#Fun4the Disabled’s Vanessa Harris visits Anna Kunz’ art show, where they discuss the importance of making events and art accessible to all.
You’re about to watch a video about an amazing mixed media artist, Anna Kunz who had her 15th exhibit in Chicago this past Spring.
This was the first video I shot and it was the one that inspired me to start fun4thedisabled. There were many cool things about Kunz’s exhibit. It was not only paintings, but also fabric and sound. It was also three dimensional and was on several levels. If you were on wheels, you could feel like you were flying through the exhibit!
Fun: Do you design your artwork for a particular gallery or is this exhibit mobile? Has this exhibit been in any other places?
Anna Kunz: No, I do design with a specifically with a particular architectural parameters and elements in mind. So, to begin the process when I work from conventional painting to installation, I build an architectural model so I use about a half-inch equals one foot scale so that I can imagine it. That allows me to do a little bit of room for improvisation where I can actually get into the space which allows me to do things onsite with a little more confidence knowing what its gonna look like overall. I also think a lot about the sightlines so that this painting installation is meant to be thought through in 360 degrees because of the catwalk above us and the different levels which affect the space.
Fun: The exhibit has a different vibe when there’s a lot of people in here than when there’s no on in here. And when one person at a time is in here they’re able to really experience it in a lot of different ways and we can play. I also noticed that there were a lot of kids in here two weeks ago.
Anna Kunz: Yeah, they made me nervous with their chocolaty hands.It was not my ideal situation to have like a run through exhibit, i wanted to make something where people could walk through the painting. I do think the space changes depending on how many bodies are absorbing the experience, how many bodies are absorbing the sound. I think the ideal viewing experience is when one figure is absorbing the space. But it does change when there is more of a social thing going on with more bodies, more people. One of the reasons I why used transparent fabrics is because I want to implicate the viewers bodies into the experience of the painting. I want to see the silhouettes.
Fun: What do you think of the Exhibit?
Visitor: I love it. I haven’t time to sit down and actually enjoy it. I just got off of work and I’m just taking a moment to feel the vibrations of the floor. I’ve looked at the paintings, but I haven’t really sensed the room yet, so today I’m just kind of sensing the room. I really love the way the light plays off the fabric. That to me, is the best part.
Fun: What about accessibility issues for people like me who are in a wheelchair?
Anna Kunz: To me, when I was working in the space, I wanted to include everybody. So I’m thinking about contemporary art more and more taking on the problem and logistics of being very inclusive in their models for people who have mobility issues or have sight or hearing or any number of issues. There are a lot of people in my family that are aging all around me and their mobilities are changing, and that’s very much in the forefront of my consciousness. Kind of a way for me to work on some autobiographical parts of my life into my work without being too overt about it. I want to make sure that my old Pop can come to my shows! But more than that, I’m really interested in how behind the times it seems that design is that have mobility issues. There’s got to be a better set of situations. I don’t like how limited it is from what I’ve observed. and even in the whole health care industry in general. It would be really cool if the people in doctor’s offices looked happier.
Fun: What are you gonna do with the exhibit when it closes?
Anna Kunz: Cry!
Fun: Why did you have it for such a short period?
Anna Kunz: Well it’s been since March so it’s running through June 24th.What will happen is I’ll be able to very easily transport these paintings because they fold up really tiny.And usually in my work I use these elements and sort of recycle them for newer work. So they are converted into new works.
Fun: Will they be here or in some other galleries?
Anna Kunz: I’m gonna try to see what can travel and what I can do for my next row of exhibitions.