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Sequelae by Hallie Bahn

Opening Reception: Saturday, July 20, 2024, 6-9 PM

Artist Talk with Hallie Bahn Sunday, July 21, 2024, 1-2 pm.

Exhibition Runs: July 21 – August 31, 2024

Sequelae by Hallie Bahn continues previous work with a new perspective. Right before her initially scheduled exhibition last year, Bahn was in a serious car crash, leading to extensive physical injuries and a still-in-process rehabilitation. Sequelae is a reflection of the before and after of this life-altering experience. 

 

Bahn uses miniature tableaus and projected animation to construct narrative sculptures in which her autobiographical subjects search for agency within newly discovered scripts of rehabilitation, perverting, adopting, and exaggerating expected behavior to gain ownership over their actions.

 

The show consists of sculptural, expanded animations, including the use of the Pepper’s Ghost technique, which projects self-figurative rotoscope animation into miniature sets. The narrative is divided between multiple small, hand-built cinemas and optical devices, asking the viewer to explore the gallery to construct a story. Using such techniques is meant to inspire awe and wonder as the mechanics of animation and moving images are revealed to the viewer, parallelling Bahn’s sense of wonder at the body’s ability to heal.

 

By continuing to push the boundaries of traditional screen-based digital animation, the project seeks to create interactive and physical connections between the artwork and the viewer. Stylistically, this series breaks new ground. Both her storytelling and approach to animation are often naturalistic and hyperrealistic. In this series, Bahn now incorporates the surreal, using hand-drawn, stop-motion, and rotoscope animation, and goes “off-model,” using the footage to create an uncanniness through the timing.

 

In exploring this idea of the transforming self before and after such an event, Bahn created a larger-than-life-size, uncanny papier mâché marionette. The marionette, Mari, appears throughout the narrative, at times controlled by an animated avatar version of Bahn and at other times functioning independently. Mari is Bahn’s public self: a performance, a burden, and a place of growth. Throughout the work, she performs repetitive actions ranging from cryptic rituals to practical and obvious rehabilitation work. The incorporation of Mari into the narrative reflects Bahn’s experience in the unexpected publicness of recovery—Mari is both the grotesque burden of being perceived and a comforting mask that Bahn protects and tenderly cares for. 


Hallie Bahn is an interdisciplinary artist and educator in non-traditional and expanded animation. Her practice uses sculpture, stop motion, and digital 2D animation to dissolve the traditional boundaries of screen-based digital animation and create interactive, physical relationships between the art and the viewer. Bahn’s work has been exhibited and screened nationally and internationally, including at the Weisman Art Museum in Minneapolis, Minneapolis Institute of Art, Public Functionary in Minneapolis, Marinaro Gallery in New York, Center for Mediterranean Architecture in Chania, Greece, and the Museo Memoria y Tolerancia in Mexico City, Mexico. In 2020, she was a grant recipient of the Metropolitan Regional Arts Council’s Next Step Fund. Bahn is currently based in Western Massachusetts, where she is the Assistant Professor of Animation at UMass Amherst.

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