Rafael Rozendaal, Onwards
Nate Hitchcock, the curator/creator of the Apache Projects, is one of the guest discussants this week on empyre (which you should subscribe to!). Here’s his opening spiel on the project:
I should haves stated this earlier: Apache Projects is not affiliated with the park or the department of Texas Parks and Wildlife in any formal way. I have been allowed to install works there with the permission of the park rangers.
The website for the park is written a little poorly.. I am not sure how the park appeared in the 1930s when it was completed but that what they are calling a restoration to a historical setting seems ridiculous to me since a to restore a landscape essentially turns it into a garden and requires a huge amount of upkeep.
At the info section of Apacheprojects.com I transcribed the text from a plaque near the entrance of the cave but I don’t particularly agree with the way everything is worded.. I think the use of the term "prehistoric" seems a little strange and insensitive as well.
The title “Apache Projects” comes from a few sources that are directly related to colonization.
The first and most straight forward explanation for the title is that I am 1/8th Apache (nonpracticing) and is in part a tip of the hat to my grandfather and the west Texas Apache tribes who were nomads and
I use the Apache server logo on the website because I believe that the Internet is coming off the screen (through installation and more so through several projects in the works) and into a cave in this case. The cave hosts web in its physical form.
In a sense the artists are colonizing the cave for themselves with the artwork. Any parasite projects somewhat colonizes an area or site. An example might by logos and advertising. Colonization seems to be working a new way these days because of mobility. It is temporary. People are moving from place to place finding work or on vacation etc, but they don’t stay there for too long. They take up residence or real estate in a place, make an impact locally, take in what they will and move on again.
The Internet and the artworks made for it work in a similar way.. or we work in a similar way when we browse. A piece attracts our time and attention for a little while, we internalize it, change our views of the world and we move on.
Future exhibitions will deal more specifically with the movement of forms between the realities of hyperspace and the physical. A burial site seems to me to be a good location for this to happen; the artwork and Internet will be given a new life in the physical world, like reincarnation. After an exhibition the work will be removed and the cave will return to its former state, like a plant growing or a flash loop.