Oddball Visual Art

Bruce Hanson
There are artists who make beautiful objects for the sake of beauty, but I'm not one of them. I focus on the process of making light, movement, shape, color, and design expose what is concealed. 
Humor finds its way into many of my pieces, as do warmth, curiosity, and a sharp awareness of the human condition. I endeavor to create subjective spaces where my viewers and I meet.
My work is often ephemeral, existing only in a particular space, time and social/cultural context. And for the record, without beauty, life would indeed be dull.
Bruce Hanson holds an MFA in Visual Art from Vermont College of Fine Arts. He lives on Whidbey Island, Washington.
Faces of Recovery
This is an augmented reality (AR) portrait project focused on people in recovery from a substance use disorder. AR, in this project, uses a smartphone to enhance and add meaning to ordinary images.
The images will be created based on the lived experiences of people in recovery. Over the next year, I will be interviewing people and creating AR portraits. ​​​​​​​
A video of four portrait prototypes.
My plan is to exhibit the AR portraits in non-profit galleries, recovery community organizations, hospitals, addiction treatment centers, or virtual galleries. This is not a commercial project and nothing will be up for sale. Images and names of the people I interview will be anonymized.​​​​​​​
Try the AR experience with this demo:
Use your smartphone camera to scan the QR code below, then follow the directions. A smartphone made in the last three years is best. Use the Safari browser on an iPhone -- on Android use either Chrome or Firefox. 
Nivarra, a fictitious non-profit pharmaceutical company of the future, is a vehicle to explore how policies and organizations can reduce the harm caused by our current failed drug policies. 
Ephemeral Public Art
Selected video projections from the past twenty years.
On December 3, 2022 I presented an ethereal video projection at the Rob Schouten Gallery Sculpture Garden in Langley, Washington. The piece is titled Float to suggest buoyancy and lightness, color and enchantment.
Lightbirds in Langley
This is a collaboration with Bay-Area artist Therese Lahaie that we performed on August 27, 2022 in downtown Langley, Washington. 

Therese uses mirrors to reflect the sun on to the sides of buildings, creating wonderful, evolving avian shapes she calls Lightbirds. 

Instead of the sun, we used video projectors to create the Lightbirds by reflecting abstract video images from the projectors on to a large wall.

See thereselahaie.com for more about Therese's work.
Lightbirds in Langley 
(Succinct Edition - 1 minute 7 seconds)
Lightbirds in Langley 
(Extended Edition - 8 minutes 55 seconds)
This video is especially mesmerizing!
Oculi Vigilantes
In Downtown Langley, Washington on February 5, 2022 I performed a video projection installation titled Oculi Vigilantes. The literal translation is eyes watching, and it features a selection of creatures found in our local area -- specifically, it features their eyes.

For over twenty years I have been doing large-scale video projections in public spaces. Here on Whidbey Island, we live in a sanctuary along with our animal friends. As we watch one another trundling about, we seem to be heading down a path that points to ruin: environmental, social, and cultural. This feels like a moment to remember that these creatures are watching as well.

Oculi Vigilantes selected scenes (0:41)

Oculi Vigilantes full video (3:14)

Neighborhood Watch - Langley Art Walk - November 2021

Three Experiments - November 2021

Bellevue Art Museum I
Who defines the culture of a place?
Bellevue Art Museum II
Co-opt or be co-opted.
Newport Hills
I lived for many years in a suburb of Seattle that had an old strip mall that dated back to the 1960s. It was showing its age, especially when the Red Apple Market closed its doors. I did a number of video projections on the buildings in an attempt to stimulate the imaginations of my neighbors and to help us forge a new neighborhood core. 
Contact Me
Thank you!
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