Carrie Schneider “Revenge Body”

Candice Madey

poster for Carrie Schneider “Revenge Body”
[Image: Carrie Schneider "Choose Well" (2022) unique chromogenic photograph made in camera, 52 x 40 in.]

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CANDICE MADEY presents the gallery’s second solo exhibition with NY-based Carrie Schneider, Revenge Body, presenting six unique photographs and an installation. The title of the show lifts tabloid-speak used to describe the action of drastically modifying one’s figure–often through punishing self–discipline– to seek retribution.

The longing for vengeance is inextricable from desire: feral, embodied, with a need to be seen. Such desire crops a total image into a fraction of its sum–zooming in on a captive subject to the point of pixelation. This urge to capture and exhaust the subject(s) is a frequent theme in Schneider’s new series of photographs in which recurring faces transcend from feature to testament of aspiration, control, and absolution. Using a camera hand-constructed by the artist, she produces analog scrambles. The images layer and build through iteration and chance. Developed through a tenuous process of multiple exposures, Schneider finds comfort in killing the image, the method being a subtle kind of mechanical evisceration.

The exhibition centers on two iconic women: 1970s Austrian actress Romy Schneider in the film L’important C’est d’Aimer directed by Andrzej Żuławski, and American actress Sissy Spacek in the 1976 film Carrie directed by Brian De Palma. With the explicit comedy of the subject’s play on her name–faces of Carries and Schneiders repeated ad infinitum–the photos are simultaneously playful and chaotic; with jagged edges and mangled presentation, the series appears as a “working through” of something that persists without direct explanation.

Schneider’s images strike dissonant notes, appearing obvious but imbued with cultural significance, dissociative humor, and wit. The photographs arrive as a labor of fated execution produced within the bounds of her psyche and the subject’s cultural connotations, a kind of face-off. Like a palimpsest, the trope of iconic faces glimpses through the exposures, revealing traces from earlier moments of composition and light.

Conceptually and technically, exposure is an essential tool in Schneider’s work. Usually occurring in the early morning when no light can infiltrate her studio, she exposes color photographic paper to found images through the camera’s lens. The process involves inverting the image faithfully and getting a true positive. Her images oscillate between free association and carefully calculated gesture. There’s a balance between elements like light bleeds, chance composition, and a total surrender to color and shape.

In the namesake piece, Revenge Body (2022), a photograph measuring 225-feet compresses and unfurls in a mangled torrent, freely hanging over a low-lipped plinth. The photograph presents as if disemboweled from a printer, spilling out without concern for crispness or legibility. A repeated, found image becomes a photograph, and in turn becomes a dense series of enmeshed motifs through which a more significant object emerges. In individual works, the images build and resurface with total commitment; accidents become elegy. With titles like Straight Alpha, buy it, and Choose Well, her work finds solace in the chance to source the mistakes and failures inherent to the process. This sequence gives viewers an excuse to see a face time and time again through an ambivalent and even absurd lens.

Throughout each work, Schneider manages to convey subtle undertones of the intimate and perverse nature of looking into the mirror until you no longer recognize yourself. She accounts for the raw edges of personal and paradoxical time through the layering of imagery and circumstance. With allusive speculation and flat humor, the photographs are obvious and evasive and serve as an impressive exercise of reprise. Like the proverbial revenge body, powered by rage or reckoning with a moment past, this series arrives through rigor and commitment, withholding nothing and exposing what is left.

Carrie Schneider (b. 1979, Chicago) is co-represented by CHART and CANDICE MADEY in New York. In February 2023, she will open a major museum solo exhibition at MASS MOCA, curated by Susan Cross.

She has presented her work at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago; the Pérez Art Museum Miami; The Andy Warhol Museum, Pittsburgh; The Art Institute of Chicago; and The Kitchen, New York; Kunsthal Charlottenborg, Copenhagen; the Finnish Museum of Photography, Helsinki; Galería Alberto Sendros, Buenos Aires; santralistanbul, Istanbul. She received a Creative Capital Award, a Fulbright Fellowship, and attended the Whitney Museum of American Art’s Independent Study Program and the Skowhegan School of Painting & Sculpture. Her work is in numerous public collections including The Art Institute of Chicago; Museum of Contemporary Photography, Chicago; The Minneapolis Institute of Art; Haggerty Museum of Art, Milwaukee; Centre Canadien d’Architecture, Montreal among others. She received an MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and a BFA from Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh. Carrie serves on the boards of Iceberg Projects and A.I.M by Kyle Abraham.



from September 08, 2022 to October 22, 2022

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