MARK JEFFERY                                                                             COLLABORATION


The Labors (2011)

Mark Jeffery & Judd Morrissey
The Labors
(January 11-16)
10:30 - 12:30pm and 2:30 - 4:00pm each day

Part of Without You I'm Nothing: A four-month companion series of artist and audience activations
Curated by Tricia Van Eck

Working collaboratively, Mark Jeffery and Judd Morrissey experiment with text, technology and body movement. Mark Jeffery is a performer, curator, and a professor at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in the performance department. Judd Morrissey is a writer and code artist of electronic literature, interdisciplinary performance, and installation. Morrissey is a professor at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in writing, art and technology studies, and performance. Jeffery and Morrissey are both former members of the Goat Island Performance Group. The artists recently presented The Living Newspapers at the MCA for the Out of Gallery Experience exhibition Hide and Seek and their work The Precession is currently on display at the Hyde Park Art Center.

Inspired by history, astrology, and new media sources, The Labors combines digital images, text, and performance art into an exploration of labor and the night sky. As in- residence researchers at the MCA, the artists interview visitors about their occupations, labor histories, and what the word “work” means, particularly during a time of economic uncertainty. Working with dramaturg and performance artist, Fiona Wright, the artists, using the interviews as source material, will create a movement sequence for 10 male performers. The movements are also drawn from a computer program that generates a real-time map of celestial objects above the museum and is coordinated with an online catalogue of star data.

Inspired by the Hoover Dam’s sculpture, The Winged Figures of the Republic, and the celestial floor map at the base of the dam, The Labors is influenced by numerous historical and cultural references, including Busby Berkley’s choreography, the novel The Grapes of Wrath, Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s New Deal, and artist Sol LeWitt’s geometry. The Labors both marks the passing of time with everyday gestures and resembles an ephemeral human monument to the laboring body.

Interview assistants
Hope Esser
Daviel Shy

Justin Deschamps
Sam Hertz
Jarrett Rashad Kelly
Zachary Kolodjeski
Chris Knowlton
Zihan Loo
Joshua Rackliffe
Blake Rusell
Louis Turcotte





© Mark Jeffery 1994 - 2013