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
6 September – 9 November 2013, Tanya Leighton, Berlin
Sharon Hayes will install Public Appearances — her second solo exhibition at Tanya Leighton — featuring a selection of new and recent works. Among the existing works to be shown is the film installation Gay Power (1971/2007/2012) and the audio installation Sarah H. Gordon's Strike Journal, May 1970 (2012), both of which are being shown in Berlin for the first time. These two collaborative works expand on the methods in which Hayes engages the present moment, as one that reaches both backwards and forwards. Both works continue Hayes' earlier engagements with the period of political activity in the 1960s and 70s, but in these instances Hayes collaborates with individuals – feminist author, artist, and leading women’s rights activist Kate Millett and historian Sarah H. Gordon – who lived through that moment, asking them to revisit and reinterpret material they generated in the early 1970s.
Gay Power, at the core of the exhibition, is a collaboration between Hayes, Millett, and the Women's Liberation Cinema (WLC). The film installation utilizes footage that Millett and the WLC shot of New York’s Second Annual Christopher Street Day Parade in 1971, which celebrates the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender community, and campaigns for liberation. Hayes and Millett have created a voiceover soundtrack to accompany — or speak with — the footage. As two voices from different generations, Hayes and Millett address the footage and the “movement” from two distinct historical positions. Neither voice commands authority over the moving image, demonstrating both the coherence and incoherence of historical documentation.
Throughout her work in performance, video, photography, sound, and installation, Hayes explores the connections between love, politics, and history, through various forms of address. The recent works in the exhibition include: I Saved Her a Bullet (2012) — an over-head projection of Anita Bryant, the notoriously homophobic singer and beauty pageant queen, being hit in the face with a pie while crusading against gay rights; and a sound installation comprised of two vinyl records titled Sarah H. Gordon's Strike Journal, May 1970, specially designed and pressed by Hayes, records Sarah Gordon reading from a journal she wrote as a student. The journal entries document the 1970 student strike at Smith College, Massachusetts, one of a series of student strikes protesting the Vietnam War, racism and the National Guard killings at Kent State on May 4, 1970. Gordon’s perspective articulates aspects of that significant student movement that are not often celebrated, such as the mundane details of the organizational apparatus of the strike and the confusion about committing oneself to a collective position. Gordon’s voice registering the decades of difference between her written self and the one reading, complicates the transmission of this “authentic” witness to history. Hayes’ interest in Gordon’s re-speaking of her own text, elaborates the artist’s investment in voice as an embodied medium of speech. Sarah H. Gordon’s Strike Journal, May 1970 is situated within a larger collaborative work, Space-Set/Set-Space (2012), a variable collection of bare plywood platforms, walls and seating units, produced by Andrea Geyer and Hayes as stagings for their individual and collective work.
In the video loop Her Voice (2012), Hayes cycles through descriptions of female voices taken from newspapers dating from the 19th century to the present. Ranging from ostensibly objective accounts to critical judgments, these citations reveal ways in which voices are evaluated and, as a result, what borders are imposed around an individual. Implicit in these citations are assumptions of gender, an important factor in the complex relationship between speech and its reception and interpretation. By substituting first-hand reports for actual speech, Her Voice explores the tension among the written, verbal, and embodied voices.
For a large window installation titled Join Us (2012/2013), reconfigured specifically for this exhibition, Hayes organizes approximately 200 flyers inviting participation in various political actions from the 1960s to the present. Collaborating with individuals and organizations across the United States, Join Us, is a collection positing the flyer as a speech act, one that proposes itself to a receiver. May 1st (2012) continues Hayes’ interest in the intersections between private and public, personal and political, life. The five letterpress prints compose an address to an unnamed lover — about and around the potent pleasure and despair of political desire.