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
19 – 20 January 2019, KW Institute for Contemporary Art, Berlin
Berlin-based artist Jimmy Robert (born in 1975, Guadeloupe, FR) presents Joie noire, a performance that uses KW as a stage to investigate the worlds of disco and death. Robert’s new work starts with an examination of two bodies in the context of the history of clubbing, and asks: What is the nature of a body’s visibility? What is the role of desire? What and who remains when the party is over? And how will the show go on? Considering the nightclub as a space of rhythm and sensuality, as well as assessing its potential to host underground celebration, Joie noire dissects elements of club culture. It blocks out the white light of the gallery to embrace the vernacular of the dancefloor, and by this means opens up a critical meditation on the legacy of the 1980s with specific regard to AIDS, activism, gender and race. Joie noire is produced with support from The Hunterian, University of Glasgow, and Tanya Leighton Gallery, Berlin. Thanks to Susanna Kirschnick and Christine Fenzl at gOlab, and Dominic Paterson.
This performance is the first in a three-part Pause series dedicated to the late Ian White (1971–2013) and comprises work by White’s friends and collaborative associates—Jimmy Robert, Emma Hedditch, and Every Ocean Hughes. An artist, performer, curator, teacher and writer based in London and Berlin, White’s work responded critically to the role of institutional infrastructures in the production of art. His work often raised the question how the limits of these infrastructures could be exposed, tested and disrupted through moments of public performance. The 2019 Pause program will explore how White’s legacy continues to influence contemporary performance and durational collaboration. The 2019 Pause series is part of Reflect-Suspend-Dismantle, a year-long program around the work of Ian White, which takes place at various locations in Berlin, and is delivered in collaboration with curator Kirsty Bell, Arsenal Institute for Film and Video Art, DAAD Artists-in-Berlin Program, and the Estate of Ian White.
Jimmy Robert’s multidisciplinary practice encompasses performance, photography and film. His work often explores the politics of spectatorship, reworking canonical and avant-garde performances and hereby challenging their racial and gendered readings. Recent solo exhibitions include Jeu de Paume, Paris (2012); Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, (2012); Power Plant, Toronto, (2013); Museum M, Leuven (2015); La Synagogue De Delme, France (2016); Western Front, Vancouver, and Peer Gallery, London (both in 2017). Robert’s performances have been presented at Tate Britain, London, (2004); MoMA, New York (2014) and Migros Museum, Zurich (2015). Robert’s most recent performance work Imitation of Lives was co-commissioned by Performa17 and the Glass House, and took place in New York in November 2017. Robert lives and works in Berlin.
Curator: Mason Leaver-Yap