Sept. 24 - Dec 4, 2022
601Artspace, 88 Eldridge St., NYC
Reviewed in the New York Times by Jillian Steinhauer
Mierle Laderman Ukeles
The way we work has radically changed in the last two years. We are looking less at the impact of individual labor, and more at how systems can support or abandon us. Artists are all too familiar with this reality. The art world is not a meritocracy, and hard work guarantees nothing. This exhibition is a series of commentaries that question how art, labor, virtue and meaning intersect. The artworks force us to consider what kinds of labor did or did not occur in their making and how that makes us feel, exposing our cultural biases and belief systems around success and working hard.
Any dialogue about art and labor in America draws on specific historical fallacies, from the (white, European) pioneer farmers who “earned” their land claims through physical investment, to the myth of the American Dream that propels the deserving into the middle class or beyond. American notions of success have been measured by metrics of labor, with slavery and other egregious racial and structural inequities conveniently ignored so that hard work could be positioned as the great equalizer.
But while wealth may be the goal of this quintessentially American form of striving, the leisure it could provide is suspect. In the U.S., the flaneur is a bum and there is no acceptable narrative for not working, ever. Yet, in the topsy-turvy reality of the art world, we all know working hard can amount to nothing. The artists in this exhibition explore the notion of “work” from different vantage points; from art brought to life through labor-intensive virtuosic efforts to art that succeeds exactly because the artist did less, not more, work. We titled this exhibition “Show your work”, after the ubiquitous request of math teachers everywhere. The artists in this show challenge us in different ways to consider the role of “work” in their artwork.
Thursday, July 18th, 6-9pm, 2019
601Artspace, 88 Eldridge St., NYC
Organized by Gabriela Vainsencher
Install/Deinstall is a 3-hour long group exhibition that condenses the three main events in the life cycle of every show: the installation of the work, opening night, and deinstallation of the exhibition. Artists included in the show will bring their self portraits with them to the opening and install them upon arrival. When they are ready to leave, they will deinstall and take their work with them.
While some of the works in the show will be straight-forward self portraits, many of the artists included in this exhibition do not work in a representational manner, and have been invited to create their own riff on the concept. Each artist brings two versions of themselves to the exhibition: one is their actual physical person, and the other is their visual echo, the self portrait, which like a persistent shadow insists on following the artist in and out of the gallery. The exhibition will spring into being, exist ephemerally as works are added and taken away, and then disappear, along with the last artist leaving the opening.
Artists in the exhibition:
Samantha Adams Reut Asimini Tirzah Bassel Keren Benbenisty Ryan Brennan Jude Broughan Lindsay Burke Sari Carel Noa Charuvi Kim Dacres Jennifer Dalton Mira Dayal Hsini Des Jamie Diamond Janna Dyk Ira Eduardovna Kate Elliot Derek Fordjour Pricsilla Fusco Marie-Noële Guex Susan Hamburger Bang Geul Han + Steven Mygind Pedersen Nora Herting Seong Eun Hong David Howe Lisa Iglesias Sareh Imani Roxanne Jackson Katarina Jerinic Jac Lahav Elizabeth Tannie Lewin Sharon Madanes Katy McCarthy Summer McCorckle Andrew McNay Sara Mejia Kriendler Naomi Miller Patrick Mohundro Megan Pahmier Alexander Perrelli Sofi Quirno Paul Ramirez Jonas Rebecca Riley Jason Rondineli Arkadiy Ryabin Naomi Safran Hon Gabriela Salazar Sara Shaoul Zorawar Sidhu Elisabeth Smolarz Elisa Soliven Jane Swavely Kevin Swenson Fabian G Tabibian Tattfoo Tan Michael Wilson
PAIRS: an evening celebrating friendship among women in the artworld
A.I.R. Gallery, Brooklyn, NY
Mary Beth Edelson, Death of Patriarchy/ A.I.R. Anatomy Lesson, 1976
Click on the image for the evening's program.
I Can't Tell You Because I Can't Tell YouCurated by Gabriela Vainsencher
September 16th - November 12th 2018
Hours: Thurs-Sun, 1-6pm
88 Eldridge Street
“What is clear and concise can't deal with reality, for to be real is to be surrounded by mystery”. James Joyce
I Can't Tell You Because I Can't Tell You deals with the inherent problem of shaping human experience into a linear story. Reality, as it is happening, is an overwhelming nonlinear smear: past, present, and future interlace, events mix with emotions, and focus shifts from one thing to another. Maybe this is why people have invented stories in which effects have causes, things happen for a reason, and narrators can be trusted to tell a story straight, with a beginning, middle and end – and in that order.
The artists in this exhibition, however, explore the limitations, flaws, and impossibilities of the narrative structure through photography, video, film, sculpture and performance. They crack open the conventions of their fields to engage the questions: What happens if we agree that every story is an artificial construct that by definition distorts and lies? What if we acknowledge that no narrator is reliable? In lieu of solid narrative ground, this exhibition presents us with works that expose the machinery of story-making and then throw a wrench in the works.
- Gabriela Vainsencher