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Wilmington Art: Gene A. Felice II's Solo Exhibition

Wednesday, January 30, 2019

Those who attended Gene A. Felice II’s opening reception on January 17th were treated to a projection of swimming fish onto the front of the Cultural Arts Building, succulents in geo-planters, and 3D printed representations of the evolutionary cancer cells prominent in Gene’s genetic make-up. A new member of the Wilmington art scene, Gene is the newest faculty member in the Art and Art History Department, but has already made a statement in the art world with his incorporation of science, education, and design into his artistic practices. Parks Busby, a new intern at the Cultural Arts Building Gallery, said one of the highlights in showing the Gene A. Felice II exhibit “was the projection of Gene's work onto the face of the building. This being the first thing of its nature for the UNCW art department brought many to view.” We caught up with Gene for a Behind the Curtain interview to learn more about the unique facets of his intriguing first exhibition.  

How did the Cultural Arts Gallery and the Mobile Coaction Lab work together to project Gene Felice’s art on the face of the Cultural Arts Building? 

     The CAB Gallery gave me a unique opportunity to set up the Mobile Coaction Lab for some site-specific video projection mapping on the exterior of the main entrance to the Cultural Arts building.  They gave me a lot of assistance with set up and also helped me keep the system running throughout the evening.  

Has the Cultural Arts Gallery projected art onto the Cultural Arts Building before? What inspired the projection for this exhibit? 

      I believe this is the first time this type of projection mapping has occurred on the exterior of the cultural arts building, but hopefully it won’t be the last.  The inspiration for the video came from my project titled “Iron Lotus” a site-specific video installation that I created in Alexandria, Egypt in December of 2018.  All of the video was shot on site in Alexandria and Cairo Egypt and revolved around the theme of human beings’ relationships with water and aquatic ecosystems. 

 How does the three-dimension and technological nature of this exhibit encourage interactivity with patrons? 

      Emerging technologies have a unique sense of wonder associated with them as often they’re being experienced by the viewer for the first time.  Multi-sensory video / audio installations interact with the viewer as an immersive experience sometimes referred to as “shared VR”. 

Gene Felice's exhibit will rotate in some new work and continue to evolve through the rest of January and February. Students and others in the Wilmington community can experience Felice's intersections of art, technology, and science hands-on with these workshops hosted by the Cultural Arts Gallery:

Video Projection Mapped Microscopy Workshop
Feb. 1st – 1:30pm in the CAB Art Gallery
Air and Water Sensing / Interaction via Arduino / DIY Electronics
Feb. 15th – 3pm in the CAB Art Gallery 


Get reminders for CAB Gallery events, and stay in tune with other Wilmington arts events and performances by signing up for our UNCW Office of the Arts mailing list

-Lindsay Lake, with thanks to Parks Busby and Corinne Lefebvre at the CAB Gallery.