P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center announces Listening to New Voices, an exhibition of work by the artists of the 2001–2002 P.S.1 National and International Studio Program. An opening reception will be held at P.S.1 on Sunday, May 19, 2002, from 12:00 to 6:00 p.m. The exhibition is curated by P.S.1 Associate Curators Larissa Harris and Daniel Marzona. A catalogue will be available for purchase at P.S.1 in Long Island City in July.
P.S.1's National and International Studio Program is comprised of a wide range of artistic perspectives represented not only by the global nature of the program but also through the program's encouragement of diverse interests, creative currents, and counterculture. Listening to New Voices will include video, film, performance, sound installations, installations, multi-media, painting, and photography by 21 artists and artist-collaborations from 15 countries.
2001-2002 Studio Program Artists included in the exhibition are: Daniel Bozhkov, U.S.; Birgit Brenner, Germany; Phil Collins, Northern Ireland; Elizabeth Demaray, U.S.; Anoka Faruqee, U.S; Nic Hess, Switzerland; Gim Hongsok, Korea; George Kimmerling, U.S.; Jeroen Kooijmans, The Netherlands; Dave McKenzie, U.S.; Isozaki Michiyoshi, Japan; Ottonella Mocellin, Italy; David Noonan, Australia; Bruno Peinado, France; Valérie Prot, Spain; Amanda Ralph, Republic of Ireland; Douglas Ross, U.S.; Constanze Schweiger, Austria; Rudy Shepherd, U.S.; Dario Solman, Croatia; and Katleen Vermeir, Belgium.
ABOUT THE ARTISTS:
Birgit Brenner's Once you wanted to become famous. Sincerely yours. (2002) is a large-format color photograph based on a character invented by the artist in 1999. In the image, an anonymous woman seems to suffer from a crippling social phobia, as she seeks only to isolate herself from the world around her. Since 1999 the artist has developed this woman's on-going fictional biography, one haunted by mental illness through wall texts, books, photographs, and documented interactions with the character's neighbors and psychologist.
United States-born Daniel Bozhkov may be described as a relational artist, interacting with members of the public who are specialists in different fields. In Darth Vader Tries to Clean the Black Sea with Brita Filter (2000), Bozhkov posed as the Star Wars anti-hero in a noble but impractical ecological intervention. In Befriending the Bacteria (2001–2002), Bozhkov produced yogurt out of bacteria modified with his own DNA and packaged it in marketable containers. He enters worlds of genetic science, department mega-stores, world-famous tourist-sites, as an intruder/visitor who also functions as a producer of new strains of meaning.
In his photographs, Phil Collins examines socio-political realities in cities such as Belgrade and Belfast, whose identities are created, for many of us, through photographic and video coverage of ethnic conflict. Avoiding the cliched strategies of mainstream media, Collins examines the complexity of those living in some of the world's most photographed places with direct attention to individuality and the individual. In Enduring Freedom (2002), images of people visiting Ground Zero taking pictures, and buying memorabilia and T-shirts are displayed on small lightboxes.
Elizabeth Demaray makes unexpected, profound connections between science, art, and cultural assumptions by highlighting the disparate relationship between the named world and the real. Good Baseball Rocks, please hold (2002), with rocks fitted with white leather coverings, invites us to experience the violent underpinning of competitive sports; while Half, all the apples on one tree in an orchard halved (2002) alludes to the simultaneous departure point of conception, consumption, and demise by confronting us with a tree bearing half it's fruit, literally. With these works, Demaray points to the way our expectations influence our perceptions of the visual world.
Anoka Faruqee uses painting as a place where the makeup and aesthetics of tapestries, tiling, and digital printing can pun or interrelate. Producing one abstraction made of thousands of interlocking asterisk-like shapes, or very thin vertical lines, and then copying it into a "twin," Faruqees struggle for perfection inevitably fails, and that failure imbues the works with a potent emotional energy. At P.S.1, she shows Straight/ Wavy Twins (Stripes) (2001) and Pour Painting and Copy (2002).
Nic Hess's large murals, created with ordinary adhesive tape, film, and industrial paint, intersect the languages of art and commerce. His narratives are born out of intricate juxtapositions of corporate logos with panoramic and pictorial landscapes. In this exhibition, Hess will present Coupe du monde (2002), a wall painting made of chocolate.
Gim Hongsok's work investigates visual perception, belief, culture, technology and subjectivity. By filling a small space with over 7,000 watts of light for Eyes Wide Shut (2001–2002), Hongsok amplifies the idealization of the art of display and points to its prevalence in our hyper-consumerist society. In Romancing the Stone (2001–2002), Hongsok continues his questioning of the authority of display, and presents a transparent resin sculpture, lit from the inside, resting on a plinth.
George Kimmerling explores physical and political border zones through photography and other media. His project Migration Atlas (2002) documents structures and markers of the desert areas in Arizona perilously traveled by migrants from Mexico and includes highly detailed maps marked with images of abandoned personal objects that migrants have left behind.
Jeroen Kooijmans's works are very direct and have a strong visual language. Reality, fantasy, and poetry go hand-in-hand. I'm a frog (2002) consists of two video pieces. One is a short video in which his girlfriend kisses him as a frog (duration 15 seconds). The other part is a self-portrait as a frog projected in a small corner. Kooijmans's video Work (1994) is installed in the hallway on a monitor where a clock would normally hang. In this video, three men keep each other busy by endlessly digging and filling each other's holes. In this work, sense and nonsense become irrelevant. Kooijmans will present Guard (2002), a live video projection of a guard performing his normal work duties, but appearing in the size of a dwarf.
Using the body as a primary means of expression, Dave McKenzie attempts to define a language of a nonverbal communication. Repetition and exaggeration become vital in translating simple, even banal gestures. In the video Karaoke Dream Machine (2002), and the provocative sculptures Self-Portrait Piata (2002) and Michael Douglas Spare Keys (2002), McKenzie tweaks the materials to reveal their place inside or outside culture.
Isozaki Michiyoshi's projects often incorporate childrens clothes and childhood games in order to reexamine adult communication and self-perception, and point to modern Japan's important exportable juvenile culture. Parachute and MAKIO (2002) is a performance and installation piece in which visitors write messages and wishes on colored squares of paper. Michiyoshi then attaches these wishes to tiny, ephemeral parachutes that he then places in the mouth of a piata-like puppet. During performances at the opening and closing of the exhibition, the artist will allow the wishes to escape.
Ottonella Mocellin works with video, photography, text and performance to reflect on identity. Investigating the connections between biography and autobiography, Mocellin creates short cinematic narrations that analyze the dark side of emotionality. Im too sad to tell you (2002) is part of an ongoing collaboration with Nicola Pellegrini based on a reflection on interpersonal relationships, which uses the imagery of games as a metaphor of the dynamics of communication, power, and the definition of identity in relation to the other. The double video projection examines the difficulties of an intimate conversation between the two and the emotional blocks that determine these difficulties.
David Noonan works with the vocabulary of scenic set design to fabricate sculptural installations that examine identity and perception. His protagonists, whether an ambiguous heroine or a doomed astronaut, are presented in mysterious ways, shifting between the narrative and the documentary. Minimal emotional expressions by the actors become deafening pleas within the ephemeral world that they inhabit. In Waldhaus (2002), Noonan references cinema with a fabricated room "set," made up of a doorway, interior walls, wallpaper and an ambient soundtrack. The installation functions as a sculpture with which the audience interacts vicariously, becoming actors. The piece consists of three parts, one of which will be featured in a film made later this year within and outside the installation.
With a multi-ethnic and multi-national background, Bruno Peinado assimilates the aesthetics, icons, and colloquialisms of different cultures with Western European popular culture. His hybrid imageries and reinvented objects include a black panther, a garden gnome, a hand-drawn advertising slogan, or a black-skinned Michelin Man, in an attempt to reaffirm the significance of figures, styles, and ideas that are often overlooked in today's global Westernized pop culture.
Working in a variety of media, Valerie Prot addresses nationhood through subtlety and humor. She raises popular fears and paranoias through irony, metaphor, and a childlike eye. In Global Anthem made in USA (2002), Prot plays all the national anthems from the countries represented in the Studio Program at the same time. The unified national anthems alternate between chaos and melody and the songs end one by one, until a single anthem—the longest—remains.
Through video, photography, public art, or performance, Amanda Ralph explores feminism. American Transformation (2002) is a New York-based research project about women's style, involving makeup, exercise, deportment, dress, and body hair. The research takes the form of a serious attempt to achieve a satisfactory standard in each of these categories. The resulting photographs move between self-improvement, humiliation, and humor, as they critique the assumption that the ability to successfully achieve those standards is made easier by being a woman. The artist portrays her own sensation of failure as a humiliating lack of femininity, similar to a man dressed in drag.
"While you witness my art I am somewhere else," says American Douglas Ross, who takes on questions of technological, physiological and cultural mediations. As with Into the Hearts of Millions (2000), the viewer is invited to hear through the limits of photography. His current video piece Lacunae (Reanimation) (2002), engages the restoration of aging cornea, early 20th century films, old sports cars, and other attempts at resisting the inevitable.
Constanze Schweiger works both in painting and social interventions. Her paintings are created in an isolated studio, whereas her other projects are often staged outside, in direct contact with a public. Schweiger takes pictures of friends and then makes paintings to accompany the photographs. In a series of four photographs taken in 2002, Schweiger captures the offhand expressions and gestures of friends and associates who have sat for her in her studio. Schweiger create sspaces, backgrounds and situations to which her subjects can respond, and considers their reaction captured on film as a contribution to the finished work. In this installation, painted interpretations of the photographic portraits are joined by paintings of patterns taken from clothing and domestic objects, privileging the physical world and its participation in moments of intimacy.
Rudy Shepherd's work is concerned with issues relating to the contemporary American perceptions of race. Black Box (Frantz Fanon vs. Martin Heidegger vs. The Invisible Man) (2002), a light-less soundproofed room physically confronts the participant with the "blackness" while also providing a stimulus-free environment as a memorial and meditative space.
Using drawings and animations Dario Solman creates new iconographic languages. In The Real Thing: The Making of the Film (2002) he introduces a prototypical human form in flight over a cityscape of buildings. His creation gains a depth of character through dialogues included in his installation.
Katleen Vermeir's work is tied to architecture, space, and people's movement in different environments. Tableaux-Vivants (Construction Models) (2001), a collaboration with Ronny Heiremans, were mainly inspired by the paintings of the Flemish Primitives and the Italian Renaissance. Tableaux-Vivants identify certain universal aspects in various human postures and architectural models. They are living images recorded on video and presented as paintings. By flattening fore- and background and using an artificial set in concert with the real landscape or city, the camera zoom reveals an ambiguous distinction between reality and fiction.