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Robert Zverina: Select Works | Community & Curatorial
enter Picture of the Day - www.zverina.com
A "blog" before blog was a word, this online photo journal has been continually updated since January 1998. Unlike blogs, each installment is hand-coded in HTML with custom layouts designed to integrate text and image into a harmonious whole.

Bici Batte Auto 57 Short Films about Bicycles is included on a bicycling advocacy DVD compilation published by Shake Edizioni in Italy: "Senza retorica, con ironia, fantasia, molto coraggio e una forte dose di pazzia, un movimento si è diffuso a macchia d’olio, conquistando centinaia di città e spronando un numero sempre più ampio di attivisti, corridori o acrobati a invadere le strade."

Watch video - Order DVD

A series of three-minute thematic pocket video compilations commissioned by 4Culture in Seattle. 180 seconds each. Premiered November 6, 2008.


The first six can be seen entire at zverina.blip.tv.

Flattened Can Spiral, photo by
                                Bradley Enghaus, Capitol Hill Times

Sound Transit

Flattened Can Spiral #6, September & October 2008
As an advocate of public transportation, I was delighted to be included in Sound Transit's STart on Broadway group show. The sixth incarnation of the Flattened Can Spiral was the largest and most durable to date--1,300+ cans, each nailed to the asphalt with a galvanized roofing nail, displayed for 60 days. Read full account.

memory (w)hole, August 1 - September 27 2008
McLeod Residence, Seattle
In George Orwell's Nineteen Eighty-Four, history is constantly rewritten, with the old versions being tossed into the "memory hole"--an incinerator. memory (w)hole is a play on words that implies we inhabit a space between total recall and utter amnesia. This exhibit presents the largest compilation of Robert Zverina Short Films to date, with 24 hours of non-repeating microdocumentaries cycling chronologically in a comfortable cinema setting. In an adjacent gallery, 572 Picture of the Day web page printouts line the walls from floor to ceiling to form an "exploded book," a grand gesture in the futile struggle against forgetting.

Seattle Times/P-I, August 17

Flattened Can Spiral, June 18 2007, Seattle
1,044 traffic-smashed can arranged into a spiral. Fourth in a series of temporary deployments.
Trash Cycle-Own, April 2008, Seattle
Most recent attempt to keep discarded materials from going to waste. Shown at Recycled Art Show.

autobioanthropolography AUTOBIOANTHROPOLOGRAPHY, DVD + 28p. booklet, 2007
On March 29, 2007 I gave a slidetalk at Henry Art Gallery called AUTOBIOANTHROPOLOGRAPHY--a combination of the words autobiography and anthropology which I use to describe the subjective history of our rapidly evolving culture recorded via my microdocumentary video vignettes. The DVD is a 50-minute Robert Zverina Short Films sampler with accompanying 28-page color booklet which reproduces the lecture notes embellished with the same illustrations used during the slidetalk.
[ Download the booklet ]

Thank You
                          for Not Driving

Can Spiral #2
                                              - click to enlarge

Can Spiral #3 - click
                                              to enlarge

439 Flattened Can Spiral
June 18, 2005, Seattle
Second in series, this spiral was constructed in the now defunct Priceless Works Gallery parking lot.
This piece is documented also at www.zverina.com/2005/0618.htm
1,000 Flattened Can Spiral
September 8, 2005, Seattle
Third in series, assembled for RE Store Recycled Art Show. If you stand close to the spiral, you might notice a curving of your vision at the periphery. Through this optical effect, the piece literally changes the way one sees.

This piece is documented also at zverina.com/2005/0908.htm

Inside Out, spring 2005
In early 2005, I started saving packaging--mostly the boxes processed food comes in. I'd find the glued overlapping seam, pull it apart, then hot glue the box back together inside out. I didn't know what to do with these boxes as they piled up, but I kept making more anyway. It finally occured to me that the only decent thing to do would be to return the boxes to their natural environments. So, like wounded animals rehabilitated in captivity, they are being reintroduced to the herd. The idea is to invert the purpose of commercial packaging which vies for the consumer's attention to induce a purchase. The blank nonmessage outdraws the competing messages and provides an oasis of calm amid the tumult of signs and colors, offering an empty box and blank canvas on which to reflect.

(When exhibited at Crawl Space in Seattle, a sample box was tacked to the wall beside a printout of www.zverina.com/2005/0525.htm)
Inside Out

Flattened Can Spiral
                                  #1 - click to enlarge 163 Flattened Can Spiral
May 4, 2005, Seattle
The can spiral series arose from the persistent urge to repurpose discarded material in a practical manner. If this result is not practical, it is at least aesthetic. The cans were collected from the streets of Seattle. The collection and subsequent spiral constructions continue to grow. Spirals are fragile and temporary, displayed always in vulnerable public settings which invariably lead to cans' return to entropy. #1 in series.

Boycott 100

Boycott 100 (poster) was created for the group show One Hundred Ways to Remove a President from Power
at CoCA Seattle, curated by Greg Lundgren, August 2004. One hundred corporate logos downloaded
from internet arranged to spell BOYCOTT; 100 posters printed and distributed for free.

Stretched Dollar

Organically Grown Apple These two pieces from spring/summer 2004 owe a debt for inspiration to the work of Czech collage artist Jiri Kolar (whose last name, properly pronounced, sounds a bit like collage).

Stretched Dollar
appears in the book
24 Hours in the Life of Seattle's Contemporary Arts, ConWorks Press, May 2004 and is available for purchase. It consists of two one-dollar bills sliced apart and interleaved, bound by packing tape.

Organically Grown
was created for the group show Urban Dwellers at Priceless Works Gallery in Seattle, curated by Ragan Peck, July 2004. It was a temporary sculpture lasting until the apple rotted. Perhaps if it hadn't been organic the preservatives would have helped it last longer. Stickers courtesy of Fremont PCC, a local food co-op.

Consolidated Works Import/Export, May 2004
Consolidated Works, Seattle
A smaller and potentially portable version of Everything &nd More (see below) installed in an 8'x8'x8' shipping container and presented as part of Frozen Moments group show curated by Dylan Neuwirth. Sadly, the effect wasn't as powerful in such a confined space and the entire piece self-destructed about 5 weeks into the exhibition--which in an odd way made it better. If the box represented a skull full of memories, its collapse symbolized the inevitability of forgetting and being forgotten.

Everything &nd More, February 2004
Priceless Works Gallery, Seattle
"This installation gives play to the casual snapshot, free, for the most part, of the usual earmarks of arty aspiration....The "everything" of the title is all that's contained in approximately 5,000 snapshots lining the walls, ceiling and floor of a small irregular gallery niche; the "more" is what happens when you crowd 5,000 snapshots—bits of life, throwaway moments, accidents—together. The point is the accumulation, but it's an accumulation that refuses to be subsumed into a whole; the tension of the discrete part and the engulfing whole keep this installation lively and disturbing."
          [ Read Full Review | click pix to enlarge ]
                                                    &nd More key exterior



floor to

Floor to Ceiling

floor robert zverina ceiling


A Sense of Scale


792 Short Films, December 2003
Howard House, Seattle
"It is precisely the opposite of Andy Warhol's eight-hour film of a single view of the Empire State Building; instead of scoping in to notice tiny shifts in light or circumstance, your perception opens out like a lens. You are never bored, only longing for a few more seconds here or there, to know what becomes of something, to hear the end of the sentence. It makes you aware of your capacity for seeing and taking in and interpreting. It is all generosity....
[ Read Full Review ]

Liberated Stationary
                                            Bicycle Three-Wheeled
                                              Articulated Tandem
Art Bikes, June 2002
Left: Liberated Stationary Bicycle (really a tricycle) pokes fun at the way some people pedal and pedal without ever getting anywhere. Exercise bicycle with front stand chopped and shopping cart wheels added in back. It steers from the rear with a little butt scooching. I'd like to see more of these made and then race them in view of a health club's window. Thanks to Bill Vaegemast for his mechanical assistance.
Right: Three-Wheeled Articulated Tandem is two dumpster bikes with front fork of rear bike hooked onto rear hub of front bike. Front bike has drive train removed; only back person pedals. Riding requires good balance and cooperation as bike pivots in the middle. Nate Everson provided mechanical assistance.