Introduction to Evening II – Abbas Akhavan

Our Facebook event is officially live! Please RSVP now! We are continuing to introduce you to the speakers of our event, Evening Conversations at the ICP for Evening II at the ICP Museum. Today we are posting about our Evening II Artist, Abbas Akhavan.

Evening II: Tuesday, December 14th 6:30 – 9:00 PM at the ICP Museum 
– Abbas Akhavan, Caitlin Cherry, moderated by Daniella Rose King.


Abbas Akhavan’s practice ranges from site-specific ephemeral installations to drawing, video, sculpture, and performance. The direction of his research has been deeply influenced by the specificity of the sites where he works: the architectures that house them, the economies that surround them, and the people that frequent them. The domestic sphere, as a forked space between hospitality and hostility, has been an ongoing area of research in his practice. More recent works have shifted focus, wandering onto spaces and species just outside the home – the garden, the backyard, and other domesticated landscapes.

Akhavan has had solo exhibitions in spaces including The Delfina Foundation, in London UK; Mercer Union, in Toronto; and FLORA, in Bogota. He has participated in group exhibitions at KW Institute for Contemporary Art, Berlin; Beirut Art Centre, Beirut; and Guggenheim Museum in New York. He is the recipient of Kunstpreis Berlin (2012), The Abraaj Group Art Prize (2014), the Sobey Art Award (2015), and the Fellbach Triennial Award (2016).  In the coming year he has solo shows at Villa Stuck in Munich, Fogo Island Arts, and at the David Robert Foundation in London UK.  He is the artist in residence at the Alexander Calder Foundation in France from January utill April of 2017.

For more information about the Conversation check out the event at!

“Everyday” at La Mama Galleria

I had an opportunity to visit La Mama as a part of my internship with Visual AIDS on its opening night last week. The exhibition, entitled “Everyday,” “explores the AIDS crisis through the lens of art that looks at and evidences daily experiences and practices in response to HIV/AIDS.”


It is curated by Jean Carlomusto, Alexandra Juhasz and Hugh Ryan.  “Everyday” includes artwork by 32 artists and art organizations. A video piece I edited was a part of the exhibition, and was presented in a living room installation, which emphasized the exhibition’s theme. Visitors can choose from a menu of nine-hour video compilations by nine different artists, many whom have passed away, and some of whom are still alive and strong. These videos are part of an archive by Jean Carlomusto, from her documentary film “Compulsive Practice.” Her film will be featured at the New Museum on December 1st, World AIDS Day.


Creating this video took me about 100 hours, almost enough to meet my one-year internship school assignment, in three intense weeks. The subjects in the videos range from the homemade, where an artist talks about living with AIDS, to political demonstrations in Washington DC, an interview with a drag queen about HIV prevention, and recordings of fund raising events. Some are professionally shot, but many are simple VHS recordings from the ‘80s or more recent cell phone videos.  One common theme is that the people who are in these videos had HIV, some for many decades. Editing them was an emotionally draining task. I often overlapped my own experience of losing my partner while editing them, but then came to realize this was the best way to process grief, creating art to remember something important. At the end, I felt I developed a strong connection to each artist in the videos. I heard their voices and saw their faces again and again as during the editing process. After looking at all this material, it was a very strange to meet the curator, Jean Carlomusto at La Mama on that opening night. She must have watched the same raw video footage hundreds of times, as I did in the past three weeks. And that is a very small part of her roomful of archives from artists who died from AIDS. I immediately felt a closeness with her. She and I know some details of artists’ life through the video, as if we have friends in common. We talked about how funny Breachman by Ray Navarro was. Video by Nelson Sullivan was way ahead of its time, using a selfie style video to walk though HIV/AIDS fund raising events, drag show, and neighborhood of the Lower East Side back in the ‘80s. I also had a chance to meet one of the artists, James Wentzy, during the opening night. This was the first time I met him, but I heard his voice during so many hours of editing.

I don’t know if other people who visit the gallery have the same level of connection to these artists by watching a 10-minute piece of video. Some visitors may reflect their own experience while watching the video, while others may know the artists personally. Many weren’t even born back then and I’m not sure how they relate to the material, or comprehend the level of crisis our community underwent. Overall, I am somewhat hopeful. The process of making this art freed me from the past, and is now helping me to prepare for what’s coming over the next four years.



“Compulsive Practice”

Carolee Schneemann Further Evidence -Exhibit A at PPOW

Closing Soon! Oct 21- Dec. 3, 2016

What most struck me about Carolee Schneemann’s “Futher Evidence – Exhibit A” was the complexity of her work. Amidst it all, there appeared to be a code, as if all of the necessary information was present, but that I would have to piece it together on my own to determine precisely what she meant to say.

I particularly connected with the installation in the back room, titled Known/Unknown — Plague Column, 1996-1997. This piece is not beautiful. It is jarring, almost unpleasant to view. However, Schneemann dares the viewer to enter into the work. The materials include hay and branches with video monitors and breast implants nested in tangles of string lights on the floor. The long columns of images and text juxtaposed against needle-stricken oranges hanging from the ceiling seem like disparate forces.

Reading the press release and connecting some of the ideas to the panels of text on the wall struck a more personal chord. A friend of mine recently decided to undergo a preventive double mastectomy because she carries the breast cancer gene and wanted to effectively eliminate her chances of developing breast cancer.

Knowing that breast cancer mainly afflicts females makes this approach seem even more barbaric. Schneemann uses this term “malignant femininity” to express the female body as something that is simultaneously feared and desired. In the text panel on the wall, she writes, “She could always make a doctor flinch when he reminded her of the urgency of a mastectomy: ‘my breast is an erotic organ —as is your penis — I’m keeping it with me.” Schneemann reminds us that the body is powerful and beautiful but that it is also dangerous.

Schneemann’s comparison of cancer treatment and tactical warfare was reiterated throughout the exhibition, in the montage of clips on the video monitors, in specific sections of texts, and in the images of the bubonic plague portrayed as a witch.

I appreciate Schneemann’s research and openness in stating her questions as the artist, guiding the viewer into her own thoughts. Especially in the context of recent political events, I find Schneemann’s investigation of the female body to be even more relevant. The notion of treating disease and the body with warlike tactics feels unbelievably contemporary. Femininity as malignant, feared, and desired, extends beyond this investigation of cancer and disease. It permeates our culture and our politics in ways that we are now being forced to face. The apparent chaos of the installation illustrates the way our society handles fear and the unknown. The visual cacophony and lack of pleasing aesthetic in Schneemann’s installation makes it something that is easy to walk away from without any attempt to understand, but doing so would be exactly the opposite of how I believe our society should confront work like this and the ideas that it embodies.

Introduction to Evening I – Kelly Shindler

Our Facebook event is officially live! Please RSVP now! We are continuing to introduce you to the speakers of our event, Evening Conversations at the ICP for Evening I at the ICP Museum. Today we are posting about our Evening I moderator, Kelly Shindler. There will be upcoming posts about the Evening II guests; Abbas Akhavan, Caitlin Cherry, and Daniella Rose King.

Evening I: Tuesday, December 13th 6:30 – 9:00 PM at the ICP Museum – Nicole Eisenman and Lucas Blalock, moderated by Kelly Shindler


Kelly Shindler began her career as an associate curator at the St. Louis Art Museum in 2011. During her tenure, she organized over thirty exhibitions featuring artists such as Rosa Barba, Geta Brătescu, Josh Faught, Sheila Hicks, and Anthony McCall. She curated the midcareer survey, “Dear Nemesis, Nicole Eisenman” 1993–2013, which was recognized as the second best monographic museum show in the country in 2015 by the International Association of Art Critics. Prior to working at the Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis, Shindler was a producer of the PBS documentary series Art:21—Art in the 21st Century—from 2003 to 2011 and has organized numerous shows as an independent curator.

Shindler is the Senior Specialist for Exhibitions and Public Interpretation at the Pew Center for Arts & Heritage in Philadelphia. Prior to joining the Pew Center, she was Associate Curator at the Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis (CAM), where she organized solo exhibitions with Tala Madani, Arlene Shechet, Lari Pittman, Sheila Hicks, Anthony McCall, The Propeller Group, Rosa Barba, Mika Taanila, Geta Brătescu, Takeshi Murata, Kevin Jerome Everson, and Josh Faught, among many others. Previously, Shindler was an independent curator, organizing exhibitions such as Chicago-Scope: The Films of Tom Palazzolo 1967–1976 at The Art Institute of Chicago, and others for art spaces and festivals worldwide. Shindler holds dual MAs in Modern Art History, Theory, and Criticism and Arts Administration and Policy from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.

For more information about the Conversation check out the event at!

Introduction to Evening I – Lucas Blalock

We are officially live on Facebook with our event! Please RSVP now! We are continuing to introduce you to the speakers of our Evening Conversations at the ICP Museum. Please check back to learn about our Evening I moderator Kelly Shindler, and Evening II speakers; Abbas Akhavan, Caitlin Cherry, and Daniella Rose King. We hope to see you at the ICP Museum in December!

Evening I: Tuesday December 13th 6:30 – 9:00 PM at the ICP Museum – Nicole Eisenman and Lucas Blalock, moderated by Kelly Shindler

Blalock Meathead, 2016 Archival inkjet print 63.5 x 50.8 cm %2F 25 x 20 in.jpg

Meathead, 2016. Archival inkjet print.

Lucas Blalock’s work engages the ways that falseness or evident mechanics in photographs can bring both the picture and the pictured into sharper focus. He
pursues this through a variety of overlapping strategies (often involving Photoshop) that in some way alienate the “natural” view generally associated with photographic pictures. Blalock’s work employs this expanded notion of the photograph to consider a world that is ever more inhabited by the plasticities of the virtual.

Blalock’s pictures have been included in recent exhibitions at the Museum of Modern Art, the the Walker Art Center, the Hammer Museum, the Albright-Knox Art
Gallery, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. He has made a number of artist books including Towards a Warm Math (Hassla, 2011), Windows Mirrors Tabletops (Morel, 2013), Inside the White Cub (Peradam, 2014) and Subscription Series Vol. IIV (SPBH, 2014) and Making Memeries (SPBH, 2016). Blalock is also active as a writer and has published interviews and essays in a number of periodicals including Aperture, Foam, Mousse, and Objectiv. Blalock was born in 1978 in Asheville, North Carolina and currently lives in Brooklyn, NY.

For more information about the Conversation check out the event at!

Introduction to Evening I – Nicole Eisenman

We would like to introduce you to the speakers of our Evening Conversations at the ICP Museum. Please check back to learn about Lucas Blalock, Kelly Shindler, Abbas Akhavan, Caitlin Cherry, and Daniella Rose King. We hope to see you at the ICP Museum in December!

Evening I: Tuesday December 13th 6:30 – 9:00 PM at the ICP Museum – Nicole Eisenman and Lucas Blalock, moderated by Kelly Shindler


Shooter II, 2016. Courtesy of Nicole Eisenman and Anton Kern Gallery.

Nicole Eisenman is a painter/sculptor living and working in Brooklyn. Her work has been the subject of recent solo exhibitions at The New Museum (2016), The Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego (2015), The Institute of Contemporary Art, (Philadelphia, 2014), The Contemporary Art Museum of St. Louis (2014), and Studio Voltaire (London, 2012). She has participated in group exhibitions internationally, including Sadie Coles Gallery (London 2015) and Museum Brandhorst (Munich, 2014). Eisenman was featured in the 2012 Whitney Biennial and The Carnegie International in 2013. Eisenman was the winner of the Carnegie Prize for the 2013 Carnegie International. Her work is featured in the permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Art, the Art Institute of Chicago, and The Whitney Museum of American Art. 

In September 2015, Eisenman was awarded a MacArthur “Genius” Fellowship for her contribution to “expanding the critical and expressive capacity of the Western figurative tradition through works that engage contemporary social issues and phenomena.” Her work is represented by Anton Kern in New York, Susanne Vielmetter in Los Angeles, and Barbara Weiss in Berlin. She is currently working on a sculpture project in Germany for Skulptur Projekte Münster, which opens in June of 2016.

For more information about the Conversation check out the event at!


Candidates for the 2017 ICP-Bard MFA in Advanced Photographic Studies are pleased to present two evening conversations at the ICP Museum. Each evening will begin with presentations by two artists and a moderated discussion, followed by a Q&A with the audience.

These conversations are intended to foster an open dialogue between students, artists, and the general public. The cross-pollination of ideas that result is also meant to inspire a more fluid, interdisciplinary exchange between all aspects of the ICP community.

Evening I: Nicole Eisenman and Lucas Blalock, moderated by Kelly Shindler

Nicole Eisenman and Lucas Blalock approach picture making with an expanded notion of their depictive medium (painting and photography), and their shared histories. By considering the pictorial space between the real and the virtual, representation opens up a conversation where pictures mediate and reflect on the material and emotional fabric of our contemporary experience. How do their respective working methods reveal a concurrent attraction and distrust, perhaps even humor, over the appearances of things?

Evening II: Caitlin Cherry and Abbas Akhavan, moderated by Daniella Rose King

Through their response to the exhibition space as a terrain, where access gets negotiated from the inside and the outside, Caitlin Cherry and Abbas Akhavan’s work address the formation and institution of boundaries. Whether paintings are set up on catapults or the entrance of the gallery is obstructed by sandbags, each artist subverts the functional use of objects to question the history of contested territories and the sites of conflict from which they individually draw.

Tuesday and Wednesday, December 13 and 14, 2016, from 6:30 – 9:00 pm.
ICP Museum, 250 Bowery, New York, NY, 10012. Free and open to the public.

More Information: Evening I & Evening II

About The ICP-Bard MFA in Advanced Photographic Studies: The ICP-Bard MFA program offers an exploration into the ways in which the photograph operates in society, emphasizing creative vision and openness to examining the many iterations of the image, from photography to digital imaging, installation, and video. By considering how photographs are created, presented, discussed, used, and documented, students gain an intimate knowledge of the ways in which images increasingly structure modern society and consciousness.

The ICP-Bard MFA class 2017 candidates: Sasha Bush, Hyungjo Moon, Marla Hernandez, Sam Margevicius, Melchior de Tinguy, Gülsüm Kavuncu, Nechama Winston, Emile Rubino, Cristina Velasquez.


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