Muzak to My Ears

Artist to create first real-life “Vaporwave Mall” in Miami

Art East Media
View of Mall at the Source, an American mall in Long Island, New York. (Courtesy Jtalledo / Wikimedia Images)
View of Mall at the Source, an American mall in Long Island, New York. (Courtesy Jtalledo / Wikimedia Images)

The artist Aileen Quintana is creating an homage to internet cultural relics and the dying American mall in an installation for this year’s III Points Music, Art & Technology Festival in Miami.

The “Vaporwave” genre has been called “the internet’s collective nostalgia”: a grouping of the various IRL (“in real life”) ephemera that defined the activities supplanted digitally by the World Wide Web, like shopping, waiting in line, and listening to muzak in elevators. (Note: Vaporwave is very different from vaporware.) Art and music produced within the Vaporwave genre dabble in a mix of surrealism, kitsch, and nostalgia.

Quintana’s “Vaporwave Mall” takes inspiration from the genre directly and will feature a bazaar of clichés from consumer-oriented, recreational capitalism to outfit a collection of fashion storefronts and art installations at the festival. Preliminary images of the installation show brightly-painted mannequins and the wire rack scaffolding used to display merchandise in mall outlets.

The creativity festival, which Quintana cofounded in 2013, will take place in Miamis artsy Wynwood neighborhood between October 8th and October 10th, 2016 and will feature Quintana’s “mall” as a key installation. The artist told the Miami New Times this week, “Conceptually, it’s like couture club kids. I have the opportunity to associate the fashion component to the audio component and create this hybrid where the art is vivid and the creativity is more because it’s influenced by music.”

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