David Oresick

(American, b. 1984; resides in Chicago, IL)

Using the Internet, David Oresick appropriates and edits together online videos to explore the ways in which people use technology for self-expression and communication, even—or perhaps especially—in extremely emotional circumstances, including death and war.

The Dream Songs (2010) is a meditation on mourning inspired by the elegiac poetic tradition. Oresick creates a montage of videos representative of a range of reactions to loss, revealing the dualism of despair and hope and the difficulty of communicating profound grief. Many of the same videos are revisited throughout the narrative arc, establishing emotional connections between people who, otherwise, have no relationship with each other. Oresick also includes found footage, such as a video of a storm or a baby deer stuck in a fence, which relates metaphorically to the videos of people speaking about their grief. The resultant montage resembles stream of consciousness as the viewer vicariously moves through the process of mourning.

Soldiers in Their Youth (2009) is assembled from videos created by American soldiers and their friends and families, both in Iraq and once they return home. The videos encompass humorous camaraderie and questionable hazing among soldiers, life-threatening situations in the battlefield, messages of love and longing between separated couples, and displays of anger and emotional disturbance by soldiers both in the war zone and once returned home. The juxtaposition of footage from such emotional and situational extremes—from an IED exploding near a convoy to a soldier surprising his girlfriend with his return home—exposes the complexity of war and the fragility of the lives closest to it.

David Oresick completed an MFA in Photography at Columbia College Chicago, IL (2010), and a BFA in Photography at the Rochester Institute of Technology, NY (2007). He has exhibited and screened his work nationally, including at Blue Sky Gallery, Portland, OR (2011); Fotofest 2010 Biennial, Houston, TX; and the Guggenheim Gallery, Chapman University, Orange, CA (2009). Oresick is the recipient of the Albert P. Weisman Award Project Grant, Columbia College Chicago (2009). He lives and works in Chicago, IL.