Artist Bruce Yonemoto has been commissioned by Otis College of Art and Design in Westchester to produce and debut a new installation of video and photographic images titled Simulations, beginning Thursday, August 13th and continuing through Thursday, September 3rd.
The exhibit is held at the Bolsky Gallery at Otis College, 9045 Lincoln Blvd., Westchester.
In writing about Simulations, Yonemoto, a 1979 Otis College alumnus, describes his desire to recreate a childhood icon, Disneyland’s Matterhorn attraction.
The title of the photo installation is a nod to French philosopher/theorist Jean Baudrillard and his influential 1983 essay, published by Semiotext(e)’s new Foreign Agents Series.
The artist vividly remembers going to Disneyland as a young boy and his awe of the Matterhorn Mountain, 147 feet tall and exactly 1/100th size replica of the real mountain in Switzerland.
“Thinking back to my family’s two-day car trip from Santa Clara to Anaheim before the major freeways, you can imagine the excitement of seeing the top of the Matterhorn Mountain jutting through the orange groves. It meant that we had finally reached our destination — Disneyland, a place where all our dreams came true,” Yonemoto said.
“Now, 50 years later, as an art professor driving down to UC-Irvine, I can barely glimpse the once solitary mountain top. Hotels, shopping malls and freeway overpasses make it almost impossible to see my symbol of arrival.”
Yonemoto said he agrees with Baudrillard that “we live in a world where Disneyland exists to make us believe that outside of the fantasy park is reality, when in fact, America is a Disneyland.”
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