7 September – 19 October 2019, Tanya Leighton, Berlin
Preview: 6 September, 7-9 pm
Tanya Leighton is pleased to present ‘Fabula Rasa’ — a group exhibition that investigates the literary form of the fable from six artistic positions. Recognising the blend of animate and inanimate objects that lays at the core of fables, ‘Fabula Rasa’ focuses on the potential of this interplay to critically reflect the human condition.
The exhibition title is a word play on the concept of the clean slate or ‘tabula rasa’. Life begins without knowledge and lived experience grows our understanding of the world. As much as fables relay shared memories and moral values, they also offer a way to recalibrate ourselves. The works in the exhibition propose perspectives from which to do so.
Sam Anderson’s interest in the dramaturgical narratives of everyday life often leads her to the recast characters that traditionally play set roles. In this case, the tragic-comic figure of the clown, a figure who both entertains and critiques society, is her subject. Both an outsider and an integral part of a community, the classic humorist tells fables of everyday life to question the ways we live together. This ‘clown’, however, is a fabulous and somewhat menacing caricature of itself — a replica dolphin scull, masked with a teardrop, a red nose, and a row of teeth so long it is hard to discern a smile or a grimace.
Antonio Ballester Moreno’s pictographic paintings are distillations of the fundamental ways in which humanity defines itself in relation to the larger world — knowledge, morality and the nature of being. Ballester Moreno’s geometric forms and palette of primary colours speak to an archaic image-memory, exploring what it actually means to be humane. Trees, mountains, moons and suns constitute a universal lexicon while echoing the building blocks of the ancient fable.
The hand-painted animation by Matt Copson introduces archetypal figures from European mythologies into a dystopian limbo. Here, a headless fox circles a maniacally self-obsessed woodpecker whose monologue details a compulsion to define the object of its love. As an allegory for the artist at work or sociopathic manoeuvring, Copson’s parable delivers an unsettling moral about how we relate to the world around us.
Notions of physical malady recur in the work of Jesse Darling. A winding crutch and a bent walking stick emerge like charmed snakes from an altar-like pedestal that floats above the ground. Part of Darling’s larger project, ‘The Ballad of Saint Jerome’, this sculpture retools the eponymous fable to examine the contemporary relationship between healer and healed.
Michael Dean’s sculptures begin in the realm of language – as a means of expressing love, anger, or grasping for understanding. In their translation from text to thing, Dean’s objects and icons become stand-ins for larger narratives. Considering what it means to create a physical extension of oneself, Dean’s concrete and rebar sculptures are human-scaled, bear traces of their making, and introduce new anthropomorphous characters into the exhibition space.
Staring into space through hollow eyes, the vacant, thinking and feeling figure by Austrian artist Heinz Frank is a residue of a body in distress. Part tree, part box, part mask and part spine, its anatomy consists of natural and artificial components that deconstruct the impressive mythical figure of the lion to an assemblage of objects — some quotidian, some bizarre.
17 – 20 October 2019
Preview: 16 October
'Christine Roland & Ruby Barber'
Hiroka Yamashita Kurfürstenstraße 156
Bauhaus: Utopia in Crisis, curated by Professor Daniel Sturgis
Camberwell Space, Camberwell College of Arts (forthcoming)
16 September – 9 November 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 at Galleria d'Arte Moderna, Milan
11 November 2019 – 5 January 2020
Phaidon Contemporary Artist Series
Text by Julia Bryan-Wilson, Jeannine Tang, and Lanka Tattersall
Beethoven – World.Citizen.Music Bundeskunsthalle, Bonn
17 December 2019 – 26 April 2020
...and other such stories
Chicago Architecture Biennial
19 September 2019 – 5 January 2020
Feminist Avant-Garde of the 1970s. Works from the VERBUND COLLECTION, Centre de Cultura Contemporània de Barcelona, Spain
19 July – 1 December 2019
Maskulinitäten Bonner Kunstverein, Kölnischer Kunstverein und Kunstverein für die Rheinlande und Westfalen, Düsseldorf
1 September – 24 November 2019
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: Melanie Isabel García
Registrar: Henry Babbage
Finance Manager: Stefan Schuster
Tanya Leighton GmbH
Kurfürstenstraße 156 & 24/25
Open Tuesday – Saturday
11am – 6pm and by appointment
In My Little Corner of the World
15 April – 5 June 2016, Studio Voltaire, London
For her commission at Studio Voltaire, Hayes has looked specifically at queer and feminist archives across the US and UK which document gay rights, and women’s liberation. Working with both the content of these archives and how they are disseminated, Hayes has restaged and re–presented material that ranges from the seemingly mundane or administrative, to more affective forms.
Hayes’ new work, In My Little Corner of the World, Anyone Would Love You, is a five-channel video installation projected onto a large plywood structure that bisects the gallery. Referencing hoarding and notice boards used as sites of communication for action and support groups, Hayes’ new work restages material extracted from newsletters and small-run publications produced by feminist, lesbian and effeminist political collectives in the US and UK from 1955-1977. Thirteen readers/performers, from the contemporary queer and feminist community in Philadelphia, read the texts aloud. The work draws out the complex relationships between communication and isolation, as well as marking some of the critical debates that circulated in the early formation of lesbian, feminist, lesbian-feminist and gay liberation political positions. Filmed within a domestic setting, the ‘home’ is posited as a political site, a site where politics is made, where political language was written and read and where individuals and collectives gathered the language to define their political identities and aspirations.
As an extension of the commission, Hayes has produced a poster that will be fly-posted on sites across London throughout the duration of the exhibition. The poster contains a tightly cropped image taken of the Gay Liberation Front’s 1971 manifesto. The photograph’s orientation is intentionally altered, changing the way in which we view the image. The original photograph was taken by John Chesterman and is now housed at Hall-Carpenter Archives at the London School of Economics.
The artist is attentive to the moments in which communities are built and ideas are shared through the action of reading. Through these methods of enactment the artist is engaging in what she calls “speech acts”, highlighting the friction between common activities and personal actions to examine how collective consciousness is built. Hayes is interested in the limits of gender as well as the historic and contemporary ways in which feminist and queer political collectives continually expand and constrain gender expression. These new works serve to interrogate the genealogy of our current moment in feminism and queer politics.
The material reinterpreted in Hayes’ new commission was drawn from research undertaken in collaboration with Rose Gibbs (London) and Tara Burk and Heather Holmes (US). The archives used include: The Hall Carpenter Archives at the London School of Economics; the Gay News Photo Archive at Bishopsgate Library; The George Padmore Institute in London; The William Way Archives in Philadelphia; The Daughters of Bilitis Archives in the Gale Cenage Learning Databases; and the Herstory X newsletter archives at the University of Pennsylvania Library.
Sharon Hayes’ commission is a part of the third and final year of How to work together, a shared programme of commissioning and research by Chisenhale Gallery, The Showroom and Studio Voltaire. The exhibition has been co-commissioned with The Common Guild in Glasgow.
How to work together is supported by a capacity building and match funding grant from Arts Council England through Catalyst Arts, with additional funding in this third and final year from Bloomberg and Jerwood Charitable Foundation and with additional funding for the 2016 commissions from Cockayne – Grants for the arts and The London Community Foundation.
Sharon Hayes’ commission is supported by Charlotte Ford, Haro & Bilge Cumbusyan and Valeria & Gregorio Napoleone.
With thanks to Hauser & Wirth, London and Chisenhale Gallery for in-kind technical suppport.