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Jared Bendis

Cleveland Heights, Ohio USA
jaredjared@earthlink.net
The Digital Me series : 1
10" x 12" x 6"

Artist Statement:"The Digital Me" series explores my interactions with the digital world on both physical and metaphysical levels. I share my artistic vision using the skills and tools at my disposal; this invariably involves technology.

The "Pixel Mask" involves self-expression with a clay mask molded from my face. Using several digital prints I have reconstructed my head from punched out 'pixels,' which, in this case, are literally 'picture elements'. Unlike a jigsaw puzzle, where the image is predetermined, my re-creation here is more adventurous. Bits of beard turn into hair; bits of forehead turn into cheek, and in the end, the eyes just stare back at you with some of the spirit but none of the life of the creator.

The "Pixel Portrait" is a lithograph that explores technique, the self, and reproduction. I started with a low resolution digital image of my face, and for each pixel, I placed one drop of touche (a greasy liquid) on the lithography stone. The drop would dry, leaving the grease (and the desired gray). The resulting print is a hybrid: the medium is analog; the image is digital. The original digital image took a moment to shoot and can be printed endlessly. The lithograph took hours of painstaking labor to produce and only 8 were printed. Step back. As a whole, the image takes on more character and life than the original digital print. There is only one me, but unlike my images, I am ever changing.

The "Vector Block" is hand-cut linoleum that represents the interaction of self and tool. I converted a digital photograph of myself into a vector graphic. To maintain the spirit and integrity of the vector image, I plotted it on an old HP graphics plotter. The plotter was my inspiration as I held the blade in my hand, and the plot guided my cutting. Doing by hand what a machine can do is challenging, yet it can empower the artist in new ways.

Traditionally, the block is used to create prints, and I printed an edition of 7. The prints, however, are secondary; they mirror the image as they mirror my true intention. The block itself is my true representation. I am a tool for creation, a source. Influenced by technology, history, and a desire to disseminate my ideas and ideals, I show myself for all to see.
The Digital Me series : Pixel Mask, 2
11" x 14"

The Digital Me series : Pixel Portrait, 3 - Vector Block
8" x 10" x 1"

The Digital Me series : Pixel Portrait, 3 - (different view)
8" x 10" x 1"