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Padberg Completes Commission for Yale's Sterling Memorial Library
<i>Augmented/Obstructed</i> playfully intertwined the physical with the digital, resulting in a reactivated card catalogue room that is enhanced through the medium of machine vision.
Carol Padberg, associate professor of painting in the Hartford Art School, recently completed a commission for Yale University’s Sterling Library, in collaboration with artist Andy Deck.
Their work was one of five artist-in-residence projects in New Haven libraries that were commissioned in conjunction with a recent exhibition, titled Library Science, at Artspace in New Haven. The Library Science exhibit investigated how our physical, intellectual and personal relationships with the library and its materials are changing as libraries adapt to the digital world.
In conjunction with the Library Science exhibition at Artspace, Connecticut artists were invited to submit proposals for research residencies towards creating site- and situation-specific projects at local libraries. Padberg and Deck were selected to exhibit their project, Augmented/Obstructed, at Yale's Sterling Memorial Library.
Augmented/Obstructed utilized such materials as smart phones, books that can only be read with mobile devices, paper, ink, and ancient Babylonian clay tablets. The project playfully intertwined the physical with the digital, resulting in a reactivated card catalogue room that is enhanced through the medium of machine vision. Incomprehensible to the human gaze, but perceptible with the assistance of software, the designs of commerce and culture combined in the form of reinvented card catalogue labels, altered books, and an ancient Babylonian clay tablet. Referencing key moments in the history of language and technology, the work invited viewers to consider the consequences of our cultural journey from clay tablets and the printing press to digital tablets and the Internet.
In addition to her project at Yale's Sterling Library, Padberg recently co-curated an exhibit at Yale's Haskins Laboratories. The exhibit, which runs through Feb. 3, is titled Rules of Conversion: Artists Explore Encoded and Embedded Language.