Past Events

Wednesday, April 15, 2015, 6-7pm

Inquires into Contemporary Sculpture: What about Power?

New York Public Library, Stephen A. Schwarzman Building, South Court Auditorium

This panel unpacks some of the themes that emerge in the new publication Inquires into Contemporary Sculpture: What about Power? (published by SculptureCenter and Black Dog Publishing, London). Co-editors Mary Ceruti and Ruba Katrib will lead a conversation with contributors Malik Gaines, Candice Hopkins, and Margaret Lee about the various power dynamics embedded in and surrounding contemporary sculpture.

As part of SculptureCenter series of books Inquiries into Contemporary Sculpture, the second title What about Power?, looks at the contemporary intersections of power and sculpture. From ritual to monument, sculpture has been embedded within various power dynamics, whether political, spiritual, erotic, or otherwise. Sculpture's relationship to power is distinct from other artistic forms, as it is engaged with particular spatial and physical realms. Hinged on issues around architecture and the body, sculpture reflects on will, subjugation, desire, fetish, scale, etc. These relationships have shifted throughout time, where do they stand now? What is the power dynamic around sculpture today? Does sculpture wield power today? If so, what kind? Is it necessary to understand sculpture through power relations? What are the potentials of this kind of reading, its pitfalls? Other contributors to What about Power? include Gregg Bordowitz, Dominic Eichler, Jörg Heiser, Chris Kraus, and Jumana Manna, among others.

The series takes an earnest look at what constitutes, excites, entangles, and necessitates ideas and questions around sculpture now. Each topic is determined through a closed think tank meeting with a small group of artists, curators, and historians. The first book in the series, Where is Production?, was published last fall and features contributions by Michelle Kuo, Camille Henrot, Ei Arakawa, Carol Bove, Miki Kaneda, Trevor Paglen, and Shahryar Nashat, among others.

Mary Ceruti is Executive Director and Chief Curator at SculptureCenter and co-editor of What about Power?

Ruba Katrib is Curator at SculptureCenter and co-editor of What about Power?

Malik Gaines is an artist and writer based in New York. He has performed and exhibited extensively with the group My Barbarian and his newer collaboration, Courtesy the Artists. Gaines has written about art and performance for magazines, exhibition catalogues, artist monographs, and journals including Art Journal and Women & Performance. His first book, on 1960s black performance, is in the publication process. He is assistant professor of Art at Hunter College.

Candice Hopkins is an Albuquerque-based curator and a writer. She has held curatorial positions at the National Gallery of Canada, The Walter Phillips Gallery, and The Western Front. She is presently Interim Curator at the Museum of Contemporary Native Arts. Her writings on art, history, and vernacular architecture are published widely. Her co-curated exhibitions include Unsettled Landscapes, SITE Santa Fe (2014); Sakahàn, National Gallery of Canada (2013); Close Encounters: The Next 500 Years, Plug In ICA (2010); Before the Internet: Networks and Art, Western Front (2007), and Jimmie Durham: Knew Urk, Reg Vardy and Walter Phillips Gallery (2005).

Margaret Lee lives and works in New York. As an artist she has exhibited extensively both in the US and abroad and has been included in exhibitions including Made In L.A. 2014, Hammer Museum, Los Angeles; the 12th Biennale de Lyon, France; New Pictures of Common Objects, MoMA PS1, New York; and The 6th White Columns Annual, New York, amongst others. As a curator, Lee founded the artist-run space 179 Canal from 2009-2010 and has curated projects at White Columns, New York and the X-Initiative, New York. In 2011, Lee partnered with Oliver Newton to open 47 Canal, a commercial gallery in New York which acts as an extension of her curatorial practice and ongoing commitment to supporting emerging art.


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