CGI Reflections on Jacolby Satterwhite’s Schizophrenic Mother

January 9, 2013 | Marina Galperina

It’s “lipstick for the between the legs,” a chair-tub, a floating bed and Jacolby Satterwhite’s mother drew these “products” as part of her treatment for schizophrenia, the Gallerist explains. It’s all manifested inside a unhinged CGI world and paired with intimate family photographs. And so, the 26-year-old New York artist Jacolby Satterwhite makes a solo debut at the Monya Rowe Gallery.

When I was first assaulted with Satterwhite’s work, there were faceless contortionists in digital zentai suits shooting gooey membrane into waterfall landscapes. This was at artist/comedian Casey Jane Ellison and her Aboveground Animation collective’s 3D animation showcase at the Ramiken Crucible last year, which has later made it to the New Museum (swag!). It was so weird.

Satterwhite’s an instantly recognizable, unsettling aesthetic. The squirming subtitles, the bad sexual vibes, the glitchy, interpretive gestures of Satterwhite’s “characters” and surrealistic, neon-opulent horror — that’s fairly significant to video game players but nothing much is lost in the genre translation. Ah, oddball digital video art. Welcome to vindication.

Satterwhite also directed this video for teen girl confessions as part of the Music For Sleeping Children conceptual art album collaboration between Charlie White and Boom Bip. See Reifying Desire 5 (2013) and other pieces of new generative art at “The Matriarch’s Rhapsody,” Jacolby Satterwhite, Jan 5 – Feb 16, Monya Rowe Gallery, New York