Marfa Dialogues

Data Deluge

Rachel Gugelberger and Reynard Loki (Curators), Rebeca Bollinger, Jon Brunberg, Jennifer Dalton, Anthony Discenza, Scott Hug, Loren Madsen, Michael Najjar, Roberto Pugliese, Adrien Segal, and Anna Von Mertens

2 March 2012 – 8 July 2012

Opening reception: Friday, 2 March, 6-8pm
Community dinner: 8:30pm at the Capri
Performance: R. Luke DuBois with Bora Yoon, 9:30pm at the Capri
Exhibition walkthrough with the artists: Saturday, 3 March, 2pm

The ongoing dialogue between the digital and physical worlds provides the backdrop for Data Deluge, an exhibition that presents a selection of sculpture, furniture, painting, photography, video, sound and works on paper by artists who shape Web-based and software-generated data into art. The exhibition, curated by Rachel Gugelberger and Reynard Loki, takes its name from the title of a 2010 special report published by The Economist that observed the emergence of “a new kind of professional…the data scientist, who combines the skills of software programmer, statistician and storyteller/artist to extract the nuggets of gold hidden under mountains of data.”

Data Deluge features work by Rebeca Bollinger, Jon Brunberg, Anthony Discenza, Scott Hug, Loren Madsen, Michael Najjar and Adrien Segal that communicates a wide range of concerns, from the development of the world’s stock market indices to terrorist-related deaths, from national water use statistics to male responses to photographs of women in online chat groups. Newly created commissions by Jennifer Dalton, Roberto Pugliese and Anna Von Mertens tap into the unique characteristics of Texas, and Marfa in particular, with a sensitivity to minimalist forms, local weather conditions, the tourism industry and oil.

In Choruses from ‘The Rock’, the poet T.S. Eliot asks, “Where is the wisdom we have lost in knowledge? / Where is the knowledge we have lost in information?” Through various approaches and with different sensibilities, the artists in Data Deluge address this issue by presenting innovative modes of data visualization and uncovering the often unexpected beauty of information.

To inaugurate Data Deluge, Ballroom Marfa will host a weekend of festivities, including an opening reception on Friday, 2 March, from 6-8 pm. After the opening reception is a community dinner at the Capri at 8:30pm followed by a live performance by conceptual new media artist, programmer and performer R. Luke Dubois and multi-instrumentalist, composer and performer Bora Yoon, both based in New York. The duo will perform an experimental work that is rooted in the live shaping of digital information. There will be an exhibition walk-through with the artists on Saturday, 3 March, at 2pm. All events are free and open to the public.

Be sure to listen to the Talk at Ten interview with curators Rachel Gugelberger and Reynard Loki on Friday, 2 March 2012 at 10 am. Listen on KRTS Marfa Public Radio 93.5FM or streaming live on

    Listen to Marfa Public Radio’s Talk at 10 interview with Data Deluge curators, Rachel Gugelberger and Reynard Loki, from 2 March 2012.

    Data Deluge has been made possible through the support of the National Endowment for the Arts, the Foundation for Contemporary Arts and the Brown Foundation, Inc., Houston, with generous contributions by Lacey Neuhaus Dorn & Tucker Dorn, Brooke & Daniel Neidich, Joseph & Esther Varet and Ballroom Marfa members.

    Educational programs for Data Deluge supported by Texas Commission on the Arts, Meyer Levy Charitable Foundation and H-E-B, San Antonio, TX.

    In-kind support provided by Pud & Tigger Cusack-Schexnayder, Tobin Levy, Quality Quinn and Hotel Paisano, Marfa, TX. Special thanks to Joe Cashiola, Ross Cashiola, Rob Crowley, Tim Crowley, Sean Di Ianni, Sabrina Franzheim, Amanda Galli, David Gouge, Rosa McElheny, W.N. Parrott, Francisco Rosas and Gory Smelley.

    Community Dinner by Rocky Barnette.

    Graphic design by Sally Coleman.