Young Curators on the Art of New Ideas

In the spirit of celebrating new ideas, NYAB asked the folks behind “Young Curators, New Ideas II” at PPOW Gallery to share thoughts on what’s recently been on their minds… with funny, thoughtful, and unexpected results.

poster for

"Young Curators, New Ideas II" Exhibition

at P.P.O.W.
in the Lower East Side area
This event has ended - (2009-08-06 - 2009-08-28)

In Features Main Article 3 by Teri Duerr 2009-08-06 print

Las Hermanas Iglesias, ''Lost Glove'' (2009). Collection of 62 single gloves found in Paris (October 2008-April 2009) and gouache on paper, variable - Curator Jose Ruiz. Image courtesy of PPOW Gallery.

“Young Curators, New Ideas II” organized by Amani Olu, is made up of seven micro-exhibitions from a diverse coterie of emerging New York curators. The show promises to be a vibrant mix of perspectives that “experiments with curatorial practice and an exploration of ideas as physical form.” In the show’s open spirit of engagement, several of the featured curators took time to share some new ideas with NY Art Beat.

AMANI OLU – Curator, “Young Curators, New Ideas II”
NEW IDEA ON HIS MIND: Photography as we’ll know it after photography as we knew it
“Currently on view at Bose Pacia is a group show I curated titled “After Color,” which examines how artists employ conceptual black-and-white photography to strengthen their ideas and how such usage comments on the dominance of large-scale, color photography as seen in the contemporary art world over the last 25 years. One of nine of the artist included in this exhibition is Talia Chetrit. In her series Gradient Tool, Chetrit composes eight black-and-white prints from images created with Photoshop’s gradient tool. Once converted into 8 x 10 inch negatives, she returns to the darkroom to make traditional contact prints on silver gelatin paper. The result is a formal study of tone and the way that light renders space.

Chetrit sidesteps conventional methods of using Photoshop by reversing technological advancements in photographic production. Taking into account that these works originate as digital fabrications and then revert to traditional silver gelatin prints, Chetrit raises the following questions: Are these images actually photographs? Does referring to a traditional photographic process prove that this is photography? Furthermore, what does this work say about technology’s continued influence on photography and how images are interpreted? Chetrit’s manipulation of the trajectory of technological advancements within photography makes room for a critical discourse around the inherent contradictions within the medium.”

THE NEW IDEA IN HIS SHOW: “Young Curators, New Ideas II”
If you mine the minds of seven curatorial talents, what sorts of priceless nuggets about contemporary art presentation and perspective are to be found? Broadening the scope of the photography-centric original “Young Curators, New Ideas,” this year’s show includes sculpture, video, and multi-media installation.

Karen Archey and Tara White, ''Emma the Curator'' (2009). C-print, 15 x 23 inches - Curator Karen Archey. Image courtesy of PPOW Gallery.Jason Lazarus, ''Self portrait as an artist making something contemporary'' (2004). Archival inkjet print, 17 x 23 inches - Curator Karen Archey. Image courtesy of PPOW Gallery.

KAREN ARCHEY – Curator, “Low Museum”
THE NEW IDEA ON HER MIND: Redefining greatness and re-evaluating success
“I’ve struggled with the concept of greatness and often become hung up on the term. Greatness doesn’t necessitate a qualitative ‘goodness’ to me. The concept marries well with ambition as well as failure, effacing any lingering sentiment of idealism or culturally determined success. Greatness may be quotidian and ugly, but never boring… kind of like Divine in John Waters’ movies.

This definition brings to mind the exhibition space I started with a friend in the Lower East Side around October 2008. Diving blindly into the project, I had moved to New York merely two weeks before its opening. The space held countless events and exhibitions featuring emerging artists for about six months, draining our pocketbooks as well as our morale. Although I became acquainted with some of the most ingenious artists and gallerists in the LES, the project ended almost as invisibly as it began. Though ambivalently, the quality and magnitude of this experience proved to be ‘great,’ compelling me to reevaluate the definition of art world success.”

Through an installation of archived refuse from past curatorial projects and two video projects, Low Museum lays bare the curatorial process and asks, “What is the process through which one becomes a curator of contemporary art?” “How does popular culture view the role of a contemporary art curator?” For mostbet sign up and registration at Mostbet Casino, you need to visit the official website and provide your personal information, as well as confirm your email address. Registration is free and provides full access to all games and bonuses.

Jaret Vadera, ''1973 (When you grow up...)'' (2005). Manipulated video footage projected through translucent painted plexiglas screen, variable - Curator, Megha Ralapati. Image courtesy of PPOW Gallery.
MEGHA RALAPATI – Curator, ”1973”
THE NEW IDEA ON HER MIND: The lauding of “PLOT/09”
“I love the idea of ‘PLOT/09,’ a public art initiative presented by Creative Time, particularly the first installment titled ‘This World & Nearer Ones.’ The project features 19 artworks by contemporary artists displayed at existing spaces all over Governors Island. It energizes people to explore or re-explore Governors Island, a beautiful and historically fascinating place that has served important military functions for the last few centuries—and it’s free to travel to! I think this project perfectly embodies what public art should do, which is to successfully operate on a number of levels by presenting relevant contemporary art at venues that are accessible and safe for the widest number of people to visit.”

Using the re-appropriation and reinterpretation process embodied in Jaret Vadera‘s 1973 (When you grow up…) as a theoretical springboard, she explores the way in which the mind constructs “new” ideas and how often our thoughts are “merely reflections of information that have been filtered into our consciousness.”

Taylor Baldwin, ''I ain't afraid of no ghosts'' (2009). Mixed media installation, 48 x 54 x 54 inches - Curator Nico Wheadon. Image courtesy of PPOW Gallery. Boyd Holbrook, ''Harlan'' (2009). 14.6 x 30 inches - Curator Nico Wheadon. Image courtesy of PPOW Gallery.

NICO WHEADON – Curator, “Comet Fever”
THE NEW IDEA ON HER MIND: The wisdom and folly of the 4th grade on our potential future selves
“In the fourth grade, Mrs. _____ asked me to write a letter to my future self. I remember being hungry and totally annoyed by the prophetic intentions of the exercise. So, instead of outlining the future I envisioned for myself, I drafted a list [in order of edibility] of all the items in the classroom that I would eat if nobody was watching: paint chips, pink chalk, world map, etc. Last week, I was reminded of this letter and my apathy when reading an article in New Scientist that discussed how a combination of real-time web search and user input at FutureMe (a website where you can send yourself an email scheduled to arrive at any date within the next 30 years) could be analyzed to gauge individual hopes and fears whilst forecasting communal action and reaction. The formative authoring capacities of our online footsteps coupled with an ever-present necessity to reintroduce hope into global equations of cause-and-effect could work to open up a site of creative inquiry inside of which we can write a better future into being.”

A glimpse into the “communal hallucination” induced by the fever and allure of the unknown, occult, and uncontrollable that we all love and fear, and love to fear. Works by Taylor Baldwin, Boyd Holbrook, Dawit L. Petros, Segtram, and Noelle Lorraine Williams contrast the world of science and logic, and “render the world less fathomable and more magical.”

Michele Abeles, ''2nd of January'' (2008). Archival pigment print, 24 x 30 inches - Curator Women In Photography. Image courtesy of PPOW Gallery. Tierney Gearon, Untitled (2001) C-print, 20 x 24 inches - Curator Women In Photography. Image courtesy of PPOW Gallery.

WOMEN IN PHOTOGRAPHY – (Amy Elkins & Cara Phillips), Curators, “Deconstructing the Female Gaze”
THE NEW IDEA ON THEIR MIND: The thrill of techno-ization and democratization in art
“Curating has evolved considerably in the last several years from DIY exhibitions and self-publishing to virtual showcases and online magazines. People are stepping into the role of ‘curator’ by employing the technologies offered by the Internet. By doing this, they can reach a worldwide audience with efficacy, rapidity with very little monetary investment, making the web one of the most valuable tools in showcasing art today. These DIY practices are spilling over from the virtual art world into the physical art world. It is allowing the artists to be more involved, it is breaking down the traditional roles that in the past have separated artist from curator, it is questioning the value of art and it is allowing for more experimentation—all of which to us is quite exciting.”

THE NEW IDEA IN THEIR SHOW: “Deconstructing the Female Gaze”
Through the highly individualistic work and methods of women artists Michele Abeles, Tierney Gearon, Els Vanden Meersch, and Victoria Sambunaris, the stereotypical assumptions about how women interpret the world through photographic practice is closely considered—then tossed aside with art that transcends gender.

Tom Fruin, ''Necktie Party'' (2009). Hand bent neon tubes and electrical components, variable dimensions. - Curator Cecilia Jurado. Image courtesy of Cecilia Jurado. Norma Markley, ''Pom-Pom Clouds'' (2009). Neon, 19” x 19” x 3” - Curator Cecilia Jurado. Image courtesy of Cecilia Jurado.

”For me, last year was filled with unexpected deaths and with a big echo of the crisis. Although its very ending was like a dawn, the whole experience of a debacle—unannounced—made 2009 a year where I stopped in almost every single step while walking. Every show I curated this year was a question of mortality, of its values, of its ironies, of its memories. From ‘Two to Dominate,’ (where Eunah Kim built a fantastic new happy world to subjugate her lung cancer), passing for ‘El Fin’ (where Christoph Draeger made jokes of ‘the end,’ and Miguel Aguirre reviewed recent tragedies), till ‘Bulletproof’ (perhaps the pick of the investigation, where Milagros de la Torre showed crime evidence, the protagonists, but also, the protection).”

The project presented for “Young Curators” is literally a bright ending. White neon pieces by Norma Markley and Tom Fruin bring to mind the poetic space like the myth of the tunnel we pass through as we move towards the light at the end of it. It’s a journey that is paradoxical, hopeful, frightening, humorous and mysterious.

In addition to Karen Archey, Megha Ralapati, Nico Wheadon, Women in Photography, and Cecilia Jurado, “Young Curators, New Ideas II” includes micro-exhibitions curated by Jose Ruiz and Cleopatra’s (Bridget Donahue, Bridget Finn, Kate McNamara & Erin Somerville).

Teri Duerr

Teri Duerr. Teri lives in Brooklyn where she co-runs Horse+Dragon NYC, a boutique agency that puts creative talents to work on publicity, editing, design, and events/exhibitions for artists, writers and nonprofit friends. She has spent much of the last year launching publicity campaigns for films at Tribeca, Sundance, SXSW, MoMA, and for television broadcast. In addition to being a contributing editor for the highly dubious culture publication Chief Magazine, and a book reviews editor for Mystery Scene, she spent four years as director and editorial mentor for the Minneapolis teen girls’ magazine Chicas in the Mix, followed In 2000 by editor in chief posts at events & culture magazines Tokyo Scene and Kansai Scene in Japan. Her editorial and photo production work has appeared in places like Best Life, The Source, Men’s Health, Organic Style, Vogue Korea, Vogue China, and most recently Tom Tom Magazine and CODE. » See other writings


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