Never Odd Or Even
Never Odd Or Even presents two recent bodies of work by New York-based artist Gareth Long. Untitled (Stories) is a set of lenticular prints accompanied by the book series Books (Untitled) that pivots around a disjunction between the oeuvre of the late American author J.D. Salinger and the design of his books. The unfinished novel, Bouvard and Pécuchet by Gustave Flaubert is the central point around which the other works in the exhibition revolve. Bouvard and Pécuchet’s Invented Desk for Copying, a suite of two-sided desksculptures form the core of these, alongside related projects The Illustrated Dictionary of Received Ideas and a journal/ artist book entitled Who Invented the Desk?.
Long’s work centres on processes of transference and collaboration as a means to question authorship and the mechanisms with which culture and knowledge are produced. In much of his previous work, he has explored the crosstranslation of artistic forms, non-linear narrative tropes and gestures de-stabilizing medium specificity. Frequently, these explorations lead to a revised understanding of Modernism as it relates to artistic and literary traditions and the history of design, particularly book publishing.
The exhibition’s title, Never Odd Or Even, is a palindrome that reinforces the backwards and forwards motion inherent to the desks and lenticulars. The reverse-ability of this movement, that is both a doing and an undoing, can be seen in much of Long’s practice. His works enter into a form of sequencing, or a sequence of forms, in which there is never a conclusive performative moment. What is encountered in the gallery is best considered as a singular instance of an accumulative project, in which the sum is greater than the parts. At the heart of both works lies a fascination with books as uniquely flexible vehicles of meaning, as complex compendia to be read, re-read and mis-read, and as socio-cultural endeavours, objects circulating within wider networks of meanings.
Gareth Long was born in Toronto, Canada. He holds a BA in Visual Studies and Classical Civilizations from the University of Toronto and an MFA from Yale University. Long has held solo exhibitions at Oakville Galleries, Toronto; Leo Kamen Gallery, Toronto, Kate Werble Gallery, New York; and TORRI, Paris. His work has been shown at the Badischer Kunstverein, Karlsruhe; the Musée d’Art Contemporain de Montréal; Montreal; Mercer Union Centre for Contemporary Art, Toronto; Flat Time House, London; Wiels, Brussels; Artists Space, New York; Casey Kaplan Gallery, New York; and MoMA PS1, New York. In 2011 his work will be shown in a number of exhibitions, including ones at Eastside Projects in Birmingham, UK. Long is represented by Kate Werble Gallery in New York, and TORRI in Paris.
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