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September 15, 2017

Artifacts for the 23rd Century

By Carol Sogard


SALT LAKE CITY, UT - The Utah Museum of Contemporary Arts (UMOCA) is pleased to present Artifacts for the 23rd Century by artist Carol Sogard.  
Artifacts for the 23rd Century draws attention to the inordinate amount of plastic we consume daily. Through creative reconstruction of these single-use disposable materials, the works explore the use of plastic as product rather than simply a by-product of our daily habit of consumption. The plastic grocery bag is a common side effect of consumerism. It lacks value beyond its limited use. Sogard's process of collecting and reusing reclaimed bags and then manipulating their form and context reveals their tactile qualities rather than reaffirming their intended function. In doing so, she challenges the viewer to question the original intent and necessity of the bags and how their lifestyles contribute to the issue.
The deconstructed bags are the primary material used for the objects in this living space installation. They are literally and metaphorically woven into artifacts that represent our modern culture. The word "artifact" has many meanings... "any object made by human beings; a handmade object characteristic of an earlier time or cultural stage; any mass-produced, usually inexpensive object reflecting contemporary society." Plastics represent the eternal artifacts of our current society. They never biodegrade-surviving for centuries in landfills, contaminating oceans and endangering species.
UMOCA Curator of Exhibitions Jared Steffensen says, "Carol's use of ubiquitous materials comes with a bit of finger pointing, but also with an alternative solution to the problem. If the material qualities that make plastic bags so long lasting can be exploited to make functional objects and keep them out of our oceans landfills, it's something that should be explored."
Artifacts for the 23rd Century will be exhibited in UMOCA's Projects Gallery from September 22 through January 14, 2018 with an opening reception on September 22 from 7-9 p.m.
About Carol Sogard
Carol Sogard is an American artist living in Salt Lake City, Utah. Born in Detroit Michigan she studied Graphic Design at Michigan State University. After working in advertising in Detroit, she moved to Utah obtain an MFA in Graphic Design at the University of Utah. Her primary research interest relates to sustainable design. Her design work and textile art has been honored and published by the AIGA, How Books, Print Magazine, Rockport Publishers, Utah Division of Arts & Museums, as well as exhibited in galleries nationwide. Since 1999, she has served as Associate Professor of Graphic Design in the Department of Art and Art History at the University of Utah. She believes it is essential to teach today's student about how to use their creative abilities to create positive change in the world.

About the Utah Museum of Contemporary Art
The Utah Museum of Contemporary Art (UMOCA) has advanced and elevated the community of contemporary arts and culture since it was established in 1931. UMOCA is a fearless voice for innovation, experimentation and dialogue surrounding the topics of our time. Located in the heart of Salt Lake City, UMOCA invites curiosity and promotes understanding of the challenging concepts that art and its reflective social commentary can present. UMOCA is a force for social transformation that unites all points of view, backgrounds, experience and ages through pertinent art exhibitions and educational programming. UMOCA evokes change, challenges ideologies, celebrates triumph and introduces an array of contemporary voices with in the Museum and throughout the community.
UMOCA is a five-time recipient of funding from the Andy Warhol Foundation and a 2015 and 2016 recipient of the Art Works Grant awarded by the National Endowment for the Arts.
UMOCA is a 501c3 institution that is supported by public foundation, and corporate gifts. Your donation in any amount is greatly appreciated, and admission is a $5 suggested donation.

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