Debuting a suite of new large-scale paintings, Lorna Simpson’s Darkening finds the artist returning to and building upon themes and motifs at the center of her practice: explorations focused on the nature of representation, identity, gender, race, and history. For more than 30 years, Simpson’s powerful works have entangled viewers in an equivocal web of meaning, drawing upon techniques of collage through the use of found materials, often culled from the pages of vintage Jet and Ebony magazines. In ‘Darkening,’ Simpson continues to thread dichotomies of figuration and abstraction with vast and enthralling tableaux that subsume spliced photos and fragmented text, abstracted beyond comprehension. Equally arresting and poetic, the paintings engage viewers with layers of paradox, capturing the mystifying allure of an arctic landscape in inky washes of blacks, grays, and startling blues. Darkening will be on view through 26 July at Hauser & Wirth 548 West 22nd Street, New York. photographs courtesy of Hauser & Wirth
Adrian Piper: Concepts and Intuitions, 1965-2016 is the most comprehensive West Coast exhibition to date of the work of Adrian Piper (b. 1948, New York). It is also the first West Coast museum presentation of Piper’s works in more than a decade, and her first since receiving the Golden Lion Award for Best Artist at the 56th Venice Biennale of 2015 and Germany’s Käthe Kollwitz Prize in 2018. Organized by The Museum of Modern Art, this expansive retrospective features more than 270 works gathered from public and private collections from around the world, and encompasses a wide range of mediums that Piper has explored for over 50 years: drawing, photography, works on paper, video, multimedia installations, performance, painting, sculpture, and sound.
Piper’s groundbreaking, transformative work has profoundly shaped the form and content of Conceptual art since the 1960s, exerting an incalculable influence on artists working today. Her investigations into the political, social, and spiritual potential of Conceptual art frequently address gender, race, and xenophobia through incisive humor and wit, and draw on her long-standing involvement with philosophy and yoga.
For this exhibition, the Hammer is partnering with the Institute of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles (ICA LA) to present Piper’s work What It’s Like, What It Is #3, a large-scale mixed-media installation addressing racial stereotypes. Adrian Piper: Concepts and Intuitions, 1965-2016 in on view through January 6 at Hammer Museum 10899 Wilshire Boulevard, Los Angeles. photographs by Summer Bowie
Benrubi Gallery, in collaboration with the International Center of Photography, presents "Southern Rites," the new exhibition from award-winning photographer Gillian Laub, whose previous exhibition at the gallery, "Common Ground," dealt with the relationship between Israeli Jews, Israeli Arabs, and Palestinians. With "Southern Rites," she again takes on a story steeped in generations-long tensions, and tells it with power, sensitivity and enduring poignancy. "Southern Rites" is a provocative twelve-year visual study of one community’s struggle to confront longstanding issues of race and equality. In 2002, Laub was invited to Mt. Vernon, Georgia, to photograph its segregated homecoming celebrations. She kept returning to the community and in 2009, The New York Times Magazine published a photo-essay by Laub titled, “A Prom Divided,” which documented Georgia’s Montgomery County High School’s racially segregated prom rituals. Laub’s photographs ignited a firestorm of national outrage that, remarkably, led the community to finally integrate the proms. Laub continued to travel to Mt. Vernon to document the aftermath, which was welcomed in some circles and decried in others. In 2011, amid newfound hope, the murder of a young black man (portrayed in Laub’s earlier prom series) by an older white town resident reopened old wounds. Through her intimate portraits, first-hand testimony, and video installation, Laub reveals in vivid color the horror and humanity of these complex, intertwined narratives. Southern Rites will be on view until June 27, 2015 at Benrubi Gallery, 521 West 26th Street, New York. You can also purchase a monograph (Damiani) of the work here.