Vernon M Byron - Water/Source://Code
November 12 - December 10, 2021

November 12, 5pm

Vernon M Byron 

Water/Source://Code is a multi-video and sound work of animated virtual oases, with cascading streams, lush vegetation, meadow scenes and rock formations composed of collaged overlapping images of actual Hudson Valley landscapes.

As the second artist for 1x1x1, Vernon Byron’s installation of Water/Source://Code is installed as a multi-screen/projection within the gallery’s front window, storefront, and rear room, with the video loops displayed on large screens, projected on walls within the gallery space, and sound reverberated through the window glass. The installation has various viewing points from both the street and from inside the gallery.

In the hyper-perfect, yet glitchy construction of his rendered landscape, Vernon’s representation of pristine nature is undoubtedly fabricated. The hypnotic looping imagery is reminiscent of a screen saver or loading page of a gaming platform. Yet once one is drawn within this suspended virtual environment, questions arise: where does one actually encounter nature? and is there a nature that is not constructed?

The Hudson Valley’s colonial legacy left a landscape altered, transformed, and reconstructed to certain utopic (and dystopic) ideals, which eschewed the symbiotic balance of the region’s indigenous people’s relationship to the natural environment. One practice, the simple and careful shaping of human-scaled trails by native peoples served as precise minimalist interventions to the landscape allowing for navigation through forest, mountain, stream. To the colonialist’s untrained eye, these paths must have appeared as some divine act: a way so perfectly dimensioned as to allow the rider unhindered passage through the (untamed) natural world.  

In contemporary society, where physical and digital interfaces continually overlap and increasingly merge, the boundary between what one might consider natural environment and human intervention becomes more ambigous. Every action—even seemingly immaterial or digital—has lasting impact and repercussion on physical natural environments, from micro-plastic pollution in our oceans to increased frequency and severity of weather events. Vernon’s work reconsiders the notion of an ecosystem as one not only outside, but also within, our mediated environments. Within each of Vernon's oases, we become witness to the subtle but rapid transformation of nature right before our very eyes.

Vernon M Byron, Glitch Array (Encrypted Oasis), 2021,  dimensions variable, color video 60 min.

1x1x1 is ann street gallery’s series featuring one artist, one work, for one month in the Gallery window. 1x1x1 aims to be a nimble platform giving artists experimental space for solo exhibitions.
Vernon M Byron, is a conceptual artist based in the city of Newburgh. He primarily works with video, sculpture and installation. In his work he investigates the visual nature of transitory phenomena, magnifying common materials, substances and structures into indexes of growing complexity through spatial and temporal manipulation. Vernon’s work is an exploration of the intersection between matter, energy, space/time and society and how these fundamental aspects of reality shape the human experience.

Vernon was born and raised in the Hudson Valley region of New York. Much of his artistic practice has been influenced by the unique socioeconomic conditions of the towns and cities that line the northeastern rust belt and the topography of the Hudson River Valley that encompasses it. Vernon finds himself at the interstice between industrial decay and the constant evolution of the natural environment.