To Name A Few
27 April – 22 June 2019, Tanya Leighton, Berlin
Preview: Friday, 26 April 7–9 pm
I am sitting here with this feeling, and it is a familiar feeling, and it is my heart.
I am needing to reassure myself that I am not writing this letter to you, that I am
just writing it, simply writing it, simply letting it wander out.
I feel sad. My heart, my chest, what fills my chest, something like the taste of
copper, like sucking on a penny, like licking a 9 volt battery and getting a little
shock. It’s here, a little shock.
It has never been so apparent, the workings of shame embedded in my being so
old and outside, yet all the same my own deep thing to tend to, untangle, air out
And I guess it’s true, now I am writing to you. I am writing to you from me and
also to myself.
But isn’t that a letter?
The linear scroll is scraping against the pavement.
In my delusions I am literally some kind of a hero and that is embarrassing.
What holds the reigns, I think of some force, nameless, shapeless within and
outside this bodily container. Sending signals into outer space and actually
I can tell you the joy of this spring day, the brightness of 4PM light, the spirits
that burst through at this time. It’s almost too much of a drunken feeling to
manage. It’s almost too much.
There is my heart again. You know, I haven’t been able to feel my heart in so
And now I pause, and just stare at my hands, still on the board.
And in this moment I decided this letter is no longer for you, because I know
that you don’t want it.
This letter is for my heart, and I can say anything to my heart.
Right now, I am saying to my heart, I am sorry. I am sorry that I wrapped you up in cotton batting and put you away all tampered down and quiet. I am sorry that I hid you from myself, that I turned away from you while we were sleeping, and on purpose, many times.
I am sorry that I turned away from you, my heart. My beautiful, my tender, my sensitive, my loving, my strong, strong heart. And I am so sorry that I put you to rest so often as to no longer feel anything between my ribs and the sky.
To Name a Few
Tanya Leighton, Berlin
Gallery Weekend 2019
26 April – 22 June 2019
David Diao, 2018
Delmonico books — Prestel
With contributions from Philip Tinari, Michael Corris, Pi Li, Sarah K. Rich, Felicia Chen, Kerry Doran
Recipient of the 2019 Arnaldo Pomodoro Sculpture Prize
Solo exhibition opens in Fall 2019
Galleria d'Arte Moderna, Milan
Phaidon Contemporary Artist Series
Text by Julia Bryan-Wilson, Jeannine Tang, and Lanka Tattersall
...and other such stories
Chicago Architecture Biennial
Chicago Cultural Center
19 September 2019 – 5 January 2020
Fondazione Morra Greco, Naples
Tanya Leighton is delighted to announce that the Museum of Modern Art, New York has acquired Marianne Wex's Let's Take Back Our Space: 'Female' and 'Male' Body Language as a Result of Patriarchal Structures, 1977
Tanya Leighton Gallery, Berlin, established in 2008, is dedicated to developing a cross-disciplinary, trans-generational gallery programme with off-site projects, in collaboration with artists, filmmakers, critics, art historians, and curators. Its international exhibition programme reflects a variety of opinions and practices as well as Leighton’s associations with American and British experimental cinema, artist’s film and video, performance, minimal and conceptual art.
Director: Simon Gowing
Director: Patrick Armstrong
Project Manager: Marie Egger
Gallery Manager: Jessica Aimufua
Registrar: Henry Babbage
Finance Manager: Stefan Schuster
Tanya Leighton GmbH
Kurfürstenstraße 156 & 24/25
Open Tuesday – Saturday
11am – 6pm and by appointment
26 November 2015 – 27 February 2016, Tanya Leighton, Berlin
Tanya Leighton is pleased to announce Endless Love, the first solo exhibition at the gallery by American artist Sam Anderson.
Anderson’s multidisciplinary practice focuses on the peripheral, the bit-part actors of life that arrive to bring about plot development and then slink off to the fringe. These figures are studied and organized, but never defined by Anderson, who asks her viewers to regard their personalities as carefully as they would themselves. Arranged into grid-like patterns that call to mind urban planning, public smoking areas, playgrounds, and other spaces that have been imagined and built for human interaction, Anderson’s sculptures are subject to the impulse of an architect they have never met.
Though the filmic is an underlying theme in much of Anderson’s sculptural work, the artist has not, until now, exhibited her videos in three years. Endless Love includes a looping excerpt of a new video of the same title, which follows the artist’s mother to New Zealand, where she was filming a horror movie, and West Virginia, where she had a log cabin built on land inherited from her mother and father. These scenes of ostensible documentary are interrupted by clips from a 1979 Western that Anderson’s mother starred in, as well as stock footage. Throughout the video, Anderson’s mother reads a monologue of musings compiled by the artist, which include conversations with taxi drivers, as well as fragments from the play A Long Day’s Journey Into Night by Eugene O’Neill – chosen almost at random as an example of 20th century writing that confuses familiar emotional colloquialisms with deep meaning. Our over-exposure to canned language, like the dialogue taken from O’Neill’s play, colours the way we are able to synthesize and vocalize emotion, making it increasingly easy to act out pat, scripted replies in moments of pain or existential suffering.
The artist’s mother also appears in the form of a clay sculpture holding a gong, modelled after a portrait drawn when she was in her early thirties. She is joined by taxis, tractors, and the ancillary actors who contextualize her: a farmer, an actress, a musician, a pregnant kiwi bird, a taxi driver, and a stalker.
Much of Endless Love seems to question the idea of objects holding transcendent power. Swept up bits of broken glass, orange peels, paper, and wood lie in the center of roughly cut pieces of sheepskin and leather. They could be unwrapped gifts still sitting in their wrapping or opened greeting cards with a dirty dollar bill inside. Presents as emblems of love or emotionality come under scrutiny - Anderson interrupts the video Endless Love with a short clip made by her partner, who gave it to her as a gift in 2013. Her own gift is also on view: a pair of moulded in-ear monitors, fit specifically to her partner’s ear canals, which are printed with nubile bathing beauties. They play their own insular soundtrack.
Anderson’s interests and themes are as far reaching as they are intimate. Her artworks engage through their familiarity, but reveal far more when they ask us to think how they came to be familiar. Where narratives break and slip, there is space for self questioning, reformatting viewpoints of desire, role-playing, and examination of the material world both man-made and organic. Anderson’s work cultivates a cinematic positioning of the mind that switches in and out of multiple genres of comprehension.