The Color Out of Space
Berlin-based artist Rosa Barba was in residence for the development of a site-specific EMPAC commission, working in collaboration with Heidi Newberg, professor of physics, applied physics, and astronomy and director of Rensselaer’s Hirsch Observatory, and Rensselaer physics undergraduate students Nicholas Palmieri, Jake Weiss, and Thomas Hartmann. A large-scale projection covering the building’s 8th Street façade in Spring 2015, it was to be viewable from downtown Troy and beyond, and the accompanying sound composition broadcast via audio stream. Using voices collaged by composer Jan St Werner from interviews, fictions, and readings by artists and astronomers from around the world, the artwork hovers at the speculative intersection of astronomy and art.
Rosa Barba’s publications, sculpture, and installation work is rooted in the material of cinema. In 2010, she won the Nam June Paik Award, and was a resident artist at Artpace in San Antonio in 2014, Chinati Foundation in Marfa in 2013, and the Dia Art Foundation in 2008. Her work has been presented in exhibitions worldwide, including the Bergen Kunsthall; Temporäre Kunsthalle Berlin; the 53rd Venice Biennale; and the Palazzo Grassi in Venice; and the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago.