Julie Weitz brings ASMR relaxation to Eastern Star Gallery

Archer’s Eastern Star Gallery had its first exhibition of the 2016 school year on Nov. 12. The gallery program is led by senior Sky Edenfield who started taking the Gallery Management and Design class as an independent study this year. The show was titled “Touch Museum 2.0” featuring work from visual artist Julie Weitz.

“Touch Museum 2.0” is essentially a smaller version of an exhibition titled “Touch Museum” that Weitz previously installed at Young Projects. This was Archer’s first art exhibition featuring solely video called Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response [ASMR].

“ASMR extends this question of how we experience empathy and locates it in the digital space. It’s a type of low-tech virtual reality that allows one group of people (the video-makers) to offer relief, comfort and relaxation to another group of people (the viewers) through simple, straightforward techniques. As an artist, I’m inspired by the perceptibility of this exchange despite its apparent intangibility,” Weitz wrote in the Eastern Star Gallery’s press release.

Photo by Alice Grainge
Some attendees experience the AMSR exhibit. Touch 2.0 was the first exhibit of this genre to be shown at the Eastern Star Gallery.

The ASMR style has inspired others in the community.

“Ms. Warner even told me that there is a group of sixth graders who want to start making ASMR videos,” Edenfield said. “I didn’t even know what ASMR was in sixth grade, so the fact that I’m also teaching younger grades is really fulfilling. I know some other people have even made ASMR Instagram accounts.”

Edenfield heard about Weitz through her teacher independent study advisor Chad Attie. Weitz is a teacher, and Edenfield believed that because she is a teacher, she would engage well with Archer students during the artist talk.

“The community reacted very positively to this. It feels especially good since it is my first year flying solo, with Mr. Attie as my co-pilot,” Edenfield said. “I am beyond grateful that the community is so appreciative of such an amazing artist and her immersive exhibition. I really feel like I’ve done my job as a gallery director.”