Wednesday, October 1st
11:00am President’s Hall
Mark Allen is the founder and executive director of Machine Project. Machine Project is a non-profit art and event space in L.A. dedicated to exploring the directions, deviations and connections between art, science, technology, music and literature.Allen, who was raised in Vermont and schooled at California Institute of the Arts (where he majored in art) ran a few galleries in Houston after moving there in 1993 for an artist's residency. The first, called Revolution Summer, had a sort of Marxist theme. "For instance," he explains, "if it took the artist two hours to make the art, then you could buy the art by working for the artist for two hours." His second gallery, LAX, sold the work of L.A.-based artists. When Allen returned to Southern California in 1997, he immediately integrated himself into the arts community, working at CalArts' campus galleries and with collaborators at the C-Level space in Chinatown. At C-Level, he organized a number of successful installations, most memorably a simulated video cockfight in which participates donned rooster suits and fought their opponents via on-screen avatars. Allen teaches at CalArts and UC San Diego and freelances as a computer programmer.