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This project was successfully funded on March 26, 2011

the things in between

by Jen Urso


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Your support will make possible the design, production and distribution of 100 limited-edition books that encapsulates research, discoveries and creations made while chronicling in-between places in social interaction and physical space. The $10,000 I need to raise will go towards the design, printing and production of a book that serves as an all-inclusive conceptual art project. As most of my work does not produce collectable works, this book will be the first printed summary of a large conceptual art project and is a great way for supporters of my work to finally own a part of it.

I will start by filming people having conversations and then edit out the actual conversation so that all is left is the non-verbal communication, gestures and facial expressions between the talking.

The words from the conversation itself will be broken out and used to create abstract ink diagrams that make connections in word commonalities. These diagrams will then be used as the visual framework for a drawing or series of drawings. The drawings will expand on the subtleties and complexity of what exists within those moments in the conversation that are expressed non-verbally.

A lot of communication comes through during a conversation that has nothing to do with the words that are being said—through gestures, body language and facial expressions. The same complexity in apparent absence occurs in our geographical spaces. The areas of a city that are ignored, abandoned or left in between built environments also tell a lot about the city we live in. I believe it is in this negative space that we find out the most about a person or a city.

Paralleling the conversation will be photographs of vacant lots and unstructured spaces in Phoenix. Like the gestures and moments in between conversation, the 40% of vacant land in Phoenix is often overlooked. Within that space is what we choose not to investigate in an effort to move through quickly to another place that's deemed valuable—but the space in between is full. I will create an additional set of diagrams based on these images and an additional set of drawings based on the diagrams.

The images, diagrams and drawings will be compiled together in a book divided into 2 sections: in-between social spaces and in-between physical spaces. Each section will contain translucent pages of an original image (either photo or video still of conversation or vacant lot), a diagram created from the conversation or lot, and the drawing or series of drawings created from the diagram. These images will overlap in a cacophony of image, information and complexity.

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    • March 29, 2011 Kira Maria Shewfelt Artist

      Wow! The book is coming along so quickly! Thanks for sharing a preview :)

    • March 24, 2011 Neal Anderson Community Member

      Who can resist freshly baked chocolate chip cookies!

    • March 03, 2011 Todd Community Member

      Good luck Urso!!!

    • February 15, 2011 Kate D. Timmerman Community Member

      I am very interested in the connections this project is making. Looking forward to the book!