May 7th, 2014

Whitney Biennial 2014 Part II

Lisa Anne Auerbach

Artists: Etel Adnan, Ei Arakawa and Carissa Rodriguez, Uri Aran, Lisa Anne Auerbach, Julie Ault, Kevin Beasley, Andrew Bujalski; Lucien Castaing-Taylor, Véréna Paravel, and Sensory Ethnography Lab; Zackary Drucker and Rhys Ernst, Radamés “Juni” Figueroa, Morgan Fisher; Tony Greene curated by Richard Hawkins and Catherine Opie; Channa Horwitz, Travis Jeppesen, Yve Laris Cohen, Fred Lonidier, Dashiell Manley, Keith Mayerson, Bjarne Melgaard, Ken Okiishi, Pauline Oliveros, Miljohn Ruperto, Jacolby Satterwhite, Sergei Tcherepnin, Semiotext(e), A. L. Steiner, Triple Canopy

Venue: Whitney Museum of American Art, New York

Curator: Stuart Comer

Date: March 7 – May 25, 2014

Note: Marvin J. Taylor is an archiving activist and the director of the Fales Library and Special Collections at New York University. This conversation between Taylor and Julie Ault is part of Ault’s contribution to the 2014 Biennial.

Click here to view slideshow

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Julie Ault. Work by  Martin Wong. Afterlife is a constellation of evidence and events that converse about disappearance and recollection. With various modalities, these artworks, artifacts, and texts activate and annotate the intricate relationship between archive and historical representation. In unison, Afterlife articulates a nexus of reference points, a cluster of concerns, a collection of contexts, and an amalgamated practice—artistic, curatorial, editorial, and archival.   A painting by Martin Wong
  A photograph by David Wojnarowicz  
A publication by Martin Beck  
A sculpture by Robert Kinmont  
A stereoscopic photograph by Alfred A. Hart  
A text by Julie Ault
  An apparition by Liberace  
An excerpted passage by William Least Heat-Moon  An interview with Marvin Taylor
  Documents and artifacts from the Downtown Collection at New York University
  Two heliogravures by Danh Vo  
Two paintings and a film by James Benning

Channa Horwitz

Full gallery of videos, images, press release and link available after the jump.


Jacolby Satterwhite, excerpt from Reifying Desire 6 – Island of Treasure, 2014. High-definition digital 3-D video, color, sound; 20 min. Collection of the artist; courtesy Mallorca Landings Gallery, Spain and Oh-WOW Gallery, Los Angeles.


Zackary Drucker and Rhys Ernst, excerpt from She Gone Rogue, 2012. High-definition video, color, sound; 23 minutes. Collection of the artists; courtesy Luis De Jesus, Los Angeles.



Videos and images courtesy of the artists and the Whitney Museum, New York. Photos by Contemporary Art Daily and Filip Wolak.

Press Release:

For over a decade leading up to curating this floor of the Biennial, Stuart Comer worked in London as a curator of film and video—media that are inherently hybrid, multiple, and collaborative, and that suggest a complex relationship between the recorded past and the lived moment. The works on view on this floor are similarly heterogeneous and have been drawn together to provide a kaleidoscopic glimpse of this historical moment, a time of fundamental artistic, technological, and global transformation.

Many of the works on view here involve transpositions of one medium into another, including Dashiell Manley’s painting and video installation derived from the 1903 film The Great Train Robbery; the late Channa Horwitz’s graphical scores, which are intended to be danced or performed musically; Ken Okiishi’s painted plasma screens; and the digital magazine Triple Canopy’s installation of real, scanned, and 3-D printed artworks. In the work of the octogenarian Lebanese-born artist and writer Etel Adnan, poetry and visual art find the space and rhythm to renegotiate their conventional roles: letters become glyphs and painted forms morph into words. Such hybrid artistic practices speak to the ways in which our attention is divided among many screens and other realities, both virtual and actual, constantly moving us between different states of focus and distraction.

Identities are also manifold in this section of the exhibition. Biennial curators have long recognized that “American” art is part of a global network, and have included American artists living abroad as well as international artists who are largely based in the United States. A number of artists on this floor adopt a critical and poetic perspective on the nation, focusing on migration, circulation (of people as well as images and ideas), and labor issues. Others use the mobility of gender identity to investigate personal or political structures—Zackary Drucker and Rhys Ernst, for example, examine queer body politics through documents of their evolving relationship during their gender reassignments. In some cases, Biennial participants present exhibitions-within-the-exhibition, acting as curators or editors to disperse their own voices by communicating through others. There are also artists who work as both object-makers and performers, animating the galleries with live events. Even the changing condition of the Whitney itself—still operating in Marcel Breuer’s Madison Avenue building as it prepares to move downtown—becomes a subject here. Overall, Comer presents artists as engineers and shape-shifters, who approach the fluid relationships between images and objects, language and culture in novel ways.

Stuart Comer is chief curator of media and performance art at the Museum of Modern Art, New York. He was curator of film at Tate Modern, London, until September 2013.

Link: Whitney Biennial 2014 Part II

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