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    Short Stories, Part Two: Danna Vajda and Rona Yefman

    Short Stories, Part Two: Danna Vajda and Rona Yefman

    Oct 8–Nov 6, 2011

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    Reading Room: Sarah Chacich, Angie Keefer, Matt Keegan, and Rita Sobral Campos
    Part Three: Alejandro Cesarco, Ursula Mayer, November 12 - December 4

    SculptureCenter is pleased to announce a unique exhibition series Short Stories, guest curated by Isla Leaver-Yap. Short Stories navigates the fabricated spaces of representation. It questions the role of art historian and critic as the best readers of an artwork, favoring instead the internal logic and fiction of the artist's practice. The series will feature rotating solo exhibitions by six New York-based artists, an onsite reading room, as well as readings and performances. Exhibiting artists include: Alejandro Cesarco, Iman Issa, Ursula Mayer, Ben Schumacher, Danna Vajda and Rona Yefman. The reading room, configured in collaboration with Angie Keefer, also features work by Sarah Chacich, Matt Keegan, and Rita Sobral Campos. Short Stories will be on view September 10 - December 4, 2011.

    During each month of Short Stories, SculptureCenter's lower level galleries will be turned over to two artists who will each present an autonomous exhibition project. The rear ground floor gallery, meanwhile, will be transformed into a reading room, a locus and constant throughout the duration of project. It will feature art works, books selected by the artists in relation to their exhibition presentations, commissioned texts, audio works and other ephemera. This space will act as a site of production and dissemination, where the accrual of material will also serve as the documentation for Short Stories. Finally, in the closing week of Short Stories, the main gallery will be used as an event space by participating artists to feature performances, screenings, and talks.

    Through the artist independently fashioned narratives, Short Stories presents work engaged in the architecture of how to read and write the object, the image, and the practice. Short Stories takes the notion of 'reading' as a framework through which an artist might begin to construct personal positions and self-determined subjects.

    Danna Vajda

    For Short Stories Vajda presents Forimmediaterelease, an installation that examines the properties of the public institutions, and the discursive and commercial frames that reinforce these values. Vajda's paintings recreate spaces usually inhabited by the institution - press releases, magazine covers and logos, for example - tropes that are the focus for legitimacy, and where the artist's subjectivity is typically absent. Her work seeks to reclaim these spaces, the canvases and painted floor mats becoming an unlikely location for these ephemeral forms of communication. Here, the practice of painting becomes a source of extended and reflective labor whose imprecise mimicry serves as a means to imbue these cultural properties with accidental subjectivity.

    Central to the exhibition is Anewwork, 2011, an installation that mimics the architecture of a storefront. Vajda creates a fiction of a commercial space, satirically claiming the potentiality of 'real estate' and its anonymous public, yet producing the representation of a desire that is nonetheless authentic.

    Danna Vajda (North Vancouver, Canada, 1983) is an artist and writer who works with performative readings and scripting of objects, images, and situations. Her work uses points of contact with disparate fields such as economics, acting, policy research, fan-fiction, and graphic design as means to rethink situations in which abstract ideas are disseminated, while highlighting the pervasive fetishism that surrounding the aesthetics of knowledge.

    Rona Yefman
    Time Kills

    Yefman's project for Short Stories is Time Kills, a double portrait that plays upon ideas of innocence and experience. The installation examines the lives of two female tattoo artists, young and old, using the gallery as a space of thwarted representation. The artist's two subjects - along with their projected identities and desires - intersect to form a composite portrait of Yefman herself.

    Included as part of Time Kills is Yefman's new 30-minute video work, Dame of the World, 2011, which focuses on the artist's interactions with the older subject of the exhibition, Shanghai Kate, one of America's first female tattoo artists. Against the backdrop of an Alaskan landscape, Shanghai Kate reflects on a life spent working in a male-dominated craft, and the precarity of her future career.

    Rona Yefman (Haifa, Israel, 1972) is engaged in notions of freedom, and the gap between what we are and what we want to be. Yefman often collaborates with individuals that have formed a radical persona, documenting her relationship to them and exploring identity with photography, video, and text. Her practice reveals the humanity of her subjects, reinventing positive and complex notions of a customized conception of identity.


    SculptureCenter's exhibition program is generously supported by grants from the New York State Council on the Arts; The New York City Department of Cultural Affairs; the Kraus Family Foundation; the A Woodner Fund; the Lambent Foundation Fund of The Tides Foundation, Lily Auchincloss Foundation, Inc., and contributions from our Board of Trustees and many generous individuals.

    Short Stories is generously supported by Foundation for Contemporary Arts, New York.