On Sunday, August 28, artists will collaborate during a multimedia group art event, called Zyou, happening at the Wired Goat in the Vista from 3 pm to around 9 pm. Zyou was created by collage artist Riki Matsuda and sound designer Nic Jenkins, collaborators living in Charleston (although Jenkins recently lived in Columbia).
Artists across all mediums are invited to submit to participate in this event, which Jenkins describes as an “art playground for adults.” Its purpose is to encourage the collaboration of artists and the overlapping of media, which Jenkins says is usually “segmented and neatly organized within the parameters of installation art.” Zyou will be far from neat and orderly, and Matsuda and Jenkins are encouraging a messy, playful, and nonjudgmental process.
This event invites people to participate in the process, rather than concentrating on achieving a finished product. “ZYOU celebrates the process of making and not so much on the critique of the (unknown) potential for resonance,” Jenkins says, “Every process has a purpose.” People will be displaying their art, as well as finding ways to integrate and blend with any other artists present. Musicians are also encouraged to submit and to consider blending their sounds with other mediums. Current collaborators include local graphic designers Savannah Taylor and Nate Puza.
Most art installations leave the process out completely, and instead focus on one instance, feeling, or idea. The purpose for this particular process will be to accept the inevitable messiness that comes from exchanges in art and human interaction. This sort of messiness is not necessarily negative, and has the potential to become something even more powerful.
The word “Zyou” was created (or, rather, misheard) through exchanges of appreciation, Matsuda explains. “I think the first time I thought I heard Zyou, it was in the common response to a compliment, ‘No, you.’” After repeating it back and forth through the exchange of compliments and affirmations, it started to sound like “Zyou.” Zyou is a celebration of friendship and the positive affirmations between individuals through art.
This event is also partially inspired by the art happenings of the New York avant-garde scenes in the 1960s and 70s, Jenkins explains. He was inspired by the idea of performance art and installations being spontaneous and simultaneous, rather than sequential or linear. He and Matsuda are hoping to recreate the unrestricted nature of these happenings, and also inspire future collaborations through media integration. “Something I value about our friendship is the delight in the absurd and playfulness within the Dada-esque presentation of creative ideas,” says Jenkins.
Anyone interested in submitting their work to be considered for Zyou can send an email, either to Jenkins at firstname.lastname@example.org, or to Matsuda at email@example.com by the deadline, August 21. Although space is limited, everyone is welcomed to attend the happening on August 28, and feel the magic of collaboration and “leaning into chaos,” as Matsuda and Jenkins put it.
-- Ony Ratsimbaharison