Tiffany Trenda, Paul Wehby, Victor Solomon, Rex Bruce, Eder Cetina
October 13-November , 2016
Reception: Saturday, October 15, 6-9pm
The Los Angeles Art Collective (LAAC)’s installation explores the controversial topic of gun control. The United States, with less than 5 percent of the world’s population, has about 35 to 50 percent of the world’s civilian-owned guns and ranks No. 1 in firearms per capita (Newsweek). There have been 353 mass shootings in the United States in 2015 (Forbes) and 1,537 accidental shootings this year.
In LAAC’s new work, they explore the social debate, gun control versus the media. With the 2nd amendment, “right to bear arms,” US citizens believe that guns protect one’s freedom. In contrast, guns are also a system of fear. News outlets heighten our anxieties of death by showing 24 hours of devastation and murder. As a voyeuristic society we love to watch shocking images and the media understands how to capitalize on this by making content quantifiable.
If it bleeds it leads—photos, video, and information are scrutinized to produce the most hits, how many viewers it will receive, and how provocative the subject matter is. Therefore, the power of victimization lies in the hands of the editor. So, we are no longer given the full picture. Instead, guns become the ammo to skew the perspective of a story. For example, statistics can change from one source to another depending on what the writers’ viewpoints are on gun control.
More often, the media elevates the offender to a movie star, the victim becomes merely a number, and the hero is left anonymous. Now we must ask the question: who is really in control of the information? is it the media? Or is it the government and the NRA? LAAC questions the empathy and integrity of the influence media has on our feelings surrounding gun control and how it deadens us — figuratively and literally.
Eder Cetina, Victor Solomon, Paul Wehby, and Tiffany Trenda will present new work along with Rex Bruce of LACDA.