Current & Upcoming
Site of Knowledge, Jane Lombard Gallery, New York June 8 - July 28
SITES OF KNOWLEDGE
Curated by Melissa Bianca Amore & William Stover
Opening reception: June 8, 6-8pm
Exhibition runs June 8 - July 28, 2017
Jane Lombard Gallery
518 West 19th Street, NY
Richard Artschwager, Henri Chopin, Simone Douglas, Guy Laramée, Jen Mazza, Kristin McIver, Enrico Isamu Oyama, Michael Rakowitz, Karen Schiff, Sophie Tottie
What is the “site” of knowledge? Is it a book? An artwork? Or a concept? What is the visual shape or the image of knowledge? And when does a symbol become a pictorial composition, a line drawing, a word or a concept? How do we attach meaning to a line?
Jane Lombard Gallery is pleased to present Sites of Knowledge, a group exhibition curated by the collaborative Re-Sited (Melissa Bianca Amore and William Stover). The exhibition features works by Richard Artschwager, Henri Chopin, Simone Douglas, Guy Laramée, Jen Mazza, Kristin McIver, Enrico Isamu Oyama, Michael Rakowitz, Karen Schiff and Sophie Tottie. These artists, through various mediums, examine the function of semiotics–the “symbol” and language per se as their primary apparatus. In many ways, these artists return to the ideologies and techniques once employed by the concrete poets, using linguistic fragments or elements as a structural visual form and as a typographical aesthetic. Their work is about the visual and oral histories of knowledge, and the architecture of memory.
The renowned American artist Richard Artschwager sculpts words and translates perceptions into tangible objects. A former scientist and furniture maker, before becoming an artist, Artschwager re-contextualizes everyday objects into letters or punctuations suspended in space, creating new form from traditional visual representations of language. The exclamation point featured in the exhibition represents the arbitrary relationship between form and meaning, and reinstates the artist’s dedication to playfully challenging the preconceived associations in language.
French avant-garde pioneer of concrete and sound poetry Henri Chopin’s series of type-writer poems – or dactylopoèmes - represent the possibilities and significance of conveying meaning through visual symmetries, employing text primarily as a concept to be experienced rather than comprehended. During the 1950s, Chopin began experimenting with everyday sounds by recording vibrations and basic movements, creating a series of sound shapes that investigate the psychological relationship between sound and object.
Australian-born artist Simone Douglas’s predominant area of enquiry is with the making of “culture” as a living history and the creation of “language.” Douglas’s work represents the disappearance of oral traditions, storytelling, and the dissolving nature of history and culture. The boat, as a symbolic gesture, emphasizes the mobility of history and the sanctity of oral memories. In the artist’s words, the construction of an ice-ship will serve “as a poetic symbol of reparation - a passionate inducement for considering how we as a nation can go forward.”
French-Canadian artist Guy Laramée retraces the disappearance of the written word by carving and cutting directly into old or used books, creating new topographical landscapes from these discarded pages. Laramée returns to the origin - that is, back to the landscape as a romantic and spiritual gesture. The Grand Library features 80 books from Encyclopedia Britannica and challenges the foundation of knowledge, the work becoming a new “site” of knowledge. Laramée says, “even if the book is dying, even if the paper encyclopedia is gone, the myth of knowledge as an accumulation, the Encyclopedic myth if you like, that myth is far from being dead. We still dream the fiction that knowledge is forever and we dream of keeping it all, all at the same place (be it the web) – and forever.”
The focus of American artist Jen Mazza’s paintings is the concept of “translation” – the translation of ideas and knowledge between languages and from one form to another, as well as what is gained or lost in the process. Mazza sees formal parallels between painting and the book, explaining that “the process of creating the paintings is also a dialogue with form and ideas. Though the finished images are representational, the paintings remain “open,” literally blank, through a great deal of the process. Each image begins as a near abstraction, the book is reduced to its rectangular form placed so as to be somewhat antagonistic to its support (not unlike Malevich’s White on White) with images and text only appearing later in the process.”
Multi-disciplinary artist Kristin McIver examines the vocabulary of social media and the ways in which technology has reshaped the mode of exchange and the employment of language. The artist uses devices including light, language and social media to research “identity” ontology and the disappearance of traditional methods of communication. McIver proposes that ideologies served to consumers through traditional and social media, empowered by advancing technologies and driven by market forces, become referents for new models of self-representation. Her work Indebted to you charts the US national debt figure, recorded at the same time of day over a period of 40 days. The number is so capacious as to become abstract and almost incomprehensible; a figure so large it is never fully visible in its entirety.
The Japanese-Italian artist Enrico Isamu Oyama is inspired by graffiti, particularly the stylized letters of the writer’s signature, otherwise known as the “tag.” Removing the letter shapes, Oyama keeps only the flowing line and repeats it over and over, exploiting its objectness, and thereby creating an abstract motif or a purely visual object. His works are titled “FFIGURATI, a term referring to the word “graffiti” and the Italian expression “figùrati” (literally translated as “figure it out yourself”). Oyama examines the psychology of attaching “a name” to something or someone, and reveals the significance of language as the foundation to the creation of identity and the ego. The exhibition opening will feature a live painting performance by the artist, in the gallery’s courtyard. While a one-time improvisation, the performance will represent the visual idioms and languages the artist has established throughout his practice.
Using stone quarried from the ruins of a 6th century sandstone Buddha destroyed by the Taliban in 2001, Michael Rakowitz, with the assistance of stone carvers from Afghanistan and Italy, remade books from the State Library of Hesse-Kassel that were destroyed during bombing by the British Royal Air Force in World War II. For Rakowitz, the “undertaking conjures tombstones and recalls the tradition of stone books serving as surrogates for the illiterate.” The project also underscores the notion that though the physical can be destroyed, beliefs, ideas, and knowledge can never be stopped.
Karen Schiff is an artist and wordsmith who often combines both the visual and the verbal into new configurations. Schiff’s drawings, paintings, installations, videos, and performances play with sensory dimensions of language and haptic experiences of space. The Agnes Martin Obituary Project drawings are not just an homage but a “thank-you letter” to the woman who has been a major motivating factor in her work. Staring at Martin’s obituary, Schiff noticed the geometry of the article, as “text columns coalesced with image into an elegant whole. The overall composition gave [her] the feeling of a richly populated spaciousness and reminded [her] of Martin’s work.”
The works of Swedish-born artist Sophie Tottie reveal the physical space between things. The artist employs gestures such as drawing, cutting, and erasing, to examine both the physical presence and the conceptual associations attached to the line. Tottie examines the line as a spatial demarcation, as a thinking apparatus, and as the structural foundation of words and ideas. In her series, Written Language, Tottie illustrates through the activity of meticulous repetitive movements the importance of the line, whether understood as a topography or image, composing a conceptual symphony simply through repetition itself. These works resemble the beginnings of mark making, a place or psychological space that existed prior to comprehension as understood today.
Sites of Knowledge addresses critical ideas about history, authorship and visual structures of knowledge. Indirectly, the curators question how we “look” acknowledge and engage with the complexities of our collective history – both imagined and observed. At what point do we begin to attach meaning to a line, a symmetry, and a sound? Knowledge is primarily understood as the basis to knowing, the basis to creating a network of associations and the relationship between memory and history. So, we will continue to ask: what is the “site” of knowledge?
Kunstenfestival Watou, Belgium, July 1 - September 3
July 1 - September 3
On Being Alone and Unbearable Loneliness
From 1st of July until 3rd of September the 37th edition of the Watou Art Festival takes over the village situated on the French border. With "solitude and unbearable lonelines," as the central theme we bring together collected stories of artists and poets. The visitors follow a trail along eleven locations and find a symbiosis of visual arts and poetry in, among others, a grain shed, a brewery cellar, the farms of a farm and a park. For the campaign image of this year, we chose a fragment from the work 'personne n'appartient a personne' by Rogerio Reis.
Visitors can attend a varied event-program on weekends and public holidays. For Summer Senses we like to build a bridge to various arts disciplines, enabling visitors to for instance enjoy a fascinating authors reading, an intimate reading club, an engaging or surprising performance or an interesting workshop. The full event-calendar can be found on this site from mid-June on.
For young visitors we provide a small booklet that guides them along the children's course. Thus, the 37th edition of the Arts Festival Watou will be an experience festival for young and older.
Tremolo, Rick Wester Fine Art, Chelsea, New York, May 11 - June 30
CHRISTOPHER COLVILLE, ELISABETH CONDON, LYNN DUNHAM, NORMA MARKLEY, TOM MCGLYNN, KRISTIN MCIVER, MAUREEN MCQUILLAN, RAY RAPP, ALYSE ROSNER, AARON ROTHMAN
CURATED BY CAROLANNA PARLATO
May 11–June 30, 2017
Rick Wester Fine Art is pleased to present a group exhibition, Tremolo, featuring works by ten artists employing widely varied mediums, including painting, photography, video and neon. Curated by the New York based painter Carolanna Parlato, the show’s concept centers on the tremulous effects found in each artist’s work. The term tremolo refers to the vibrating effect produced on musical instruments when there is a rapid alternation of one or two musical tones. It can also refer to a nervous or involuntary quiver or trill in the human voice. Through their visual experiments with vibration and movement, open interval and colored note, each artist has constructed hybrid forms that respond to the technological world we live in, echoing today’s anxiety-ridden zeitgeist. The artworks chosen stem from divergent impulses and methods, welcoming an open-ended process of looking and relating.
Christopher Colville’s latest series, Ouroboros, takes its title from an ancient symbol shared in many cultures. The depiction of the snake eating its own tail alludes to the infinite cycle of life, death and regeneration. Colville places a collapsing band saw blade on gelatin silver paper with a measure of gunpowder which, when ignited, creates an image of the serrated teeth’s shadows. The heat transforms the silver, creating an eerie aura of an apocalyptic event, either the birth of creation or the end of time.
Elisabeth Condon’s use of translucent color, Chinese ink, mounds of glitter and iridescent glazes combines gestural deliberation with spontaneous pours. Patterns inch toward recognizable structures but refuse to cohere, retaining a permeable and formless suggestiveness.
In Lynn Dunham’s Stereo Eclipse series, atmospheric halos are juxtaposed with hard edge minimalism to create pulsing illuminations from an unknown source. The composition of upper and lower focal points references the woofer and tweeter components of a speaker, alluding to an imagined vibrato.
Norma Markley is drawn to works of sexualized literature by authors such as Nabokov and Charles Bukowski. Integrating the language and imagery of these texts, Markley’s neon works reflect a bygone America and have been described as “symbols of throwaway culture.” Titled with a question “What do they call you in bed?”, the answer is the neon piece, Heeeheeeheeehehehehe…, a word that is audible in silence. You read as you hear as you look.
Tom McGlynn’s paintings set in motion a subtle shift of tectonic form. Carefully augmented by color combination, the works feel simultaneously familiar and fleeting. These selections from the artist’s Decal series take generic logotypes into vibratory realms of transcendental contemplation.
Kristin McIver's Data Portraits disrupt the streams of big data accumulating behind social media networks. A commentary on celebrity in the Age of the Internet, McIver re-situates face recognition data from within the computer network into hand-painted visualizations of her subjects. Appropriating the scale and color palette of Andy Warhol’s 1967 Marilyn, the work translates and transforms Warhol’s obsession with celebrity to reflect the technological advances of contemporary society.
The threads that run through Maureen McQuillan’s work are seemingly opposites: surface and depth, gesture and geometry, system and disorder. Through repetition, the motif becomes something more complex, and color reverberates; creating a sense of space that is both real and illusory.
Ray Rapp’s video works focus on the repetitive movement associated with a physical activity. In Golfer, Rapp goes beyond the use of the camera as the sole support and turns the video selections into animations projected onto glass. The scenes become at once introspective and direct, giving motion a timeless and ethereal effect.
Alyse Rosner’s work combines rhythmic layers of line, long unfurling strands, fine staccato marks and vibrant transparent wash over graphite rubbings. Speed and movement are modulated as dashes vibrate over a flowing channel of color, and opaque turquoise bars both disrupt and lend structure.
Aaron Rothman’s exploration of the photographic picture-making process leads him to extraordinary exploitation of the image plane. In the series Cosmos, he points his camera towards the Arizona desert night sky, pushing the limits of the equipment to record infinity. The resulting images become pointillist canvases that define the outer reaches of human and camera vision.
Tongue Tide, Flux Factory, New York, July 6 - July 30
Long Island CityFlux Factory is pleased to present its next 2017 Major Exhibition, Tongue Tide , opening Thursday, July from 6-9PM. The exhibition will be on view through Sunday, July 30 with gallery hours on Saturdays & Sundays from
1-6PM, and by appointment.
Inspired by Flux Factory’s location in Queens, NY -- the most language-dense area in the world-- Tongue Tide explores the multitude of ways in which artists engage with language, addressing both its tide-like ebb and flow as well as its limitations.
Investigating the ways in which we experience, use and understand words, the projects will take many forms including: games, performances, photography, installation, neon sign, nomadic library, opera, karaoke booth, artists books, online dictionary, video installation, walks, conversations over meals, visual storytelling workshops and more.
Opening Reception, July 6th, 6-9PM
Featuring The Blue Bus Project, and performances by Irene Chan, JeviJoe Vitug, and Martha Wilson.
Flux Thursday, July 13, 5:30PM
Artists walk by Bibi Calderaro, followed by a potluck and performances by Maribel Placencia, and Amela Parcic & Marija Draskic.
Closing Reception, July 30th, 2-6PM
Performance by Purgatory Pie Press, Opera by Michal Dzitko, and potluck dinner organized by Masoom Moitra.
Amela Parcic & Marija Draskic , Amira Hanafi , The Blue Bus Project , Bibi Calderaro , Carlos Salas, Eugenio De Giovanni Pizzorno , Graciela Cassel, Grayson Earl e, Heather Kapplow & Ernie Kim, Helen Lee , Irene Chan , Jean Barberis & Daupo, Jevijoe Vitug , J Triangular , Katie Murray, Kristin McIver , Magali Duzant , Masoom Moitra, Maribel Plasencia , Martha Wilson, Michal Dzitko, Nina Ross , P A L / Pilipinx American Library, Patricia Silva, Purgatory Pie Press, Rashedul Deepon & Dan Silverman, and Xenia Diente
This exhibition is curated by Flux Artist-in-Residence Christina Freeman and Curator-in-Residence Emireth Herrera.Christina Freeman teaches studio art at Hunter College in New York and Haverford College near Philadelphia.
Emireth Herrera is an Independent Curator and serves on the faculty at Universidad Autónoma de Coahuila in Saltillo, Coahuila, México