“Untitled(Red All Over)” is a collaboration between Gautam Kansara and his students from the Visual and Performing Arts Department of Manhattan College, New York City. The work addresses the massive amount of daily media that floods our feeds, and that continually overflows in every platform. In Kansara’s photographic and video practice The New York Times looms large as a source material, and is Kansara’s preferred choice for news. Headlines and front-pages from the analog and digital version of The New York Times are layered and overlapped, creating a collage of information that is somewhat impenetrable. The New York Times content which makes up most of the collage is punctuated by small printed screenshots of news from other sources, selected by student in Art 212, and representative of the myriad of sources out there for obtaining news and information. The collage and installation is indicative of the way information, through articles and headlines, is delivered and then forgotten or lost within the news rotation. Also exhibited is a video work which uses cyanotype image transfers of front-pages of The New York Times to create virtual ‘landscapes’ of news and information that is largely deteriorating and fading away, a reference to the temporary nature of stories as they rise and fall within the confines of the news cycle. Kansara’s love affair with The New York Times is in and of itself a complicated web of personal connections and history. (He was forced to read Op-Ed articles at age 12 and was quizzed by his father afterwards. He would be asked “What’s the thesis statement?” And would generally be unable to answer and wound up resenting the experience and the newspaper, only to adopt it in adult life as the portal he visits daily.) Kansara realizes that The New York Times, like most all publications, is flawed, beholden to the bias of its editorial board and that of its reporters. It’s profound pro-israel bias is unmistakeable and obviously problematic. One source is never enough to get to the facts of what actually happened in any given news story. By drawing on multiple sources, by selecting and analyzing and comparing those sources one might be able to arrive at a less biased truth, or perhaps even fact. But in all honesty who really has the time for this. This type analysis is in and of itself a full time job, and one can’t really trust any of the pundits to do the work for them. And so we remain largely ignorant of the facts but heavily influenced by the biased truth. We know so much about so little. Whatever we do know is suspect. And it will all be largely forgotten and replaced the next time I refresh my feed. Things are bad. So much going on. So dramatic. Oh did you see this? What were we talking about?
Wojciech Gilewicz “SCULPTURES” , 2017, work in progress), Single-Channel Video “SCULPTURES” aims to rethink, in rather a provocative, ironical, but at the same time quite funny way, the role of sculptural representations in the public realm in different places around the globe. While often decorating or aspiring to decorate, they are in fact simply objects in public space funded by local governments showing off, or manifesting their power by shaping popular aesthetics. Therefore often giving to the general public quite a false perception of what sculpture is, and how it should, or could be interpreted. This ongoing project is a series of various video-recorded performative actions Gilewicz performs in a guerrilla way by using sculptures located in various public spaces including USA, Iran, Taiwan, Poland, Korea, South Africa. Often before performing with a given sculpture Gilewicz asks for some advice or expertise of a professional art conservator or other specialists in the field of restoration. Wojciech Gilewicz (b. 1974) is a Polish-born New York-based interdisciplinary visual artist. He holds an M.F.A from the Academy of Fine Arts, Warsaw, Poland. (www.gilewicz.net) Gilewicz draws on his experience of the painting medium to create formally varied works, also with the use of sculpture and performative actions that seek to investigate the boundaries of art and space. In his recording of reality, Gilewicz often uses the video camera, which can fluidly transform into a means of registering social relations, which take place ‘outside’ his actions performed with or around his paintings or sculptural objects. Gilewicz’s art provokes reflection on the mechanisms which govern perception and its cultural conditioning. The author actively collaborates with the viewer, whom he involves both in his projects and in polemics about myths and stereotypes concerning the most recent art, its reception, and interpretation. Gilewicz takes on board issues related to the role of painting, sculpture, and performance as well as video in today’s world, the status of the artist and artistic work in the context of the institution and the art system as well as the society at large. He is also interested in the role of artist a citizen. His solo projects and exhibitions include Cuboids, Cuchifritos Gallery / Artist Alliance Inc, New York (2015); Rockaway, Foksal Gallery, Warsaw, Poland (2015); Painter’s Painting, Kuandu Museum of Fine Arts, Taipei, Taiwan (2013); Residency Unlimited, Flux Factory, New York (2012); Foksal Gallery, Warsaw, Poland (2009); Front Room: Wojciech Gilewicz, Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis, MO (2008); Museum of Fine Arts, Ivano-Frankivsk, Ukraine (2007); Foksal Gallery, Warsaw, Poland (2005). His group projects and exhibitions include The Travellers, Kumu Art Museum, Tallinn, Estonia (2017) and Zacheta National Gallery of Art, Warsaw, Poland (2016); IDEAS CITY The Invisible City, New Museum, New York (2015); Seven, The Boiler / Momenta Art, New York (2014); Queens International, Queens Museum, New York (2013); Videorover, NURTUREart, New York (2012); Monitaur, Aspen Art Museum (2009); In Practice, SculptureCenter, New York (2009); Factory, MoBY (Museums of Bat Yam), Bat Yam, Israel (2009); Starting Point: Intrude Art & Life 366, Shanghai Himalayas Museum (former Zendai MoMA), Shanghai, China (2009); Hello Goodbye Thank You Again, castillo/corrales Paris, France (2009); BELGRADE: NONPLACES. Art in public space, Museum of Contemporary Art, Belgrade, Serbia (2009); Distortion of an Unendurable Reality, Pianissimo, Milan, Italy (2008); Multi-way Street annex to the exhibition Beautiful Losers, Muzeum Sztuki in Lodz, Poland (2007); and On Their Own Zacheta National Gallery of Art, Warsaw, Poland (2006). The artist’s works were reviewed in Art Forum, Art Pulse, Frieze among others. Gilewicz’ works are in many public and private collections in Poland and abroad, including Shanghai Himalayas Museum, CCA Ujazdowski Castle in Warsaw, and MoCA Belgrad. In Spring 2017 Wojciech Gilewicz established Beach64retreat in The Rockaways, Queens, in NYC for creative individuals as the artist’s response to the rising precarity in arts&culture internationally. The first pilot season is on invitation. There will be an open-call in Fall 2017 for its second season 2018-2019. The retreat is free of charge. (www.beach64retreat.wordpress.com)
ENCYCLOPEDIA OF THINGS is my latest portrait series in which I collaborate with individuals in their home environments. Each participant selects personal objects as portals to memory that are both precious and meaningful, they are then arranged for the camera in a temporary installation. The installations of the participants’ most treasured objects embody their sense of self-hood and identity, and tell the story of each individual. Since starting this long term project in 2014 I collaborated with individuals in North America, Europe, the Middle East and most recently in East Asia. The final result is series of intricate non-concrete portraits consisting of a prevalent vocabulary made out of ubiquitous objects that echo the universality of the human condition.
Immigrating from Poland to Germany, Elisabeth Smolarz grew up on the cusps of two different cultures affected by a communist and democratic system. Consequently, she became involved in the idea of how consciousness and perception is formed by one’s surroundings. Since then her work has been shown nationally and internationally – in venues such as The Bronx Museum, New York, Eyebeam Art + Technology Center, New York, Galeria Aleksander Bruno, Warsaw, Oberwelt e.V, Stuttgart, Kunsthalle Galapagos New York, Baden Württembergischer Kunstverein, Photography Triennial Esslingen, Carnegie Mellon, Independent Museum of Contemporary Art (IMCA) Cyprus, Brooklyn Arts Council, Reykjavik Photography Museum, Espai d’art contemporani de Castelló, the Sculpture Center and the 3rd Moscow Biennale among others. Awards and residencies include the LMCC Work Space Residency, New York, AIM Artist Residency, Bronx Museum, Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen Travel Grant, Karin Abt-Straubinger Stiftung Grant, Sarai Artist Residency, New Delhi, India, Capacete Artist Residency, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Red Gate Gallery Artist Residency, Beijing, China and more. Elisabeth Smolarz received her BA and her MFA from the Staatliche Akademie der Bildenden Künste Stuttgart.
The Myth of Layla (TMOL), 2016
HD Video, TRT- 5:43, color, sound
The Myth of Layla (TMOL) is a participatory multimedia performance and installation about political ideology, celebrity-obsessed media, and an Iranian-American activist named Layla based on Khoshbin’s personal history. TMOL is set in a near future when a big-brother media conglomerate called The Network runs the US government and is at war with Iran. The leader of The Network is a reality show host, similar to our President-Elect, who employs media-manipulation tactics such as fear of the Other, violence, and propaganda as reasonable safety-measures. The Host of The Network invites Layla and audience members to participate on their new reality show, Activists in Sexy Solidarity (ASS), which is the set for the performative installation. Taking satirical cues from the absurd structures of reality TV, Khoshbin presents a backdrop of projected videos and outrageous color costumes and banners. Viewers become part of the piece as audience members on ASS: they are captured by running cameras, screened during the performance, and edited into reality show videos afterwards. TMOL creates a parallel universe that—vividly demonstrating the dangers of media control and the necessity of questioning content production and consumption—echoes America’s contemporary socio-political state.
TMOL has been exhibited as a solo exhibition and series of performances at Mana Contemporary, NURTUREart and The Watermill Center, and is a recipient of the Rema Hort Mann Artist Community Engagement Grant and Creative Capital’s On Our Radar. At Mana Contemporary, the piece was Directed by Morgan Green, Dramaturgy by Yuliya Tsukerman, Performed by Amy Khoshbin, Maxwell Cosmo Cramer, Ryann Weir, Kenny Rivero, and Kristianne Molina, Cinematography by Jessica Gardner, Videography by Azikiwe Mohammed and Matthew Kohn, Lighting Design by Tuce Yasak, and Sound Design by Michael Clemow.
For more information, visit tinyscissors.com.
Amy Khoshbin is an Iranian-American Brooklyn-based artist merging performance, video, collage, costume and sound to examine our individual and collective compulsion to create, transform, and sometimes destroy the stories of who we are, who we think we are, and who we think we should be. She produces media and mythologies using humor and a handmade aesthetic to throw a counterpunch at the high-definition, profit-generating codes and signals that American audiences are trained and accustomed to consuming. She has shown her solo and collaborative work at venues such as Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM), Abrons Arts Center, Mana Contemporary, NURTUREart, National Sawdust, The Invisible Dog Arts Center, and festivals such as River to River and South by Southwest. She is currently in residence at Lower Manhattan Cultural Council’s Workspace Residency 2016-17, and has completed residencies at The Watermill Center, Mana Contemporary- where she curated a group of 12 artists for the BSMT Residency, LMCC’s Workspace Residency 2014-16, Banff Centre for the Arts, Team Effort! in Glasgow, Scotland, and at the Tisch School of the Arts at New York University. She has received a Rema Hort Mann Artist Community Engagement Grant and is on Creative Capital’s On Our Radar for her recent project, The Myth of Layla. Khoshbin has bachelor’s degrees in Film and Media Studies from the University of Texas at Austin and a master’s degree from the Interactive Telecommunications Program at New York University. She has collaborated with Laurie Anderson, Karen Finley, Tina Barney, and poets Anne Carson and Bob Currie among others.
ONE AND OTHERS, 2011
HD Video 8min., color, sound
The artists work moves within an area of tension resulting from movement and stagnation, retardation and éclat. At the same time a playful element is a leitmotif in the artist’s oeuvre. It expresses the “other” space, in which social codes and structures of action might be absorbed and turned around. The artist confronts the seriousness of her chosen topics with a certain lightness of being. For us, the viewers, she opens up an imaginary “possibility-space”, mysterious and enigmatic, that leaves us with the substantial question: Why is it the way it is? And: Couldn’t it be different?
Seline Baumgartner (b. 1980) is a New York-based artist born in Zurich, Switzerland. Baumgartner uses video, sound installations, and sculptures to carefully observe the patterns and grammar of individuality and group dynamics. Baumgartner’s solo exhibitions include “One and Others” Kunst 11 Zürich, with Gallery SCHAU ORT, Christiane Büntgen, Zurich, Switzerland (2011); Not Yet, Gallery SCHAU ORT, Christiane Büntgen, Zurich, Switzerland (2010); and Trial 1-3, Final Fish, Videotank, Zurich, Switzerland (2010). Group exhibitions include The Movement, Kolumba Kunstmuseum des Erzbistums Cologne, Germany (2013); Alternativa, Wyspa Institute of Art, Gdansk, Poland (2013); and What Happened 2081, Goethe Institute, New Delhi, India (2013).
Baumgartner received the Dance Movie Commission from Experimental Media and Performance Arts Center (2014) and residencies from Swiss Arts Council Pro Helvetia, New Delhi, India (2011-2012) and City of Zurich, Switzerland, New York (2009-2010). Publications include Aargauer Kunsthaus (2012) and Museum of Fine Arts Bern. Baumgartner received her B.F.A. from Zurich University of the Arts (2005).
For more information, please visit http://www.selinebaumgartner.com/.
In the 1970s David Hockney, a British artist primarily known as a painter, became fascinated with Photography and gave up painting for a decade or so while he experimented with photographic techniques. During this time he developed groundbreaking methods of photographic collage. Hockney explored using the camera to collect fragments of scene, that could then be pieced together. He was interested in splitting up an image in time and space, getting away from capturing only a moment, and trying to capture a collection of moments, a sequence of time, analogous to perhaps a scene in a film.
Because the photographs were taken from different perspectives and at slightly different times, the result is imagery that has an affinity with Cubism, a painting style developed and favored by Picasso and George Braque in the early 20th century, 1910’s and 20’s. Fascinated by Cubism’s investigation of multiple perspective Hockney’s major aim was to explore this through photography. As He saw it there was a relationship between cubism and the way human vision works, in that we see things simultaneously in multiple perspectives and in pieces. We see multiple viewpoints that are then pieced together by our mind.
Seeking to replicate the way we see through photography Hockney began these photo collages, which he called “joiners”, working with different subjects from portraits to still life, and from representational to abstract styles. He did this because he was interested in how we see and depict space and time. He is interested in how we turn a 3 dimensional world into a 2 dimensional image. Upon looking at the final compositions of these “joiners”, he realized it created a narrative, as if the viewer was moving through the room. These images layer time and space, the multiple angles convey a strong sense of movement. Hockney points out that “a single photo expresses a single instant, and so cannot represent time or narrative: “Cubism was total-vision: it was about two eyes and the way we see things. About his collage technique, Hockney said: “I realized that this sort of picture came closer to how we actually see, which is to say, not all-at-once but rather in discrete, separate glimpses which we then build up into our continuous experience of the world.”
In Art 212 we appropriated Hockney’s method and created a homage to his photographic collage technique.
Ah Ahk Ahk Aht Ahn
Ah Ahk Ahk Aht Ahn – Kiyuk
HD video, B&W, 10:20, Sound
Ah Ahk Ahk Aht Ahn – Ssang Kiyuk
HD video, B&W, 09:25, Sound
11172 is the number of possible consonant-vowel combinations in Korean language (my mother tongue), which can be displayed in Unicode. They are theoretical combinations for a written language; therefore, many of them are not used in actual speaking and writing. Ah Ahk Ahk Aht Ahn is a series of 19 single channel videos in progress. The videos are organized in groups by their first consonant from ㄱ(kiyuk) to ㅎ(heeut). There is a voice prounouncing each consonant-vowel combination shown in the screen. I began this project wanting to focus on the sounds and shapes of the letters and also to contemplate on the physical act of reading aloud. While working on this project, I re-experienced what I felt when I was learning to speak English – being very aware that I am making sound through my body and organs.
Sujin Lee uses text, video and performance, exploring the way in which different cultural and linguistic systems affect the actions of language. Lee has been awarded residencies from Millay Colony for the Arts, Blue Mountain Center, I-Park and Newark Museum and participated in the AIM program at the Bronx Museum of Art and the Emerge program at Aljira. She was a 2012-2013 A.I.R. Gallery Fellow in NYC and a 2014-2015 artist-in-residence at Kumho Art Studio in Korea. Lee earned her BFA from Maryland Institute College of Art. She holds an MFA in Studio Art and an MA in Performance Studies, both from New York University. She has exhibited internationally.
For more information, please visit http://www.sujinlee.org.