ArtSlant en-us 40 Wednesday Web Artist of the Week: Miyö Van Stenis <p><a href="">Miy&ouml; Van Stenis</a> is a Venezuelan new media artist currently based in France. Her work explores of the ubiquity and influence of technology, often seen through a strong socio-political lens. An interest in political themes, frequently related to her home country, gives her work an uncommon and vital weight in the world of new media art. In turn, by presenting these themes through digital and web-based interfaces her work has a unique relatability that other mediums might struggle to achieve.</p> <p>Van Stenis&rsquo; work is included in two shows at <a href="" target="_blank">Satellite</a> art fair during <a href="" target="_blank">Art Basel Miami Beach</a> this week: <a href="" target="_blank">The Digital Museum of Digital Art</a> (DiMoDa)&rsquo;s exhibition, <em><a href="" target="_blank">Tour</a></em>, and<em> <a href="" target="_blank">Morph&eacute; Presence</a></em>, presented in the lounge of the Parisian Hotel in South Beach.</p> <p>I asked her about her thoughts on Miami and art fairs as promoters of new media art and what it was like curating the first purely new media art exhibition in Venezuela.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Christian Petersen: You are from Caracas but you live in Paris. Why did you move there?</strong></p> <p><strong>Miy&ouml; Van Stenis:</strong> I moved for political reasons in 2014, when things in Venezuela started to get very difficult after Hugo Chavez&rsquo;s death. I had to ask myself if I wanted to have a future and be free or be complacent in front of a totalitarian government. I decided to turn my work into a witness of what is happening back home and be free, no matter the price of becoming a refugee.</p> <p><strong>CP: What was your first experience of using a computer?</strong></p> <p><strong>MVS:</strong> I&rsquo;ve had a computer since I was six years old so I&rsquo;m very familiar and comfortable with technology. Ever since I can remember my family were very into computers, video games, internet, etc. So we always have this natural and weird connection with technology&mdash;it&#39;s a family bond.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" /></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>CP: When did it first occur to you that you could make art using a computer? Were there any specific</strong> <strong>artists or artworks that inspired you?</strong></p> <p><strong>MVS:</strong> I guess that all started in the first year of college. I knew from the beginning that I was only going to be good enough with digital art so I choose that without knowing what I was going to do. It was mostly because I didn&rsquo;t, and still don&rsquo;t, feel a sense of being capable of creating with other type of tools. Creation depends a lot on what you find comfortable enough to let your feelings express themselves.</p> <p>I was 17 years old when a friend show me the ASCII works of <a href="" target="_blank">Vuk Cosic</a> as a joke&mdash;it was an interpretation of the film <em>Deep Throat</em>, but that work blew my mind. After, I found Jodi and <a href="" target="_blank">Alexei Shulgin</a> and everything started to make sense, I realized that it was the right path.</p> <p><strong>CP: When did you first hear the phrase &ldquo;new media art,&rdquo; and what does that phrase mean to you?</strong></p> <p><strong>MVS:</strong> The first time that I read/heard that phrase/discipline was studying <a href="" target="_blank">Lev Manovich</a> and <a href="" target="_blank">Jos&eacute; Luis Brea</a>. But for me, new media art is just a discipline related with types of technology, like painting and photography [are disciplines]. It doesn&rsquo;t give me any specific direction when I&rsquo;m working.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" /></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>CP: What was the first new media art you made?</strong></p> <p><strong>MVS:</strong> My first Net.Art work was <em><a href="" target="_blank">m_m</a></em> from 2009 which used Flash. I still love it, mostly because everything there happened as an accident and still works well. At that time I knew how to code, but I didn&rsquo;t know what I was going with do or that I was going to get hooked on Net.Art.</p> <p><strong>CP: Why are you so inspired so deeply by the digital world and the internet?</strong></p> <p><strong>MVS:</strong> I found in new media art and internet, as a medium, total freedom to develop projects sometimes with less complications, less mediators. Internet is not regulated by institutions or a specific, necessary public so there&rsquo;s a large spectrum to play with. Everything can inspire me: nature, politics, a book... it depends on my daily experience.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" /></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>CP: What&rsquo;s the new media scene like in France? Are there any specific people or galleries</strong> <strong>that are supporting the movement?</strong></p> <p><strong>MVS:</strong> You should check David Pole, with his <a href="" target="_blank">Databitme</a> Festival at Arles, in the south of France and <a href="" target="_blank">Dominique Moulont</a>, with the <a href="" target="_blank">Variation Paris Media Art Fair</a> in Paris.</p> <p><strong>CP: You are also a curator, what was the first show you curated and what was your favorite</strong> <strong>show that you curated?</strong></p> <p><strong>MVS:</strong> The first exhibition I curated was in 2010, called <em>Lado B</em> (Side B). It was an invitation from the Venezuelan artist and dear friend Jorge Mitzuro da Silva. We had the chance to use the space of the principal library in one of the most important universities of our country, Sim&oacute;n Bol&iacute;var University, which specialized in engineering and sciences.</p> <p>My favorite curatorial exhibition will be always <a href="" target="_blank"><em>DOB: The Revolt </em>in 2011</a>. It was the first pure new media art exhibition in Venezuela. I took a big risk of showing an art movement that not even my teachers at my Alma Mater understood. I selected Glitch artist such as Rosa Menkman, Bill Miller, Nicolas Maigret, and more. I pushed the young generation of Venezuelan artists, to show a type of art that didn&rsquo;t have any space in our museums or in the art scene. I searched like crazy for the people that were doing Net art, Sound art, etc. It was pure digital&mdash;no objects in the room&mdash;and even the catalog was made on Pure Data. Nobody believed in or understood what I was doing or why I was doing it. A lot people just closed the door on my nose and told me that it wasn&rsquo;t art.</p> <p>I did it because I was feeling frustrated that there wasn&rsquo;t a space for us and I&rsquo;m glad I did it. After that show, my generation of artists started creating spaces instead of waiting for an opportunity.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" /></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>CP: What are the particular challenges of being a new media curator compared to a &ldquo;traditional&rdquo; curator?</strong></p> <p><strong>MVS:</strong> I believe it&#39;s the same passion: in both you have to be very creative, think about the space and presentation of each specific project, and of course have a critical eye! You have to be sure of the selection of artist/work involved.</p> <p><strong>CP: How did you become involved in SPAMM and The Wrong &ndash; New Digital Art Biennale?</strong></p> <p><strong>MVS:</strong> Thanks to the internet. I got in contact with Micha&euml;l Borras (aka Systaime) and David Quiles Guiro online, and after a while chatting, we started working together. I believe these projects are important because they give validation like institutions (museums, galleries, etc). It&#39;s not less or more important because they&rsquo;re based on internet, but it&#39;s evident that for new media artists these alternative spaces need to grow and have budgets to pay artists. Working as a public or private institution will do that.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="394" mozallowfullscreen="" src=";byline=0&amp;portrait=0" webkitallowfullscreen="" width="700"></iframe></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:14px;"><a href="" target="_blank">DiMoDA 2.0 : Morph&eacute; Presence Beta trailer</a></span></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>CP: Tell us a little about the show you are part of in Miami.</strong></p> <p><strong>MVS:</strong> The show in Miami is part of DiMoDa&rsquo;s exhibition <em>Tour</em>. The second exhibition, <em>Morph&eacute; Presence</em> is on view at Sstellite&rsquo;s main lobby lounge. The project will have upcoming installations in Geneva, New York, Basel, Paris, and the<a href="" target="_blank"> RISD Museum</a> in Rhode Island. I&rsquo;m involved thanks to the invitation of Helena Acosta, one of the curators of <em>Morph&eacute; Presence</em>. I have never participated in Miami Art Week before&mdash;normally I&rsquo;m not a &ldquo;fairs&rdquo; or &ldquo;galleries&rdquo; artist. I&rsquo;m not yet involved in those types of institutions, but I guess all types of exposures are positive.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" /></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>CP: What does being at Miami Basel mean to a new media artist and to new media art in general?</strong> <strong>What do think the current status is of new media art in the wider/ traditional art world?</strong></p> <p><strong>MVS:</strong> There&rsquo;s still a long way to go so that new media art shares the same status as the more traditional disciplines, especially with the commercialization of the art work.</p> <p>When Helena Acosta and I proposed to present <a href="" target="_blank">Beautiful Interfaces: the privacy paradox</a> as a private network with potential to sell, we were asking ourselves how we can commercialize art in a format that is part of that new media art culture. So the idea of presenting each artist in a hacked router or private network was to bet on the commercialization of new media art. Being involved in Art Basel, Satellite, or any type of fair, introduces the artist to the market, makes it accessible to collectors. I don&rsquo;t believe that this type of exposure necessarily has a great impact in the discipline, per se, or in the artist&rsquo;s work.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" /></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>CP: As you note, it&rsquo;s notoriously hard for new media artist to earn money from their work&mdash;so, do you think that&rsquo;s changing? </strong></p> <p><strong>MVS:</strong> It&rsquo;s hard in new media art to make money mostly because there aren&rsquo;t collectors&mdash;or at least like they exist in other disciplines&mdash;which allows a flow of money from prizes, residencies, or institutions. However, I know for sure that the Y- Generation or &ldquo;Millennials&rdquo; are our collectors so we&rsquo;ve got to figure it out what the system of consumption will be for this generation that promotes this purpose. Shows like the Miami fairs can definitely help, but only directly to a singular artists, not to a whole movement.</p> <p><strong>CP: New media has been embraced by a new generation of feminist artists. Why do you think that is? </strong></p> <p><strong>MVS:</strong> Art is the hyperbolic reflex of societies and tells the history that will be preserved and admired in future generations. If the feminist movement has been embraced by contemporary artists, it&#39;s because in our globalized and post-internet society, women have awakened to demand a more equitable distribution of the future. For me, this is something inspiring and important, since I myself have been the object of minimization and contempt throughout my career.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" /></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>CP: How do you think new media artists will react to the changing world, like the rise of the far Right in America and France?</strong></p> <p><strong>MVS:</strong> It&rsquo;s scary to see the rise of these old ideologies. I believed that we were finally in a time that will preach inclusion to all genders, religions, and postures. It seems that this may not happen for many years or until future generations.</p> <p>It is intriguing, however, how empires are destroyed at the cusp of their kingdoms. I&rsquo;m not shocked that North America or France decided to have extreme right candidates. It&rsquo;s the way in which politics develops; we need a dialectic of conventions and meetings. However I am shocked that those candidates expressed themselves with hatred and exclusion, when long ago we overcame the notion that racism and segregation is something positive for a nation.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" /></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>CP: What else do you have coming up?</strong></p> <p><strong>MVS: </strong>The third <a href="" target="_blank">Beautiful Interfaces</a>, more DiMoDa, and Virtual Reality&hellip;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&mdash;<a href="" target="_blank">Christian Petersen</a></p> <p><em>We run an online magazine, so of course, we&#39;re interested in what&#39;s happening with art on the web. We invited online gallerist, founder, and curator of&nbsp;<a href="" target="_blank">Digital Sweat Gallery</a>, Christian Petersen, to write a bi-monthly column for us. Every other Wednesday he selects a Web Artist of the Week.</em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><span style="font-size:14px;">(All images: Courtesy of Miy&ouml; Van Stenis)</span></p> Thu, 01 Dec 2016 10:47:01 +0000 The Miami Art Fairs: Here’s What You Need to Know <p>Closing out what can only be described as a relentlessly brutal year, the excesses that are Art Basel Miami Beach and Co. find themselves in the unenviable position of celebrating surfeit in a time of global angst and suffering. But who are we kidding? A sinking shoreline, mosquito-borne pathogens, and a fascist president-elect aren&rsquo;t stopping this party.</p> <p>Yes, facing the indulgences of Miami Art Week might get you feeling a bit more existential than usual&mdash;even in the best of years, Miami&rsquo;s the source of many a perplexing <em>Why does this exist? </em>moment. So, in the smallest of consolations, we offer this primer to make the week easier.</p> <p>It&rsquo;s always a little unclear just how many art fairs turn up in Miami each December. We&rsquo;re going with the liberal total of 25 this year, but won&rsquo;t begrudge anyone&rsquo;s conflicting tally. One thing is for sure: there will be more art than you possibly can, or should, safely take in over the course of a week. This guide will help you decide what you want to see and where/when you can find it. Choose wisely and take care out there, dearest readers!</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><iframe height="500" src="" width="100%"></iframe></p> <p style="text-align: center;">Click on each fair for info about dates, opening hours, locations, and admission fees.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><strong>Jump to:</strong></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a href="#MiamiBeach">Miami Beach</a><br /> <a href="#Midtown">Midtown/Wynwood</a><br /> <a href="#Other">Other Areas</a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong><a id="MiamiBeach" name="MiamiBeach"></a>MIAMI BEACH</strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><strong><img alt="" src="" /></strong></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:12px;">Art Basel Miami Beach Public sector: Tony Tasset, Rendering of&nbsp;<em>Arrow Sculpture</em>, 2016. Courtesy of the artist and Kavi Gupta, Chicago</span></p> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"><span style="font-size:22px;"><strong>Art Basel | Miami Beach</strong></span></a></p> <p>December 1&ndash;4<br /> Private view &amp; Preview: Wed, November 30, 11am&ndash;8pm (invitation only)<br /> Vernissage: Thurs, December 1, 11am&ndash;3pm (invitation only) &nbsp;3&ndash;8pm (general admission)<br /> Public days: Thurs 3&ndash;8pm, Fri/Sat 12&ndash;8pm, Sun 12&ndash;6pm<br /> Miami Beach Convention Center, 1901 Convention Center Dr., Miami Beach<br /> $55 one-day pass, $115 multi-day pass (we recommend purchasing tickets online for a slightly reduced entry)</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>The beast that has the art world flocking to South Beach each December. With 269 galleries exhibiting modern and contemporary work across six sectors, no other Miami art fairs come close in size or scope. Highlights include &ldquo;Positions,&rdquo; solo presentations from young galleries who got the Basel gatekeeper nod; &ldquo;Kabinett,&rdquo; smart and diverse mini solos installed within a separate section of a gallery&rsquo;s booth; and &ldquo;Survey,&rdquo; art historical and research-driven presentations, this year with a particularly strong showing of artists who may have gone under-recognized by the establishment in their prime.</p> <p>Despite steep entrance fees and multi-million dollar offerings, there are plenty of things for the cash-strapped art lover. Check out the outdoor sculpture sector in Collins Park; nightly <a href=";access=PUBLIC&amp;eventTypes=-4&amp;organisers=-1" target="_blank">film screenings</a> in SoundScape Park; and daily &ldquo;Conversations,&rdquo; including artist talks with <a href="" target="_blank">Julio Le Parc</a> and <a href="" target="_blank">Glenn Ligon</a>, and the panel &ldquo;Debating Disruption: Has Technology Really Changed the Artworld?&rdquo; (Thurs&ndash;Sun 10&ndash;11:30am).</p> <p>From the &ldquo;Salon&rdquo; panels we genuinely want to know &ldquo;Why Is Gender Still an Issue?&rdquo; (helmed by Hyperallergic&rsquo;s Jillian Steinhauer, Thurs 4&ndash;5pm), and for the cynical among us, there&rsquo;s this chat about the &ldquo;Post-Election Art Market&rdquo; (Fri 1&ndash;2pm). #priorities</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"><span style="font-size:22px;"><strong>NADA</strong></span></a></p> <p>December 1&ndash;4<br /> Preview: Thurs 10am&ndash;2pm (invitation only)<br /> Public hours: Thurs 2&ndash;7pm, Fri/Sat 11am&ndash;7pm, Sun 10am&ndash;5pm<br /> Deauville Beach Resort, 6701 Collins Ave, Miami Beach<br /> $20 one-day pass, $40 multi-day pass</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>NADA heads back to its former North Beach haunt at the Deauville Beach Resort. A critic favorite, NADA&rsquo;s the bellwether fair for galleries you&rsquo;re going to need to know, and there are a lot of newbies in town: in 2016 nearly half of its 110 dealers are first-time participants. Bring your bathing suit for <a href="" target="_blank">poolside programming</a> from indie publishers (there&rsquo;s also a great hot tub bar), and stick around North Beach any given evening for <a href="" target="_blank">Nada Wave</a> happy hours (7&ndash;10pm) and after-parties (10pm&ndash;) at the nearby Sandbar Lounge.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:12px;">View of Untitled, 2014. Courtesy of Untitled</span></p> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"><span style="font-size:22px;"><strong>UNTITLED</strong></span></a></p> <p>November 30&ndash;December 4<br /> Preview: Nov 29 (Press and VIP)<br /> Public hours: Wed&ndash;Sat 11am&ndash;7pm, Sun 11am&ndash;5pm<br /> Ocean Drive and 12th Street, South Beach<br /> $30 general admission</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Untitled, the first fair on the beach, returns to its sandy perch for its fifth edition. Expect hip contemporary art that&rsquo;s bleeding edge, conceptual, and politically engaged. Radio Wynwood will be reprising their role as the voice of the fair with curated, artist-produced programming like Cheryl Pope&rsquo;s anti-violence project, <em><a href="" target="_blank">Just Yell</a></em> on <a href="" target="_blank">Untitled, Radio</a>. You can also hear talks with art luminaries Julia Morandeira Arrizabalaga, Bik Van der Pol, and <a href="" target="_blank">Natalia Zuluaga</a>.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"><span style="font-size:22px;"><strong>PULSE Miami Beach</strong></span></a></p> <p>December 1&ndash;4<br /> Private preview brunch: Thurs 10am&ndash;1pm (invitation only)<br /> Public Vernissage: Tues 1&ndash;7pm<br /> Public hours: Tues 4&ndash;7pm, Fri/Sat 10am&ndash;7pm, Sun 10am&ndash;5pm<br /> Indian Beach Park, 4601 Collins Ave., Miami Beach &nbsp;<br /> $25 one-day pass, $40 multi-day pass</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>This satellite circuit mainstay, Pulse is a highlight for its emerging contemporary work from up-and-coming galleries&mdash;and its ample special project sectors. Head straight for the beachfront pavilion&rsquo;s South Tent for &ldquo;<a href="" target="_blank">Impulse</a>&rdquo; solo presentations, plus &ldquo;<a href="" target="_blank">Conversations</a>&rdquo;&mdash;duo presentations putting artists in dialogue with one another. Among the abundant &ldquo;<a href="" target="_blank">Projects</a>&rdquo; this year is Erica Prince&rsquo;s <em>The Transformational Makeover Salon</em>, a relational performance project that may or may not give participants the makeover they imagined. Give it a go&mdash;self care, people: it&rsquo;s a thing.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:12px;">Aqua Hotel courtyard. Courtesy Aqua Art Miami</span></p> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"><span style="font-size:22px;"><strong>Aqua Art Miami</strong></span></a></p> <p>November 30&ndash;December 4<br /> VIP preview: Wed, November 30, 3&ndash;10pm (access for Art Miami, CONTEXT and Aqua Art Miami VIP Cardholders &amp; Press)<br /> Public days: Thurs 12&ndash;9pm, Fri/Sat 11am&ndash;9pm, Sun 11am&ndash;6pm<br /> Aqua Hotel, 1530 Collins Ave., Miami Beach<br /> $20 one-day pass (Aqua only), $90 multi-day pass (includes admission for Art Miami, CONTEXT, and Aqua Art Miami)</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>This classic South Beach hotel transforms into an art fair once again for its 12th season. Aqua is our fave hotel fair for a reason: galleries surround a funky courtyard filled with palm trees, drinks, and a mini-pool for resting your weary weary ankles. As part of a partnership with the Association of Women Art Dealers, AWAD founder Susan Mumford will host a panel on &ldquo;Unconscious Bias and the Art World&rdquo; (Fri 10&ndash;10:50am).</p> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:12px;">Marc Quinn, <em>Siren</em>, 2008. Courtesy of Krampf Gallery</span></p> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"><span style="font-size:22px;"><strong>Scope Miami Beach</strong></span></a></p> <p>November 29&ndash;December 4<br /> Preview day: Tues 12&ndash;8pm (for VIP, press, and invited guests)<br /> Public hours: Wed&ndash;Sun 11am&ndash;8pm<br /> Scope Pavilion, 810 Ocean Dr., Miami Beach<br /> $35 general admission</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Turning sweet 16, the enduring Scope returns to its expansive South Beach pavilion to showcase 125 dealers from 22 countries. For what it&rsquo;s worth, Scope&rsquo;s got a clear visual identity: this is where you&rsquo;ll find the type of glossy, photogenic, and street-art inspired works you&rsquo;d expect to see in many a Miami &ldquo;boutique&rdquo; or &ldquo;design&rdquo; hotel.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:12px;">Jen Catron and Paul Outlaw,&nbsp;<em>F+++ OFF</em>, Preliminary rendering&nbsp;for Satellite Projects. Courtesy of the artists</span></p> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"><span style="font-size:22px;"><strong>Satellite</strong></span></a></p> <p>December 1&ndash;4<br /> Preview: Thurs 12&ndash;3pm<br /> Public hours: Thurs 3&ndash;10pm, Fri/Sat 12&ndash;10pm, Sun 12&ndash;6pm, with daily after-hours programming from 10pm onward<br /> The Parisian Hotel, 1510 Collins Avenue, Miami Beach<br /> $10 one-day pass, $25 week pass</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>In its second season, Satellite&rsquo;s orbit closes in on the South Beach fairs, setting up shop in the Parisian Hotel next door to Aqua. Promoting itself as #notbasel, this outsider&rsquo;s fave is basically a fair full of special projects: instead of dealers hawking their wares in booths, each room is a concept-driven project from galleries, artists and artist collectives, schools, and arts publications.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:12px;">Terry Dintenfass with Jacob and Gwendolyn Lawrence, from&nbsp;&ldquo;The Women Who Made Modern Art Modern&rdquo;</span></p> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"><span style="font-size:22px;"><strong>X Contemporary</strong></span></a></p> <p>November 30&ndash;December 4<br /> Preview: Wed, 10am&ndash;1pm (invite only)<br /> Public hours: Wed&ndash;Sat 1&ndash;9pm, Thurs&ndash;Sat 10am&ndash;7pm<br /> Ocean Gardens closing party: Sun 12&ndash;5pm (invite only)<br /> Nobu Hotel, 4525 Collins Ave, Miami Beach<br /> $20 one-day pass</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Under new direction, the second iteration of this fair moves from Midtown to Nobu Hotel Miami Beach. This year, X is featuring &ldquo;The Women Who Made Modern Art Modern,&rdquo; an exhibition profiling 16 female art dealers active in the 1940s, 50s, and 60s. Hot tip: stop here to recharge at artist Rachel Lee Hovnanian&rsquo;s sculptural phone charging station.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:12px;">The Design Miami entrance with the world&rsquo;s largest 3D-printed structure, <em>Flotsam &amp; Jetsam</em>,&nbsp;Rendering by&nbsp;SHoP Architects. Courtesy of SHoP Architects</span></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><span style="font-size:22px;"><strong><a href="" target="_blank">Design Miami</a></strong></span></p> <p>November 30&ndash;December 4<br /> Vernissage: Tues, November 29, 12&ndash;8pm (invitation only)<br /> Public hours: Wed 12&ndash;8pm, Thurs 10am&ndash;8pm, Fri 11am&ndash;8pm, Sat 12&ndash;8pm, Sun 12&ndash;6pm<br /> Meridian Avenue and 19th Street, Miami Beach Convention Center<br /> $30 one-day pass, $65 in combination with entry to Art Basel ($5 discount for ordering tickets online)</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Design Miami, always the innovator with branding mashups, is worth a trip for anyone who has graduated on from IKEA furniture. This year promises, amongst other beaux objets, a &ldquo;3-D printed ice bucket crafted using powder from Chardonnay grape skins&rdquo; sponsored by Perrier-Jou&euml;t.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:12px;">Jane LaFarge Hamill, Giant Summer, 2016. Courtesy FMLY</span></p> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"><span style="font-size:22px;"><strong>Miami Project</strong></span></a></p> <p>December 1&ndash;4<br /> Preview: Thurs 12&ndash;4pm (VIP/invitation only) Thurs 4&ndash;8pm (public)<br /> Public hours: Fri/Sat 11am&ndash;7pm, Sun 11am&ndash;6pm<br /> The Deauville Beach Resort, 6701 Collins Ave., Miami Beach<br /> $25 one-day pass, $40 multi-day pass</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>The Miami Project is going back to basics in its fifth year&mdash;gone is the short-lived Art on Paper sister fair, and it is no longer partnering with Satellite. Instead, this intimate Art Market Productions enterprise hitches its fortunes on NADA, one block away, as it looks to capitalize on the fair-goers headed up to North Beach.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><span style="font-size:22px;"><strong><a href="" target="_blank">Ink Miami Art Fair</a></strong></span></p> <p>November 30&ndash;December 4<br /> Public hours: Wed 9&ndash;5pm, Thurs&ndash;Sat 10am&ndash;8pm, Sun 10am&ndash;3pm<br /> Dorchester, 1850 Collins Avenue, Miami Beach<br /> Admission is free</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>With Art on Paper gone after one season, Ink reclaims its longstanding title as Miami&rsquo;s only fair dedicated to works on paper. This is the little fair that could&mdash;with 11 exhibitors in its 11th year, it&rsquo;s an easy and intimate introduction for new collectors.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"><span style="font-size:22px;"><strong>Fridge Art Fair</strong></span></a></p> <p>November 27&ndash;December 4<br /> Preview: November 27, 4&ndash;7pm (ticket required)<br /> Grand gala closing event: Sat 4&ndash;7pm (suggested donation $10)<br /> Public Hours: Mon&ndash;Sun 9am&ndash;9pm<br /> Underground Gallery at The Betsy Hotel, 1440 Ocean Drive, Miami Beach<br /> $10 suggested admission</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>For its fourth installment, this cheeky fair moves to The Betsy Hotel. Art shows pop up across the hotel, but Fridge&rsquo;s signature is the &ldquo;Curated Mini-Fridge Art Fair,&rdquo; hosted in The Underground Gallery and curated by New York artist and fair founder Eric Ginsburg.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong><a id="Midtown" name="Midtown"></a>MIDTOWN/WYNWOOD ARTS DISTRICT</strong></p> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:12px;">Art Miami. Photo: Ken Hayden Photography</span></p> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"><span style="font-size:22px;"><strong>Art Miami
</strong></span></a></p> <p>November 29&ndash;December 4<br /> VIP preview: Tues 5:30&ndash;10pm (Access for Art Miami VIP Cardholders and Press)<br /> Public hours: Wed&ndash;Sat 11am&ndash;8pm, Sun 11am&ndash;6pm<br /> 3101 NE First Ave., Wynwood<br /> $45 one-day pass, $90 multi-day pass (includes admission for Art Miami, CONTEXT, and Aqua Art Miami)</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>As one of the few fairs to span modern and contemporary periods, the 27th edition of Miami&rsquo;s oldest art fair includes a cavalcade of the usuals: Chagall, Ernst, L&eacute;ger, Lichtenstein, Stella, de Kooning, and Thiebaud. An interactive diamond booth will also be present. Not sure what that means but proceeds will go to &ldquo;DIAMONDS UNLEASHED Donor Advised Fund benefiting Girls Who Code, GirlUp and She&#39;s the First.&rdquo;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><span style="font-size:22px;"><strong><a href="" target="_blank">CONTEXT Art Miami</a></strong></span></p> <p>December 1&ndash;6 
<br /> VIP preview: Tues 5:30&ndash;10pm (Access for Art Miami VIP Cardholders and Press)<br /> Public hours: Wed&ndash;Sat 11am&ndash;8pm, Sun 11am&ndash;6pm<br /> 118 NE 34th Street, Wynwood<br /> $40 one-day pass, $85 multi-day pass (includes admission for Art Miami, CONTEXT, and Aqua Art Miami)</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>In its fifth year, CONTEXT&mdash;Art Miami&rsquo;s sister fair for contemporary art&mdash;has wandered a little farther away from its progenitor, one block away in midtown Miami. One highlight will be checking out Brian Eno&rsquo;s sculptures. Maybe just put <a href="" target="_blank">Music for Airports</a> in your earbuds and wander around for a while. If you&rsquo;re into aural, check out the reprise of Sound Positions, a sound art exhibition curated by Cristoph Cox.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:12px;">Spectrum <a href="" target="_blank">LaunchPad Program</a> artist Luis A. Gutierrez,&nbsp;<em>Politics</em></span></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><span style="font-size:22px;"><a href="" target="_blank"><strong>SPECTRUM Miami</strong></a><br /> <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>ArtSpot Miami</strong></a><br /> <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>The New Red Dot Miami</strong></a></span></p> <p>November 30&ndash;December 4<br /> Preview: Wed 6&ndash;10pm (tickets required)<br /> Public hours: Thurs&ndash;Sat 12&ndash;8pm, Sun 12&ndash;5pm<br /> 1700 NE 2nd Avenue (NE 2nd Ave. at NE 17th St.)<br /> $30 one-day pass (includes admission to SPECTRUM, ArtSpot, and Red Dot) ($25 if purchased online)</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"></a><br /> <a href="" target="_blank"></a><br /> <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>This trio of fairs share a site in the Arts &amp; Entertainment District. Spectrum and its show-within-a-show ArtSpot highlight photography this year with their &ldquo;Foto Solo&rdquo; and &ldquo;Photo Lab International&rdquo; presentations, respectively.</p> <p>Like Spectrum, <em>The New </em>Red Dot&mdash;n&eacute;e Red Dot&mdash;features Art Labs and Spotlights&mdash;booth programming with artist and gallery meet-and-greets. In a trend we&rsquo;re seeing more and more of, the Miami non-profit Life is Art lab will feature VR art experiences in partnership with Virtual Relief and students from Miami International University of Art and Design.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:12px;">Waltercio Caldas,&nbsp;<em>Figura Figura</em>. Exhibited by Multipo Espa&ccedil;o Arte</span></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><span style="font-size:22px;"><strong><a href="" target="_blank">Pinta Miami</a></strong></span></p> <p>November 30&ndash;December 4<br /> Preview: Tues, 6:45&ndash;10:30pm (invitation only)<br /> Vernissage: Wed 5&ndash;8pm<br /> Public hours: Wed 5&ndash;8pm, Thurs&ndash;Sat 12&ndash;8pm, Sun 12&ndash;6pm<br /> MANA Wynwood, 318 NW 23rd Street<br /> Admission free; donation suggested</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Pinta makes a return this year to the sprawling MANA Wynwood. This edition is being touted as a more &ldquo;international and interdisciplinary&rdquo; version of the traditionally Latin America and Iberia focused fair. Miami curatorial committee, Jos&eacute; Antonio Navarrete, Roc Laseca, and Jesus Fuenmayor hope to create a &ldquo;dialogue across all cultures, connecting Latin America to the rest of the world.&rdquo;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:12px;">Jen Clay, exhibited by Squatter Gallery at Superfine!</span></p> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"><span style="font-size:22px;"><strong>Superfine! The Fairest Fair</strong></span></a></p> <p>December 1&ndash;4<br /> Previews: Thurs 11am&ndash;6pm (invite only)<br /> Public hours: Thurs 6&ndash;11pm, Fri/Sat 1&ndash;11pm, Sun 1&ndash;8pm<br /> 56 NE 29th Street, Midtown Miami<br /> $7.77 one-day pass, $33.33 multi-day pass</p> <p><strong><a href="" target="_blank"></a></strong></p> <p>We dig Superfine!&rsquo;s mission to disrupt the art fair model that pushes costs onto exhibitors and collectors. Focusing on under-served collector bases, Superfine! isn&rsquo;t exactly courting the same demographic as many of the week&rsquo;s high-rolling outfits&mdash;though its new home across the street from Art Miami will surely bring in more of Miami Art Week&rsquo;s traditional audience. Panels sound promising with topics like: &ldquo;An Artist Who Happens to Be (Queer)&rdquo; (Fri 2&ndash;3pm) and &ldquo;Sorry I&rsquo;m Not a Collector&rdquo; (Sat 1&ndash;2pm).</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"><span style="font-size:22px;"><strong>Conception Art Fair</strong></span></a></p> <p>December 1&ndash;4<br /> Preview: Thurs 6&ndash;10pm (VIP and press)<br /> Public hours: Fri&ndash;Sat 12&ndash;8pm, Sun 12&ndash;6pm<br /> 31 NW 23rd Street, Wynwood<br /> $20 one-day pass; $40 multi-day pass</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Conception is a small, artist-centered enterprise, promoted as Miami&rsquo;s first women-owned and produced fair. It promises &ldquo;a strong focus on art for social and political change as well as work by women and other under-represented minorities.&rdquo; Expect pop-inspired and street art aesthetics from 22 artist exhibitors.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong><a id="Other" name="Other"></a>OTHER AREAS</strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:12px;">Allison Janae Hamilton, <em>The Land of Milk or Honey</em>, Video installation. Courtesy of PRIZM Art Fair</span></p> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p> <p><span style="font-size:22px;"><strong><a href="" target="_blank">Prizm Art Fair</a></strong></span></p> <p>November 29&ndash;December 11<br /> Preview: Tues 12&ndash;4pm (invite only)<br /> Nov 30&ndash;Dec 4 11am&ndash;7pm, Dec 5&ndash;11 11&ndash;5pm<br /> 7230 NW Miami Court, Little River<br /> $15 one-day pass; $50 multi-day pass</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>This four-year-old fair for artists from Africa and the Diaspora runs for a fortnight at a new Little River venue. Featuring nearly 40 artist solo presentations, this year&rsquo;s theme considers the &ldquo;global impact of Africa&rsquo;s cultural DNA.&rdquo; For such a small fair, Prizm has a robust <a href="" target="_blank">programming schedule</a> with performances and talks such as &ldquo;Black Femininity in Contemporary Art,&rdquo; led by Karen Senefuru.</p> <p>Also featuring art from the African diaspora, <a href="" target="_blank">Art Africa Miami Arts Fair</a>, turns six this year. More of an exhibition than a traditional fair, this juried show&rsquo;s 2016 theme is <em>Afrotopia</em>. It is now held in the recently renovated Historic Clyde Killens Hall (920 NW 2nd Ave in Overtown), from Wednesday&ndash;Sunday.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:12px;">Kim Yun Soo, <em>Surface of Wind</em>, 2014, Gallery SoSo</span></p> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"><span style="font-size:22px;"><strong>Art Concept</strong></span></a></p> <p>November 29&ndash;December 4<br /> Collectors&rsquo; VIP Vernissage: Wed 1&ndash;10pm (invite only)<br /> Public hours: Thurs&ndash;Sat 1&ndash;10pm, Sun 1&ndash;6pm<br /> Bayfront Park, 301 Biscayne Blvd at Chopin Plaza, Downtown Miami<br /> $20 one-day pass; $30 multi-day pass</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Next Level Fairs throws its hat into the ring this year with Art Concept. With presentations like &ldquo;An Insider&rsquo;s View on Valuing Art&rdquo; and &ldquo;The Golden Rules in Collecting,&rdquo; we&rsquo;re expecting a practical, collector-driven approach from this one, with few surprises. We&rsquo;re into the donut-shaped pavilion though&mdash;just follow it around to the stunning views of Biscayne Bay.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"><span style="font-size:22px;"><strong>Miami River Art Fair
</strong></span></a></p> <p>December 1&ndash;4<br /> VIP Collector&rsquo;s Preview: Thurs, 6&ndash;11pm (black tie, invitation only)<br /> Public hours: Fri&ndash;Sun 12&ndash;8pm<br /> Miami Convention Center Downtown-Brickell, 400 SE 2nd. Ave<br /> Admission is free online. $20 general admission at door</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>A largely unremarkable Art Week contender, the trick up this so-called &ldquo;Waterfront Art Fair&rdquo;&rsquo;s sleeve is the Riverwalk Sculpture Mall, installed alongside the Miami River Downtown.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:12px;">2015 mural from the Little Haiti Mural Project, Caratoes</span></p> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p> <p><span style="font-size:22px;"><strong><a href="" target="_blank">Art Beat Miami</a></strong></span></p> <p>November 30&ndash;December 3<br /> Preview party: Wed 7&ndash;10pm<br /> Public hours: Wed&ndash;Sat 12&ndash;8pm<br /> Little Haiti Cultural Center Complex, 212-260 NE 59th Terrace, Little Haiti<br /> Admission is free</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Installed as a pop-up in Little Haiti&rsquo;s Caribbean Marketplace, Art Beat Miami focuses on local and Haitian artists. Be sure to check out the <a href="" target="_blank">Little Haiti Mural Project</a>&mdash;a mile of murals and public art installation spanning Northeast Second Avenue.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&mdash;The ArtSlant Team</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><span style="font-size:12px;">(Image at top:&nbsp;<span style="text-align: center;">Falling from Paradise, Studio shot for Satellite Projects)</span></span></p> Tue, 29 Nov 2016 18:00:03 +0000 Under the Radar: David Rios Ferreira | Zed Nesti | Naira Mushtaq <table style="width: 100%;"> <tbody> <tr> <td> <table align="center" border="0" style="width: 100%;"> <tbody> <tr> <td colspan="4"> <p>&nbsp;</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p><span style="font-size: medium;"><em><span style="font-family: georgia, palatino; line-height: 24px;">ArtSlant is an open Arts community with over 200,000 free, user-generated <a href=";utm_medium=image&amp;utm_campaign=Subs" style="color: #097ff5; text-decoration: none;">artist profiles</a>. The support of our community is an essential part of our mission &mdash; from our <a href=";utm_medium=image&amp;utm_campaign=Mag" style="color: #097ff5; text-decoration: none;">magazine</a> to our <a href="" style="color: #097ff5; text-decoration: none;">residency</a> and <a href=";utm_medium=image&amp;utm_campaign=Prize" style="color: #097ff5; text-decoration: none;">prize</a>. Every week our editors select the best artist profiles from under the radar. </span></em></span></p> <p><span style="font-size: medium;"><em><span style="font-family: georgia, palatino; line-height: 24px;">Follow your favorite artists to see new work and exhibitions by adding them to your <a href="" style="color: #097ff5; text-decoration: none;">watchlist.</a></span></em></span></p> <hr /> <p><a href=";utm_medium=image&amp;utm_campaign=Radar" style="text-decoration: none;"><span style="font-family: georgia, palatino; font-size: large;"><span color="#097ff5" face="georgia, palatino" georgia="" large="" palatino="" size="4" style="color: #097ff5; text-decoration: none;">David Rios Ferreira &ndash; New York City</span></span></a></p> <p><a href=";utm_medium=image&amp;utm_campaign=Radar"><img src="" style="display: block; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" width="100%" /></a></p> <table width="100%"> <tbody> <tr> <td style="padding 0px;" width="33%"><a href=";utm_medium=image&amp;utm_campaign=Radar"><img src="" width="100%" /></a></td> <td style="padding 0px;" width="33%"><a href=";utm_medium=image&amp;utm_campaign=Radar"><img src="" width="100%" /></a></td> <td style="padding 0px;" width="33%"><a href=";utm_medium=image&amp;utm_campaign=Radar"><img src="" width="100%" /></a></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> <hr /> <p><a href=";utm_medium=image&amp;utm_campaign=Radar" style="text-decoration: none;"><span style="color: #097ff5; font-family: georgia, palatino; font-size: large;">Zed Nesti &ndash; Brazil</span></a></p> <p><a href=" ZedNesti&amp;utm_medium=image&amp;utm_campaign=Radar"><img src="" style="display: block; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" width="100%" /></a></p> <table width="100%"> <tbody> <tr> <td style="padding 0px;" width="33%"><a href=" ZedNesti&amp;utm_medium=image&amp;utm_campaign=Radar"><img src="" width="100%" /></a></td> <td style="padding 0px;" width="33%"><a href=" ZedNesti&amp;utm_medium=image&amp;utm_campaign=Radar"><img src="" width="100%" /></a></td> <td style="padding 0px;" width="33%"><a href=" ZedNesti&amp;utm_medium=image&amp;utm_campaign=Radar"><img src="" width="100%" /></a></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> <hr /> <p><a href=";utm_medium=image&amp;utm_campaign=Radar" style="text-decoration: none;"><span color="#097ff5" face="georgia, palatino" size="4" style="color: #097ff5; font-family: georgia, palatino; font-size: large;">Naira Mushtaq &ndash; Lahore, Pakistan</span></a></p> <p><a href=" NairaMushtaq&amp;utm_medium=image&amp;utm_campaign=Radar"><img src="" style="display: block; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" width="100%" /></a></p> <table width="100%"> <tbody> <tr> <td style="padding 0px;" width="33%"><a href=" NairaMushtaq&amp;utm_medium=image&amp;utm_campaign=Radar"><img src="" width="100%" /></a></td> <td style="padding 0px;" width="33%"><a href=" NairaMushtaq&amp;utm_medium=image&amp;utm_campaign=Radar"><img src="" width="100%" /></a></td> <td style="padding 0px;" width="33%"><a href=" NairaMushtaq&amp;utm_medium=image&amp;utm_campaign=Radar"><img src="" width="100%" /></a></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p> <hr /> <p style="text-align: center;"><em><span style="font-family: georgia, palatino; font-size: medium; line-height: 24px;">ArtSlant supports thousands of contemporary artists through our outreach and exposure programs&mdash;come join the best online arts community today!</span></em></p> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p> <table> <tbody> <tr> <td style="padding 0px;" width="25%"><a href=";utm_medium=image&amp;utm_campaign=Prize"><img src="" width="100%" /></a></td> <td style="padding 0px;" width="25%"><a href=";utm_medium=image&amp;utm_campaign=Residency"><img src="" width="100%" /></a></td> <td style="padding 0px;" width="25%"><a href=";me=A2JPU387EQQ9HR&amp;merchant=A2JPU387EQQ9HR&amp;redirect=true" style="font-family: georgia, palatino;"><img src="" width="100%" /></a></td> <td style="padding 0px;" width="25%"><a href=";utm_medium=image&amp;utm_campaign=Subs"><span style="font-family: georgia, palatino;"><img src="" width="100%" /></span></a></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </td> </tr> </tbody> </table> Fri, 25 Nov 2016 18:16:27 +0000 Natalia Zuluaga Kicks Off ArtCenter/South Florida’s Latest Chapter with “An Image” <p>When <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>ArtCenter/South Florida</strong></a> opened on Lincoln Road in 1984, in the heart of South Beach, the street was &ldquo;nearly abandoned and severely dilapidated.&rdquo; Today the center, which hosts exhibitions, classes, and a studio residency program, is credited with kickstarting the revitalization of the mall and its surrounding area. Following the appointment of Natalia Zuluaga as Artistic Director this August, ArtCenter itself is getting something of a revitalization. Dynamic changes are underway as the promising Bard Center for Curatorial Studies graduate begins her tenure with an ambitious exhibition that rethinks the space&#39;s programming structure&mdash;and the very shape of what an exhibition can be.</p> <p>Part of an emerging generation of local creatives that have been actively distinguishing Miami&rsquo;s cultural identity through art&mdash;challenging stereotypes about the city and bringing it visibility outside of the annual art fair invasion&mdash;Zuluaga will oversee programming, education initiatives, and artist residencies. In addition, she works on a variety of collaborative curatorial and publishing projects such as <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>[NAME] Publications</strong></a> and PDP/PLP, a transdisciplinary &ldquo;think tank&rdquo; co-run by <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>Alan Gutierrez</strong>,</a> <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>Patricia Margarita Hernandez</strong></a>, and <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>Domingo Castillo</strong></a>. &nbsp;</p> <p>For her debut ArtCenter exhibition, she worked with Castillo, an artist and co-founding <a href="" target="_blank"><strong>Noguchi Breton</strong></a> gallerist, to co-curate <a href="" target="_blank"><strong><em>An Image</em></strong></a>, which runs through December 18. Together, they organized an exhibition that deconstructs, subverts, and reasserts notions of <em>the image</em>: what it is, what it could be, and how it functions in culture. The exhibition title is borrowed from Harun Farocki&rsquo;s film, included in the show, and the installation presents a smart selection of video art, objects, performance, and talks.</p> <p>I spoke recently with Zuluaga and Castillo about their conceptual framework and the intricacies of their robust exhibition, which is a must-see during Miami Art Week next month.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:14px;">Exterior view of <em>An Image</em>,&nbsp;ArtCenter South/Florida. Photo: Zack Balber</span></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Audrey Phillips: Natalia, what led to your move to ArtCenter/South Florida and what shape do you see things taking with future exhibitions? &nbsp;</strong></p> <p><strong>Natalia Zuluaga: </strong>My move to ArtCenter was really the result of a confluence of things, and luckily so. I think the institution is going through an interesting transition period and was a great place from which to explore my own interests in &ldquo;institutional forms&rdquo; and programming. So the invitation to come in and re-imagine the way ArtCenter&rsquo;s many pieces fit together (exhibitions, residencies, pedagogy) was particularly exciting for me.</p> <p><em>An Image</em> reflects a way of programming that allowed us to think through ideas over longer periods of time. So, instead of thinking about an exhibition schedule that included 10 exhibitions a year, I figured we could shorten that down to 3-4, and instead unpack the ideas over longer periods of time and through a variety of engagements. This is where the thinking behind an exhibition in the shape of objects, lectures, screenings, and using the exhibition space as the site where most of these things happen came into fruition. So future programs at ArtCenter may not be exhibitions at all, and instead focus on the necessary outputs for the content we want to engage with and breaking with the demands we place on ourselves to produce (or overproduce!) in one particular way.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" style="width: 700px; height: 467px;" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:14px;">Barbara Kasten,&nbsp;Installation view of&nbsp;<em>An Image</em>&nbsp;at ArtCenter/South Florida.&nbsp;</span><span style="font-size: 14px; text-align: center;">Photo: Zack Balber</span></p> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>AP: The exhibition seems so thoughtful, even the design of the </strong><a href="" target="_blank"><strong>web page</strong></a><strong>&mdash;which is beautiful. I imagine it was also approached as an image in and of itself. Could you talk about the process of selecting works and how they operate in relation to one another?</strong></p> <p><strong>NZ: </strong>Domingo and I really did want to think about all of the components in the exhibition as images, or as contributing factors to the construction of an image. We wanted to move beyond the representational force of an image which had dominated so much of &ldquo;image&rdquo; discourse/politics and think about the way an image is both imbricated and a catalyst for a number of social/political processes. So yes, the website, and especially the installation was important for this because we knew that the exhibition space as an image would travel further than the amount of people who could possibly access it in person.</p> <p>As a project we like to think that it works on two registers: that the exhibition space itself works as the place where the construction of an image is set to play, and that the public programs were a way of thinking through effects and gamuts of temporalities. In the space you have works by Harun Farocki, Enrique Castro-Cid, Barbara Kasten, and Suzan Pitt as immediate examples bolstered by the exhibition design and by the lighting, which Alan Gutierrez so carefully designed. Each one of these pieces does something slightly different: Farocki gives you the careful construction of desire in an image; Pitt&mdash;the presence of the hand in her very rich imagery; Castro-Cid in the relation between reality, computer-aided design, and painting. &nbsp;</p> <p>I think together the pieces are more than individual images&mdash;and this is important because we weren&rsquo;t interested in <em>importing </em>images; we wanted to create one too.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" style="width: 700px; height: 467px;" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:14px;">Alan Gutierrez, Installation view of&nbsp;<em>An Image</em>&nbsp;at ArtCenter/South Florida.&nbsp;</span><span style="font-size: 14px; text-align: center;">Photo: Zack Balber</span></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Domingo Castillo:</strong> We looked at <a href="" target="_blank">ARQUITECTONICA&rsquo;s Pink House</a> as a case study of a project that literally reprogramed the visual identity of Miami for the 80s and made ARQUITECTONICA an instant global architecture firm. The house, which perfectly exemplifies the &ldquo;post-modern&rdquo; in architecture, won multiple awards before it was even built. The proposal of which was first designed by Laurinda Spear and Rem Koolhaas, showed a return to the hand-painted and romanticized rendering which clearly highlighted their admiration of the Bauhaus thinking but begins to do something else.</p> <p>When the house is finally constructed it&rsquo;s redesigned by the newly established firm. It begins getting highlighted for its five Shades of Pink and it continues to get awards through all the photography-based architectural magazines. Luxury brands use the house as a stage for their advertisements, becoming the actual post-modern moment. The functionality of the house as a house comes second to it functioning as a stage where images are created. Due to the sheer amount of images that are generated through the house and its positioned branding of the image, the City of Miami starts to pivot towards the lifestyle, colors, and aesthetics laid out by the house and the images of its use. That to this day continues informing a &ldquo;luxurious&rdquo; understanding of the city, as per <a href="" target="_blank">Pitbull and Chris Brown&rsquo;s &ldquo;Fun&rdquo; music video.</a></p> <p>This is the grounding logic we wanted to work through with the exhibition as a whole. Instead of bringing in archival material, the logic is re-performed and our study of the house gets incorporated into the exhibition design and promotional apparatus of the exhibition.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" style="width: 467px; height: 700px;" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:14px;">Enrique Castro-Cid,&nbsp;Installation view of&nbsp;<em>An Image</em>&nbsp;at ArtCenter/South Florida.&nbsp;</span><span style="font-size: 14px; text-align: center;">Photo: Zack Balber</span></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>AP: You mention that the exhibition is &ldquo;an inherent political project&rdquo; that looks at &ldquo;image in relation to power structures and pseudo-agency&rdquo; referencing a &ldquo;history of anxiety,&rdquo; then tie these themes to the image of Miami as &ldquo;colonial fantasies of Latin America&rdquo; in your press release. Further to that, you assert that &ldquo;images are coded by different cosmologies in order to reconfigure the politics of visibility and presence.&rdquo; I&rsquo;m curious to know how or where these different cosmologies exist and am also interested in your thoughts related to these aspects of your statement.</strong></p> <p><strong>NZ: </strong>Alan Poma&rsquo;s <em>La Victoria Sobre el Sol </em>[Victory Over the Sun], which is the multi-media opera we are presenting at the conclusion of the exhibition that re-appropriates the Russian futurist play by the same name, is a good example of what we mean by the way in which different cosmologies code images. The play translates the opera both visually and linguistically to incorporate both Andean visions of the last moments of the solar system -- a story that has its origins in pre-columbian cultures. This incorporation is not in effect to translate the story, but to reclaim and decolonize the notion of futurity as a narrative that is strictly european in origin and in doing so re-situates the way in which that narrative has a <em>presence</em>, and is made <em>visible</em>; and that is inherently a political act.</p> <p>It&rsquo;s great that you picked up on the &ldquo;colonial fantasies.&rdquo; This was a slight jab at the idea that Miami is the &ldquo;gateway to the Americas&rdquo; or the &ldquo;capital of Latin America.&rdquo; This is language that has been disseminated by economic and tourist development boards in an effort to really sell Miami as that; but for us that idea pointed to a kind of colonial fantasy that doesn&rsquo;t play out through the dispossession of land or the acquisition of it for a nation state, but through a more pervasive form of economic colonialism. One key example that Domingo and I are always talking about is <a href="" target="_blank">NAP of The Americas</a>. This data site located just north of downtown Miami is where a large amount of internet traffic from the Americas is funneled through. So if you send an email, say, from Brazil to Chile, there&rsquo;s a chance it has to travel up here before reaching its destination. This subtle crossing of territories says more about Miami as a gateway and capital and the power structures that support and propel this vision forward than palm trees and sunsets do.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" style="width: 700px; height: 467px;" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:14px;">Installation view of&nbsp;<em>An Image</em>&nbsp;at ArtCenter/South Florida.&nbsp;</span><span style="font-size: 14px; text-align: center;">Photo: Zack Balber</span></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>AP: What makes Miami unique in relation to other &ldquo;art worlds&rdquo;?</strong></p> <p><strong>DC:</strong> Miami is just another node within the larger network of Contemporary Art. A place of constant contestation, natural disasters, racial inequality, financial inequality, constant land (re)development, and the ecological harmony of the Everglades are a few things of many that constantly rub up against each other and have to be constantly negotiated. The politics of the image become almost obvious if we start thinking about the way that art has always been instrumentalized within the creation and development of this city&rsquo;s imagery. When used with this kind of awareness and agency images and art can be used as a great vehicle where one can act and possibly change the course or at least the conversation towards more radicalized and empowered futures.</p> <p><strong>AP: What are your top Miami picks for Art Basel week?</strong></p> <p><strong>NZ: </strong>To see:&nbsp;<a href="" target="_blank"><em>AN IMAGE</em></a> :) and <a href="" target="_blank">Lynne Golob Gelfman</a> at Noguchi Breton.</p> <p>To eat: <a href="" target="_blank">Chef Creole</a> (200 NW 54th Street in Little Haiti), <a href="" target="_blank">La Palapa</a> (2699 Biscayne Boulevard in Edgewater), and <a href="" target="_blank">La Camaronera</a> (1952 W Flagler Street in Little Havana).</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&mdash;Audrey L. Phillips</p> <p><em>Audrey Phillips is a Toronto-based writer. She is a regular contributor to AQNB.</em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><span style="font-size:14px;">(Image to top: Installation view of <em>An Image</em> at ArtCenter/South Florida. Harun Farocki and Alan Gutierrez. Photos: Zack Balber. All images courtesy of ArtCenter/South Florida)</span></p> Tue, 29 Nov 2016 18:23:06 +0000 The Artist Positioning Himself as Richter’s Crown Prince <p>Next year Eberhard Havekost turns fifty: time to balance the books. The press release for his current solo at KINDL positions Havekost &ldquo;among the most important German artists of his generation.&rdquo; The artist himself probably doesn&rsquo;t agree with an accolade this generic, especially when it&rsquo;s accompanying the kind of self-confident display of painterly power that is <em>Inhalt</em>. The show takes up two full floors and doesn&rsquo;t leave much wall space unused. The works on show are so diverse, they could have been created by three or four different artists.</p> <p>Most recognizable as Havekost&rsquo;s are the flat figurative paintings of everyday objects and scenes. They&rsquo;re based on photographs, either Havekost&rsquo;s own or found footage, which have been digitally enhanced and transferred to canvas with a minimum of depth or visible brushstroke. A lipsticked mouth blowing out smoke, a close-up of a sugar cube, a bent, tanned leg framing the ocean behind. It&rsquo;s imagery with a pop-art charm, somewhere between social and photo realism. And it is what it is. Only occasionally does Havekost allow himself an ironic wink, like in the <em>Transformers</em>-titled depiction of a car wreck.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" style="width: 413px; height: 700px;" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:14px;">Eberhard Havekost, <em>Baum, B15</em>, 2015, Oil on canvas, 270 x 160 cm.<br /> Courtesy of Galerie Gebr. Lehmann and Anton Kern Gallery. Photo: Werner Lieberknecht</span></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Havekost&rsquo;s most vacant paintings are of dead screens, of TVs, computers, or mobile phones. The vast pools of grey nothingness hold promises of light and pigment but they turn out to be the dull opposite of everything painterly. In their off mode it&rsquo;s almost impossible to imagine we spend hours every day looking at them, our windows to the world. With sardonic delight Havekost exposes the soul of the virtual world in <em>Baum</em>: the colorful electronic bits inside a cracked iPhone are more real than the numb screen.</p> <p>With a series of iridescent works Havekost bounces to the other side of the spectrum. One triptych is even called <em>Light</em>. It&rsquo;s a depiction of basic physics but the result is both kitschy and hysterical. Havekost offsets these luminary explosions with measured color schemes, rhythmic compositions of six shades of secondary colors with titles such as <em>Copy + Property</em> or <em>Sch&ouml;ner Wohnen</em>. Here, the natural force of light and reflection has been categorized and domesticated.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" style="width: 700px; height: 518px;" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:14px;">Eberhard Havekost, Installation view of <em>Inhalt</em> at KINDL&rsquo;s Power House (first floor, M1). Photo: Jens Ziehe, 2016</span></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Up to this point the works in <em>Inhalt </em>can somehow be linked together, however diverse they may be. But Havekost rudely breaks this logic by adding half a dozen semi-abstract expressionist paintings, scattered across the walls, often right next to the flattest images in the presentation. The palette is geared towards contrast, the paint seems to have been forcefully smeared onto the canvas, attacked with sharp objects. To see <em>Zimmerpflanze</em> (House plants), a violent clash of sweeping greens, blacks, and yellows, right next to the perfectly realistic flowers in <em>Poison</em>, is nothing short of shocking.</p> <p><em>Inhalt</em> is Havekost flexing his painterly muscles. He obviously feels the need to showcase the full range of his skills. And he is explicitly competing with Gerhard Richter, the greatest German painter alive today, the best of not just his own but of all generations. The color schemes, the abstract work, the photorealistic images&mdash;they echo Richter&rsquo;s multi-faceted oeuvre. The standoff between the now 84-year-old Nestor and his would-be crown prince doesn&rsquo;t end favorably for Havekost, though. As Frieze critic Kristy Bell noticed in her review of his 2006 show at the Kunstmuseum Wolfsburg: &ldquo;Richter described the process of painting from photographs as being about making the banal &lsquo;more than just banal,&rsquo; but the problem with Havekost&rsquo;s paintings is that the banal just becomes more banal.&rdquo;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" style="width: 391px; height: 700px;" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:14px;">Eberhard Havekost, <em>Gef&uuml;hl, B15</em>, 2015, Oil on canvas, 80 x 45 cm.<br /> Courtesy of Galerie Gebr. Lehmann and Anton Kern Gallery. Photo: Werner Lieberknecht</span></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>What holds true for Havekost&rsquo;s photographically inspired paintings, applies to his entire body of work. Richter&rsquo;s works are about history and painting, memory and painting, identity and painting, a lot of different subjects combined with painting. Havekost&rsquo;s are only about painting. His subject matter is of secondary concern; the images are first and foremost shapes and colors. His large-scale reproduction of an illustration from a history book he received as a child might inspire mild bewilderment but his decision to paint it seems random. In that light the show&rsquo;s title, <em>Inhalt</em> (Content), feels deeply ironic. To be counted amongst the truly greatest painters of his age, however, Havekost needs to go beyond his noncommittal game of half-hearted references.</p> <p><em>Eberhard Havekost&rsquo;s </em><a href="" target="_blank">Inhalt</a><em><a href="" target="_blank"> </a>is on display at KINDL &ndash; Zentrum f&uuml;r zeitgen&ouml;ssische Kunst, Berlin, until February 19. 2017.</em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&mdash;<a href="" target="_blank">Edo Dijksterhuis</a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><span style="font-size:14px;">(Image at top: Eberhard Havekost, Installation view of <em>Inhalt</em> at KINDL&rsquo;s Power House (second floor, M2). Photo: Jens Ziehe, 2016)</span></p> Sat, 26 Nov 2016 17:13:28 +0000 Pipilotti Rist Unleashes the Comforts and Terrors of the Technological Sublime <p>Entering the three-floor exhibition currently on view at the New Museum, everything immediately slows down. The lights are dim, colorful projections hitting almost every wall and surface, illuminating people and subsequently turning them into shadows. Some visitors sit, splayed out on a plush carpet to watch the wall-to-wall two-channel video projections, while others drift through flowing gauzy curtains, a soft warbling tune flooding the air. This digital playground is Pipilotti Rist&rsquo;s <em>Pixel Forest, </em>the first major retrospective of the Swiss artist, featuring works spanning her thirty-year career, all of which invite you to play, to see, to touch, to take off your shoes and stay a while. &nbsp;</p> <p>And the result is something like magic. Museum goers have the opportunity to place themselves as a subject in Rist&rsquo;s videos, with settings like <em>Looking Through Pixel Forest </em>(2016), a blinking and pulsating light installation, which transports you to a world filled with waves of emotive color. In an interview with curator Massimiliano Gioni in the show&rsquo;s catalogue, Rist says that her video installations now &ldquo;dematerialize ceilings and walls, opening them up, liquefying them with images.&rdquo; In turn, they liquefy the space between the viewer and the work itself, calling on the viewer instead to be a participant, an actor in her own experience.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" style="width: 700px; height: 394px;" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:14px;">Pipilotti Rist, <em>Mercy Garden</em> (still), 2014, Two-channel video and sound installation, color, with carpet and sheepskin; 10:30 min, Dimensions variable. Sound by Heinz Rohrer. Courtesy the artist, Hauser &amp; Wirth, and Luhring Augustine</span></p> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p> <p>But with screens exploded and fractured and re-directed, with the installation almost consuming the content itself, what do we as viewers take from these videos? Is there a more subversive message to be gleaned? Or do these elaborate installations essentially break down to formal experimentations in the possibilities of digital art? The reality is that this exhibition operates in multiple registers. It is egalitarian in its openness and ability to offer such delight, yet challenging in the subtle ways the works contradict standards of power, offering up a particular brand of technicolored feminism.</p> <p>Early works like <em>I&rsquo;m Not a Girl Who Misses Much </em>(1986) and <em>Ever Over All </em>(1997) perfectly encapsulate a feminist agenda, yet resist the didacticism of many of her predecessors. Rather in these works, we see a kind of maniacal energy and destruction, of a girl and her environment, in a way that is humorous and shocking at the same time. In <em>Ever Over All</em>, for example, Rist walks down a city street smashing car windows with a cast iron &ldquo;Redhot Poker&rdquo; flower&mdash;alluding to the final scene, which ends on a vista filled with the tropical flower. This feeling carries through to the single- and double-channel videos throughout the show. We see flashes of bodies amidst natural vistas and underwater worlds, a breast or mouth coming into view before the image is choked out by weeds or a burst of colorful patterns. Rist is asserting agency over bodies, worlds, the natural and suburban realms. In <em>Vorstadthirn (Suburban Brain) </em>(1999), she&rsquo;s built a diorama of any or every town, urging us to see how small it really is. She is transporting us to a different dimension, one where women can construct worlds as easily as break them down.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" style="width: 700px; height: 544px;" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:14px;">Pipilotti Rist, <em>Ever is Over All</em>, 1997 (still), Two-channel video and sound installation, color, with carpet; 4:07 min, Dimensions variable. Sound by Anders Guggisberg and Rist. Courtesy the artist, Hauser &amp; Wirth, and Luhring Augustine</span></p> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p> <p>Although many of these individual works contain this message, the spectacle of the installation blurs how we are able to view the show on a whole. For instance, one can focus on the show&rsquo;s social aspect, watching other museum-goers experience the installation through their own virtual means, capturing digital memorabilia in the form of iPhone pictures and videos to be shared long after the physical experience is over. Or one can try and block out the others in order to immerse herself in the architecture of the installation, following Rist&rsquo;s proposal and becoming an actor in the exhibition itself. Or one can simply grab a beanbag, and watch the videos play through their 5&ndash;15 minute loops, consuming passively but attentively.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" style="width: 700px; height: 467px;" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:14px;">Pipilotti Rist, <em>Gnade Donau Gnade (Mercy Danube Mercy)</em>, 2013/15. Installation view: <em>Komm Schatz, wir stellen die Medien um &amp; fangen nochmals von vorne an</em>, Kunsthalle Krems, Austria, 2015. Courtesy the artist, Hauser &amp; Wirth, and Luhring Augustine. Photo: Lisa Rastl</span></p> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p> <p><img alt="" src="" style="margin-left: 10px; margin-right: 10px; float: right; width: 300px; height: 400px;" />But there is another side to the installations, one that moves away from the communal spectacle by fomenting unrest in the digital utopia you think you&rsquo;ve entered. These more solitary viewing experiences take the form of tiny iPhone screens buried in corners, playing single-channel videos that you almost have to crouch down to see. Or in a row of shard-like viewing stations mounted on either side of the long, narrow gallery on the second floor, each angular box [at right] fitted with a hole at the bottom allowing only one viewer access at a time. Looking down the exhibition space, this scene is as much a performance as the videos themselves, with people plugged into their stations, protected, yet strangely exposed. When you plunge into this confined space, you are consumed by the video and the music playing in your individual box; everything else dissipates.</p> <p>In stark contrast to the communal installations, these boxes produce a sort of ostrich effect, asking us to bury our heads in the sand and give in to the escapist aspects of entertainment, forcing us to close off from the world. It can be a disturbing scene&mdash;all those bodies with heads in the sharp, menacing viewing stations could easily be replaced with a subway full of people all plugged into their headphones, unaware of the world going on outside of themselves. Perhaps this is Rist&rsquo;s own little warning to us. She says to Gioni later on in their interview that &ldquo;I believe in the technological sublime. And the potential for terror has been a part of the sentiment of the sublime since back in the days of Romantic painting.&rdquo; In striving towards this new concept of the technological sublime through rapturous nature-inspired videos rendered as exploded projections, she is also revealing the terrifying reality of digital entertainment: that it can consume and distract us as much as set us free. &nbsp;But if we are sick with technology, perhaps the technological sublime is just the cure&mdash;as Rist says, &ldquo;like with a homeopathic remedy, for you to heal, you need the same thing that makes you crazy.&rdquo;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" style="width: 700px; height: 478px;" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:14px;">Pipiloti Rist, <em>I&rsquo;m Not the Girl Who Misses Much </em>(still), 1986, Single-channel video, sound, color; 7:42 min. Sound by Rist after &ldquo;Happiness Is A Warm Gun&rdquo; (1968) by John Lennon and Paul McCartney. Courtesy the artist, Electronic Arts Intermix (EAI), New York,, Hauser &amp; Wirth, and Luhring Augustine</span></p> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p> <p>In the final installation of the show, <em>4th Floor to Mildness</em> (2016), an underwater scene plays out on two amorphously shaped screens on the ceiling. I lie down on the beds set up beneath the projection, immediately settling into a kind of comfortable discomfort, allowing myself to feel at ease in this public, yet intimate space. The music calms, the waves of water and color and faces wash in and out of view. I never want to leave, I think, I could lie here forever listening to ethereal tunes and staring off at otherworldly visions. That is until a clot of dirt is thrown in the lens, reminding me of where I am, forcing me to pay attention.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&mdash;<a href="">Olivia B. Murphy</a></p> <p><em>Olivia Murphy is a writer and editor based in New York, covering arts and culture. Her work has appeared in various publications both in print and online, including&nbsp;</em>L&#39;Officiel Magazine<em>,&nbsp;</em>Freunde Von Freunden<em>,&nbsp;</em>Whitehot<em>,&nbsp;</em>Riot of Perfume<em>,&nbsp;</em>doingbird<em>, and&nbsp;</em>Whitewall Magazine<em>.</em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><span style="font-size:14px;">(Image on right: Photo: Olivia B. Murphy. Image at top: Pipilotti Rist, <em>Pixelwald (Pixel Forest)</em>, 2016. Installation view: <em>Pipilotti Rist: Dein Speichel ist mein Taucheranzug im Ozean des Schmerzes</em> [Your Saliva is my Diving Suit in the Ocean of Pain], Kunsthaus Z&uuml;rich, Switzerland, 2016. Courtesy the artist, Hauser &amp; Wirth, and Luhring Augustine. Photo: Lena Huber)</span></p> Fri, 18 Nov 2016 23:37:54 +0000 What do we do now? [Updating] <p>Farcical fascist, Donald Trump, will be winging his way through the next four years at the head of the United States government.&nbsp;</p> <p>Fuck this. Stay angry. Be helpful. Be safe.&nbsp;</p> <p>Artists have a duty to remain committed to the <a href="" target="_blank">critique of society</a> and while this list is not just art-related, our lives and our practices must confront and accept their political implications. Friends and family have been sharing resources &mdash;&nbsp;<em>thank you</em>&nbsp;to those of you who shared yours with us.&nbsp;Below is an updating list of resources and organizations for all vulnerable peoples and their allies to survive the orange times. Add any relevant community events or resources you think would be helpful in the comments. We will be updating this list for as long as necessary so please bookmark and share.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <hr /> <p><strong style="text-transform: uppercase;"><em>Educate:</em></strong></p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">Radical Politics</a>&nbsp;-&nbsp;<span id="docs-internal-guid-6e88214d-7811-69f9-90ac-604a92ffbcc4"><span font-weight:="" new="" style="font-size: 16px; font-family: " times="" vertical-align:="" white-space:="">A reading list for undoing Amerika.</span></span></p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">Open document of fake news sources</a>&nbsp;- Fake news played an outsized role in this election, do your best to call out fake news no matter their bias.</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">Online Privacy Best Practices</a>&nbsp;- Trump will have control of one of the most invasive security apparatuses in the world, protect yourself and your networks. Use different, non-sensical passwords for all your accounts, write them down on paper or use a <a href="" target="_blank">password manager</a>&nbsp;which encrypts your password database.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong style="text-transform: uppercase;"><em>Security:</em></strong></p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">Set-up Two Factor Authentification</a>&nbsp;- If you are at risk, secure all your accounts.</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">EFF Privacy Badger</a>&nbsp;-&nbsp;Blocks spying ads and invisible trackers.</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">EFF Security Self-Defence Project</a>&nbsp;- Understanding digital privacy needs and tools to circuvent surveillance.&nbsp;</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">HTTPS Everywhere</a>&nbsp;- ensures you are always requesting a secure connection through your browser.</p> <p>Use PGP Keys for email communications - get public and private keys from <a href="" target="_blank">keybase</a>&nbsp;and use <a href="" target="_blank">mailvelope</a>&nbsp;to send secure communications.</p> <p>Use <a href="" target="_blank">Ghostery</a>&nbsp;or <a href="" target="_blank">Privacy Badger</a> to block trackers while browsing.</p> <p>Set up a <a href="" target="_blank">VPN</a>&nbsp;(Virtual Private Network).</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em><strong>EXTENSIONS:</strong></em></p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">Chrome extension</a> automatically changes &quot;alt-right&quot; to &quot;white supremacy&quot;.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong style="text-transform: uppercase;"><em>Survival Guides:</em></strong></p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"></a>&nbsp;-&nbsp;an open collection of&nbsp;<a data-slimstat-async="false" data-slimstat-callback="false" data-slimstat-clicked="false" data-slimstat-tracking="false" data-slimstat-type="2" href="">health</a>,&nbsp;<a data-slimstat-async="false" data-slimstat-callback="false" data-slimstat-clicked="false" data-slimstat-tracking="false" data-slimstat-type="2" href="">legal</a>, and&nbsp;<a data-slimstat-async="false" data-slimstat-callback="false" data-slimstat-clicked="false" data-slimstat-tracking="false" data-slimstat-type="2" href="">safety</a>&nbsp;plans and resources +&nbsp;<a data-slimstat-async="false" data-slimstat-callback="false" data-slimstat-clicked="false" data-slimstat-tracking="false" data-slimstat-type="2" href="">social</a>,&nbsp;<a data-slimstat-async="false" data-slimstat-callback="false" data-slimstat-clicked="false" data-slimstat-tracking="false" data-slimstat-type="2" href="">digital</a>&nbsp;and&nbsp;<a data-slimstat-async="false" data-slimstat-callback="false" data-slimstat-clicked="false" data-slimstat-tracking="false" data-slimstat-type="2" href="">economic</a>&nbsp;security related resources.</p> <p><a data-saferedirecturl=";q=;source=gmail&amp;ust=1479565728349000&amp;usg=AFQjCNECPoh-fJZYHKwEdDqPZlPuoxeL9g" href=";w=1" target="_blank">Accompany a neighbor on their commute.</a> Not feeling safe in your community? Not willing to allow your neighbors to feel unsafe? Sign up to help.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong style="text-transform: uppercase;"><em>Participate:</em></strong></p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">#GrabYourWallet Boycott List</a>&nbsp;- An open document of companies involved with Trump and his organizations.</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">Million Women&#39;s March</a>&nbsp;- Scheduled for January 21st, the day after the inauguration.</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">#PAYBLACKTiME</a>&nbsp;- Put your white guilt to good use and nourish people of color.</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">The DJT Resistance</a>&nbsp;- Boycott and political actions organized by journalist Shaun King.</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">Call your Representatives</a>&nbsp;- Look up your rep and give them a call. Calling is the best way to get your voice heard.&nbsp;</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">Direct Action Drop-in for Artists and Art Workers</a>&nbsp;at <a aria-controls="js_1kp" aria-describedby="js_1kq" aria-haspopup="true" data-hovercard="/ajax/hovercard/page.php?id=612792938787435" href="" id="js_1kr" role="null">The Shandaken Project</a>- November 19, NYC -&nbsp;group POSTER-MAKING and community discussion about STRATEGIES OF CREATIVE NONVIOLENT RESISTANCE, and DIRECT ACTION PLANNING.&nbsp;</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">Urgent Care</a> - November 19, Chicago -&nbsp;Symposium as: Therapy / Protest / Rebuttal / Open Dialogue / Resource / Grieving / Research / Empowerment / ___________</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong style="text-transform: uppercase;"><em>Legal Help:</em></strong></p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">Concrete Guide to January for Vulnerable Peoples</a>&nbsp;- an open document with legal advice for populations who will be targeted by Trump</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong style="text-transform: uppercase;"><em>Donate:</em></strong></p> <p>Gun Safety</p> <blockquote> <p><a data-saferedirecturl=";q=;source=gmail&amp;ust=1479565728350000&amp;usg=AFQjCNE5oVeo_rzt7ZutE1LYnK0cYKeXwg" href="" target="_blank">Everytown</a></p> <p><a data-saferedirecturl=";q=;source=gmail&amp;ust=1479565728350000&amp;usg=AFQjCNHk7TmLxCtck8ASLXUq_O2HwtedWA" href="" target="_blank">Moms Demand Action</a></p> </blockquote> <p>Reproductive Rights</p> <blockquote> <p><a data-saferedirecturl=";q=;source=gmail&amp;ust=1479565728350000&amp;usg=AFQjCNEd_xyP5zBzenQ9I2qTtqpQ9vbTdA" href="" target="_blank">NARAL</a></p> <p><a data-saferedirecturl=";q=;source=gmail&amp;ust=1479565728350000&amp;usg=AFQjCNGH1oQgWVvC99YzW0fsn-uB0fj3hQ" href="" target="_blank">Planned Parenthood</a></p> <p><span style="font-size: 13.3333px; font-family: arial; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;"><a data-saferedirecturl=";q=;source=gmail&amp;ust=1479565728350000&amp;usg=AFQjCNEbHBQVvn7HpzspovHcxYRxa5I34Q" href="">Abortion Care Network</a></span></p> </blockquote> <p>Environment</p> <blockquote> <p><a data-saferedirecturl=";q=;source=gmail&amp;ust=1479565728350000&amp;usg=AFQjCNHburziOmTI3X7c9abZ-eY2wFqBLg" href="" target="_blank">Sierra Club</a></p> <p><a data-saferedirecturl=";q=;source=gmail&amp;ust=1479565728350000&amp;usg=AFQjCNHc3hz8SkiHXNYKM7Zl9pEBi1uxAg" href="" target="_blank">​League of Conservation Voters</a></p> <p><a data-saferedirecturl=";q=;source=gmail&amp;ust=1479565728350000&amp;usg=AFQjCNGE_L1n3ENFMF307hoq5KwC_jSEaQ" href="" target="_blank">Greenpeace</a></p> <p><a data-saferedirecturl=";q=;source=gmail&amp;ust=1479565728350000&amp;usg=AFQjCNG6XOshTbWc9k6a8O7z1OWe8wTmZA" href="" target="_blank">Junglekeepers</a></p> </blockquote> <p>Racial Justice</p> <blockquote> <p><a data-saferedirecturl=";q=;source=gmail&amp;ust=1479565728350000&amp;usg=AFQjCNHS2eYm37dprCxGx7cwquAPdPaAaA" href="" target="_blank">The Equal Justice Initiative</a></p> <p><a data-saferedirecturl=";q=;source=gmail&amp;ust=1479565728350000&amp;usg=AFQjCNHuYLc6AiZ2_JlLYW8tZzTbUR9bFA" href="" target="_blank">Southern Poverty Law Center</a></p> <p><a data-saferedirecturl=";q=;source=gmail&amp;ust=1479565728350000&amp;usg=AFQjCNFr3mWbkkdK3oonnZ92-pKuHs2khw" href="" target="_blank">Color of Change</a></p> <p><a data-saferedirecturl=";q=;source=gmail&amp;ust=1479565728350000&amp;usg=AFQjCNEX_W20IssatA28H1HX-CKOeHn3RQ" href="" target="_blank">Black Lives Matter</a></p> </blockquote> <p>Civil Liberties</p> <blockquote> <p><a data-saferedirecturl=";q=;source=gmail&amp;ust=1479565728350000&amp;usg=AFQjCNHk26rBbbkYtnabFLXviSpmEcak-w" href="" target="_blank">ACLU</a></p> <p><a data-saferedirecturl=";q=;source=gmail&amp;ust=1479565728351000&amp;usg=AFQjCNGSAcK0H2S2HMmU8Anl8Zvg1V52Iw" href="" target="_blank">Bread and Roses Fund</a></p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">Electronic Frontiers Foundation</a></p> </blockquote> <p>​LGBT</p> <blockquote> <p><a data-saferedirecturl=";q=;source=gmail&amp;ust=1479565728351000&amp;usg=AFQjCNEp2psVSjdyL4Pg_X8y2Olwtu9Pkg" href="">National LGBT Task Force</a></p> <p><a data-saferedirecturl=";q=;source=gmail&amp;ust=1479565728351000&amp;usg=AFQjCNEdCMRUQKGBHLB1itv19U1Sn28z3A" href="">Human Rights Campaign​</a></p> <p><a data-saferedirecturl=";q=;source=gmail&amp;ust=1479565728351000&amp;usg=AFQjCNEGvTN529uXV2uMATCMravYw_uwqg" href="">TGIJP (Transgender &amp; Intersex Justice Project)</a></p> <p><a data-saferedirecturl=";q=;source=gmail&amp;ust=1479565728351000&amp;usg=AFQjCNGYZKBif4LTpd2_iQlw6EygpdpCaA" href="">Trans Affairs</a></p> <p><a data-saferedirecturl=";q=;source=gmail&amp;ust=1479565728351000&amp;usg=AFQjCNHZy2s72adb6zNli0Xhu9oWpGvGag" href="">Trans Justice Funding Project</a></p> <p><a data-saferedirecturl=";q=;source=gmail&amp;ust=1479565728351000&amp;usg=AFQjCNEFJ6R3JUvP45vqoQ6L3fr6_cpZUQ" href="">Transgender Law Center</a></p> <p><a data-saferedirecturl=";q=;source=gmail&amp;ust=1479565728351000&amp;usg=AFQjCNGKOIWwPPjXoVNWqR29GNLc3lYiXg" href="">Familia trans queer liberation movement</a></p> <p><a data-saferedirecturl=";q=;source=gmail&amp;ust=1479565728351000&amp;usg=AFQjCNEQIQ5axDeCQYiqOx9ntiQXW3UWrw" href="">LGBT Books to Prisoners</a></p> <p><a data-saferedirecturl=";q=;source=gmail&amp;ust=1479565728351000&amp;usg=AFQjCNEY7KwsoctIKSe_5WPZtefdaGxlsw" href="">Sylvia Rivera Law Project</a><span style="font-size: 13.3333px; font-family: arial; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;"> </span></p> </blockquote> <p>Muslim Rights</p> <blockquote> <p><a data-saferedirecturl=";q=;source=gmail&amp;ust=1479565728351000&amp;usg=AFQjCNHvQi12LFJSj0-gnfq964Kj5Z2wag" href="">Council on American Islamic Relations</a></p> <p><a data-saferedirecturl=";q=;source=gmail&amp;ust=1479565728351000&amp;usg=AFQjCNH1wo4dcuQX7cGr6BiNqnvC4cv_iw" href="">Muslim Justice League</a></p> </blockquote> <p>Protecting Immigrants</p> <blockquote> <p><a data-saferedirecturl=";q=;source=gmail&amp;ust=1479565728351000&amp;usg=AFQjCNH_5e3AoMumtc2xHtjjUlA1QMfd9g" href="">Immigrant Defense Project</a></p> <p><a data-saferedirecturl=";q=;source=gmail&amp;ust=1479565728351000&amp;usg=AFQjCNHc1E6LUE3OU6V9FtzagzGaQTeUzA" href="">Families for Freedom</a></p> <p><a data-saferedirecturl=";q=;source=gmail&amp;ust=1479565728351000&amp;usg=AFQjCNFhpdQ5tZw3uBGlh1kpSESDdCRiWg" href="" target="_blank">The New Mexico Immigrant Law Center</a></p> </blockquote> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Don&#39;t get distracted by the divisive rhetoric to come, think about how to build <a href="" target="_blank">the next economy</a> to benefit us all.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> Wed, 30 Nov 2016 15:39:38 +0000 GCC: Nation-making and the Power of Positivity <p>GCC&rsquo;s latest solo show <em>Positive Pathways (+)</em> at Mitchell-Innes and Nash features mixed media installations, thermoformed wall reliefs, and sound works. The show is an elaborate tongue-in-cheek reflection of the Arab Gulf States&rsquo; recent investment in New Age spirituality trends, from personal holistic remedies, natural healing energies, and positive life-coaching, to governmental policy making such as implementing Feng Shui techniques in ministry offices and the UAE&rsquo;s recent forming of a Ministry of Happiness. The regional unrest of the Arab Spring barely scratched the surface of the oil-rich Arab Gulf countries, not withstanding the political protests in Bahrain. Yet, it has curiously manifested into vast resources being funneled into self-branding and positivity propaganda&mdash;seemingly at odds with the cultural and religious frameworks of the region.</p> <p>GCC&rsquo;s members (or delegates<a href="#delegates">*</a>, as they call themselves) grew up in the Arab Gulf countries (namely Kuwait and Bahrain) but navigate highly mobile itineraries that can be followed through their social media accounts. They formed as a collective in 2013 during a visit to Art Dubai&rsquo;s VIP lounge. In their recent talk at Anthology Film Archives, the group mentioned that becoming a collective was almost happenstance: border control personnel in Dubai had asked them if they were traveling together as a band. Rarely together in the same place, their creative process takes place largely through mobile applications such as Whatsapp.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" style="width: 700px; height: 525px;" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:14px;">GCC:&nbsp;<em>Positive Pathways (+)</em>, Installation view at Mitchell-Innes &amp; Nash, NY, 2016. Photo: Adam Reich. Courtesy of the artists and Mitchell-Innes &amp; Nash, New York</span></p> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p> <p>The acronym GCC loosely references the Gulf Cooperation Council, an intergovernmental union that binds together the Arab Gulf States. According to the group, it also provides them with a layer of opacity. In <a href="">an interview</a> with Christopher Y. Lew, who in 2014 curated their first US show <em>Achievements in Retrospective</em> at MoMA PS1, they suggested that GCC could mean anything, such as &ldquo;Glendale Community College or Grupos Cementos de Chihuahua. It gives us a bit of a shield so that we are not just referencing political bodies.&rdquo;</p> <p>One of the works of <em>Positive Pathways (+) </em>revisits an installation shown earlier this summer at the Berlin Biennale. Titled <em>Positive Pathways (+) (Version II)</em>, it features a plaster sculpture of a woman (wearing a hijab and typical hijab attire) performing a Quantum Touch exercise&mdash;a non-contact touch therapy&shy;&mdash;on a young boy in front of her. They are surrounded by sand, and a running track, a reference to the designated walking areas for exercise common in some Arab Gulf countries. As alternative healing methods such as Quantum Touch and Reiki gain popularity in the Middle East, they have been coopted into everyday life, practiced and endorsed by everyone from government officials to dilettante practitioners and housewives on Instagram.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" style="width: 700px; height: 401px;" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:14px;">GCC, <em>Gestures I</em>, 2016, Thermoformed styrene with flocking, ed. of 3 + 2 AP, 17 3/4 x 37 1/4 in. Photo: Adam Reich. Courtesy of the artists and Mitchell-Innes &amp; Nash, New York</span></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The exhibition features a number of thermoformed wall reliefs titled <em>Gestures (I-V)</em> that are covered with a brazen red, velvety surface. The complex industrial process of thermoforming plastic is eclipsed by the banality of the images on the reliefs. TV presenters, audiences and random hand gestures, based on stills from YouTube, are placed against different backdrops including columns, plant pots, and dissonant phrases in Arabic and English. For example, <em>Gestures I</em> presents us with an image of a man wearing traditional headgear set against a backdrop of Grecian looking columns, partially covered in what seems to be algae. With a microphone in one hand, he holds out his thumb, index and middle fingers towards us. The English text asks, &ldquo;what is the secret behind it?&rdquo; The Arabic reads: &ldquo;the consultant Salim Hadeed.&rdquo;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" style="width: 700px; height: 454px;" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:14px;">GCC, <em>Gestures V</em>, 2016, Thermoformed styrene with flocking, ed. of 3 + 2 AP, 46 3/4 x 74 1/2 in. Courtesy of the artists and Mitchell-Innes &amp; Nash, New York</span></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>In <em>Gestures V</em>, an obsession with social media celebrities, TV and Twitter clerics, foreign brands, and lifestyles is perfectly distilled in its contradictory relation with conservative identity politics. Seated women and men look up towards the ceiling. The women are in traditional clothing&mdash;hijabs and abayas&mdash;while the men seem to have more options: some are in suits, others in dishdashas. Despite the sartorial differences, they appear to be uniformly hypnotized.</p> <p>GCC&rsquo;s work seeks to bring the invisible and under-recognized popular culture of the region into conversation with contemporary art practices and discourse. The group often finds inspiration in found footage from YouTube made for branding purposes, content particularly fixed toward Gulf nation-making that in recent years has been premised increasingly on what could be called the tyranny of cheerfulness. The intentional opaqueness and playful ambivalence of the collective&rsquo;s name are qualities that extend throughout their work. For example, one of their previous exhibitions, <em><a href="" target="_blank">Achievements in Swiss Summit</a>, 2013</em>, focused on rituals and cultural trends that are immediately identifiable to an audience from the Arab Gulf, such as ribbon cutting ceremonies and trophy productions. GCC is quick to point out, however, that the fanfare of self-congratulatory ceremonies are neither imported nor local. They combine stock imagery made for global commercial campaigns; recreate official summits and ceremonies (with some members in drag) in Morschach, Switzerland; and make actual trophies for the exhibition with the typical language (in Arabic) found on these commonly seen and distributed awards. What remains largely unseen&mdash;and what GCC effectively presents&mdash;is a critical reflection of the rituals, trends, and luxury brands that are subject to hyper-consumption in the region.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" style="width: 700px; height: 467px;" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:14px;">GCC, <em>Inaugural Summit, Morschach 2013 5</em>, 2013, Digital C-print photograph, 84.1 x 118.9 cm, Edition of 3 plus II AP. Courtesy of the artists and Project Native Informant</span></p> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p> <p>It is often rather hard to make out the difference between the sardonic undertones of GCC&rsquo;s own work and the frequently hyperbolic found material that serves as their point of departure. It is exactly that moment of misrecognition in which I find GCC&rsquo;s work at its strongest: as they call the Gulf region&rsquo;s ideological regimes into question, without ever posing a question or even attempting to unpack the work for any audience, native or otherwise. As I walk away from the show I find myself wondering whether this is the Middle East that I know and inhabit, or some dystopian version of it? I cannot tell.</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"><em>GCC&rsquo;s&nbsp;</em>Positive Pathways (+)</a><em><a href="" target="_blank">&nbsp;</a>is currently on display at Mitchell-Innes and Nash, 534 West 26th&nbsp;Street, New York, through November 23, 2016</em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&mdash;Hend F. Alawadhi</p> <p><em>Hend F. Alawadhi is a PhD Candidate in Visual and Cultural Studies&nbsp;at the University of Rochester.</em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><span style="font-size:14px;"><a id="delegates" name="delegates"></a>* GCC delegates are: Nanu Al-Hamad, Abdullah Al-Mutairi, Aziz Alqatami, Barrak Alzaid, Khalid al Gharaballi, Amal Khalaf, Fatima Al Qadiri, Monira Al Qadiri</span></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><span style="font-size:14px;">(Image at top: GCC, <em><u>Positive Pathways (+) (Version II)</u></em>, 2016, Reinforced plaster, sand, rubber and spray paint, ed. of 3 + 1 AP, Dimensions variable. Photo: Adam Reich. Courtesy of the artists and Mitchell-Innes &amp; Nash, New York)</span></p> Thu, 17 Nov 2016 20:11:34 +0000 In a Political Nemesis, Philip Guston Found His Greatest Muse <p>Although this exhibition of Philip Guston&rsquo;s archly satirical drawings of Richard Nixon was conceived long before last week&rsquo;s election, it could not have opened at a more opportune moment to illustrate Karl Marx&rsquo;s adage that &ldquo;history repeats itself, first as tragedy then as farce.&rdquo;</p> <p>Hauser &amp; Wirth has assembled selections of Guston&rsquo;s Nixon drawings, a series that the artist worked on over a period of several years when faced with a tumultuous personal and artistic crisis&mdash;changing his style from abstract to representational and changing galleries from the established Marlborough Gallery to his last gallery and champion David McKee&mdash;as well as the tumult of the Vietnam- Civil Rights-era Nixon administration. A refugee from the Manhattan art world, Guston moved to Woodstock, and there, along with his new best friend, Philip Roth, finally found a subject worthy of his skills as a political satirist&mdash;a modern-day Hogarth and Voltaire.</p> <p>There is a wonderful moment in Mel Brooks&rsquo; <em>The Producers</em> where the producers, in a bid to lose as much money as possible, create a musical farce specifically <em>designed</em> to lose as much money as possible. Seeking the lowest brow, they bring to life <em>Springtime for Hitler</em>, a kind of aborted <em>Sound of Music</em>. The classic line from the film, Brooks&rsquo; &ldquo;That&rsquo;s our Hitler!&rdquo; stands for that eureka moment when one&rsquo;s expectations of meeting the lowest common denominator have been met. Spoiler alert: the musical is a great success.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align:center"><img alt="" src="" style="height:414px; width:700px" /></p> <p style="text-align:center"><span style="font-size:14px">Philip Guston, Alone, 1971, Oil on canvas, 52 x 93 1/2 in. &copy; The Estate of Philip Guston. Courtesy Hauser &amp; Wirth</span></p> <p style="text-align:center">&nbsp;</p> <p>Anticipating the anomaly of this body of work in Guston&rsquo;s career, <em>In Bed II</em> and <em>Alone</em> (both 1971) give us the archetypal Guston figure, a vaguely Tin Tin-ish, round-headed figure, recumbent in a disheveled bed. He is illuminated by a bare lightbulb, the symbol of poverty and loucheness&mdash;&ldquo;I can&#39;t stand a naked light bulb, any more than I can a rude remark or a vulgar action,&rdquo; says Blanche DuBois in <em>A Streetcar Named Desire</em>&mdash;and is suffering under the weight of some heavily painted and heavy-looking objects, like books and sandwiches. Pretty stock stuff for Guston. Up until this moment, Guston had been, if not at the forefront of the Abstract Expressionist movement, at least a pretty faithful member of the cause. Possibly because of his early successes&mdash;well-funded teaching positions in Iowa and luminously beautiful abstractions reminiscent of Monet&mdash;Guston seemed mired in nothing so much as niceness. A terrible position for an artist to find oneself, especially following his well-received mid-career survey at the Guggenheim. But there had once been another Guston, an early Social Realist painter, whose works, like <em>Martial Memory</em> (1941) or <em>Drawing for Conspirators</em> (1930) showed both a leaning towards the work of the Mexican Muralists, as well as a leaning, well, Left, as well.</p> <p>A supersaturated solution, such as a glass of salt water, needs only one crystal to transform. Enter Philip Roth, the catalyst out of Guston&rsquo;s mid-career slump. Roth&rsquo;s satirical writing, heavily infused with a history of being an American Jew, was something Guston (born Phillip Goldstein) may have found invigorating, along with Roth&rsquo;s embrace of popular culture, politics (his <em>Our Gang</em>, a satirical novel about a character called Trick E. Dixon), vulgarity, and frank descriptions of human behavior, especially awkward sexual depictions. It is in particular Roth&rsquo;s vulgarity, a quality that bookish and WASPy New York culture found both fascinating and off-putting, that became an important element for Guston. In the context of Roth&rsquo;s writing it is significant to note that our word &ldquo;vulgar&rdquo; might connote both the original definition &ldquo;characteristic of or belonging to the masses&rdquo; as well as the more colloquial &quot;crude or distasteful.&quot; This is crucial to our understanding of Guston&rsquo;s transformative work with Nixon, changing him from what was becoming a popular political caricature to Guston&rsquo;s greatest muse.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align:center"><img alt="" src="" style="height:536px; width:700px" /></p> <p style="text-align:center"><span style="font-size:14px">Philip Guston, Untitled (Poor Richard), 1971, Ink on paper, 10 1/2 x 13 7/8 in. &copy; The Estate of Philip Guston. Courtesy Hauser &amp; Wirth</span></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Hauser &amp; Wirth have divided up Guston&rsquo;s folios, most of which are simply titled <em>Satirical Drawings</em>, into temporal-based groupings, providing us a view of the developing relationship Guston formed with Nixon over the four-year period. In <em>Nixon in Bed</em> (1971), which follows the format of Guston&rsquo;s bed-locked figures, we see a Nixon homunculus, not quite defined but in various states of distress. One drawing is inscribed &ldquo;a case of the measles,&rdquo; showing a spotty Nixon, his body (and we presume by metaphor, the body politic) in a state of sickness. From here Roth&rsquo;s influence becomes more apparent; Guston develops a Nixon character, a figure whose unshaven face sports a huge cock in place of a nose, which, like Pinocchio&#39;s, grows longer as Nixon lies. We see this in the series <em>The Presidency</em>, with Nixon in the company of his trusted henchmen Henry Kissinger (usually represented by a pair of horn-rimmed glasses, reminding us of Garry Trudeau&rsquo;s <em>Doonesbury</em> comic strip) and Spiro Agnew. The adolescent, graffiti-like quality of the phallus-nosed Nixon reminds us of Jon Stewart&rsquo;s recent Twitter spat with Donald Trump, where he dubbed the president-elect &ldquo;<a href="" target="_blank">FuckFace von ClownStick</a>.&rdquo;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align:center"><img alt="" src="" style="height:536px; width:700px" /></p> <p style="text-align:center"><span style="font-size:14px">Philip Guston, Untitled (Poor Richard), 1971, Ink on paper, 10 1/2 x 13 7/8 in. &copy; The Estate of Philip Guston. Courtesy Hauser &amp; Wirth</span></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Not all the drawings are masterworks of wit, nor should they be. The greatness of these collections is that they are indeed greater than the sum of their parts. Nixon&rsquo;s lackeys wear KKK hoods, plot and scheme, and are probed by Nixon&rsquo;s nose. They speak in a hieroglyphic mock Chinese language, swim in Biscayne Bay, and travel to China, or at least a Chinese restaurant, replete with Fu dogs, coolie hats, and rice bowls. <em>Poor Richard </em>(1972), the most resolved of the folios, is a play on the fall of Nixon, as well as <em>Poor Richard&rsquo;s Almanac</em>, melding the visual and the narrative in clever play. Nixon&rsquo;s dog Checkers is rendered as a cubistic checkerboard, and Nixon&rsquo;s head is transformed into an ancient, pyramidal monolith, decaying under the weight of history.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align:center"><img alt="" src="" style="height:700px; width:562px" /></p> <p style="text-align:center"><span style="font-size:14px">Philip Guston, Untitled, 1975, Ink on paper, 24 x 19 in. &copy; The Estate of Philip Guston. Courtesy Hauser &amp; Wirth</span></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The exhibition ends with the <em>Phlebitis</em> paintings from 1975. Nixon, with an elephantine leg, bandaged and dragging behind him, resigns under the threat of impeachment and slouches off stage to Bethlehem. In the final drawing of the series, Guston shows Nixon on his deathbed&mdash;a bit of wish fulfillment, and a little premature. Perhaps Guston was nostalgic for, if not the literal death of Nixon, the Nixon that inspired such an outpouring of work. Guston would create another decade&#39;s worth of paintings, relying more heavily on art historical references&mdash;great paintings, but bloodless by comparison. Guston&rsquo;s hideous Nixon golem with elephantitis might be seen more as his <em>Olympia</em> than <em>Death of Marat</em>, such is the luscious delectation with which Guston paints his Hitler.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&mdash;<a href="" target="_blank">Bradley Rubenstein</a></p> <p><em>Bradley Rubenstein is a New York-based artist and writer.</em>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><span style="font-size:14px">(Image at top: Philip Guston, Untitled, 1971, Ink on paper, 14 x 11 in. &copy; The Estate of Philip Guston. Courtesy Hauser &amp; Wirth)</span></p> Tue, 15 Nov 2016 21:30:44 +0000 Relentlessly Dissecting Beauty, Marilyn Minter Gets at the Guts of Glamour <p><em>October saw the launch of&nbsp;A Year of Yes: Reimagining Feminism at the Brooklyn Museum, a yearlong series of ten exhibitions celebrating the 10th anniversary of the museum&rsquo;s Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art. The series&rsquo; first two exhibitions honor two unique feminisms. Today, we&rsquo;re taking a look at them both: Beverly Buchanan&rsquo;s&nbsp;</em><a href="">Ruins and Rituals&nbsp;</a><em>and Marilyn Minter&rsquo;s&nbsp;</em>Pretty/Dirty<em>.</em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>A woman just beginning to show the signs of a life well-worn, with deeply impressed laugh lines and a made-up face sagging ever so slightly, stares almost seductively, or maybe placidly at you from her bed. A cigarette burns in her liver-spotted hand, the strap of her nightgown barely hangs on to one shoulder. The photograph is titled <em>Coral Ridge Towers (Mom Smoking) </em>(1969/1995), and as titled, along with the eight other photos in the series, it depicts the artist&rsquo;s mother in her Florida home. But there is a reason it took Marilyn Minter over twenty years to print and show this series.</p> <p>On a walk-through of her recently opened retrospective at Brooklyn Museum, Minter stops at the Coral Ridge Tower series, which begins the show, to recall how she didn&rsquo;t feel there was anything special about these photos when she took them&mdash;she was simply snapping photos of her mother in her apartment, doing the things she usually did. But upon showing them to some classmates, she realized that what she&rsquo;d captured was something entirely different. She saw what they saw: a woman defeated by the patriarchal standards of femininity.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" style="width: 700px; height: 543px;" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:14px;">Marilyn Minter, <em>Coral Ridge Towers (Mom Smoking)</em>, 1969/1995, Gelatin silver print. Collection of Beth Rudin DeWoody</span></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em>Pretty/Dirty</em>, Minter&rsquo;s first major retrospective, explores this idea of abject beauty that we see running throughout her entire oeuvre&mdash;from her first student photographs, to her current paintings and videos. As a show, it is concise and clear cut, taking a few choice samples from each era of the artist&rsquo;s history in order to create a trajectory to understanding more fully how she arrived at her current work: the glossy, high production value, artificial colored, painted lips and lacquered nails&mdash;all resulting in what looks almost like Maybelline advertisements on acid.</p> <p>But the early works play an important role in understanding this largely misunderstood artist, because we see that there is a desire throughout to give agency to the unspoken, the overlooked, the scoffed, the embarrassing. Through the photographs, paintings, and videos she dissects this idea of beauty, a beauty that has been forced down the throats of women like her mother, a beauty that she herself would not be consumed by, rather she would turn in on itself, revealing the guts of glamour.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" style="width: 700px; height: 508px;" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:14px;">Marilyn Minter, <em>Big Girls</em>, 1986, Enamel on canvas, 2 panels. Collection of Bill Contente, New York</span></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The first real hint of this after the early photographs is <em>Little Girls #1 </em>(1986) and <em>Big Girls </em>(1986), both of which depict a deconstruction of women&rsquo;s bodies via the media they are most widely represented in: magazines. Each painting is constructed from source images ripped apart and put back together, representing the scrutiny women&rsquo;s bodies are put through on a daily basis. This is the beginning of Minter&rsquo;s interest in reclaiming oppressive images from the media for her own feminist agenda.</p> <p>Included as well are her photorealist paintings of floors and sinks, mostly taken from her home and in her studio. Here, in a collision of the domestic realm with the workspace, we see that she trained her photorealist eye on the mundane, turning the ordinary into something beautiful, something to look at or even objectify. It&rsquo;s not until later in her career that she brings this technique back, focusing instead on the absurdity of realism&mdash;the freckles the fashion industry takes such pains to erase (<em>Blue Poles,</em> 2007), the stubble still visible in freshly shaved underarms (<em>Armpit</em>, 2006), the unsightly marks binding clothes leave on bodies (<em>Sock</em>, 2005). Even the close-up shots in <em>Plush </em>(2016) are beautiful, taking a kind of professional care to make each individual bush look like a star&mdash;a head shot for your vulva.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" style="width: 467px; height: 700px;" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:14px;">Marilyn Minter, <em>Armpit</em>, 2006, C-print. Courtesy of the artist, Salon 94, New York, and Regen Projects, Los Angeles</span></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>This sort of sexual glorification is also visible in her first hardcore porn paintings, like <em>Porn Grid </em>(1989). To a contemporary audience the paintings might seem quaint, portrayed in bright colors, with an almost cartoonish halftone dot matrix, which was actually a laborious hand-painted effect. In fact, the depictions may not even register as &ldquo;hardcore porn&rdquo; anymore, as we see things almost as graphic on HBO these days. But it&rsquo;s important to note that these paintings were coming out of a time wrought with identity politics, and just by daring to go tackle the issue of porn had established Minter as something of a feminist-outcast, a traitor to the rhetoric of the time, shunned as a perceived accomplice of oppression.</p> <p>Looking back we can see that she was taking a feminist stance that was way ahead of her time with these paintings. Minter, as a heterosexual woman, was reclaiming the oppressive images from porn in hopes to turn them on their head with a female sex-positive message. Porn has been a reality of our culture for longer than most like to admit, so by co-opting these images of consensual sex, she was giving women agency over their sexuality, agency to enjoy and indulge in their sexuality. Plus, she noted, &ldquo;no one has PC fantasies, anyways,&rdquo; so we might as well get it all out there in the open. She was also searching for subject matter that would indeed shock and alarm for the very fact that a woman was dealing with it, noting that &ldquo;if Mike Kelley could mine 13-year-old girl culture of mall culture, unicorns, crushes&hellip;&rdquo; the equivalent would be her mining hardcore porn.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" style="width: 700px; height: 420px;" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:14px;">Marilyn Minter, <em>Orange Crush</em>, 2009, Enamel on metal, 108 x 180 in. Private collection</span></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Her practice and eye have certainly grown and evolved along with the available technology, now incorporating higher production photo shoots, from which she constructs Photoshopped images, called &ldquo;cobbles,&rdquo; to create the perfect source image, from which she then makes her signature photorealistic enamel on metal paintings. She has moved away from the explicitly sexual, and back into a world of opulent sensuality. In the video <em>Meltdown</em> (2011), a silver-heeled and bejeweled foot dripping in metallic silver, kicks through an invisible plane of glass in slow motion. And paintings like <em>Drizzle (Wangechi Mutu)</em> (2010) and <em>Orange Crush</em> (2009) display similar dripping, metallic, almost ravenous mouths pouring over with glimmering substances.</p> <p>There&rsquo;s something insatiable about these paintings and videos. They contain a force that draws you in and pushes you away at the very same time, imploring you to consume them, much like their subjects slurp and taste and lick. Minter is creating seductive, yet off-putting steamy, frosty, wet, crystalized, shiny gem-filled fantasy worlds. You look in and look in, until you pull back, for fear of being consumed. This is the power of subverting the patriarchal gaze, the confinement and rule of imposed femininity&mdash;that the beauty and lust can linger along with the abject and repellent.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&mdash;<a href="">Olivia B. Murphy</a></p> <p><em>Olivia Murphy is a writer and editor based in New York, covering arts and culture. Her work has appeared in various publications both in print and online, including&nbsp;</em>L&#39;Officiel Magazine<em>,&nbsp;</em>Freunde Von Freunden<em>,&nbsp;</em>Whitehot<em>,&nbsp;</em>Riot of Perfume<em>,&nbsp;</em>doingbird<em>, and&nbsp;</em>Whitewall Magazine<em>.</em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><span style="font-size:14px;">(Image at top: Marilyn Minter, <em>Blue Poles</em>, 2007, Enamel on metal. Private collection, Switzerland)</span></p> Fri, 11 Nov 2016 12:21:50 +0000 Beverly Buchanan and the Architecture of Blackness <p><em>October saw the launch of&nbsp;A Year of Yes: Reimagining Feminism at the Brooklyn Museum, a yearlong series of ten exhibitions celebrating the 10th anniversary of the museum&rsquo;s Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art. The series&rsquo; first two exhibitions honor two unique feminisms. Today, we&rsquo;re taking a look at them both:&nbsp;Beverly Buchanan&rsquo;s </em>Ruins and Rituals<em> and Marilyn Minter&rsquo;s </em><a href="">Pretty/Dirty</a><em>.</em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>How might we understand a spatial and architectural discourse that marks a black subjectivity? This is the question that lingers in my thoughts as I reflect on <em>Ruins and Rituals</em>, a retrospective exhibition presenting the work of the late Beverly Buchanan, now on view at the Brooklyn Museum&rsquo;s Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art. Sackler Family Curator Catherine Morris considers Buchanan a game changer, which is not untrue; I would consider Buchanan a witness.</p> <p>Beverly Buchanan was a black Southern woman. As a black Southern woman myself, many of those in my personal circles ascribe to this positionality a type of unspoken power. However, as <a href="">critics</a> have already rightfully articulated, within the parameters of the mainstream (read: New York City) art world during the 1970s, 80s, and early 90s&mdash;the periods during which Buchanan was most active&mdash;to be Southern and black and woman often resulted in an overlooking. Buchanan worked anyway, creating a repository of site-specific earthworks, sculptures, self-portraits, and other assemblage objects that move across the schools of conceptual and land art, while responding to the idiosyncrasies of the geographies in which she lived. So, as the artist traversed multiple landscapes, so too did her ever evolving canon traverse the political histories of the land, which often revolved explicitly around blackness(es).</p> <p>Organized by guest curators Jennifer Burris and Park McArthur, <em>Ruins and Rituals </em>points a critical, unprecedented eye towards Buchanan&rsquo;s multi-disciplined oeuvre. (Full disclosure: I am now employed at the organization where McArthur was once an artist-in-residence.) The exhibition is divided among three galleries, resisting a chronological viewing experience while still offering an obvious thread of conceptual connectivity.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" style="width: 700px; height: 560px;" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:14px;">Beverly Buchanan, <em>Untitled (Slab Works 1)</em>, circa 1978&ndash;80, Black-and-white photograph of cast concrete sculptures with acrylic paint in artist studio. Private collection. &copy; Estate of Beverly Buchanan</span></p> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p> <p>Upon entering the Sackler Center, one is drawn towards Buchanan&rsquo;s <em>Frustuala</em> series: small, concrete blocks and columns the artist utilized as markers of presence, or, in some cases, the withering away of that which once was. When she began the series in the late 70s, Buchanan was employed in the public health field in New York and New Jersey. She used the stones to respond to the urban decay she was encountering, acutely aware that the materials she used to compose the works were also subject to weathering and aging. In a document on view in the archival section of the exhibition, Buchanan writes that she was &ldquo;...interested in urban walls when they [were] in various stages of decay; walls as part of a landscape.&rdquo;&nbsp;</p> <p>Buchanan&rsquo;s topographical engagement embodies critic (and close friend of the artist) Lucy Lippard&rsquo;s meditations on place&mdash;that is, a location in which space meets memory. <em>Marsh Ruins</em> (1981), for example, marks the memory of a group of Igbo slaves who drowned themselves off the coast of St. Simons Island, Georgia, as a way of resisting enslavement. Buchanan built these ruins in the marshes of Glynn, in Brunswick, Georgia, and in the show we encounter them via a video created by Burris, McArthur, and Jason Hirata. <em>Marsh Ruins</em> is a material reckoning with the earth in which its stone are planted, certainly, but also a physical (perhaps even spiritual) negotiation through unseen remnants of time.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" style="width: 531px; height: 700px;" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:14px;">Beverly Buchanan, with poet Alice Lovelace, <em>Shack Stories (Part I)</em>, 1990, Unpublished handmade book of ink and crayon drawings with watercolor and collaged typewritten text. Private collection. &copy; Estate of Beverly Buchanan</span></p> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p> <p>The same might be said of Buchanan&rsquo;s small shack sculptures. It is in these works that we see the artist most vividly address a Southern, black, architectural vernacular. That is to say, the shack, in Buchanan&rsquo;s hands, is not merely a signifier of social status, but rather a framework&mdash;literally and figuratively&mdash;through which we might understand the nuances of black Southern life. The form represents an important site of social and familial interactions such as weddings, births, and religious gatherings. The centering of the shack as structure<em>&nbsp;but also&nbsp;</em>cultural idiom places blackness within the frame of reference for spatial inclusion, as architect Mario Gooden describes in his book&nbsp;<em><a href="">Dark Space: Architecture, Representation, Black Identity</a></em>. Through these loaded forms, Buchanan speaks to the particularities of a black Southern subjectivity, past and present.&nbsp;<em>Low Country House</em>&nbsp;(date unknown), a small, unpainted wood shack, is an eloquent illustration of Buchanan&rsquo;s deftness for the subtle processes of commemoration.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:14px;">Beverly Buchanan, <em>Low Country House</em>, date unknown, Wood. &copy; Estate of Beverly Buchanan, courtesy of Jane Bridges. Photo: Adam Reich, courtesy of Andrew Edlin Gallery, New York</span></p> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p> <p>In the 90s, Buchanan also began to make assemblage pieces, often dedicated to or named after close friends, once again embodying experience and memory within material form. In the final gallery we see the bulk of this later work alongside a trove of photos, letters, and other textual ephemera produced by Buchanan throughout her life. In this room, though full of works ostensibly different in form, we still encounter Buchanan&rsquo;s entanglement with space, object, and memory. Here, the artist turns inward, tracing a personal relationship to the people she loved and the spaces she called home. In one black and white photograph, <em>Hunger and Hardship Creek</em> (1977/1994), Buchanan grips a sign pole with her right arm while staring intently at the camera. In an untitled, undated photocopied business card, she has drawn an image of herself as working artist/good cook/drama queen/safe driver. She is naming herself.</p> <p>McArthur and Burris have gifted us with a well-deserved exhibition that offers a full picture of the prolific artist. The curatorial narrative surrounding the exhibition is concise and direct, some may argue approaching the didactic. But, for me, the texts and exhibition materials feel extremely important as a narrative tool, especially when Buchanan is unfamiliar to many who will first encounter her story through this exhibition.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:14px;">Beverly Buchanan, <em>Untitled (&ldquo;The doctor will, if you&rsquo;re lucky, see you, now.&rdquo;)</em>, July 1993, Unpublished writing in notebook. Private collection. &copy; Estate of Beverly Buchanan</span></p> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p> <p>In <em>Dark Space</em> Gooden goes on to remark that &ldquo;...the black female body occupies a space within the matrix of subjectivities and bodies, and as such, its spatial praxes, whether visible or invisible, yield its potential agency to reference its own self.&rdquo; Gooden makes this statement with specific regard to the ways blackness has (or has not) tended to operate within spatial and architectural theories and dialogues. Buchanan then, it can be argued, transgresses the boundaries of seen and unseen in order to map a non-linear grid, a dark <em>place</em>, to borrow again from Lippard, where blackness is represented through memory, structure, or through her own image, her body.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&mdash;<a href="">Jessica Lynne</a>&nbsp;</p> <p><em>Jessica Lynne is co-editor of&nbsp;<a href="">ARTS.BLACK</a>.</em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><span style="font-size:14px;">(Image at top: Beverly Buchanan,&nbsp;<em>Untitled (Double Portrait of Artist with Frustula Sculpture) (detail)</em>, n.d. Black-and-white Photograph With Original Paint Marks, 8&frac12; x 11 in. Private Collection. &copy; Estate of Beverly Buchanan)</span></p> Fri, 11 Nov 2016 12:22:37 +0000 In a Timely Retrospective, Nil Yalter Puts Undocumented Lives on the Record <p>On a regular Tuesday night in the fall of 2016, the emergency room of a central hospital in Istanbul echoes with a scream. Hardly understandable, in a foreign language. Not Turkish, not completely English, possibly Arabic. A woman demands help for her toddler, who&rsquo;s burning up, unconscious. The doctors are trying to explain to her, in English, that she brought her child to a private hospital and she needs to pay a lot of money before her child gets treated. Being a refugee, desperate for help, but not getting any, the woman leaves the cold hospital corridors for a less expensive state hospital. A heavy air of despair hangs over the ER. In one of the metropolises of the global world, a mother is abandoned with her ill child. It is the fall of 2016 and a person, who has fled from war, is left to suffer. It is the fall, 16 years into a new millennium, and the world is still full of war refugees.</p> <p>A friend of mine, an ER surgeon, recounted this story to me, in tears, a few weeks ago, and it hasn&rsquo;t left me. Her words continue to haunt me now as I contemplate the artwork of Nil Yalter. Yalter&rsquo;s Istanbul retrospective <em>Off the Record</em> arrives in a time of need&mdash;a need for remembrance and acknowledgement. It is a salutation for the people who are &ldquo;off the record&rdquo; in this world: invisible people like the refugees, women, children, people of color, immigrant workers, domestic workers, sex workers, trans-people, people who are brutally murdered and left on the streets, people who are massacred by armed forces or by state dictatorships, all people and subjects neglected by official histories.</p> <p>Yalter was born in Cairo, raised in Turkey, and migrated to Paris when she was 27. Her work &ldquo;explores individual&rsquo;s strategies for survival in the face of society&rsquo;s control mechanisms and norms, focusing on omitted facts, invisible people, enclosed places and repressed emotions,&rdquo; as <a href="" target="_blank">the exhibition text</a> reads. Spanning installations, painting, photography, writing, collage, performance, and video,<em> Off the Record</em>, on view at Arter in Istabul, is the most comprehensive exhibition of Yalter&rsquo;s works in Turkey to date.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" style="width: 700px; height: 467px;" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:14px;">Nil Yalter, <em>Temporary Dwellings</em>, 1974, Mixed media collage. Joan Bonet Collection. Photo: Aras Selim Bankoğlu</span></p> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p> <p>Yalter uses ethnographic methods to address issues of immigration; she observes and documents, and as a Marxist-feminist, she is devoted to the struggles of oppressed groups. The series <em>Temporary Dwellings</em> (1974&ndash;1977), for example, comprises archival board panels on which Yalter has recorded the lives of immigrant communities in Paris. Poetic texts, drawings, and collages are accompanied by documentary interviews complementing the work. As one of the first artists to survey the living conditions of these people&mdash;people on the outskirts of the city, people who live in abandoned dwellings, people not listed in any official consensus&mdash;she documents cultural memory, giving an account of history and lives existing outside of national records.</p> <p>Akin to <em>Temporary Dwellings</em>,&nbsp;<em>La Roquette, Prison de Femmes</em>&nbsp;(1974) lends a sociological and conceptual approach to issues dealing with identity, gender, and migration. In collaboration with Judy Blum and Nicole Croiset, Yalter documented how the state executes control over bodies, implementing the panopticon on masses. The work is based on Mimi, who was an inmate at the women&rsquo;s prison La Roquette, in Paris, before it was closed and demolished in 1974.&nbsp;<em>La Roquette </em>brings together drawings, photographs, and performances by Yalter, Blum, and Croiset as they reenact Mimi&rsquo;s daily life in prison.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" style="width: 700px; height: 668px;" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:14px;">Nil Yalter, <em>Estranged Doors</em> (from <em>Exile is a Hard Job</em> series), 1983, Photographs, oil paint, bronze pigment and rubber stamps on carton, 150 cm (diameter)</span></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>In the installation <em>Exile is a Hard Job</em> (1983), Yalter combines photographs of immigrants with a poem by Hasan H&uuml;seyin Korkmazgil, who was a leading left-wing Turkish realist poet. &ldquo;Other people&rsquo;s homes are roofs of slavery; the brave becomes the vassal,&rdquo; reads one line of the poem. She expresses the moments in which people feel like a slave in a foreign land: a slave who has no rights, and a slave who is forced to work in the most demeaning jobs. In one video recording, a man explains the problems immigrants face, including their lack of language skills, education for their kids, and proper settlements to live in: the problems of immigrants and guest workers all around the world.</p> <p>Narrative is a key device in many of her works, with documentation leading into storytelling. Including drawings, a 16 millimeter movie, and Polaroid photographs, <em>The Orient Express</em> (1976) documents a train ride Yalter took on one of the last Direct Orient Express trains between Paris and Istanbul; <em>Deniz Gezmiş</em> (1972) is about the execution of three young revolutionaries during the time of martial law in Turkey; and <em>Rahime, Kurdish Woman from Turkey</em> (1979, in collaboration with Nicole Croiset) tells the story of Rahime as she makes the wrenching transition between her village and a shanty town in Istanbul. Not all of her artworks center on narrative, however&mdash;Yalter is also a forebearer of new media in Turkey. Her work <em>Pixelismus</em> (1996), made in collaboration with David Apikian and Nicole Croiset, comprises an interactive CD-ROM and paintings on canvas. Rethinking canonized art historical narratives, the piece references the mosaics of the Byzantine Chora Church in Istanbul as well as the work of Kazimir Malevich.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="" style="width: 700px; height: 475px;" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:14px;">Nil Yalter, <em>Immigrants</em>, 1976-2016,&nbsp;Installation with 10 videos,&nbsp;C-print, variable dimensions, Installation view at Arter, Istanbul.&nbsp;Photo: Aras Selim Bankoğlu</span></p> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p> <p>Documenting and counting are critical acts, but so is personalizing, storytelling. Today, there are <a href="" target="_blank">over sixty million people</a> around the world who have been forcibly displaced from their homes. More than twenty million of them are refugees, living outside the country of their nationality, many with little or no access to basic human rights like shelter, food, healthcare, education, and employment. As my friend&rsquo;s chilling report from the ER emphasizes, people whose lives and homes have been destroyed, their loved ones murdered, tortured, and humiliated, are among us&mdash;2.5 million refugees, in fact, in Turkey alone. Yalter&rsquo;s four decades of work in <em>Off the Record</em> show us the importance of becoming narrative. They are able to tell stories of the untold and hidden, recording the undocumented into history.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&mdash;<a href="" target="_blank">Pınar &Uuml;ner Yılmaz</a></p> <p><em>Pınar &Uuml;ner Yılmaz is a writer, curator, and PhD candidate in Art History at the University of Illinois at Chicago. She is currently based between Istanbul and Chicago.</em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><span style="font-size:14px;">(Image at top:&nbsp;Nil Yalter,&nbsp;<em>Rahime, Kurdish Woman from Turkey</em>&nbsp;(detail), 1979, Installation with photographs, video and drawings, 11 framed works, fabrics, plinth, TV monitor, Variable dimensions. All images: Courtesy of the artist and Arter Space for Art, Istanbul)</span></p> Thu, 10 Nov 2016 17:27:44 +0000 Simone Leigh Salutes the Complexity of Black Women’s Self-Representation <p style="margin-left:60.0pt;"><em>The most disrespected person in America is the black woman.<br /> The most unprotected person in America is the black woman.<br /> The most neglected person in America is the black woman.</em></p> <p>This excerpt from Malcolm X&rsquo;s 1962 speech, &ldquo;Who Taught you to Hate Yourself?,&rdquo; which recently resurfaced in Beyonc&eacute;&rsquo;s&nbsp;<em>Lemonade</em>, resonates and takes form at&nbsp;<em>Hammer Projects: Simone Leigh</em>, curated by&nbsp;<a href="" target="_blank">Jamillah James</a>. Engaging with notions of racial commodification, assimilation, code switching, and body image, Leigh reveals a certain darkness and developed grace in the life of&nbsp;the black woman in America today.</p> <p>From the lobby of The Hammer, we see the exhibition&rsquo;s central work:&nbsp;<em>Cupboard V</em>. This large-scale installation, covered with raffia and evoking the form of a hut from sub-Saharan Africa, occupies the full height of the gallery. As we curve around the outside of the structure, we encounter a series of five figurative works in clay. Each piece depicts a loosely rendered black female figure adorned with tiny flowers, which sit atop each head. These floral headdresses recall the marble busts of women from the Hellenistic period&mdash;one of the foundational eras of western aesthetics.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p align="center"><img alt="" src="" style="width: 550px; height: 569px;" /></p> <p align="center"><span style="font-size:14px;">All images: Installation view of&nbsp;<em>Hammer Projects: Simone Leigh</em>, Hammer Museum, Los Angeles,<br /> September 17, 2016&ndash;January 8, 2017. Photo: Brian Forrest</span></p> <p align="center">&nbsp;</p> <p>The flowers evoke this western, whimsical, sensibility while each body engages with the formal language of African ceramic vessels, effectively alluding to its material history. The chromatic and constructional contrasts between these elements is striking and begins to tell a story of divergent cultures, assimilation, and code switching. Each floral headdress is a delicate costume on a rough black body, speaking to the place and purpose of adopted visual norms in African American public presentation. The association calls to mind the media hype surrounding Michelle Obama&rsquo;s period of &ldquo;natural hair,&rdquo; the image of Viola Davis carefully securing her auburn, straight-haired wig before going to court in&nbsp;<em>How to Get Away with Murder</em>, and even former MSNBC sports commentator Don Imus&rsquo; description of the Rutgers women&rsquo;s basketball team as &ldquo;nappy-headed hoes.&rdquo; Through these works, Leigh reveals the product of the social requirement of black women to wear a western (white) costume, aligning herself with those aesthetics as a channel for social acceptance.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p align="center"><img alt="" src="" style="width: 700px; height: 425px;" /></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Further, Leigh&rsquo;s use of a similar, seemingly interchangeable, black base form for each bust brings to mind notions of racial commodification. The vessel-sized scale of these works paired with their serial placement on a wall wedge alludes to the idea of the black woman as an object for consumption and use. From this perspective, these works speak to the impact of the suppressive forces that dilute the specifically African and give rise to what we begin to experience and perceive as African-American. This cultural critique of the white power structure that enforces the need for assimilation engages a learned cultural need to make white people comfortable with a black presence as a prerequisite for positive reception. The one figure without a headdress,&nbsp;<em>No Face</em>, anchors this concept. In this work, the familiar black base form has a wreath of black flowers surrounding an opening where a face would otherwise be, indicating a loss of agency and humanity as a consequence of non-conformity.</p> <p>Completing our circular progression around the hut, the concept of perception and performance gains power as we find the entrance to the structure. Inside, an early model television rests on the ground, playing a video of a black woman in a gold dress dancing to a slow, haunting melody heard throughout the room. As we look down upon this display, the dancer intently rehearses a routine in an empty studio while lifting one side of her dress to reveal two ankle rattles used in African dance. The cultural intersection in this video, contextualized by the hut, displays the literal &ldquo;song and dance&rdquo; performed by black women in the west for passage through a white world.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p align="center"><img alt="" src="" style="width: 467px; height: 700px;" /></p> <p align="center">&nbsp;</p> <p>The full meaning of the hut emerges as a representation of the body via architecture. Our initial viewpoint of the installation from the Hammer lobby gave us an interpretation of the black body as a primitive being, reduced to the giant, potentially threatening, and problematized nature of its construction in the west. Now, standing on the opposite side, we face a window into the interior world of the being it represents.</p> <p><em>Hammer Projects: Simone Leigh</em>&nbsp;presents us with works that are at once elegant and challenging, beautiful and dark, revealing and layered with symbolism that cogently captures the contemporary complexities of black female reality. While the black woman may still be a disrespected and unprotected figure in America, Leigh reminds us that her identity, experience, and world is certainly not to be neglected.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&mdash;<a href="" target="_blank">Alex Anderson</a></p> <p><em><a href="" target="_blank">Alex Anderson</a>&nbsp;is a Los Angeles-based artist, an MFA candidate at University of California, Los Angeles, and a former resident artist at the China Academy of Art as a Fulbright Scholar. He completed his undergraduate studies at Swarthmore College.</em></p> Fri, 04 Nov 2016 22:31:15 +0000