Almost Human: Digital Art from the Permanent Collection

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    A gallery space with black walls and wooden floors. In the center reads, “Almost Human: Digital Art from the Permanent Collection." On the right a dark purple flower is displayed and to the left a projected image of a human face (seemingly in agony).

    Installation view of Almost Human: Digital Art from the Permanent Collection​, San José Museum of Art, California, 2019. Photos by JKA Photography.

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    A gallery space with black walls and wooden floors with text that reads, “Almost Human: Digital Art from the Permanent Collection.” On the left, a human face seemingly in agony is projected onto a small white screen against the black wall.
     
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    Two digital artworks hang in a gallery. On the left are 2 small square panels with suspended electronic wires. On the right are 3 digitalized screens that are positioned diagonally; linked with attachments. Both works have electric cords plugged into the floor's outlet.
     
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    A gallery with black walls and wood flooring. Text on the right reads, “Almost Human: Digital Art from the Permanent Collection.” Inside the gallery is a greenish digital sculptural work shaped like a backwards "S"  with two eyes on either end and an open mouth between them.
     
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    Against black walls and wooden flooring stands a lone sculpture. It is a greenish digital work shaped like a backwards "S" with two eyes on either end and an open mouth between them. It is illuminated brightly in a haunting way, casting light and shadows around the work.

    Installation view of Almost Human: Digital Art from the Permanent Collection​, San José Museum of Art, California, 2019. Photos by JKA Photography.

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    Five digital screens lay on a gallery's floor with 2 fluorescent lights. Electrical lines are tangled and lay next to them. A digital screen is installed on the back wall. In the corner is a table, chairs, a screen, and headphones with text is on the wall near them.
     
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    In a gallery is an entry way to another dark gallery with lots of little glowing lights. Next to the entry, a tree is projected onto the wall. A digital screen is installed next to the tree. To the left, text reads “Almost Human” which is applied vertically to the wall.
     
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    In a dark gallery space, a semi-circular board is suspended with 21 columns that each have 11 rectangles hanging vertically, with words on each rectangle. ​Words are illuminated and the area is spotlighted as the background is completely dark.
     
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    In a dark cavernous room, a single person looks at a curved sculpture, which hangs from the ceiling in a curve against the wall. It is comprised of hundreds of tiny rectangles, designed to hang vertically. Some of them are lit up and emanate an eery turquoise color.

    Installation view of Almost Human: Digital Art from the Permanent Collection​, San José Museum of Art, California, 2019. Photos by JKA Photography.

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    In a dark room a brightly projected image fills the back wall. A black and white barn is erected against sandy ground and a blue sky. Inside the barn is an antique photo of people sitting around a table. In front of the projection is a stool with a video game console.
     

The technologies developed in Silicon Valley have intrigued and inspired artistic experimentation for more than three decades and pave a way toward the future. Almost Human: Digital Art from the Permanent Collection highlights artists who use digital and emergent technologies from custom computer electronics and early robotics to virtual reality and artificial intelligence.

Artists in the exhibition include Andrea Ackerman, Jim Campbell, Ian Cheng, Petra Cortright, Mark Hansen and Ben Rubin, Zara Houshmand and Tamiko Thiel, Tony Oursler, Alan Rath, Jacolby Satterwhite, Jennifer Steinkamp, Diana Thater, and Bill Viola.


Exhibitions at San José Museum of Art are supported by the SJMA Exhibitions Fund with generous contributions from the Lipman Family Foundation, Tad Freese and Brook Hartzell, and Cheryl and Bruce Kiddoo. 

Support for Almost Human: Digital Art from the Permanent Collection is also provided by Google’s Product Inclusion Division, which advocates for an inclusive lens in the creative process and mirrors the ethos embraced by many of the minority and female artists featured in this exhibition.

Additional support is provided by the San José Museum of Art Docent Council, Let’s Look at Art Volunteers, and Store Guild and Volunteers, in honor of SJMA’s 50th Anniversary.

Programs at the San José Museum of Art are made possible by generous support from the Museum's Board of Trustees, a Cultural Affairs Grant from the City of San José, the Lipman Family Foundation, Yvonne and Mike Nevens, Facebook Art Department, the Richard A. Karp Charitable Foundation, The David and Lucile Packard Foundation, Yellow Chair Foundation, the SJMA Director's Council and Council of 100, the San José Museum of Art Endowment Fund established by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation at the Silicon Valley Community Foundation, and The William Randolph Hearst Foundation.

Press

13 Haunting Art Exhibitions to See Ahead of Halloween, ArtfixDaily
September 25, 2019

Ghost Machines, 'Almost Human' at SJMA, Metroactive
October 10, 2019

Almost Human: Digital Art @ San José Museum of Art, Squarecylinder
December 31, 2019
 

Best of 2020, Squarecylinder
December 31, 2020
 
 
 

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