“TECH­NOL­OGY IS THE MENU—IT’S JUST A TOOL. ART IS THE MEAL, THE SOURCE OF REAL NOUR­ISH­MENT.” —JULIE WEITZ

Los Angeles Confidential - - Scene -

pho­tog­ra­pher, di­rec­tor, pro­ducer, ed­i­tor. I then col­lab­o­rate with a cin­e­matog­ra­pher to shoot it, and work with dif­fer­ent mu­si­cians to score orig­i­nal sound­tracks. When the work is ready for ex­hi­bi­tion, I map out im­mer­sive in­stal­la­tions to en­hance the viewer ex­pe­ri­ence.

How do you use tech­nol­ogy in your art?

The idea of tech­nol­ogy is more ex­pan­sive than we think—I use the sim­ple tools of pen­cils and mark­ers to jump­start ideas and the more com­plex tech­nol­ogy of cam­eras and soft­ware to cre­ate ef­fects my hand is in­ca­pable of achiev­ing. How do you walk the line be­tween art and tech­nol­ogy?

The Bud­dhist scholar Alan Watts has a great quote about eat­ing the menu in­stead of the meal. For me, tech­nol­ogy is the menu. How­ever com­plex and mys­ti­fy­ing, it’s just a tool. In con­trast, art is the ac­tual meal… the source of real nour­ish­ment.

What was your a-ha! art mo­ment?

The pos­i­tive re­cep­tion to Touch Mu­seum, the largescale video in­stal­la­tion I pre­miered at Young Projects in LA in 2015. I re­al­ized that the ideas float­ing in my head for years could ac­tu­ally man­i­fest into an im­pact­ful ex­pe­ri­ence for oth­ers.

What artists are you look­ing at?

De­spite hav­ing had an aca­demic train­ing in art, my deep­est af­fec­tions are for pop­u­lar cul­ture. I of­ten think about Mi­randa July and the way she main­tains a de­fin­i­tive sen­si­bil­ity be­tween medi­ums. I look at film­mak­ers like [Michelan­gelo] An­to­nioni, [Dario] Ar­gento, and [David] Cro­nen­berg, and watch mu­sic videos by Madonna, Bey­oncé, and Kanye West. I have the high­est re­gard for Frank Ocean, the way he taps into emo­tional ex­pe­ri­ences with ut­ter flu­ency and paints with a re­fined palate of in­tel­li­gence and sen­su­al­ity. julieweitz.com

BRIAN BRESS

The Old/New Soul What is your first mem­ory of mak­ing art?

I was home sick in the third grade. I started a draw­ing of a fu­tur­is­tic city. I added an­other sheet of lined pa­per with tape to the first sheet and con­tin­ued the city. I did this over and over un­til I had a 26-foot long scroll. There were fly­ing cars, hover-build­ings, and glass bub­bles over parks that sucked the kids in and out of tubes. I still have that draw­ing. It’s un­der my bed in a box.

How do you use tech­nol­ogy in your art?

I use new tech­nol­ogy to ad­dress very old is­sues per­tain­ing to art: form, color, space, and com­po­si­tion. I try to make sure that the ideas and images are the mo­ti­va­tion—not the ac­cess to the lat­est tech. Who in­spires you?

Lately, my daugh­ter! She’s a lit­tle budding artist, and re­ally funny. She keeps me from get­ting too se­ri­ous. How do you un­plug?

I take long walks with my dog late at night. I don’t al­ways know where I’m go­ing, but I get a chance to just ex­plore and think, with no texts or phone calls. How do you walk the line be­tween art and tech­nol­ogy?

That ques­tion re­minds me of a Far Side car­toon where two cave­men artists are stand­ing in front of their cave draw­ings and they look over at an­other cave­man who’s paint­ing on a can­vas and easel. One cave­men artist says to the other, “Sure, it’s cool, but is it art?” There are no lines. bri­an­bress.com

“I USE TECH­NOL­OGY TO AD­DRESS VERY OLD IS­SUES PER­TAIN­ING TO ART: FORM, COLOR, SPACE, AND COM­PO­SI­TION.”—brian bress

“I use tech­nol­ogy to cre­ate ef­fects my hand is in­ca­pable of achiev­ing,”

says film­maker Julie Weitz, one of a num­ber

of LA artists at the fore­front of tech-savvy fine art. Here, a still from

Weitz’s God­dess NetTrap, C-print (2017).

An in­stal­la­tion view of Brian Bress’s “In Lieu of Flow­ers Send Memes,” re­cently on view at LA’s Cherry and Martin gallery. left: Bress’s video Look­ing (for Josef Al­bers) (2017), dis­played on HD mon­i­tors em­bed­ded in col­lage and flashed on stretched linen.

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