thumbUnder Construction – New
Positions in American Photography

Group exhibition featuring works by Joshua Citarella, Jessica Eaton, Daniel Gordon, Matthew Leifheit & Cynthia Talmadge, Matt Lipps, Matthew Porter, Sara Cwynar, Kate Steciw and Sara VanDerBeek

ON VIEW: March 14 – April 26, 2015

Foam Fotografiemuseum Amsterdam and Pioneer Works Center for Art and Innovation present Under Construction – New Positions in American Photography, a group exhibition featuring ten young American and Canadian photographers. Even though the results of the artists’ individual practices are very diverse, the mentality, methodology and presentation of their work show a number of remarkable similarities. A key characteristic is the investigative attitude they adopt in looking at the photographic image and its representation. All the featured artists are explicitly engaged in a fundamental reassessment of the value and significance of photography in the early 21st century. This exhibition was first shown at Foam Museum in Amsterdam from September to December 2014.

The far-reaching digitisation of society exerts an unparalleled influence on almost every aspect of the medium. This ranges from entirely new photographic techniques (digitisation of the equipment) and the use of the photographic image (distribution via digital networks) to the value and significance of photography itself (in view of the never-ending stream of many millions of photographic images that are being taken, distributed and manipulated every day). This fundamental reassessment is particularly appropriate and important in a society in which so much culturally relevant information is communicated via images and where an unprecedented and extremely complex dynamic has developed amongst images. In this new world, how can photography or a photograph be defined? What is the value and significance of photography? What is the role of the artist?

These kinds of questions are of utmost relevance for this new generation of image makers who all represent very specific positions within a complex landscape. One of the most distinguishing features is that the image is constructed and built up from decontextualized elements. Furthermore its aesthetic qualities are largely determined by the use of abstract forms and colors. Whether the photograph is created entirely from scratch or whether it is put together using archetypal images, art history references, archive material or pictures derived from the internet, the end result is fragmented and layered. The artists make use of analogue or digital workflows, or a combination of both, often using advanced post-production software. With the introduction of three dimensionality as a self-evident addition, the photographic image is not always limited to a flat surface.

The participants of Under Construction are in fact engaged with a reinvention of photography within a totally different societal context, taking account of more than 150 years of photographic history. It is no less than a photographic renaissance.

Foam Magazine
To mark the exhibition, Foam Magazine devoted its whole #38 Issue: Under Construction, to the work of the above listed photographers, featuring extensive portfolios and texts by contributors such as Marcel Feil, Joshua Chang, Lorenzo Durantini and Hito Steyerl. The magazine is available here

This exhibition is made possible thanks to the generous support of principal benefactor Mondriaan Fund and WeTransfer, with additional support from Arcadis, the Consulate General of the Kingdom of the Netherlands and The Standard.

WebSquareLiving Room Index and Pool
An exhibition of installation & performance by Lauren Bakst and Yuri Masnyj
ON VIEW: March 13 – April 26, 2015

Friday March 13, 2015: 7 and 8pm*
Sunday March 22, 2015: 3pm and 4pm*
Sunday April 5, 2015: 3pm and 4pm*
Second Sunday: April 12, 2015 6pm and 7:30pm
Sunday April 19, 2015: 3pm and 4pm; RSVP Here
Sunday April 26, 2015: 4pm; RSVP Here

Living Room Index and Pool, an exhibition that takes the form of an encounter between Yuri Masnyj’s sculptures and Lauren Bakst’s performances, features an installation of sculptural objects—boards, pipes, mats, tubes, chairs, tables, sections of wall—that take their cues from construction sites, furniture design and architecture. These objects relate to things in our world, but through their aestheticization, material quality, and scale produce a slightly-off or uncanny sensibility. This expanded landscape will serve as the context for a series of performances by Bakst, joined by fellow dancer Emma Geisdorf. Occupying and reconfiguring the space, the pair of bodies oscillate between the framer and the framed—exploring the ways that rooms, and the objects that constitute them, create containers of affective experience.

Living Room Index and Pool was designed over the course of seven months by Masnyj and Bakst and is the evidence and continuation of a working and research-oriented process. The installation and performances constitute a field in transition or site that will evolve over the course of the exhibition—resisting arrival at a singular image or event.

About the Artists:

Lauren Bakst and Yuri Masnyj are both 2014-16 Open Sessions Artists at The Drawing Center and met through their participation in the program.

Lauren Bakst (b. 1989) is an artist whose work spans choreography, writing, video, and performance. A trained dancer, her work places the skilled body and choreographic form in conversation with questions around subjectivity, affect, memory, and history.

Yuri Masnyj (b. 1976) works in drawing and sculpture. Known for his austere drawings of interior space, and sculptural installations that have qualities of theatrical set objects. Masnyj’s work addresses the relationship between art and design while exploring the human compulsion to collect and compose objects.

Living Room Index and Pool was supported by a Foundation for Contemporary Arts Emergency Grant

Amplitude SquareAmplitude
Columbia University School of the Arts
Sound Arts MFA Spring Exhibition
ON VIEW: April 17 – April 30, 2015
OPENING RECEPTION: April 16, 2015 6-9PM

Alice Baird, Carla Cisno*, Cameron Fraser, Nolan Lem*, Chatori Shimizu, Frank Spigner
Curated by Wave Farm

Photo Credit: Carla Cisno, Eyes on the Horizon Perhaps

Vibration and resonance, environmental sonification and transmission, kinetic and mechanical sound, and the connotation of cadence are the central ideas that move throughout Amplitude, an exhibition centered on the third floor gallery and distributed throughout Pioneer Works. Amplitude features new work by Columbia University first-year Sound Arts MFA students; and thesis projects by the newly established program’s first graduates, Carla Cisno and Nolan Lem.

Informed by the traditions of sculpture, video art, composition, and computer music, the works exhibited in Amplitude are unified by their essential consideration and foregrounding of sound.

In Carla Cisno’s Eyes on the Horizon Perhaps, oscillation caused by transducers, as well as the vibration of viewers, activate an artificial site where dust matter transitions and transforms, triggered by the passage of time. Located in both of Pioneer Works’ stairwells, the installations HiveMind (in the north stairwell) and Triadic Attractor (in the south) by Nolan Lem employ kinetic and responsive objects to fill these otherwise hollow spaces with dynamic and progressive sound.

Alice Emily Baird’s sound and video work, A Sincere Apology, explores vocal timbre and its relationship to the perception of sincerity through choreographed performance and audience response. Cameron Fraser’s Lost High Roller is installed both in the first-floor gallery of Pioneer Works and its adjacent garden. The work is a duet comprised of found field sounds played by Fraser’s interior musical chandelier, which are then transmitted back to the exterior space. In Somewhere Close, Chatori Shimizu uses contact microphones to reveal the living sounds embedded in natural materials, which are buried inside sculpted synthetic forms. Frank Spigner’s Parallelism exposes and amplifies the mechanization of energy, electricity, and technology in a duality of physical and virtual space.

A formal or conceptual interest in sound unites these artists and the works featured. Likewise, it is this focus on sound that defines Columbia University’s new interdisciplinary area of study, which leads to a Master of Fine Arts degree in Sound Arts awarded by the School of the Arts.

Special Event: April 30, 2015, 5-9PM

60×60 Wave Farm Mix features sixty sixty-second works, created with, for, and about radio and transmission. Included are works by Amplitude artists Cameron Fraser and Chatori Shimizu. Co-presented by Vox Novus and Wave Farm.

Amplitude Live is a sonic happening featuring performances and ecstatic utterances from artists in the Columbia School of the Arts Sound Arts program. Chatori Shimizu, Frank Spigner, Alice Emily Baird, Nolan Lem, and Cameron Fraser will each premiere new works, and friends of the program will also participate. Curated by Cameron Fraser.

*Thesis Work