Brenton Smith

Born  1988,  Sydney,  Australia.    Brenton  Alexander  Smith  is  a  Sydney  based  artist  who  primarily  works  in  the   mediums  of  sculpture  and  digital  imaging.  He  is  a  proficient  photographer  as   well,   but   in   his   approach   to   art   making   the   medium   he   chooses   to   use   is   secondary  to  the  concept.  If  he  does  not  have  the  skills  to  execute  an  idea,  he  will   learn  them  or  seek  assistance  from  somebody  who  has  them.  He  is  influenced  by   themes  of  technology,  space  exploration  and  cyberspace.

Smith’s   interest   in   technology   has   manifested   in   in   his   work   where   aims   to   generate   discourse   about   the   application   of   such   technology.   His   does   this   through  the  creation  or  adaptation  of  dysfunctional  machines  that  either  appears   to  be  somehow  in  pain  or  cause  discomfort  and  hinder  the  user.  Other  times  he   will  explore  aspects  of  technology  (particularly  cyberspace)  in  unusual  ways  in   an  attempt  to  understand  them.    In  his  ongoing  project  The  Bicycle  Man  he  created  hindering  prosthetics  from  old   bicycle  parts,  which  evoked  ideas  of  the  cyborg  (or  in  the  case  the  ‘anti-­‐cyborg’
as  he  calls  it).  In  this  work  three  sculptures  made  from  old  bicycle  parts  make  up   a   kind   of   “bicycle   suit”.   They   are   prosthetic   attachments,   but   instead   of   enhancing  or  replacing  parts  of  the  body  they  hinder  the  wearer.  The  Bicycle  Man   is   the   imaginary   person   who   wears   the   prosthetics   and   is   weighed   down   by   them,  forcing  him  to  slow  down  and  consider  his  movements.  A  major  concern  in   this  particular  work  is  the  rate  at  which  technology  is  advancing  and  the  moral   implications  of  using  this  technology;  we  are  at  a  point  where  we  cannot  function   without  our  technological  attachments.
Metaspace  Exploration  is  the  term  he  uses  for  his  exploration  of  the  virtual  space
that   we   call   the   Internet.   Google’s   “search   by   image”   function   allows   you   to   conduct  a  web  search  by  using  an  algorithm  to  analyze  an  image  rather  than   keywords.  You  can  also  use  this  to  find  images  on  the  Internet  that  are  visually   similar  to  the  one  you  upload.  Smith  used  this  function  with  images  from  the   Rover  that  was  landed  on  Mars  in  2012  to  create  a  kind  of  visual  guide  to  life  on   Earth   for   extraterrestrials.   The   images   that   he   discovered   ranged   from   astrophotography   to   historical   records   to   screen   shots   of   virtual   spaces   (3D   models  and  videogames).
Smith  is  currently  studying  for  a  Bachelor  of  Visual  Arts  at  Sydney  College  of  the   Arts.  He  began  his  course  in  the  photomedia  studio  and  has  since  shifted  his   focus  to  sculpture.  In  2012  he  was  heavily  involved  in  Iris  Häussler’s  work  in  the   Sydney  Biennale,  where  he  acted  as  an  interpreter.


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