Dave Alber — Artist Statement (July 2020)
Maintaining a trajectory from traditional oil and acrylic painting to contemporary VR art, my Hybrid VR Paintings invite participants to explore their cultural orientation in time and space, particularly in the context of aesthetic stasis, historical trajectories, and rhythmic pulsations.
RESILIENT AMERICANA: A Renewal of American Virtues In Tempering Times is a Virtual Reality Painting Exhibition by Dave Alber, fine art painter and VR artist (http://DaveAlber.com) This VR Art Exhibition is a Celebration of American Virtues. It can be found at ResilientAmericana.com. Resilient Americana explores the hardiness of American virtues in small towns and cultural sites in Florida and all across the country. The commitment of Americans to abide in the virtue body of cultural memory and the American character will sustain America through any rough patch of road. In difficult times life can seem uncertain and frightening. Sadly, in these times when we need each other the most… perceived differences might seem accentuated especially across the left and right, or for that matter differences of ethnicity, sex, or tendencies in opinion or policy. In such moments, we might be tempted to polarize and imagine our friends and neighbors as an “other”, as someone we don’t relate to, don’t empathize with, or whom we believe doesn’t empathizes with us. This may be the most heartbreaking perceptual error of our time. But perhaps our nation doesn’t need to have a second civil war in order to heal from its difficulties and grievances. Perhaps what it needs—most of all—is a shared recognition of our unity, our sameness, our heart being the same heart. Resilient Americana: Virtual Reality Painting Gallery is a VR art experience that explores the hardiness of American virtues found within the people, customs, and culture of our nation. I am the artist, Dave Alber, and I believe that the commitment of Americans to abide in the virtue body of cultural memory and the American character will sustain America through any rough patch of road. The purpose of Resilient Americana: Virtual Reality Painting Gallery is to view our current moment not only through the new medium of Hybrid VR Painting but from a sustained awareness of the shared virtues of our nation. In Resilient Americana VR art experiences offer the surprise of the new. Within this open experience of surprise, viewers are offered the opportunity to saturate in the inner virtues, strengths, and resources that have always empowered Americans through difficult times. What are our shared virtues that we can relax into? What are our shared virtues that we can legitimately agree that we all share—and can abide in—as Americans? The first two room of the VR gallery explores the virtues of stability, faith, patience, continuity, levity, stewardship, local flavor, and hard work. More are being added. Art focusing on American virtues is offered as reflections, meditations, and empowering images. These are paintings that beg the questions… • “In the spirit of self-reflection or self-empowerment, what if we all returned to the calmness of our heart and reflected on the values that we all share together?” • “If Americans fail to come together in recognition of our shared virtues and ideals, are these essential values what we most hazard to loose?” • “If we took these values into our heart and abided in them as a virtue body—a recognition of shared identity—would we feel a more solid commitment for our future? Would we invest in our shared future with greater empathy, dedication, and responsibility?” This isn’t a partisan thing. This is simply a call to be something greater than whatever wind is blowing into our ear at the time. Resilient Americana is a Hybrid VR Painting exhibition. You can learn more about Hybrid VR Paintings at my website. However, it is important to know that all of these paintings are simultaneously physical and virtual. Viewers can enter each physical painting as a 360° virtual reality experience. It’s quite new and amazing! Text and audio commentaries provide a reflective experience of American inner resources and share resilient virtues as part of the American experience. Currently… • Resilient Americana is an online VR gallery; • newspaper feature in the Hernando Sun Times; • forthcoming gallery exhibition; • and is included in the 2.0 version of Dave Alber’s VR Paintings app. I am very grateful for everyone who believes in supporting and celebrating Resilient Americana! Together, we can celebrate, draw strength from, and share our collective virtues. — Dave Alber