The Spyfrost Project
Included in 'Empire of Dreams' exhibition at MOCCA, Toronto Canada
Toronto-based artist David Trautrimas has a fascination with space-age design, from
sci-fi movie sets to 1950's house-hold appliances. Taking image from such familiar
objects as vacuum cleaners and refrigerators, he alters them digitally, collaging
together shiny chrome parts to create architectural structures that look not quite
futuristic, but like some past idea of how the future will appear. There's clearly
an element of kitsch nostalgia to them. For the eleven ink-jet prints in this
exhibition, "The Spyfrost Project" Trautrimas placed these imaginary Cold War edifices
in desolate locations.
Seismic Conduction Tower (2009) resembles a phonograph balancing on a clothes iron.
Its placement in a rough gray landscape gives it an industrial appearance, with the
threat of surveillance. Whirl Surge Generator (2010) is a sleek silver tower, standing
in the middle of a snow-covered expanse, with a hint of foliage on the horizon. The
gray, life-less sky provides a backdrop of foreboding. The Radiant Proliferator (2009)
appears to be a mix between a fan, an eggbeater, and a bunker. The structure is nestled
among orange and rust coloured rocks, recalling the American Southwest. Indeed, many of
the landscapes were shot by Trautrimas around Los Alamos, home of the Manhattan Project.
Throughout the show, Trautrimas provided start yet creative combinations of silvery
structures and vast unpopulated landscapes. An observant viewer could take pleasure in
the tiny details, such as a perfectly integrated door and a glint of reflected green in
an expanse of silver. Blending humor and terror, the work renders the Cold War era as
a time when bold esthetics went hand in hand with a prevailing sense of menace
- Richard Chang, ArtNews December 2010