Selections from the Visual & Critical Studies Department's Seniors
On view January 18 - February 8, 2014
School of Visual Arts presents “Points of Experience,” an exhibition of works by fourth-year students in the BFA Visual & Critical Studies Department. Curated by faculty member Isabel Taube, it reveals the wide variety of artistic and theoretical practices in the BFA Visual & Critical Studies Department. Works on view include interactive installations that invite viewers to engage with actual or virtual worlds; creative accounts of personal narratives, ranging from hikes along the Appalachian Trail to cross-generational, multilingual conversations; and invented experiences, drawn from the artist’s imagination or shaped by found photographs and love letters. According to Taube, “This exhibition addresses the complexities of creating and representing experiences both from and for multiple viewpoints. Together the works address fundamental themes of identity formation, communication, and memory that affect both aesthetic and everyday experiences and their interpretation.”
The exhibition includes work by Caryn M. Cueto, Gabrielle DiBattista, Masha Dzambulova, Bobbie Jean Fisher, Andrea Garcia, Julia Garcia, Owen Karrel, Minhae Kim, Kylie Lefkowitz, Lily Lewis, Alexandra LoRe, Alexandra Manikas, Christopher Miller, Mike Morelli, Jonathas Nazareth, Rivers Plasketes, Oona Tempest, George Rue, Amanda Spinosa, Berny Tan and Justine Wong.
In November 2012 ESSAM was arrested and criminally charged for substituting advertising from Van Wagner phone booth displays with his own mock NYPD PSAs warning about NYPD drone activity. ESSAM and Svetlana Mintcheva, founding director of the Arts Advocacy Project at the National Coalition Against Censorship, will talk about art in the street versus art in the museum, about neo-liberal regulations of public space, and about the relationship between the artist’s mission and the constraints of the law. They will also discuss privacy and surveillance and the shift from censorship as government suppression to censorship through regulation.
SVA's faculty Carla Stellweg will introduce a discussion between the artist Terence Gower and writer Claire Bishop. Bishop has recently been investigating the incorporation of archival display in art installations, along with artists' recurring interest in post-war architecture and urbanism—two subjects at the center of Gower's work. Gower will begin the conversation with a presentation of his recent large-scale installations, including Public Spirit (Hirshhorn Museum, Washington, DC) and Baghdad Case Study (Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin). Gower and Bishop have recently been discussing the archive and retrospectivity in the visual arts, and this evening will be an opportunity to bring this conversation to the public, using the presented works as a reference.
Terence Gower is an artist based in New York and Mexico City. He works on the relationship between form and ideology in post-war art, architecture, and urbanism. He has shown his installations, videos, and sculpture work at museums, galleries and public sites all over North America, Europe, and Latin America, with a strong presence in Mexico. Two monographs have been published on Gower’s work: Display Architecture: Terence Gower Pavilions (Navado Press, Berlin/Trieste), and Ciudad Moderna: Terence Gower Videos (A&R/Turner, Mexico City).
Drawing on research from a forthcoming book chapter on Latin American avant-garde movements of the 1920s, this presentation delves into the distinctive features that differentiate Latin American modernism from its European and U.S. American counterparts. Rather than allowing Europe to set the standard, Latin American artists took an active role in framing their own avant-gardes agendas, focusing on such issues as conceptualizing modernity, achieving artistic autonomy, and promoting social justice. To appreciate the complexity of their practice, it is crucial to recognize Latin American modern art as intensely networked and developing through dialogues between visual artists, writers, and other intellectuals.
Tatiana Flores is Associate Professor of Art History at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, with a joint appointment in the Department of Latino and Hispanic Caribbean Studies. She is the author of Mexico’s Revolutionary Avant-Gardes: From Estridentismo to ¡30-30! (Yale University Press, 2013). A specialist in modern and contemporary Latin American art, she is also active as an independent curator.
Leslie Hewitt’s photographs rest in sturdy wooden frames that lean against the wall and invite viewers to experience a unique spacebetween photography and sculpture. Her work combines still life compositions comprised of political, social, and personal materials, which result in multiple histories embedded in sculptural, architectural, and abstract forms. Mundane objects and structures open into complex systems of knowledge. This perceptual slippage is what attracts Hewitt to both the illusions of film (still and moving photography) and the undeniable presence of physical objects (sculpture). Exploring this as an artist and not as a historiographer, Hewitt draws parallels between the formal appearance of things and their significance to collective history and political consciousness in contemporary art. In her lecture, Hewitt will discuss the development of her practice and recent collaborations.
Hewitt studied at the Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art, the Yale University School of Art, and at New York University, where she was a Clark Fellow in the Africana and Visual Culture Studies programs. She was included in the 2008 Whitney Biennial and the recipient of the 2008 Art Matters research grant to the Netherlands. A selection of recent and forthcoming exhibitions include the Museum of Modern Art in New York; the Studio Museum in Harlem; Artists Space in New York; Project Row Houses in Houston; and LA><ART in Los Angeles.