Renny Pritikin, Chief Curator
This exhibition is in many ways the culmination of a career-long interest in the work being done by artists using the latest technology. I clearly remember visiting Paul DeMarinis’ studio while I was still a graduate student in the mid-seventies and seeing him working on a digital sound piece at his workshop desk; some forty years later I still remember that eye-opening experience. So I must thank the artists in NEAT: New Experiments in Art and Technology who have shown me the way over these decades and become colleagues, and often friends. I’d also be remiss if I didn’t identify Paolo Salvagione as my advisor on the current show, and my guide in locating the younger artist cohort in the show.
I’d like to thank Lori Starr, Executive Director of The Contemporary Jewish Museum (The CJM), who understood the importance and relevance of NEAT, and supported it all the way. My former colleague, Lily Siegel, was very helpful in the initial meetings and conversations with the artists, as she, Paolo, and I clarified the exhibition. Robin Bernhard, Exhibitions Manager/Registrar, and Justin Limoges, Chief Preparator, smoothed the way for the exhibition planning with their dependably calm professionalism. Our development team, especially Stacy Rackusin and Ari Breakstone, worked diligently to raise the funds needed for the project. The marketing department put in many hours planning the online catalog—Melanie Samay copyedited; Devin Cornwall created the design; and Stephanie Smith managed the video production—as did our Curatorial Assistant, Sophie Schwabacher. The education department created an impressive lineup to support the exhibition, led by Fraidy Aber, and the public programs of Gravity Goldberg and school curriculum work by Janine Okmin. Many members of our astonishingly generous Board of Directors also stood behind the exhibition; I am privileged to thank Suzanne and Elliott Felson for Patron sponsorship. Supporting sponsorship has been provided by an Anonymous donor, the David Berg Foundation, and Gaia Fund. This project is supported by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency. Major support for The Contemporary Jewish Museum’s exhibitions comes from the Koret Foundation.
Our thanks go to the Todd Hosfelt Gallery and Cheryl Haines Gallery, both of San Francisco, and to the artists who loaned or created their commissioned works. A personal thank you goes to our catalog writers, Ken Goldberg and Jenny Odell, for the generous gift of their time on preposterously short notice. Many thanks also to the Jewish scholars and cultural leaders who kindly shared their wisdom to speak with us about Judaism and technological innovation: Zac Kamenetz (of the Jewish Community Center of San Francisco), Sarah Lefton (of G-dcast), Brett Lockspeiser, and Francesco Spagnolo (of the Magnes Collection of Jewish Art and Life at UC Berkeley). The exhibition graphic design was by James Brendan Williams. The catalog cinematography was shot and edited by Nathaniel Spohn.
Thanks to the entire CJM team for its help, and to the community The CJM has created that supports our evolving commitment to exploring Jewish life in the context of contemporary art in the early decades of the twenty-first century.