FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 17 - March 17, 2007
EVA and FRANCO MATTES (a.k.a. 0100101110101101.ORG)
"13 Most Beautiful Avatars"
Postmasters Gallery, New York
Opening reception: Saturday February 17, 6-8 p-m
Postmasters Gallery is pleased to present "13 Most Beautiful Avatars,"
a portrait series from Second Life by EVA and FRANCO MATTES (a.k.a.
0100101110101101.ORG), for their second solo show at the gallery.
The Matteses have been living in the virtual world, Second Life, for
over a year, exploring its terrain and interacting with its peculiar
inhabitants. The result of their "video-game flanerie" is a series of
portraits, entitled "13 Most Beautiful Avatars." Not unlike Warhol's
entourage of stars, captured in the "13 Most Beautiful Boys" and "13
Most Beautiful Women" portrait series, the Matteses' "13 Most Beautiful
Avatars" captures the most visually dynamic and celebrated "stars" of
The portraits reflect Second Life aesthetics, featuring the bright
colors, "artificial" light, broad flat areas, 3D shapes, and surreal
perspectives that are typical of this virtual world. Overall, the
series draws on the technological developments which allow the creation
of alternate identities within simulated worlds. Despite the relative
newness of using video game-derived source materials, the avatars'
icons recall questions common to earlier eras of portraiture, including
the cultural and psychological context of the images, and the
relationships between high art and subculture, between contemporary art
and "traditional" art forms, and between art and life itself.
The project was created during the artists' stay at The Italian Academy
for Advanced Studies at Columbia University. The Matteses are the
recipients of 2006 New York Prize for most promising young Italian
A portfolio of prints produced by Jean-Yves Noblet Contemporary Prints
will also be available.
Born in 1976, Eva and Franco Mattes, (a.k.a. 0100101110101101.ORG) have
been pioneers in the net.art movement remixing famous digital art
pieces and performing Life Sharing: a real-time digital self portrait,
during which they even submitted to satellite surveillance for an
entire year. In the last decade they have created unpredictable
mass-scale performances staged outside the traditional art venues and
involving an unaware audience, where truth and falsehood mix to the
point of being indistinguishable. They created and released the code
for a computer virus, erected fake architectural heritage signs, run
media campaigns for non-existent action movies (United We Stand), and
even convinced the entire populace of Vienna that Nike had purchased
the city's historic Karlsplatz and was about to rename it "Nikeplatz".
Their controversial performances, often bordering on illegality, have
been widely discussed in the media earning them the name "Bonnie and
Clyde of Contemporary Art". Their works have been shown internationally
including: Collection Lambert, Avignon; Fondazione Pitti Discovery,
Florence; Lentos Museum of Modern Art, Linz; New Museum of Contemporary
Art, New York; ICC, Tokyo; Manifesta 4, Frankfurt; Galleria Civica di
Arte Contemporanea, Trento and the Venice Biennale.
For more information on the Second Life project and an interview with
Postmasters Gallery located at 459 west 19th street between 9 and 10
Avenues is open Tuesday through Saturday 11