Real Art Ways presents a solo exhibition by NYC based video artist RJ LaRussa.
Through video, sculpture, and digital collage “Meaningful Adjacencies” examines the psychological trauma of the CIA’s torture techniques, and the destruction of the evidence by government personnel.
“Meaningful Adjacencies” draws focus to the portion of post 9/11 abuses perpetrated by the United States. This exhibit focuses on the CIA Rendition, Detention, and Interrogation (RDI) program as it exists within both extremes: it is simultaneously the most brutal, repressive, institutionally sanctioned program to come after 9/11, as well as the most obfuscated, laundered, and pardoned practice at the highest levels.
The “information” obtained under torture in CIA Black Sites around the world continues today to serve as justification for the United States’ war on terror, just as the RDI program itself may still exist in one form or another, despite being officially ended. “Meaningful Adjacencies” memorializes those who were detained and brutalized. In doing so, we are forced to reexamine our relationship to global violence, and narratives of US innocence that are used to gain cultural consent for the continuation of these wars.
SIGHTGREEN: 2021, Digital macro video, Induced VHS Generation Loss, Audio collage.
About the Artist
RJ LaRussa is a Director of Photography and working locally in New York City. Their work has been screened at SXSW, Chicago Critics Fest, Frightfest, L’Étrange Festival, and the Denver Film Festival among others, and has been covered by the Zeiss Lenspire blog, Aislin Magazine, and the Greater Hartford Arts Council. Their most recent short film work THE MUNDANES, by Magic Society Pictures, premiered at SXSW 2023. RJ is a graduate of the 2023 Respectability Entertainment Lab.
LaRussa specializes in story-focused projects across both feature and short narrative, music video, and documentary work. He strives to bring naturalism and experimental techniques together to create visuals that serve the story of each individual project.
RJ’s sensitive approach to their subjects is informed by their experiences as a neurodivergent artist. The relationship between people and the world around them is integral to their work as a storyteller. For more information, click here.