap, so I took it out to the


Jason Lujan: Yeah. So it’s very weather. Yeah. Jason Lujan: the goals are okay. And then we went through.


Jason Lujan: I wanted a piece of art because what I wanted to happen is I Jason Lujan: I don’t want to


Jason Lujan: right on to this hard work, so that the art that had to look through the space to see the outside world. And so we have this portrait.


Jason Lujan: Okay, you can put this back on camera.


Jason Lujan: So I’ve never done this, so I need you to go into the chat. Let’s take this off.


Jason Lujan: Okay. Jason Lujan: if you like. It’s one of this because you


Jason Lujan: and so us here. So I mean, I feel like.


Jason Lujan: Okay?


Jason Lujan: And then tell me


Jason Lujan: so. What’s it like in there? Jason Lujan: It’s a much more.


Jason Lujan: It’s very hard to see Jason Lujan: this.


Jason Lujan: Yeah. and let’s kind of do this for that.


Jason Lujan: So let’s see what’s it? Look like. Jason Lujan: Nicole, Sally, what do you see?


Jason Lujan: What Sally Frater: I see? Sally Frater: I see opaque semi opaque layers.


Jason Lujan: You see any of the fires. Sally Frater: I I just saw one. So another one go by. Yeah.


Nicole Neufeld (she/her): it’s like traction in so many ways, because you do see light coming through.


Nicole Neufeld (she/her): and then shadows. But other than that, it’s really hard to figure out what’s going on. It’s amazing


Jason Lujan: as well. Jason Lujan: So that’s kind of what I mentioned. So this was a really nice way of thinking about the concept. And also


Jason Lujan: was it a Yes.


Jason Lujan: this is the collection. Jason Lujan: and, to my knowledge.


Jason Lujan: the closest approximating. It’s a series of portraits all for


it. It actually Jason Lujan: can you, that you know. So it’s better to have this. This is just the work of our portrait. It gives us a really good reading. When I talk about, see through space


Jason Lujan: you are. Jason Lujan: This is person I


awesome. Jason Lujan: Yeah, maybe it’s just to look this up to the rocky.


That’s Jason Lujan: okay. Yeah. Jason Lujan: Yeah.


Jason Lujan: So


Jason Lujan: okay. that stuff.


Jason Lujan: with the exception of a in the last 3 years or so. And so I guess it might seem like a basic question


Jason Lujan: materials or pandemic. What were some of the challenges you Jason Lujan: especially working. you know.


is there? Jason Lujan: And


Jason Lujan: and some of your video or and kind of where, or the parallels or distinction to this body of this present. Here you’re kind of over as a whole.


Jason Lujan: That’s a great question. So I think i’ll just walk you through a.


Jason Lujan: And then I moved to New York City from Bolton, Colorado. Jason Lujan: and suddenly AD. Felt so less urged when I saw that.


Jason Lujan: Do you feel like I could respond to things Jason Lujan: quickly enough with just.


Jason Lujan: I started to talk at Multi-


Jason Lujan: and that is great


Jason Lujan: I can literally. and have a perspective of ideas and concepts around that. And that’s actually the person


Jason Lujan: sorry people to ask you to church towards the laptop in your speaking.


Got it? Jason Lujan: Okay, so.


Jason Lujan: And then Jason Lujan: the time I was still making videos and you mentioned work. But something really funny. I need to start sharing with someone


Jason Lujan: starts making objects. There’s a kind of across Jason Lujan: a hybridization that kind of happens. And


Jason Lujan: when we take inspiration or just like a anyway. So the the story Maria likes to tell is that both at different times your turn today, and how to be


Jason Lujan: that the


Jason Lujan: the person was there, and see the person. I can always think of my own experience, but I eventually found myself gravitating.


Jason Lujan: I think, in through background material. Which what does it mean to? Jason Lujan: How do you


Jason Lujan: communicate Jason Lujan: these kinds of materials as as opposed to just


in a certain way? Jason Lujan: This is really big story we’re reading in a Chris. This is the story of my head every time I talk about sculpture. He was at Mona College.


Jason Lujan: and he was Jason Lujan: established California artists who


Jason Lujan: taught that they had to. Jason Lujan: And then this sort of decides where they go into his office, and I forget that.


Jason Lujan: So to know. I think I want to try sculpture. Professor gets up out of this first time in the semester.


Jason Lujan: and it goes on this long time rate. I don’t want to go with the sculpture, and it’s the road to. I think it’s the


Jason Lujan: there’s so many dimensions to it. Jason Lujan: But I still I come up, for I believe that enjoy making sculptures. But I like the one between different media and the reality. Check here is, for some reason most


Jason Lujan: have many styles like Martin Kickenberger seems to be.


Jason Lujan: People have a hard time with that Jason Lujan: one particular.


Jason Lujan: So they actually Jason Lujan: kind of find it really exciting. Working with the arts like yourself. It has a wide


Jason Lujan: so to me I don’t actually see that as a mentioned, I just think it opens up so much possibility of how do you?


Jason Lujan: But I I would I would agree that any conventional institutions or conventional partnership would probably want you to stay in a certain way.


Jason Lujan: But I think it’s changing, because I think some of the other Jason Lujan: as an educator. You see this are just working in so many different meetings all the time.


Jason Lujan: So yeah, I think I think so. I think the organization. Jason Lujan: but it’s been a small process by I just have so many.


Jason Lujan: Yeah. Jason Lujan: I really feel like each got it.


Jason Lujan: But I’ve had conversations with the Jason Lujan: that particularly.


They’re not very okay. Jason Lujan: There’s no real. They don’t really feel they have any options


Jason Lujan: since I just recently you here. I guess I I i’m trying. I feel like I have it for them to do that, but also me


Jason Lujan: such good conversations. So I I think sometimes when I make the work, they’re speaking to other arts as well.


Jason Lujan: and I think that you know that that is the Jason Lujan: politics you are not engaging with the curry. Sure you’re working with the screen.


Jason Lujan: So. But then also our


Jason Lujan: and the reason why I think it would share. Yeah. And the reason why I want to do this


Jason Lujan: if you get as much of the work in into this group. Yeah kind of the process of of carrying this shell in terms of the the replacement of the voices in the space.


Jason Lujan: And and the reason why I’m asking that question is because. you know, revealing or hiding certain things seems through. I’m just kind of curious about the relationship and how they’re replacing things, and maybe your


Jason Lujan: opening up or constraining those that visual conversation okay, so


Jason Lujan: black, like, emphasizes color and contrast as much as one. Jason Lujan: and when we were installing the show, one of I have this, the original, the the and then people would have to use the flashbacks on their phones to look around. But the reason I like that is because the idea


Jason Lujan: coming into a space and being able to see everything it’s kind of a Western concept.


Jason Lujan: the idea of shadow. See something and things reveal themselves. Slowly things come into view and they disappear from you.


Jason Lujan: and then you’re it’s difficult to take in the entire of an object or a location without moving yourself to the area.


Jason Lujan: Just an accessibility issue. It’s okay. But you know, I in my mind. I imagine this exhibition.


Jason Lujan: But it’s interesting. Jason Lujan: Yeah, I I mean that’s an interesting Prime Minister Desire as it’s interesting. It’s difficult when you live in an urban environment, as I’m. Sure you know this coming to our 5. It’s a little less populated, and so your scout is different.


Jason Lujan: What you can see the next guy is very different. Jason Lujan: and I think what’s really interesting about what you’re suggesting, or what you wanted to do is that if you ever have the opportunity to go to the


Jason Lujan: or places that are largely an inhabitant like the Southwest. And if you’re shopping on the tunes and music, and get it pretty dark. This guy’s actually quite illuminated. So great it’s it’s not as it’s just it’s not a point.


Jason Lujan: So


Jason Lujan: yeah. Jason Lujan: And then, having to the flash of that is right. That’s much of our inter.


Jason Lujan: I find that interesting. Other artists have done it, and that’s kind of where.


Jason Lujan: But I do like the concept of shadow. Jason Lujan: See? Jason Lujan: That’s start. So when I worked in the Dia. the program because they would have one. The idea was that you could come see the Exhibition, and then revisit the exhibition in different times.


Jason Lujan: Different seasons today. Jason Lujan: and kind of you know where you live with it. Jason Lujan: Since I’ve worked there, and literally, I think literally what I saw 5 days a week. Yeah.


Jason Lujan: So that’s fine. I kind of want to get that experience Jason Lujan: to you.


Jason Lujan: I guess. Yeah. And so the visual dialogue. I’m: looking at this space. And i’m hoping everyone on online can complete. Yeah.


Jason Lujan: just in terms of where you kind of decided to taste things. Jason Lujan: This is obviously where we just happen to have the anchor, perhaps, on your work. So, going back, if you look to the front of the gallery with the chink of machine and the 3 star maps.


Jason Lujan: but then also just moving around the space. So I guess I was just curious about that because the one kind of non indigenous


Jason Lujan: a sacred


Jason Lujan: place it the first thing you saw. you know nuts and bolts


Jason Lujan: the perspective that they show all of that. Who’s this person? Is everything about this person. So I wanted to start off with a fun.


Jason Lujan: You walk in to where the mat to the Pacific sheet, and then you see other stars, and black and black.


Jason Lujan: another layers of contracts. And then, of course, the Jason Lujan: if you go talk to someone. Yes. so


Jason Lujan: let’s you. Wanna Jason Lujan: You’ll have to lift it up. I get to pick. Where’s the gloves Hold on.


Jason Lujan: So I was really excited about this, and perhaps our viewers online. Well remember this particular device, this toy of sorts, although it’s no longer a toy, no longer the tool.


Jason Lujan: but it’s a viewfinder Jason Lujan: gently walk towards the camera


Jason Lujan: with it’s it’s not functional, as as Jason told me, which was a huge disappointment, because I wanted to to look through it. And it’s I guess what I


Jason Lujan: so for this one. I wanted to treat this as a sculptural object where it’s about the material and how it handles like. So what I do is it took a few master. I added, a slice of prison pattern to the front, and then go, please, you know.


Jason Lujan: And then, when it kind of turns into


Jason Lujan: a holding display device for the gold. Jason Lujan: So it’s that’s how it’s supposed to function


Jason Lujan: this particular I see. So Jason Lujan: So


Jason Lujan: here’s the camera, so you can still see through it. And then you see how the gold works. But you’re able to. There’s no there’s no carousel. Picture Karas on here. That would kind of be decided to point. But I did take earlier versions where I wanted the picture.


Jason Lujan: You You are okay, and then the viewmaster is just the support structure. Jason Lujan: And that’s what they clearly


Jason Lujan: Yeah, and that’s interesting, because you


Jason Lujan: is that is that like a longing for phone for about or you.


Jason Lujan: I think it was also text like here. Okay. i’m not. But it’s it’s the text. It’s it’s Id on an object.


Jason Lujan: The text is cut off when I use text, I like to call the text off with word letters


Jason Lujan: very much interested in survivors as proxies, and we survive the strategies. And I see a lot of. Not that I want to police that onto. But I see a lot


Jason Lujan: of some of the things that kind of conceptualize Jason Lujan: coming out of your work of this annotation of obscure.


Jason Lujan: You know these sorts of acts to not always.


Jason Lujan: And I think that there’s something to be said about that, and going back to what we were saying about Western culture, Western society, Western, or discourse. If there’s this, this false assignment, everything must be


Jason Lujan: brushes up against it just that. No, actually think there’s things that it’s okay for something.


Jason Lujan: And I really think that that because I see


Jason Lujan: you’re. Jason Lujan: and that’s what makes it work. So I think we should check the time and then get out our chairs. Oh, yeah, okay, I’ll get this. We’re gonna we’re gonna now it’s almost 7, 30. So we want to open it up to questions


Jason Lujan: folks online. and then we’ll we’ll get to that


Jason Lujan: it. Doesn’t matter. What’s your good start


Jason Lujan: That looks good right Jason Lujan: that too far away here.


That’s good. Jason Lujan: It’s also


alright, tick again. I think I’ve had it over to the for me.


Jason Lujan: I still do. There, now, we’ve changed formats to talk to a format. and


Jason Lujan: we are ready for questions. Alright, this is great.


Jason Lujan: Well, I


Jason Lujan: it’s so. I am back. Sally Frater: Thank you for that.


Sally Frater: That was Sally Frater: it was enlightening and revealing and and complaining and pure nonsense. And so the first question is from Nicole.


Sally Frater: and she was wondering about some of the displays strategies. She was curious about how the interactive


Sally Frater: or about the fact that these interactive objects are placed within the black box


Jason Lujan: clear in this Jason Lujan: not foxing. I’m not into black.


Well, yeah, so I just don’t want these things to get stolen. Jason Lujan: That’s the that’s the that’s the practical. Answer. There’s small and


a really famous successful artist, I know.


Jason Lujan: So I kind of learned from that, and I didn’t want to have to tie things up. So these things are very tactile.


Jason Lujan: It’s common. It’s a radio. It’s a view Master must be here for me to use. We always put this here just for me.


Jason Lujan: and by putting it under a case that kind of Jason Lujan: you can look, please don’t know.


Jason Lujan: to practical consideration. Jason Lujan: But you


Jason Lujan: it’s an object. and if you find it Jason Lujan: So these all by 1 point we’re objects to. So there is a natural human response to want to touch, and i’m as guilty as that as you are in our spaces, wanting to touch things. But it is obviously when it


Jason Lujan: I guess if you have to talk about this, or transcendence of the object from from functional to work. That kind of creates that separation. But


Jason Lujan: so one of the things that thanks some of the feedback I got in when they, when a viewer is presented with an object that they are not familiar with.


Jason Lujan: or maybe Don’t know very well I forgot about. They just assume that it’s supposed to look like, anyway. And so it’s just something that’s just unappropriated right. and they assume it’s it have like the radios, or I won’t have other work.


Jason Lujan: We don’t know that I Jason Lujan: And so there’s a that gives them a kind of permission for familiarity to.


Sally Frater: Okay, we have another question, and it is.


Sally Frater: The question was, I am curious about the decision, Not use labels in the installation.


Jason Lujan: What are you for about labels? Jason Lujan: I have a lovely relationship with labels. I will say that as a curator I obviously want the shows that I carry it to be as accessible as possible, and I think it’s obviously really


Jason Lujan: important to to acknowledge the artist who is the maker of that object. I think, with the solo show like this you can get away with.


Jason Lujan: perhaps not having those directed labels which really this is an aside, but I think it might still be a little bit relevant. It was a museum world when we refer to directed labels, object labels as to some rules, and I, and then a lot of difficulty, a lot of problems with the terminology we use within the museum field. Describe what it is that they do, or or what things are in space.


Jason Lujan: and so is always not sat very well with me. So I have in in some of my projects opted to not include ball labels, and instead of like a that list works mapped out


Jason Lujan: just just, and also because I do find it to be visually instructive at times. So every project is different.


Jason Lujan: Always use them. But I So what are you, hey? There we go.


Jason Lujan: I don’t like, you know something. I feel like the label interrupts just the viewing. I feel like it Lets you know what’s our what’s not our. It’s not my jam. I’m off from pretty good with the map, or that’s nearby.


Jason Lujan: I don’t see one, but there would be a macro brochure so someone needed more wanted to know something about an object. They could read about it. But oftentimes those just simply state the type of work that a location. Anyway.


Jason Lujan: I kind of prefer someone to come in. Look around. Jason Lujan: maybe be confused.


Jason Lujan: I like confusing people. I like confusing myself, and so and then just have that straight, Corey experience. It’s kind of like. So people ask me about like what’s up on the I have no idea what the happiness install.


Jason Lujan: I’ll go to the studio, but i’ll turn on a machine. I have some that I play that. Jason Lujan: and i’ll play it. You play for Chicago, and then you’re like, for maybe it’s 30 min. You’re like, all right. I


Jason Lujan: I I figured it out. Okay, and then a couple of hours later. and that’s kind of how I feel about looking at our community. Look around, maybe later.


Jason Lujan: Yeah, what was that about? And then it? I think it’s also.


Jason Lujan: you know your decision to to not include those labels might also


Jason Lujan: speak to this this idea. Everyone comes to our from a different


Jason Lujan: experience. That’s what they’re going to see. You know i’d be really playing here, but like what is the point of what we’re going to?


Jason Lujan: And so what’s interesting about Jason Lujan: it is about challenging that those ways of looking, while also having to prescribe prescriptive.


Jason Lujan: I mean, most of these works are untitled. Some of them have titles. Those titles are largely for accular titles like the Mapping the polymer.


Jason Lujan: or you know the things like that. But largely it’s just about the


Sally Frater: I think, that also ties into and’s point about this refusal that’s contained. We didn’t work in that tension between.


Sally Frater: Here’s something i’m revealing something, but i’m not necessarily going to give you all of the information.


and i’m not necessarily going to reveal everything to you. Sally Frater: I have a question.


Sally Frater: I was speaking with an artist Sally Frater: late last year, and this artist was saying that


Sally Frater: that they place a high priority on on visitors having a really rich experience of an installation.


Sally Frater: and that they they really want to prioritize having sort of enticing or engaging aesthetics or objects on view in their shows, because they said otherwise they would write a book.


Sally Frater: so that artist’s name is Jason Luhan. Sally Frater: 5. Sally Frater: There are 2 texts in particular, that sort of.


Sally Frater: or that have informed parts or works that are in the show. And so one of them is in praise of shadows, and the other one by Jimmy Chiro and I was made of Don about a and Scott Mama Day, and I was wondering if you could speak a bit about.


Sally Frater: even if you don’t want to go into detail about how those 2 works have informed you work. But just about


Sally Frater: the idea of text kind of making its way into this installation.


Jason Lujan: So we talked a little bit about the shadows. I took a lot of that language from that book, and it’s been a huge inspiration.


Jason Lujan: Hey, miss! It’s Southwest United States writer and there’s a particular chapter, and it’s about to travel the travails.


Jason Lujan: The tiger system. Jason Lujan: It’s a hard time for you.


Jason Lujan: and it’s sort of that. Jason Lujan: There is this. There’s a painting here that we’re looking at. Now. It’s called the and I recently went back, and I read that book.


Jason Lujan: That that part of what happens is this character lapses back into alcohol, you know, running in the street


Jason Lujan: schizophrenic Jason Lujan: once across this.


Okay. Jason Lujan: it’s not a good story. It’s not like the


Jason Lujan: But as I thought about that, I envisioned like.


Jason Lujan: and that’s kind of how I make this capture. which we’ll show you here.


Jason Lujan: or the call going to place out on the Jason Lujan: yeah.


Jason Lujan: So


Jason Lujan: is that he was one of the first, because I was an artist to identify creative.


Jason Lujan: This is a writer who travelled extensively to Russia, and


Jason Lujan: none of those that we’ve critically received. In fact, all of the critical interests and academic interest is super hot and stored by being an indigenous person in the Southwest.


Jason Lujan: and you should push back against that. This is why somewhere it’s a car will be in Canada


Jason Lujan: as well, and so I feel a bit of kitchen with that writer. Jason Lujan: and the kind of just the desire for creative freedom.


Jason Lujan: I love that because I Jason Lujan: I would say I’ve included Carl’s work in almost all of my projects, because I I love what he presents, and i’m a collaborating, a a path like he was the interview.


Jason Lujan: and some of these that he created Jason Lujan: are this: for, like for thinking people people who thick. So when you engage with this work, you’re not coming that you have to actually spend time with it. It’s not just Here’s a pretty picture, you know. He actually has something to say.


Jason Lujan: and it’s his perspective on the world, and that may or may not be indigenous. And and so there is a


Jason Lujan: so there was something else. That was another idea in there, oh, so Jason Lujan: oh, great! So there’s a you know. I I I use a lot of Asia and people like what’s up with that just?


Jason Lujan: I was actually didn’t really think much about it. But then I started hanging out with this


Jason Lujan: for some sort of job.


Jason Lujan: You always need to call me because you to get to bar or go to a. You would also take the restaurant.


Jason Lujan: because under various. Jason Lujan: And so that’s kind of what got me to do about like trans goal concepts, transfer communications on ideas and hybridization of cultures. It’s not about getting 2 things and making it the same. It’s about kind of operating


Jason Lujan: ideas. because that’s actually Jason Lujan: especially in the environment. For sure.


Sally Frater: There is another question from a person named Maria.


and it is I spy some toy business going on. How much of your work is about play and craft.


Jason Lujan: Hmm. Jason Lujan: Well, okay, my wife doesn’t know it’s that I actually have.


Jason Lujan: I got to the point where I buy more particular cheese. I’m Steven into the house because I don’t want them to know the there is a lot of play and a lot of that.


Jason Lujan: It can be multiple big accounts going so that I can support my hobbies, and also make art.


Jason Lujan: It’s just a general curiosity how things work I mentioned before. I


Jason Lujan: I want to figure it out, and that’s kind of what it comes into that.


Jason Lujan: The the toys it’s just I’m. I’m. Gen. X. I think there’s a certain degree of Jason Lujan: arrested development people. My age nailed my age where we just kind of want to go. We never had anything cool like this. I kind of like now, but then I always find a way to turn it into work because i’ll see something.


Jason Lujan: And then in my mind it go. Jason Lujan: How would this look this way? What would it with this? How do I familiarize it to myself. So then it becomes like mine, and that’s really part comes into that. But toys are actually a very easy starting point.


Jason Lujan: because they’re designed to. Jason Lujan: Not


Jason Lujan: I. I’m like that. The element of play, or an expectiveness in in exhibitions, and


Jason Lujan: that was being a little bit more grateful or worse taking was definitely an element of we are maybe starred as some to see the show, and I kind of


Jason Lujan: I I don’t like to stick with convention in terms of how I I hang shows Again, this language of of curation is all about to me that you’re saying hanging work, let’s say, as they place work.


Jason Lujan: We need to come with a whole new language for what we do. But within that exhibition


Jason Lujan: of the the work Jason Lujan: and the in a elliptical galaxy, just to kind of.


Jason Lujan: you know. Mess it up a little. You know how to


Jason Lujan: the way we work in the types of materials that you work with the objects that you work with at that element of play and fun that sometimes can make the lack there of can make our spaces a bit


Jason Lujan: kind of starting. and people don’t know how to Jason Lujan: the developments into things can actually offer some connection points to your point. You know, you might have another jet.


Yeah. Jason Lujan: And then we’ll never forget to show. So I think that that’s really important to take those sorts of creative risks. I, too. with Stardust I had this incredible sculpture by Kentucky.


Jason Lujan: The exhibition, it was called needed voyager, and it was so we made it. I was sitting on a block, and that was very strategic, because I wanted to


Jason Lujan: space in a darkened space. And so I think we can do sort of these sorts of things in in cure.


Jason Lujan: push the limits of what we think our should be, or whatever it should be, or


Jason Lujan: kind of breaking. I like Jason Lujan: convention. But then again I stay in surviv. So I I love that this particular exhibition is


Jason Lujan: you’re offering reference points without actually to 6 Jason Lujan: going back to the earlier question. It’s when I think about the next edition, I generally think in terms of installation.


Jason Lujan: so that means the person is through Jason Lujan: some artists work in simply discreet pieces, but I prefer to have an environmental approach.


Jason Lujan: Yeah.


Jason Lujan: So if you have any other questions. Sally Frater: No, I think this is a really great note to


Sally Frater: and on. I just want to Sally Frater: thank you both for some really rich and engaging conversation. And you’ve given us a lot to think about. I’m really excited to go back into the installation


Sally Frater: with all of the points that you have raised these perspectives. This is exactly what Nicole and I were hoping for


Sally Frater: when we were discussing this program, and I would like to thank you again and to thank Nicole Nufeld, the Community engagement coordinator at the Ag for all of her work, and putting this together, and Renaiss Shelley, who also helps with the tech


Sally Frater: who is our social media coordinator. And, thanks to all of you who are watching.


Sally Frater: Thank you.

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