Rebecca Zilinski's recent drawings chart the intersection of data and its artistic interpretation. The result is a bit like what I imagine the interior of Sol LeWitt's wall drawings might contain: beneath the mathematical rigidity and calculated randomness lies an emotional response to the universe. For her Intrinsic Response series, Zilinski collected the data herself, taking regular walks across the Walkway over the Hudson and tracking the total number of people she passed versus those who made eye contact. Each passer-by is represented with an ink dot. If eye contact was made, a dot was added to the original dot. For another work, the Poughkeepsie-based artist biked across the pedestrian bridge and noted how many people smiled at her. Like much information-based art, these drawings ask the question: Do we fit in the boxes that the data defines as us? Zilinski's answer isn't straightforward; it's complex and contradictory; it's Schrodinger's cat painting a self-portrait inside its chamber—an entanglement of science and art that's a representation of the hot messes we are.
An exhibition of recent drawings by Rebecca Zilinski, "Keeping Track: Collection, Recollection, and Reflection," will be on display through October 5 at Barrett Art Center in Poughkeepsie. (845) 471-2550; BarrettArtCenter.org. Portfolio: RebeccaZilinski.com.