Richard McGuire

The Way There and Back

May 20, 2018, to January 13, 2019

​The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum is pleased to debut two projects by Richard McGuire, The Way There and Back, a site-specific installation of all new objects, and My Things, a specially commissioned book project to be published in Fall 2018. Richard McGuire: The Way There and Back is organized by The Aldrich’s curator Amy Smith-Stewart, and will be on view at the Museum from May 20, 2018, to January 13, 2019.

The Way There and Back presents an installation of just over a hundred objects, each one an abstracted sculptural evocation of a shoe. Each object, made of wood, plaster, or aqua resin, evokes a specific fashion, desire, functionality, and personality—high heels, loafers, disco-era platforms, sandals, and sneakers, all corresponding with McGuire’s personal long-standing conversation with New York City’s culture and history. The objects will be staged along a shelf of varying depth around the perimeter of the Museum’s Screening Room and circle the gallery in a way that imparts a time-line installation. Mimicking the cacophony of the street—the uniformity of waiting lines, the glamour of then runway, and the theatricality of the stage—viewers are surrounded by a parade of objects that together form charismatic tableaux. McGuire’s many influences include Claes Oldenburg’s Mouse Museum/RayGun Wing, Philip Guston’s paintings of cartoonish shoe piles, and Giorgio Morandi’s jars and bottles.

My Things depicts the complex interrelationship of a cast of small objects encountered by McGuire in a single day, presented in sequential grids of small line drawings. The ten-page commission will appear in the publication made on the occasion of The Domestic Plane: New Perspectives on Tabletop Art Objects, an exhibition in five chapters—organized by five curators and including more than seventy artists—featuring tabletop art objects from the twentieth and twenty-first centuries.

Richard McGuire (b. 1957) is a multidisciplinary artist based in New York City. His work is in the collection of the Museum of Modern Art, New York and The Morgan Library & Museum. He is the author of the award winning graphic novel Here (2014). His illustrations appear regularly in The New Yorker. He is also a founding member and the bass player for the post-punk band Liquid Liquid.

For press inquiries, please contact Emily Devoe at 203.438.4519, extension 140, or edevoe@aldrichart.org

Generous funding for The Domestic Plane: New Perspectives on Tabletop Art Objects is provided by Crozier Fine Arts and the Art Dealers Association of America Foundation. Media support is provided by Connecticut Cottages & Gardens (CTC&G).

Generous funding for the accompanying publication, The Domestic Plane: New Perspectives on Tabletop Art Objects is provided by the Elizabeth Firestone Graham Foundation and Philip and Shelley Fox Aarons.

Robert Longo

The Capitol Project

March 24, 2013, to August 25, 2013

​Robert Longo’s artworks represent diverse fragments, contained within as well as sprung from a restlessly circulated and widely shared image-archive; surrogated archetypes of war, revolt, beauty, love, sex, power, religion, politics, culture, transgression, and subjugation.

Two groups of eighty-one studies—The Essentials (2000–08) and The Mysteries (2009–13)—hang on opposing walls of the Leir Atrium. A non-linear, grand narrative that hinges on the confluence of becoming and extinction, the artist refers to The Essentials as his creation myth, complete with a libidinal universe and its Godhead: the galaxy, sleeping children, sharks, roses, waves, bombs,
and the interior of Sigmund Freud’s apartment one day before he fled the Nazis. Once this universe was complete, Longo relinquished his control. Icons of politics, pop culture and sports, symbols of Americana, impossible landscapes, tools for aggression, and objects of desire comprise The Mysteries, drawings of a populace left to roam, replicate, and self destruct.

Proceeding upstairs to South Gallery, Capitol (2013), an immense seven-panel drawing of the US Capitol Building, hangs alone on the longest wall, its placement and dimension reminiscent of a cinema screen. The drawing’s compositional perspective and the minimal yet dramatic illumination of the artwork signal a durational effect, suggesting that like the building itself, Capitol is watched as well as seen. A drawing, a screen, a surface, it projects meaning but is also projected upon, a spectacular event preceded by the atomized storyboard of studies.

Juxtaposing the singular Capitol against the multitude of studies speaks to
the play of dualities and contradictions pervading Longo’s work; the flow of information between one and many, and the exchange between intensely
private and universally relevant experiences. His subjects are forms meaningless
in themselves, yet derivative of something powerful and hidden. Capitol, The Essentials, The Mysteries, are all drawn from the infinite database available in the post-digital age, which has, paradoxically, created a deposit of infinitely repetitious data—a shared archive of images that rhythmically gather critical mass and then explode, circulate, and replicate. The Capitol Project proposes that the artworks which comprise the exhibition have always existed. Longo is an observant chooser, who lifts and presents from the collective image-unconscious, exposing the shared desires, fears, hopes, and losses that give shape to the world we live in.

Kelly Taxter, curator

Harry Dodge

MEATY BEATY BIG AND BOUNCY

March 24, 2013, to May 26, 2013

​Transitive states, simultaneous multiplicities, and the trouble with (or the troubling of) definition are central concerns in Harry Dodge’s interdisciplinary practice. Continental philosophy, stand-up comedy, the politics of representation (what can be, and is “represented”), natural science, and queer theory constitute the spasmodic mix of conventions, influences, and obsessions that inform MEATY BEATY BIG AND BOUNCY, an exhibition that, as its title suggests, communicates weighty ideas betwixt and between buoyantly fleshy drawings, sculptures, and videos.

The two videos Unkillable (2012), presented in the Camera Obscura, and THE ASS AND THE LAP DOG, presented in the Sound Gallery, physically bracket the profusion of drawings and sculptures installed across the floor and walls of the Opatrny Gallery. Dodge’s narratives create purposefully unstable situations; the videos jump from the real to the surreal, and act as a catalyst for fluidity, wherein protagonist, antagonist, audience, main plot, sub-plot, and script ceaselessly meander, intertwine, and flip around. Artist, performers, and viewer are interwoven points of origin and departure in his intricately folded and contoured stories.

A predilection for fluidity over fixity also pervades the sculptures. Everything Shouts Together (2013) has an overall figurative affect, containing hard and soft edges, locked as well as flexible appendages, and elements which signify solids and
liquids. This sculpture, like all those on view, is resolutely non-binary; it presents a (complicated) situation of flux, a renegotiation of the available options. The variously sized drawings on paper, canvas, and board, which complete the exhibition’s trilogy of media, puzzle through the space between presence and absence, the named and the undefined, and investigate the contours of that which defies categorization— what may not be visible or valued, but is present nevertheless, often hovering at the threshold of what can be seen.

A threshold, like an edge, is both within and without, a rim over which contents spill, a boundary (of nature, the body, the mind) whose apparent limits can be pushed, tested, and potentially transgressed. The gaps produced by the videos, the elements of flux and flow in the sculptures, and the hybrid space of the drawings, are each transitive zones that Dodge beckons the viewer into—indeterminate spaces that allow us, for however long we can bear it, to be more than the sum of our parts.

Kelly Taxter, curator

Jane South

Floor/Ceiling

March 24, 2013, to August 25, 2013

​”Waiting for Godot . . . has achieved a theoretical impossibility—a play in which nothing happens, that yet keeps the audience glued to their seats. What’s more, since the second act is a subtly different reprise of the first, he has written a play in which nothing happens, twice.” *

This quote, from Irish theater critic Vivian Mercier’s 1956 review of Samuel Beckett’s famous play, has quietly engaged artist Jane South’s imagination
for many years. Her interest in Mercier’s review is extremely pertinent to the understanding of Floor/Ceiling, the artist’s largest and most ambitious installation to date, and her first to incorporate lighting. South’s work has consistently been informed by her early years in the world of theater set design, particularly the period she spent in the late 1980s working with a company in London that focused almost exclusively on the plays of Beckett. This history has come full circle in the realization of Floor/Ceiling, a work that has two distinctly different acts: the view looking up from the Museum’s ground floor Project Space and the view looking down from the second floor Balcony Gallery.

South’s large-scale works are notable due to being made almost entirely out of painted, cut, and glued paper. Their façade-like character relates to the constructed and temporary nature of the environment of the theater, but Floor/Ceiling doesn’t really recall a stage set as much as something one shouldn’t focus on while attending a performance: the loft above the stage and audience.

The superstructure of Floor/Ceiling is fabricated out of wood, CNC milled particleboard, and steel cable. Like the lighting grid above a stage, the structural components are fairly matter-of-fact, while the attached paper elements are reminiscent
of many things, but resemble nothing in particular. South’s paper objects may evoke the steely geometry of things that are industrially-made, but their decidedly handmade character humanizes them in a subtle and quirky manner.

Floor/Ceiling is not interactive in any traditional sense, but viewers, depending on their location in relation to South’s circular “stage,” might find themselves cast in the roles of actor, stagehand, or audience member.

Richard Klein, exhibitions director

*Italics added to the end of the quotation by the artist

Dan Miller and Judith Scott

Creative Growth

March 24, 2013, to August 25, 2013

​The Creative Growth Art Center in Oakland, CA, was founded in 1972 and serves a community of mentally, developmentally, and physically disabled adult artists. Writing in 2006, critic James Trainor observed that “Creative Growth isn’t a hospital, a clinic or even a school in the strictest sense. No formal instruction is given, and there are no theoretical programs about how to educate the autistic or schizophrenic. What it is is an experiment, rooted in distinctly northern California ideas about grassroots involvement, collective creativity and social change, about giving disenfranchised people the tools, space and support to express themselves.”

Judith Scott was born with Down syndrome. In 1987, after years of living in isolation, she was introduced to Creative Growth, where for the remaining eighteen years of her life she created highly idiosyncratic objects: organic structures assembled from found materials that challenge—and actively resist—our attempts to rationalize them as sculpture. Working intuitively, and without any apparent influences or precedents, Scott’s cocoon-like structures are of startling complexity and provoke an almost endless set of formal and psychological associations.

Diagnosed with autism, Dan Miller has worked at Creative Growth for more than fifteen years. He has developed an evolving body of work that employs language
as its fundamental subject and departure-point. His drawings take the form of accumulations of written descriptive texts and numerical sequences. Layered on top of one another, these individual words and numbers start to merge, creating all-over fields of obscured and often illegible texts. Juxtaposing formal methodologies with dynamic, yet highly disciplined mark-making, Miller’s works intuitively combine both conceptual and expressive approaches, to create a distinct hybrid form.

The work of Judith Scott and Dan Miller is rooted in what might be thought
of as an expanded field of “drawing.” Central to their respective approaches
is an engagement with the everyday and the commonplace, evidenced in
their choices of materials and subject matter, which is amplified through their respective processes of accumulation, the act of creating multiple layers in their work: a scenario which paradoxically serves to both elucidate and obscure the artists’ intentions.

Matthew Higgs, curator

Ballpoint Pen Drawing Since 1950

March 24, 2013, to August 25, 2013

Ballpoint Pen Drawing Since 1950: Rita Ackermann, Bill Adams,
Alighiero Boetti, Dawn Clements,
Russell Crotty, Jan Fabre, Alberto Giacometti, Joanne Greenbaum, Martin Kippenberger, Il Lee, and Toyin Odutola

Conceived at the end of the nineteenth century, perfected in the 1930s,
and popularized after World War II, the ballpoint pen has become an indispensable part of everyday life. Although it is the most prevalent tool used for handwriting, art does not immediately come to mind when one thinks of the pen. In fact, the general consensus that the ballpoint pen contributed to a decline in the craft of handwriting suggests that any marks made with it are intrinsically sloppy and unskilled.

The ballpoint has slowly been adopted by artists since 1950, with a startling increase in its use over the past three decades. This exhibition and its accompanying publication bring together the work of eleven artists who have done extensive work with the pen, disproving the view that the ballpoint
does not have aesthetic potential and that its range is limited. Artists have been attracted to the pen for many reasons, including the effortless drawing speed afforded by its nature, its ability to make an almost endless line without stopping, its pedestrian and “low art” pedigree, its intimate relationship with both handwriting and doodling, and the unique color and quality of its ink (ballpoint ink dries almost instantaneously).

For those born after the beginning of the 1950s, the ballpoint is ubiquitous; a reality that is ever present and practically invisible. For many artists, this state of affairs has created a situation where the ballpoint has become
the vernacular go-to tool, which despite its supposedly limited nature can be coaxed into performing a seemingly unlimited range of aesthetic roles, becoming in many ways the pencil of our era.

Richard Klein, exhibitions director

Legacy

Photographs from the Emily Fisher Landau Collection

June 8, 2013, to September 2, 2013

​Legacy: Photographs from the Emily Fisher Landau Collection features a notable selection of photographs drawn exclusively from the collection of works gifted to the Whitney Museum of American Art in 2010 by New York philanthropist and art collector, Emily Fisher Landau. Working in collaboration with the Whitney Museum, The Aldrich’s exhibition – the second stop of a six-city tour – showcases twenty photographs by seventeen artists, including works by Nan Goldin, Kiki Smith, and Robert Mapplethorpe, along with Aldrich alumni artists Robert Artschwager and Robert Longo, to name a few. Individually, the photographs call attention to the versatility of a medium that can be used in a myriad of experimental and surprising ways; collectively, the pieces are representative of an era of increased photography production in the art world – particularly between 1980 and 2004, when all of the works were made. Many of the photographs on view directly relate to the Museum’s camera obscura, illuminating the link between the contemporary and the history of photography.

Legacy: Photography from The Emily Fisher Landau Collection is organized in collaboration with the Whitney Museum of American Art and is co-curated at The Aldrich by Richard Klein and Alyson Baker.

This exhibition is supported, in part, by the Connecticut Office of the Arts and The Robert Mapplethorpe Foundation, Inc.

Amelie Chabannes

Double Portraits and a Fourth Hand

March 24, 2013, to August 25, 2013

​In 2009, Amelie Chabannes began working with identity as a subject, not via the usual autobiographical route, but rather through combining an objective interest in philosophy, psychology, and art history. For her new site-specific project at The Aldrich, she has created three wall drawings that engage not only with these subjects, but also with the concept of iconoclasm: the willful destruction of imagery—used here by Chabannes as a technique to challenge and transform the work of her artistic predecessors. Two of the drawings are based on iconic photographs of performances by artists Marina Abramovic ́ and Ulay, while one is based on an image of the seminal 1970 performance Singing Sculpture by the duo Gilbert & George.

Chabannes was attracted to these figures because of their attempts to merge two personalities into one identity, what is referred to in psychology as “fusion.” Defined as the desire of two individuals to become one, which is most commonly manifested by the popular romantic notion of “two halves make a whole,” fusion is fueled by the belief—both conscious and unconscious— that bliss is achieved through unity. Yet if fusion is taken to an extreme, the result can be the pathology of damaging dependency, or an attempt at a kind of liberation.

Using archeological procedures as a metaphor for the processes in psychology that uncover and expose the self, Chabannes has not only destroyed the images of her predecessors, but also dug through the images and into the infrastructure of the Museum. The process of excavation (and discovery) will continue throughout the exhibition as she periodically returns to continue to burrow into the Museum’s walls.

Chabannes’s use of the phrase “the fourth hand” refers to art historian Charles Green’s book The Third Hand: Collaboration in Art from Conceptualism to Postmodernism. The title relates to the timeless notion of “the hand of the artist” and how, through sustained collaboration, two artists can create a third hand, a new and separate creative identity. Chabannes takes this notion one step further: through her appropriation and manipulation of images that document artistic relationships, her hand literally creates a fourth identity.

Richard Klein, exhibitions director

Allison Smith

Rudiments of Fife & Drum

May 27, 2013, to September 2, 2013

Rudiments of Fife & Drum is the culmination of a year-long project organized by the artist Allison Smith in collaboration with The Aldrich Museum. Opening on May 27, and continuing through September 2, Rudiments of Fife & Drum explores the history of American fife & drum music, tracing its roots to the Middle East and reinterpreting the emblematic rope tension drum as a communication device, both on the battlefield and in peacetime.

Smith’s multi-media project, which utilizes the front parlor, porch, and adjacent lawn area of “Old Hundred,” the Museum’s administration building on Main Street, was inspired by Connecticut’s central and continuing position in the development
of American fife & drum music. Old Hundred, a landmark of Ridgefield’s historic district named for its role as a general store, bank, and post office from 1783 through 1883, abuts the site of a Revolutionary War battle.

The transformation of Old Hundred has involved the creation of a “period room” to function as a site for public engagement related to the project, including workshops, lectures, performances, and public forums. Sculptural elements of Smith’s installation include a large farm table and Windsor chairs, a fireplace mantelpiece, a corner cupboard displaying handmade textiles and ceramics, custom drapery, and a number of rope tension drums from the Cooperman Company collection. An archive of photographs and other ephemera documents the history and development of fife & drum music from the ancient Islamic world and Turkish Janissary military bands to the present. Smith also presents her own series of scaled-up rope tension and frame drums featuring vibrant nail-work designs, as well as a “jingling johnny.” The exterior of the building features a “tavern sign” communicating that Old Hundred is once again open for business.

The Celestial Ancients Fife & Drum Corps, Smith’s project band, will perform during the course of the exhibition. Led and organized by guest musical curator James Clark, their repertoire reflects the deep and complicated history of fife & drum music, from its origins in the Ottoman Empire to its ongoing development through Europe (particularly Switzerland), the American Revolution, and the Civil War. The Celestial Ancients will perform on drums designed by Smith and co-fabricated in collaboration with the Cooperman Company, the leading manufacturer of traditional rope tension drums in the United States. A fife & drum muster in the Museum’s sculpture garden on August 25 will feature the renowned regional fife band Connecticut Valley Field Music, led by Clark, as well as visiting groups, including Grainfield Fife & Drum Corps of Rheinfelden, Switzerland.

Xaviera Simmons

Underscore

September 22, 2013, to March 9, 2014

​Xaviera Simmons’s body of work spans photography, performance, video, sound and installation. She defines her studio practice, which is rooted in an ongoing investigation of experience, memory, abstraction, present and future histories, and specifically shifting notions surrounding landscape, as cyclical rather than linear.

For Underscore, Simmons looks at how artists draw directly from the movements, subtitles, and concepts of other practitioners. She shows how inspiration informs rehearsing, giving birth to new expression in the culminating work. The exhibition includes two photographs from the Untitled (Cape) series; a slide installation, Into the Rehearsal; and the premiere of a site-specific performance work, Number 17.

In Warm Leatherette and Horse (both 2009), Simmons selects diverse record sleeves as the catalyst for the photographs; simultaneously landscape surveyor, photographer, actor, and musician, she stages characters in scenic locales with each face (re)placed by an LP cover depicting a familiar portrait of a musician. This project combines her engagement with landscape, locales, portraiture, and performance.

For Into the Rehearsal (2013), Simmons examines contemporary modes of collecting and archiving, presenting digitally manipulated images culled from online Jamaican dance hall footage. Shown on a slide projector on a slow fade in an intentionally locked room and seen through an aperture, these images are a chapter in a growing body of work she has been producing since 2010.

Number 17 (2013), the artist’s most complex endurance-based performance to date, was presented over five hours on opening day, transforming the Opatrny Gallery into an active rehearsal/studio space, where the audience confronted “acts” of visual and sound construction, informed by post-modern avant-garde performance techniques, improvisational sound art, endurance practices, and action painting.

A video and vestiges of the process document the event and its aftermath, acting as testament to the synergy of art, its production, and everlasting legacy.

As a totality, the works on view underscore the experimental, the improvisational, and the collaborative as critical systems of art practice, collapsing the artist/audience and artist/performer dynamic to make evident the processes during and after the making.

Amy Smith-Stewart, curator

Xaviera Simmons lives and works in New York City.

James Mollison

The Disciples

September 22, 2013, to March 9, 2014

​In 2005 James Mollison began a four-year project to photograph not the musicians, but the fans of a cross section of popular music acts in both the United States and Europe. Usually denied permission to photograph inside
a concert venue, Mollison, assisted by his wife, would set up a temporary studio on the street outside and invite selected concertgoers to pose for individual portraits. Subsequently, he joined together shots from the same concert to create panoramic images that silently captured the zeitgeist of the act’s aesthetic. This exhibition presents seven large-scale prints from the fifty-nine photographs that comprise the series.

Mollison approaches his varied photographic projects in the manner of an anthropologist, consistently utilizing a series format to reveal both commonality and distinctions between his subjects. The Disciples is based on Mollison’s interest in the sociology of celebrity, particularly the power of music to form powerful social bonds, and how these bonds are reinforced by tribal-like codes and signs.

Seen together, Mollison’s images of diverse fan bases speak of social and class differences, but also of the power of art to coalesce and unify identity. The artist’s visual inventory of each musical “tribe” reveals the way that simple style is transformed into culture and, ultimately, history. The images that comprise The Disciples might at first glance confirm biases on cultural stereotypes, but their cumulative effect can curiously create the opposite reaction in a viewer: a self-conscious awareness that, as humans, we all conform in varying measure to our individual social group and it is almost impossible to escape from the forces of group identity.

Richard Klein, exhibitions director

Each image in the exhibition is accompanied by a recording of an iconic song performed by the musical artist whose fans are portrayed.

Digital printing by Joseph Merritt & Company. Inc.

Sol LeWitt

The Music Collection

September 22, 2013, to March 9, 2014

​Unlike the majority of exhibitions concerning the artist Sol LeWitt (1928–2007),
this one does not include his work, but rather the work of others who have either influenced the artist or for whom the artist has felt an affinity. Going one step further, the works presented are not those of visual artists, but rather composers, known for their contributions to the field of music and, in particular, Western music since the Baroque period.

The Music Collection is just what the title of the exhibition implies, a view
into LeWitt’s amassing of both scores by contemporary composers and an encyclopedic library of recorded music. The collection of recordings, personally transferred by the artist from vinyl and radio onto the medium of cassette
tape, represents thirty years of effort (the most recent tape dates from 2002). The cassettes, which lined the walls of a small room in the artist’s Chester, Connecticut, home, have been installed at The Aldrich to mimic their original organization on white wooden shelves. The consecutive numbers on the spines of the cassettes and their notation in an accompanying logbook catalogue 3,970 individual tapes.

LeWitt was a well-known collector of contemporary art, with his collection numbering over 11,000 objects. Contained within this collection are twenty-six scores written by contemporary composers, including Steve Reich, Philip Glass, John Cage, Roland Dahinden, Alvin Lucier, and Walter Hekster. This exhibition presents
a handful of these scores, three by Reich, one by Glass, and one “hybrid” score by Cage, all composers particularly relevant to LeWitt’s practice as a visual artist.

The Music Collection is a glimpse into LeWitt’s passionate and sustained interest in music over the course of a career. The Aldrich is grateful to Carol and Sofia LeWitt for generously allowing the Museum to move Sol’s tape collection to its temporary home in Ridgefield. Special appreciation goes to Janet Passehl, curator of the LeWitt Collection, for her detailed help in every aspect of the organization of this exhibition. We are thankful to Farrow & Ball, Westport, for supplying the paint that allowed us to accurately recreate the ambiance of Sol’s music room.

Richard Klein, exhibitions director

Selections from Glenn Gould’s 1962 recording of J. S. Bach’s The Well-Tempered Clavier are presented in the gallery during the exhibition. This recording is included in the LeWitt music library and was one of the artist’s favorite interpretations of Bach’s work.

Martin Creed

Scales

September 22, 2013, to March 9, 2014

​The multifarious activities of Martin Creed—visual artist, composer, musician, performer, and choreographer—are received and contextualized as artworks, yet he resists that definition; rather, he catalogues his output by a simple taxonomy: a number followed by a descriptive title. Since the initial Work No. 3, Yellow painting (1996), the intervening seventeen years have seen the accumulation of nearly two thousand works, including Work No. 1652 (2013), a Victorian upright piano whose lid mechanically opens and then drops closed. The abrupt slam causes the faint resonance of every string, an atonal drone that ebbs and flows with the creak and bang of the lid’s movement. What might be considered
music in this work is as much tied to the object’s inherent qualities as to an incremental, relative, and nimble exercise in classification.

Michelangelo, master of the High Renaissance and progenitor of the multi- hyphenate, is supposed to have said that the sculpture was inside the marble and it was just a matter of finding it. Creed often refers to this anecdote as
“a nice way to think about working—finding it, not making it.” Scales assumes this exploratory methodology, finding music both sonorously and conceptually in the most obvious and least likely of things and ways, in works in paint, ink, sculpture, and video.

This exhibition is bound together by the artist’s consistently applied methodology: playing off characteristics essential to light, metronomes, balloons, a piano, a drum machine, paint brushes, and people, rather than manipulating them to a desired effect, which yields work as much about music as all forms of creative expression. Unexpectedly complex expressions are drawn from breaking things down by units and measures, allowing new subtexts about happiness, love, relationships, anxiety, fear, failure, and death to emerge. Consider these works amongst Creed’s on-going experiments, which might illuminate some things we don’t know while helping us to enjoy the process of finding out.

Kelly Taxter, curator

Martin Creed lives and works in London, England, and Alcudi, Italy.

Simon Blackmore

Three Sound Works

September 22, 2013, to March 9, 2014

​For artist Simon Blackmore, the nature and history of musical translation and
its relationship to technology has provided a rich area for inquiry. This exhibition brings together three related works that use the language of music to convert one form of information into another: Weather Guitar, a Flamenco guitar that “plays” 
to changing weather conditions via an interface with a set of exterior weather instruments; Audio Monitors, a pair of speaker-like objects that don’t broadcast sound, but rather listen to the environment and count down the seconds and minutes of silence, only stopping at 4’ 33”, the length and title of John Cage’s iconic silent musical composition; and Sticks, a computer-based piece that utilizes a modified version of ASCII, an early binary computer code, to transmit text messages across the gallery by the rhythmic clicking of hand-held wooden sticks.

Blackmore’s work is characterized by an inventive, DIY approach that draws
on influences such as hobby-style electronics, open-source software, and
lo-fi aesthetics. The resulting “performative” sculpture and installations are not, however, just about revealing the inner workings of things that are usually invisible, but rather are an attempt to tackle the more philosophically thorny questions that surround our increasingly complicated relationship with technology and the power it holds over us.

It perhaps should come as no surprise that Blackmore is himself a musician, but his choice of instrument might come as a shock: acoustic guitar. The artist has played the Flamenco guitar, one of the most traditional of instruments,
for many years, and has recently spent time in Spain to perfect his technique. But he also creates and performs experimental music as part of the Owl Project, a collective of artists who have appeared throughout Europe playing sculptural electronic instruments of their own design. It is in this clash between the old and the new that Blackmore’s main interests lie, and the works in this exhibition all speak of the artist’s efforts to humanize technology, grounded by an attitude of playful subversion.

Richard Klein, exhibitions director

Simon Blackmore lives and works in Manchester, England. This is his first exhibition in the United States.

Jack Whitten

Evolver

April 6, 2014, to July 6, 2014

​Jack Whitten: Evolver is one of a series of exhibitions mounted in connection with The Aldrich’s 50th Anniversary that presents the recent work of artists who played a significant role during the first decade of the Museum’s history. Jack Whitten’s career began in the mid-1960s, but it was in 1970 that he first produced work that established the true direction his painting would take over the ensuing forty-three years. Evolver focuses on works Whitten created in the past sixteen months—a remarkably productive period—but also includes as a touchstone Shadows, a 1971 painting that was in the collection of Larry Aldrich, the Museum’s founder. Like a dark mirror, Shadows portends Whitten’s future evolution while also looking back at history, a condition that has characterized the artist’s endeavors to the present day.

Whitten’s formative influence was Abstract Expressionism, but he came of age in the 1960s, with the social, political, and aesthetic upheaval of the era helping forge a unique perspective that continues to inform the artist’s work. The subject matter of Whitten’s painting oscillates between the universal and personal, with references to a spectrum of influences, including philosophy, civil rights, history (particularly of the ancient Mediterranean world) and individuals–both friends and historical figures–who have had an impact on the artist’s life. Whitten’s work exhibits a profound degree of knowledge about technical developments in the chemistry of paint and pigments and the materiality of paint. This knowledge, however, was gained through the act of painting, not from outside sources. As much as Whitten’s work comes out of Abstract Expressionism, his process is quite different, reflecting an approach that mixes intuition, philosophical inquiry, and quasi-scientific experimentation in equal measure.

“Painting is a reproduction of a mental pattern,” the artist has stated. “I have to see the painting before I start.” Whitten, working in this manner, is tapping into the deepest patterns of psychic functioning, a position that echoes certain precepts in archetypal psychology. In trying to locate the “soul” of a new painting, Whitten is thinking of soul in terms of perspective: a reflective viewpoint towards the world, rather than a disembodied spirit or substance. This fluid and open attitude has allowed the artist’s work to evolve in brilliant and always unpredictable ways.

Richard Klein, exhibitions director

Jack Whitten: Evolver is supported, in part, by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts.

Michael Joo

Drift

April 6, 2014, to September 21, 2014

Over a career that now spans two decades, Michael Joo has redefined sculpture, creating a body of work that transcends the seduction of technology and the easy answers offered by science to generate a set of questions that place humankind in the context of natural history. Joo, like artist Robert Smithson before him, engages with a deep sense of time, as well as with the cycles of creation and entropy inherent in both nature and human endeavor. For this new project, created specifically for The Aldrich, Joo expands Smithson’s notion of site/non-site by connecting the interior of the Museum to the surrounding landscape and its specific history. Drift is based on Joo’s meditation on Cameron’s Line, an ancient suture fault that traces the edge of the continental collision that initiated the formation of the Appalachian Mountains. The line–which runs north from New York City through Westchester County, passes through Ridgefield as it traverses Connecticut, then crosses Massachusetts into Vermont–is defined by a belt of marble that includes the famous quarries of Vermont. The exhibition poses Cameron’s Line as a linear experience through both time and space, and features a massive displacement of Vermont marble that takes the form of a fourteen-hundred-square-foot chamber, whose chilled and frosted ceiling echoes the marble’s crystalline structure.

Curated by Richard Klein and Alyson Baker

Michael Joo was born in 1966 in Ithaca, NY, and currently lives and works in Brooklyn, NY.

Michael Joo: Drift is made possible, in part, by generous funding from Blain/Southern, London, Kukje Gallery, Seoul, Jennifer McSweeney, Robin and Andrew Schirrmeister, and The Aldrich Contemporary Council.

Michelle Lopez

Angels, Flags, Bangs

April 6, 2014, to September 21, 2014

Sculptor Michelle Lopez explores the contested yet generative place where Minimalism and Feminism converge, diverge, and ultimately reunite. The languages she employs—material, form, and space—seek to, as she says, “corrupt Minimalism,” by making “macho sculpture feminine.” Exploring the fragility of cultural icons by manipulating materials to, in her description, “wilt,” “crease,” and “crush,” she seeks to (re)cover, (de)code, and (re)produce the methodologies of (un) making sculpture by collapsing, expanding, and releasing it from itself.

The exhibition presents new and recent sculptures spanning three bodies of work. Three works from the Blue Angels series (2011–ongoing) lean precariously against the Screening Room walls, with Blue Angel (Korean) and Blue Angel (United), both 2014, made specifically for The Aldrich. Their larger-than-life size and mirrored surfaces mimic Minimalism, but reject its industrial fabrication and imposing authority. The forms reference crashed fuselages, recalling the trauma of 9/11 and our looming fear of new technology. Lopez physically wrestled the massive steel sheets through intensive folding exercises on her studio floor.

Three works from the Flags series (2014), each comprising a steel rod armature wrapped by malleable pure-lead sheets, are hung along the Ramp Gallery wall. Lopez reshapes symbols associated with victory and patriotism into frail objects. Evocative of surrender or a child’s bike pennant, the cragginess of their finish heightens the sense of attrition or defeat. Although they may be perceived as anti- heroic, deflated, or even ragged, the visibility of their maker’s hand enlivens them, transcending their forlornness—though they droop, they still stand.

Bangs (2013), a site-specific sculptural installation, transforms the diminutive Small Space into an intimate encounter. Mimicking the scale of an elevator, heavy matte- black canvas cloth, cut, sewn, edged, and grommeted by Lopez, drapes across three interior walls, like fringed hair. Deep cuts expose grey felt innards and the folds, assertive in scale, suggestive of a colossal cartoon wig, intuit a being—albeit a bodiless one—as if a female ghost is emerging from the blankets’ curves.

Curated by Amy Smith-Stewart

Michelle Lopez was born in 1970 and lives and works in Brooklyn, New York, and Guilford, Connecticut.

Taylor Davis

If you steal a horse, and let him go,  he’ll take you to the barn you stole him from

April 6, 2014, to September 21, 2014

Taken from a short story by author William Gass, the title of Taylor Davis’s exhibition points to the circular sense of movement that is inherent in both the conceptual and physical aspects of her work. Davis’s deep interest in sculpture is based in the way that a viewer’s orientation can be influenced by the perception of both form and language in space, and how this experience is an analogy to the ongoing need to constantly orient oneself in relationship to the world. The exhibition includes four related bodies of work: built forms, which are thoughtfully crafted wood objects that direct the viewer’s attention between material and form, inside and outside, and movement and stasis; the artist’s text-based works that simultaneously engage and distract the viewer’s attention, slowing down, and in some cases thwarting, the certainty of interpretation; collages that present imagery in a non-hierarchical format, suggesting that meaning is not preordained, but rather is to be found in the act of looking; and shaped canvases that play with perception by combining a Minimalist reserve with restless Op-art-like visual activity.

Richard Klein, exhibitions director

Taylor Davis was born in 1959 in Palm Springs, California, and lives and works in Boston.

David Diao

Front to Back

July 13, 2014, to September 21, 2014

David Diao, Double Rejection, 2012; Courtesy of the artist and Postmasters Gallery, New York
David Diao, Double Rejection, 2012; Courtesy of the artist and Postmasters Gallery, New York


David Diao: Front to Back is the second in a series of exhibitions in The Aldrich’s 50th Anniversary year that presents the work of artists whose careers are intimately tied to the history of the Museum. Diao had a painting enter Larry Aldrich’s collection in 1968 and his work was subsequently included in group exhibitions at The Aldrich in 1971, 1987, 1992, and 1996. The artist’s response to this history is an exhibition that references the idea of a retrospective, but casts it in the unique light of the body of work made by Diao that focuses on his own career as well as the nature of the art world in which he finds himself embedded. The title Front to Back implies a chronological read, and the exhibition does indeed include works from the beginning of the artist’s career up to the recent past; but the reference goes deeper, speaking of Diao’s ongoing interpretation of Modernism and, since 1984, the extensive use of text in his paintings.

Diao came of age in the period immediately following Abstract Expressionism and was part of the generation of painters that struggled with the evolution of the medium in the shadow of Minimalism, Conceptualism, and Process Art that categorized New York in the 1960s. The early works (dating from 1971 and 1972) in this exhibition evidence this struggle, and Diao has used them and their history as subject matter to provocatively inform the content of the later works.

One enters Front to Back by literally passing through a gap in the artist’s three-panel painting Résumé (1991), which as the title implies is a work that summarizes Diao’s exhibition history up to that point. Résumé is the earliest of the recent works in the exhibition, representing a phase—continued to the present day—of the artist critically examining the art world, his place in art history, and the usually invisible forces that shape visual culture.

The pre-1991 works in Front to Back point to the grounding of Diao’s art in the formal, abstract aspects of Modernism, while the later works are categorized by the use of the highly flexible and articulate language of that movement for deliberate and meditative social ends. Usually, art that is based in either the social or the political is ineffectual as the finger pointing is directed out towards the morally obvious. Diao, through his recent work, has held a mirror up to himself and the community he inhabits, and the results are complex, nuanced, and often uncomfortably self-conscious—just like the truth.

Richard Klein, exhibitions director

David Diao was born in 1943 in Chengdu, Sichuan, China, and lives and works in New York City.

Jessica Jackson Hutchins

Unicorn

April 6, 2014, to September 21, 2014

​Unicorn presents eight works by Jessica Jackson Hutchins, spanning video, sculpture, collage and monoprints, and a new large-scale sculpture.

Hutchins makes use of the things around her—worn clothing, tattered chairs, nicked tables, stained sofas—inserting hand-molded ceramic objects to craft works that make poetry from the mundane and unite the corporeal with the abstract, the relatable with the enigmatic. She shows us that an artist is unmistakably human, and that creative expression is fed by human experience.

In Unicorn and The Key (2010), Hutchins’s own baby grand piano, a quintessential symbol of family time, takes center stage, topped by a ceramic form evocative of a unicorn’s horn. The piano’s exterior is gashed and graffitied, evidencing the origin of several to-scale woodcuts and collaged prints on view.

In ADAM (with Pink Flowers) (2010), the title of the video and its repeating melody, Children of the Sunshine, reads in reverse. The eponymous video portrait, performed by Hutchins, her family and friends, shows how the raw emotive rhythm of daily life is woven into her material. For Finale (2011), the areas gouged from the baby grand are recycled as collaged wood cutouts, pasted near their corresponding absences. For the bench prints, such as Key!! (2010), Hutchins places paper on the inked, incised surfaces, adding collaged paper-pulp to give a two-dimensional plane depth.

Every Man Has his Tastes (2013–14), Hutchins’s newest sculpture, takes its title from a line by the Chinese poet of the Tang Dynasty, Bai Juyi. A stout clay form, a cross between a termite mound and a scholar’s rock, sits upon the dowdy ottoman like a fossil or moon rock specimen; a bowl-like clay form is tucked inside the cushion crease of the matching chair. A painted visual continuity marries the objects forever to the furniture.

Overall, Hutchins confronts us with a pregnant visual language that shoots us up into the star-crossed cosmos and grounds us in the depths of the dark earth—all at the same time.

Curated by Amy Smith-Stewart

Jessica Jackson Hutchins was born in 1971 in Chicago and lives and works in Portland, Oregon.

The Aldrich Collection 1964-1974

Standing in the Shadows of Love

April 6, 2014, to April 5, 2015

Eva Hesse, Accession, 1967; Collection of Detroit Institute of Arts, Founders Society Purchase, Friends of Modern Art Fund and Miscellaneous Gifts Fund
Eva Hesse, Accession, 1967; Collection of Detroit Institute of Arts, Founders Society Purchase,
Friends of Modern Art Fund and Miscellaneous Gifts Fund


Part I: April 6 to September 21, 2014
Robert Indiana, Robert Morris, Ree Morton, Robert Rauschenberg, Robert Smithson

Part II: October 19, 2014 to April 5, 2015
Richard Artschwager, Eva Hesse, Ellsworth Kelly, Agnes Martin, Richard Serra

The Aldrich is marking its 50th Anniversary with a series of exhibitions and programs that examine the Museum’s formative years of 1964 to 1974 through a contemporary lens, illuminating the lasting impact of a seminal period of history. Standing in the Shadows of Love: The Aldrich Collection 1964-1974–a two-part exhibition of iconic works that are representative of The Aldrich’s early collection acquired by founder Larry Aldrich–has also created a platform for a cross-generational dialogue.

Alongside these iconic works, curators will present solo exhibitions throughout the year of eight contemporary artists whose work reflects the legacy that Mr. Aldrich created. Artists include: Taylor Davis, Kate Gilmore, Jessica Jackson Hutchins, Michael Joo, Michelle Lopez, Ernesto Neto, David Scanavino, and Cary Smith.

By opening a conversation between the historical works and the work of the younger artists, this suite of exhibitions clearly and specifically reveals the continuing influence of both the art and culture of the 1960s. Today’s artists provide the interpretation, evolution, and further development of themes and ideas expressed and explored in the classic works on view, testifying to the influence and impact of the artists identified and supported by Mr. Aldrich before they were proven, at a time when they were still forming the visual vocabulary that would come to define an era.

The works included in Standing in the Shadows of Love are either the actual pieces that were in the Museum’s early collection, or comparable examples of the artist’s work from the same period. They are presented in transitional spaces throughout the Museum, along with materials from The Aldrich’s archive that document the close collaboration and intimate connections between the exhibiting artists and the institution.

Jackie Winsor

With and Within

October 19, 2014, to April 5, 2015

Winsor’s first solo museum exhibition since 1997 opens with a to-scale photograph of Burnt Piece. The artist constructed a wood and concrete cube and set it ablaze, using one of the most potent natural agents, fire, to introduce radical change and risk into the process. The completion of this work by means of a destructive act addresses her interest in unifying the known and the unknown.

The exhibition brings together ten works from Winsor’s Inset Wall series, begun in 1988; Painted Piece (1979–80), an influential performative sculpture, and photographs recording its creation; and videos and photographs documenting one layer of construction of Fifty- Fifty (1975) and the burning of Burnt Piece (1977–78). Winsor’s sculpture embraces the unification of opposing forces to evoke a singular vitality, which is given form through technical ingenuity and unparalleled craftsmanship. Her focus on intimacy and the body in relationship to scale, measurement, and placement, and her interest in elementary form has, for some, placed her historically at an intersection between Minimalism and feminism.

Winsor’s early sculptures were created over extended periods of time using familiar, task-oriented gestures. An initial focus on elementary, symmetrical forms progressed into combinations that evolved into stepped pyramids, resting on the floor and, since the late 1980s, sunken into the wall.

The works in the Inset Wall series pierce the gallery walls at heart level: the vitality is contained within the work’s core, inviting the gaze to penetrate deep within. The tranquil introspection of these pieces is disrupted by the sounds of Winsor drilling and hammering in video footage by Liza Béar documenting the creation of Fifty-Fifty, an intersecting grid with more than 42,336 nails and pre-drilled holes.

Painted Piece is at the center of the exhibition space. Winsor layered fifty coats of paint, ranging from pink to blue to yellow, onto a plywood cube, tied it behind a car and pulled it over cobblestones—alternating sides and occasionally adding weight by sitting atop the cube. The dragging exposed colorful under-layers, the scars and scratches embodying the history and circumstance of its creation.

From the tough vitality of the early work to the calming rumination of the later, With and Within contemplates the dynamic interplay of opposing but complementary power sources in a practice that spans five decades. The sculptures are both expressive and intimate; they invite the viewer into their quiet timelessness.

Amy Smith-Stewart, curator

Jackie Winsor was born in 1941 in Saint John’s, Newfoundland, and lives and works in New York City.

Cary Smith

Your Eyes They Turn Me

October 19, 2014, to April 5, 2015

Over the course of the past twenty-five years, the painter Cary Smith has engaged in
a restless, but controlled, pursuit of abstraction. Smith’s work has been consistently categorized by a particular poetic logic, rigorous craft, and a beautiful, but not gratuitous, color sense. Working in the wake of the freedom presented by the collapse of Modernism’s rigid dogmas, the artist’s work vacillates between geometric and biomorphic abstraction and is witness to a range of subtle (and often surprising) influences, including the aesthetics of eighteenth and nineteenth century New England and the visual vocabulary found in Mid-Century art and design.

Your Eyes They Turn Me focuses on work completed since 2008, including Smith’s Splats, radiating works that utilize a splash-like motif, and Wonder Wheels, optically active, geometric grids that exhibit a music-like tonality. The exhibition’s title, appropriated from a song by Radiohead, suggests optical attraction, desire, and movement—all things that a viewer encounters in the artist’s work.

Included in this exhibition are eighteen of the artist’s small-scale works on paper, including drawn versions of Splats, Straight Lines, Ovals, and Gray Blocks. Smith’s drawings are often preparatory to his paintings, giving the artist the advantage of refining the shape and placement of forms on the picture plane prior to committing them to canvas. Carefully rendered with pencil, these works substitute disciplined mark making for the exactitude of color that the artist brings to his paintings. Where Smith’s craftsmanship often drops into the background behind the color in the paintings, his flawless technique makes the experience of the drawings first and foremost one of precision; the careful, gradated application of graphite speaks of a patience that is almost painful. Smith’s work, however, is not about obsession, but about care and devotion to a process where ideally both the medium and the means are transcended.

In 1963, the art historian and curator William Rubin described Ellsworth Kelly’s painting as exhibiting “a peculiarly American combination of the hedonistic and the puritanical,” an observation that one could rightly apply to Smith’s work. At the heart of Smith’s practice is an exuberant form of control, a state of direct emotional participation and knowledge that is disassociated from any specific instance, yet speaks clearly of real experience. “I don’t want the viewer to understand my paintings,” Smith has stated, “but I want them to make sense.”

Richard Klein, exhibitions director

Cary Smith was born in 1955 in Puerto Rico; he lives in Farmington, Connecticut, and works in Collinsville, Connecticut.

This exhibition has been generously supported, in part, by Cynthia and Stuart Smith.

Ernesto Neto

The Body That Gravitates on Me

October 19, 2014, to April 5, 2015

The Body That Gravitates on Me, 2006
Polyamide fabric, Styrofoam, nylon stockings, sand Courtesy of the artist and Tanya Bonakdar Gallery, New York
The Body That Gravitates on Me, 2006
Polyamide fabric, Styrofoam, nylon stockings, sand Courtesy of the artist and Tanya Bonakdar Gallery, New York

​Ernesto Neto has become internationally known for translucent organic sculptures that often take on architectural proportions. Frequently blurring boundaries between inside and outside, weightlessness and gravitational pull, relaxation and tension, Neto’s work exhibits both playfulness and a formal rigor that is often—literally—stretched to the extreme by his use of flexible synthetic fabrics, particularly those used in stockings and tights: nylon and polyamide. The Body That Gravitates on Me has been installed in The Aldrich’s atrium, with its pendulous appendages dangling from the space’s 25-foot ceiling. Like many of Neto’s sculptures, the work goes beyond being simple organic abstraction to actually resembling a living organism, with its form including elements that read as a body, appendages, and orifices, described by the artist as “a kind of fantasy of nature, and a hypothesis about a structure of a body.”

Commenting on the piece’s title, Neto stated: “Sometimes I like to put the viewer inside of the work, through the title, to have that feeling that we are pulled towards the object, that we are inside of a field that surrounds it. This personalizes the work, bringing it closer to us. This also helps to disguise its specific anatomy, to bring the form back to the viewer.”

Neto’s art has been informed by both nature and culture, with influences ranging from the ecology of his native Brazil to mathematics, physics, astronomy, and movements such as Minimalism and Arte Povera. In the context of The Aldrich’s fiftieth anniversary, his installation has been juxtaposed with those of Richard Serra (whom Neto has referenced as an influence) and Eva Hesse. Like Neto’s work in the present day, in the 1960s Hesse’s sculpture referenced the body and utilized unusual and fragile materials in the service of reconciling formalism with figurative concerns.

Richard Klein, exhibitions director

Ernesto Neto was born in 1964 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, where he currently lives and works. He has exhibited his work worldwide, including recent solo exhibitions at the Guggenheim, Bilbao; Galeria Fortes Vilaça, São Paulo; Espace Louis Vuitton, Tokyo; Tanya Bonakdar Gallery, New York; the Nasher Sculpture Center, Dallas; the Hayward Gallery, Southbank Centre, London; The Museum of Modern Art, New York; and the Museo d’Arte Contemporanea, Rome

David Scanavino

Imperial Texture

October 19, 2014, to April 5, 2015

For more than a decade, David Scanavino has explored the ubiquitous vernacular of the institutional—the run-of-the-mill, nondescript architectural features of pedestrian spaces that don’t stand out; the interiors of public schools, city libraries, state hospitals, and bureaucratic agencies. These impressional yet indistinguishable interiors are the impetus and inspiration for Scanavino’s sculptures, works on paper, installations, and wall-relief paintings.

Scanavino asks us to think about how we relate to built space, especially the uninteresting but unmistakable institutional places we (un)willingly occupy. He transforms the architecturally “insignificant” and the seemingly inescapable into something seductive, something playful, something appealing, something unexpected—activating the space by using unassuming, inexpensive, manufacturing and preschool art supplies, vibrant construction paper, and Elmer’s Glue.

At The Aldrich, Scanavino debuts a site-specific floor sculpture and a monumental wall relief, turning the South Gallery into both an experiential installation and engaging platform for interactivity. Imperial Texture (2014) spans the floor and scales four walls, making it feel as though the viewer has walked into a gigantic immersive abstract painting or virtual video game. Using multicolored 1 x 1 foot linoleum tiles, Scanavino conceives what at
first emerges as a dizzying arrangement that generates a tantalizing optical sensation. As the floor tilts upwards onto the walls, it challenges the viewer’s dimensional perception, offering an intensified sensorial experience about body, site, and spatial conformation.

But even more significant for Scanavino is the looming presence of noted influencer Richard Artschwager, who also famously used household commercial materials such as Celotex ceiling tiles and Formica to create “hybrid” objects—like Pyramidal Object (1967), situated immediately outside the South Gallery as part of the Museum’s 50th Anniversary exhibition, Standing in the Shadows of Love.

To intensify the viewing experience, Scanavino also introduces Peacock (2014), an animated wall relief crafted with a colorful construction-paper pulp-and-glue blend that has been applied by hand directly onto one of the gallery’s walls. Formed over three eight-hour days, the pulp was pre-mixed in the studio using a household blender and arrived in color-coded buckets.

Scanavino’s works allow us entry into a mind that pulsates with color and throbs with pattern, stimulating us to rethink our relationship to the everyday elements orbiting us: the floating shapes in an indigo sky, shadows hopping across a glowing ceiling, and the rainbow hues that refract off a dewy window pane.

Amy Smith-Stewart, curator

David Scanavino was born on 1978 in Denver, Colorado, and lives and works in New York.

Kate Gilmore

A Roll in the Way

October 19, 2014, to April 5, 2015

The practice of Kate Gilmore spans video, sculpture, photography, performance, and installation. She is almost always the sole protagonist in her videos, recorded either privately in her studio or onsite, never rehearsed, and only attempted once. She assumes the functions of characters who are subjected to situations on constructed environments that act as the catalyst for a mélange of wacky plays on art and life.

Gilmore debuts A Roll in the Way (2014), a site-specific sculpture and video that
is a record of a private performance produced within The Aldrich’s walls. The end result of her actions is a monumental sculpture, a “container” of the performance’s aftermath, comprised of a pile of logs covered in bright paint, on a white platform. The video, shot from an aerial perspective, shows Gilmore stacking logs onto a base designed to exactly fit the camera’s frame. The action unfolds as follows: Gilmore dips logs approximately two feet long with a softball-size diameter in paint and carries
and lifts them onto the base, leaving a trace of color that gradually expands as the accumulation of logs increases until it reaches maximum capacity. The paint drips as if the wood bleeds, leaving a trace of the live event that bestows an inanimate object with emotional pathos. The sheer scale of the installation is testament to the incredible physicality of Kate Gilmore’s practice. The bodily force exerted and the sculpture’s immensity and site-specificity recall the infinitives Richard Serra used to describe his artistic process: “to drop,” “to roll,” and “to splash.”

Alongside A Roll in the Way, two recent performance-based videos: Love Em’, Leave Em’ (2013) and Like this, Before (2013) are on view. Both star Gilmore and employ bold color and store-bought pots or vases, her labor here referencing Abstract Expressionism’s one shot, all-or-nothing, action-based ethos. By subscribing to its power, she forges a dialogue about identity, gender, and status. As Gilmore explains: “A pot or vase is just as beautiful with its insides spilling out. I look at the construction of the individual in the same terms.”

On view concurrently in the Balcony Gallery, with a sight line onto Gilmore’s installation, is noted influencer Richard Serra’s Bent Pipe Roll (1968), a work included in the Museum’s 50th Anniversary exhibition, Standing in the Shadows of Love.

Amy Smith-Stewart, curator

Kate Gilmore was born in 1975 in Washington, DC, and currently lives and works in New York City.

This exhibition is supported, in part, by the Stanley Family Fund.

Mary Beth Edelson

Six Story Gathering Boxes (1972-2014)

October 19, 2014, to April 5, 2015

This participatory exhibition brings together six of Mary Beth Edelson’s ground-breaking story gathering boxes—a project initiated in 1972 that is still ongoing—seminal contributions that encapsulated an evolving feminist art legacy and evidenced the very first vestiges
of what is familiarly known today as “social practice.” These works, taken as a whole, engage audience interconnectivity to establish an exhibition hinged upon “interaction” in order to explore the diverse ways in which we relate to collaborative art and its impact on the world beyond the museum.

Edelson, an early pioneer of the feminist art movement as well as participatory art works, has enjoyed a six and a half decade career that traverses media ranging from performance to photography, painting, sculpture, drawing, printmaking, artist books, collages, video, and collaborative art. Centered on the experimental and oriented towards activist principles, she makes art that is predicated upon a cooperative experience focused on viewers’ involvement and reflection.

The story gathering boxes comprise two types: those created with media including leather, paint, ink, graphite, and watercolor, containing wooden tablets encompassing texts and imagery on specific themes such as gender, sexuality, goddesses, myths,
and spirituality; and those that involve a set of paper tablets with questions stamped
at the top, prompting a handwritten response from the viewer on topics ranging from gender to immigration. The questions transcend age, sexual preference, and culture, metamorphosing the purely subjective by forming a critical mass that encompasses generations and cuts across geography. Edelson assumes the role of archivist, curator, and caretaker, offering up a re-presentation of our greater social narrative as she asks us to scrutinize our cultural evolution.

Of the six boxes selected for the exhibition, two contain wooden tablets in their original boxes: New Myths/Old Myths (1973) and Great Mother (1973), which was exhibited forty years ago in The Aldrich exhibition Contemporary Reflections (1973–74). The four paper tablet boxes on view together span forty-two years: Gender Parity (1972–ongoing), Purveyor of Hope (1972–ongoing), Childhood (1995–ongoing), and Family Immigration Stories (2014–ongoing), a new work created especially for this exhibition. Visitors are invited to contribute their accounts, which besides being collected and archived will be added to Edelson’s website, storygatheringboxes.com, in order to be read by future generations as time capsules revealing of our era.

The fact that the story boxes have no end point, and will outlive Edelson herself, allows them to circulate in perpetuity, remaining forever relevant.

Amy Smith-Stewart, curator

Mary Beth Edelson was born in 1933 in East Chicago, Indiana, and has lived and worked in New York City for the past forty years.

Sloth

Seven Deadly Sins

July 19, 2015, to October 18, 2015

Sloth, The Aldrich’s contribution to Seven Deadly Sins, the first programmatic collaboration between The Fairfield Westchester Museum Alliance—a group of arts institutions in Connecticut and New York—is a project organized by artist Mats Bigert (b. 1965, Stockholm, Sweden) and Cabinet magazine editor-in-chief Sina Najafi (b.1965, Tehran, Iran). Utilizing the first floor and porch of The Aldrich’s historic “Old Hundred” building that dates from 1783, Bigert and Najafi do not address Sloth thematically, instead opting to advance human understanding by inhabiting the sin. Using the latest Western technologies—including Bob-O-Pedic recliners, video, television monitors, gin, ice, and tonic—Bigert and Najafi offer The Aldrich’s visitors the chance to armchair travel to the other six venues. No need to go all the way to Katonah! (And where exactly is Wave Hill?) Put aside that map, put up your feet, and learn about the other sins, thanks to the diligent curators at the other six institutions. And Sloth? Well, by the time you have sunk into the deep folds of one of the exhibition’s recliners, we think that you, too, will have come to know and love this most excellent of sins.

The series of exhibitions and programs will take place at The Aldrich; Bruce Museum in Greenwich, CT (Pride); Hudson River Museum in Yonkers, NY (Envy); Hudson Valley Center for Contemporary Art in Peekskill, NY (Lust); Katonah Museum of Art in Katonah, NY (Gluttony); Neuberger Museum of Art in Purchase, NY (Greed); and Wave Hill in Bronx, NY (Wrath).

Generous support for Sloth has been provided by Bob’s Discount Furniture and The International Artists Studio Program in Stockholm (IASPIS).

Objects Like Us

Objects Like Us

May 20, 2018, to January 13, 2019

Genesis Belanger, Double Cherry, 2017. Courtesy of the artist and Mrs.
Genesis Belanger, Double Cherry, 2017. Courtesy of the artist and Mrs.


Objects Like Us, a group exhibition featuring more than seventy tabletop art objects by more than fifty artists, will open at The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum in May. This exhibition explores the relational behavior of intimately scaled objects that personify or embody a human condition or attribute. The objects will span nearly sixty years and feature works conceived specifically for the exhibition, including a site-specific floor installation by artist/co-curator David Adamo. The overall experience will underscore the efficacy of the works’ relativity and illuminate the interconnectedness of audience and objects. Objects Like Us, is organized by Amy Smith-Stewart, curator at The Aldrich, and Adamo; it will be on view at The Aldrich from May 20, 2018, to January 13, 2019.

Small objects of symbolic prominence exert a special hold. Some purport to possess healing powers, channel spirit gods, or speak to us; others perform for us, mime our mannerisms, or impart notable narratives. Even with the dramatic dematerialization of objects in this hyperkinetic moment, tangible objects of small stature and symptomatic value command sizeable importance in our everyday lives, as they have for tens of thousands of years. We obsessively cram our homes, offices, museums, and galleries with these diminutive objects—whether objects of art, historical worth, ceremony, or of individual accomplishment, all are expressions of us, and thus of broader culture.

In Objects Like Us each work affects or exposes a circumstance, attribute, or manner that is notably human and transmits a potentiality, aura, or agency demonstrative of being. This exhibition brings together art objects that not only parrot human behavior or gestures, but that unequivocally “interrelate.” It has been conjured as a performative arrangement, with the objects installed in an intentional frontal method of display, positioned on a long shelf that extends over three walls of a rectilinear gallery. Its design combines two common yet neutralized display formats, the table and the shelf, suspending the visitor within a situation that evokes both the home and the museum. Another distinguishing feature of this exhibition is co-curator and artist David Adamo’s (b. 1979) eleven-hundred-square-foot, site-specific floor installation, Bâtons Rompus (2012), comprised entirely of rectangular sticks of white school chalk laid out in a herringbone pattern that mimics vintage parquet. Like all ephemeral works, its vulnerability will be apparent as the chalk inescapably succumbs to day-to-day wear and tear, fracturing and eventually disintegrating under the scores of shuffling feet, enhancing the visitor’s sensitivity to site and context while tracking their introspective travels within the gallery.

Artists confirmed for the exhibition: David Adamo (b. 1979), Yuji Agematsu (b. 1956), Sam Anderson (b. 1982), Janine Antoni (b. 1964), Robert Arneson (1930‒1992), Jonathan Baldock (b. 1980), Mary Bauermeister (b. 1934), Genesis Belanger (b. 1978), Brian Belott (b. 1973), Daniel Bozhkov (b. 1959), Eugene Von Bruenchenhein (1910‒1983), James Lee Byars (1932‒1997), Pia Camil (b. 1980), Jennifer Paige Cohen (b. 1972), Jeff Davis (b. 1967), Rainer Ganahl (b. 1961), Liz Glynn (b. 1981), Ben Gocker (b. 1979), David Hammons (b. 1943), K8 Hardy (b. 1977), Lynn Hershman Leeson (b. 1941), Christian Holstad (b. 1972), Matt Hoyt (b. 1975), Jessica Jackson Hutchins (b. 1971), Jamie Isenstein (b. 1975), Lisa Kirk (b. 1967), Tetsumi Kudo (1935‒1990), Thomas Lanigan-Schmidt (b. 1948), Hanna Liden (b. 1976); Pam Lins (b. 1957), Nicolas Lobo (b. 1979), Alice Mackler (b. 1931), Joanna Malinowska (b. 1972), Tony Matelli (b. 1971), Ruby Neri (b. 1970), Sheila Pepe (b. 1959), Mai-Thu Perret (b. 1976), Sarah Peters (b. 1973), Michael Portnoy (b. 1971); Vanessa Safavi (b. 1980), Lucas Samaras (b. 1936), Aki Sasamoto (b. 1980), Sally Saul (b. 1946); Katy Schimert (b. 1963), Michelle Segre (b. 1965), Rudy Shepherd (b. 1975), Bruce M. Sherman (b. 1942), Diane Simpson (b. 1935), Luke Stettner (b. 1979), Alina Szapocznikow (1926‒1973), Francis Upritchard (b. 1976), Marianne Vitale (b. 1973), Nari Ward (b. 1963), Hannah Wilke (1940‒1993), and Rosha Yaghmai (b. 1979).

Objects Like Us is one chapter in a series of concurrent exhibitions at The Aldrich brought together under the title The Domestic Plane: New Perspectives on Tabletop Art Objects, all of which explore the nature of small objects and our relationship to them.

For press inquiries, please contact Emily Devoe at 203.438.4519, extension 140, or edevoe@aldrichart.org

Generous funding for The Domestic Plane: New Perspectives on Tabletop Art Objects is provided by Crozier Fine Arts and the Art Dealers Association of America Foundation. Media support is provided by Connecticut Cottages & Gardens (CTC&G).

Generous funding for the accompanying exhibition publication, The Domestic Plane: New Perspectives on Tabletop Art Objects, is provided by the Elizabeth Firestone Graham Foundation and Philip and Shelley Fox Aarons.

Analia Segal

contra la pared

May 20, 2018, to September 23, 2018

​The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum is pleased to present Analia Segal: contra la pared, a solo exhibition of the artist’s recent work that expands Segal’s interrogation of the boundaries between art, design, and architecture, intertwining the conceptual, aesthetic, and functional nature of objects that inhabit our domestic environments. The exhibition, the Argentinean artist’s first solo museum presentation in the United States, will be on view May 20 to September 23, 2018.

contra la pared brings together a selection of Segal’s sculpture, video, furniture, and textile works to create an environment that resonates with both the familiar and the disquieting. The title, which can mean both “against the wall” or “cornered” in Spanish, references allusions in the artist’s work to domestic surfaces, such as wallpaper, as well as the feelings of insecurity and entrapment that interior spaces can provoke. The exhibition will include Inland, an animated video trilogy that juxtaposes the sensual—yet ominous—unfolding of patterned wall surfaces and window-like apertures against a soundtrack of fragmented phrases from language tutorials—in both English and Spanish—and texts from classic fairy tales, such as Little Red Riding Hood and The Three Little Pigs.

Carpets in the exhibition ooze from underneath walls, while others unravel upwards to suggest flight; a series of benches and a wall of objects resembling books sprout tonguelike appendages and erotic puckers that violate their normal geometry. Segal’s childhood in Argentina was formed to a large extent by the uncertainty and anxiety of living under the authoritarian military dictatorship. This experience left her with complex feelings about the safety and security of domestic space, since her home had acted as both protector and prison. Moving to New York City in 1999, the artist was struck by the fact that, unlike the thick, sound-deadening masonry walls of her youth in Buenos Aires, walls in New York are permeable membranes that permit the outside world to enter, engendering a fluid sense of interior and exterior. contra la pared is a metaphorical compendium of Segal’s experiences, revealing her deft ability to manipulate both form and materials, and thus shift and amplify meaning.

Analia Segal (b. 1967, Rosario, Argentina) received her BA from Universidad de Buenos Aires, Argentina, in 1997 and her MA from New York University in 2001. Segal received a 2017 Joan Mitchell Foundation Grant and was a Guggenheim Fellow. Her recent solo and group exhibitions include Opus Project Space, New York; Point of Contact Gallery, Syracuse University, NY; Heimbold Visual Art Center’s Barbara Walters Gallery, Sarah Lawrence College, Bronxville, NY; Museo de Arte Moderno de Buenos Aires, Argentina; Museo del Barrio, New York; Triennale Design Museum, Milan, Italy; and MoMA PS1, New York. A major book on Segal’s work El interior del interior, published in Argentina in 2017, includes a comprehensive survey of eighteen years of her interdisciplinary investigations into the possibilities of both the process and the mediums of art making. Segal lives and works in Brooklyn, NY.

A full-color, soft-cover scholarly publication will be available during the exhibition.

Organized by Richard Klein, exhibitions director, The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum.

Tucker Nichols

Almost Everything On The Table

May 20, 2018, to January 13, 2019

The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum is pleased to present Almost Everything On The Table: The Smallish Explanatory Sculptures of Tucker Nichols As Employed in the Pursuit of Understanding by Dakin Hart. Comprised of tabletop hybrid objects/models composed from mostly found items, Nichols employs a wide range of materials to query both broad and topical questions about the cosmos. Almost Everything On The Table will be on view at The Aldrich May 20, 2018, to January 13, 2019.

Even before the digital era, more or less everything you needed to understand about the universe fit on a kitchen table. Small models are a surprisingly powerful way to address big questions. The most unbelievable thing about an equation like E=mc2 is not how complex it is under the hood, but that anything as abstract and simply stated as a formula with only a few terms can have any relationship to a cosmic truth.

Organized in the anyone-can-be-a-natural-philosopher spirit of the Age of Enlightenment, this installation of epistemological apparatuses conceived by Tucker Nichols to answer questions propounded by Dakin Hart, explores the enterprise of curiosity that has produced the most absurd and ennobling understandings of man. With the right tools, you can hold infinity in the palm of your hand. Nichols employs found materials sourced from the beaches near his home in Northern California or those easily procured from his surroundings. Nichols, at his own and Hart’s request, transforms and repurposes man-made detritus culled from the ocean into vessels for pseudo-scientific inquiry.

All of the work in the Almost Everything On The Table is environmental, and with a nod to the inspirational sculptor Isamu Noguchi, explores how big and small forces influence our worldview, including gravity, chance, and electromagnetism. Under these terms, everyone has the capacity to observe how these forces interact. This installation encourages hands-on discovery and is predicated on physical contact with the material.

Tucker Nichols (b. 1970, Boston, MA) received his BA from Brown University and his MA from Yale University. His work has been included in group exhibitions nationally and internationally, at venues including the Institute of Contemporary Art, Portland, ME; Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, San Francisco; Contemporary Art Museum, Raleigh, NC; Asian Art Museum, San Francisco; Denver Art Museum, Denver; and SFMOMA, San Francisco, among others.

Dakin Hart is the Senior Curator at The Noguchi Museum in Long Island City, NY.

Almost Everything On The Table is one chapter in a series of concurrent exhibitions at The Aldrich brought together under the title The Domestic Plane: New Perspectives on Tabletop Art Objects, all of which explore the nature of small objects and our relationship to them.

For press inquiries, please contact Emily Devoe at 203.438.4519, extension 140, or edevoe@aldrichart.org

Generous funding for The Domestic Plane: New Perspectives on Tabletop Art Objects is provided by Crozier Fine Arts and the Art Dealers Association of America Foundation. Media support is provided by Connecticut Cottages & Gardens (CTC&G).

Generous funding for the accompanying publication, The Domestic Plane: New Perspectives on Tabletop Art Objects is provided by the Elizabeth Firestone Graham Foundation and Philip and Shelley Fox Aarons.

On Edge

On Edge

May 20, 2018, to January 13, 2019

Leslie Wayne, Corner Store (studio view), 2018; Courtesy of the artist and Jack Shainman Gallery, New York
Leslie Wayne, Corner Store (studio view), 2018; Courtesy of the artist and Jack Shainman Gallery, New York

The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum is pleased to present On Edge, an exhibition that brings together seven contemporary artists whose work addresses the complex and dynamic terrain of the table’s edge. Revealing the edge as a site where boundaries are both reinforced and tested, and where safety and danger coexist, On Edge will include works by Anthony Caro (1924‒2013), and newly commissioned works by Paul Bowen, Melvin Edwards, Michael Rees, Arlene Shechet, Venske & Spänle, and Leslie Wayne. Organized by The Aldrich’s exhibitions director, Richard Klein, the exhibition will be on view from May 20, 2018, to January 13, 2019.

Traditionally, the edge has been avoided as it both suggests jeopardy and violates the comfortable and familiar framing of the art object by its display surface; yet artists have been drawn to the precipice by its theatricality as well as by subjective and formal concerns. The exhibition’s design subverts institutional expectations about presentation by utilizing the domestic table as a primary display surface, employing iconic tables by Modernist designers such as Charles and Ray Eames and George Nelson generously provided by Design Within Reach. This installation emphasizes the uncertainty that small objects undergo when leaving the controlled, formal, museum or gallery environment of plinths and sculpture bases and enter the home. Traditionally, the domestic environment is one of order and safety, with the table being akin to a country or province: a landscape of unity and purpose that is bordered by the flow of the surrounding world. For an object to approach, or violate, the table’s edge is to question security, and, by extension, the sovereignty of what has been demarked as limited and known.

In our current moment where borders are being reinforced and nationalism is rising globally, the edge takes on a new urgency, charged with metaphors that go beyond the simply dramatic. If one believes significant art objects are imbued with some form of intentionality by their makers, all of the works included in On Edge share in being extremely self-conscious of both their scale and placement, questioning assumptions about the usually neutral relationship between small objects and their location in space.

On Edge is one chapter in a series of concurrent exhibitions at The Aldrich brought together under the title The Domestic Plane: New Perspectives on Tabletop Art Objects, all of which explore the nature of small objects and our relationship to them.

For press inquiries, please contact Emily Devoe at 203.438.4519, extension 140, or edevoe@aldrichart.org

Generous funding for The Domestic Plane: New Perspectives on Tabletop Art Objects is provided by Crozier Fine Arts and the Art Dealers Association of America Foundation. Media support is provided by Connecticut Cottages & Gardens (CTC&G).

Generous funding for the accompanying exhibition publication, The Domestic Plane: New Perspectives on Tabletop Art Objects, is provided by the Elizabeth Firestone Graham Foundation and Philip and Shelley Fox Aarons.

On Edge is supported by Design Within Reach.

Jessi Reaves

Kitchen Arrangement

May 20, 2018, to January 13, 2019

Jessi Reaves, I Can Dissolve Table, 2015, MDF, marine plywood, laminate, rubber, pine, polyurethane foam, ink, photo by Marc Brems Tatti, copyright Jessi Reaves, courtesy of the artist and Bridget Donahue, NYC

The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum is pleased to present Jessi Reaves: Kitchen Arrangement organized by The Aldrich’s curator Amy Smith-Stewart and Berlin-based artist and curator David Adamo. Reaves’s exhibition will feature sculptural works such as seating, cabinetry, appliances, and lighting for the presentation on view from May 20, 2018, to January 13, 2019.

Kitchen Arrangement will offer an object-based experience that is an expression of the home’s primal epicenter: a social space essential to living and an area full of relational potentiality. Arguably the most experiential site in the house, the kitchen has also evolved into a particularly feminine space. As shown here, debate, inquiry, community, and experimental freedom ably congregate, so art and life can comfortably coalesce.

Jessi Reaves’s sculptures impersonate and inhabit functional design objects—sofas, chairs, ottomans, tables, bookcases, lamps, cabinets, and coat racks—as she imaginatively remasters existing furniture or composes her own to underscore an inherent performativity. The unlikely union of disparate materials, steel, drift wood, saw dust, zippers, plywood, and car fenders, endows her charismatic objects with signifying temperaments that span the shapely and sensuous and the misshapen and contorted. Riffing on well-known modern designers, like the Eameses, Noguchi, or Sottsass, Reaves liberates her materials from their highly polished veneers. She dissects, appends, or veils her anthropomorphized forms in order to reveal inimitable additive and reductive processes, such as curious decorative flourishes made with a distinctive blend of wood glue and sawdust, or wearable fabrics (nylons and silks) that render her eccentric craftsmanship perceptible. These hybrid objects, to which she imparts beguiling attributes, emphasize and destabilize an in-built potential for corporeal interactivity.

Jessi Reaves (b. 1986, Portland, OR) received her BFA from the Rhode Island School of Design, Providence. Her work has been included in group exhibitions nationally and internationally, at venues including team gallery, inc., New York; Swiss Institute, New York; Herald St, London; and A Palazzo Gallery, Brescia, Italy. In 2016, Reaves presented her first solo gallery exhibition with Bridget Donahue, New York, and in 2017 her work was included in the Whitney Biennial. She lives and works in New York City.

Jessi Reaves: Kitchen Arrangement is one chapter in a series of concurrent exhibitions at The Aldrich brought together under the title The Domestic Plane: New Perspectives on Tabletop Art Objects, all of which explore the nature of small objects and our relationship to them.

For press inquiries, please contact Emily Devoe at 203.438.4519, extension 140, or edevoe@aldrichart.org

Generous funding for The Domestic Plane: New Perspectives on Tabletop Art Objects is provided by Crozier Fine Arts and the Art Dealers Association of America Foundation. Media support is provided by Connecticut Cottages & Gardens (CTC&G).

Generous funding for the accompanying publication, The Domestic Plane: New Perspectives on Tabletop Art Objects is
provided by the Elizabeth Firestone Graham Foundation and Philip and Shelley Fox Aarons.

Handheld

Handheld

May 20, 2018, to January 13, 2019

Alma Allen, Not Yet Titled (all four), 2017; Courtesy of the artist and Blum & Poe, Los Angeles/New York/Tokyo, photo by Sam Kahn
Alma Allen, Not Yet Titled (all four), 2017; Courtesy of the artist and Blum & Poe, Los Angeles/New York/Tokyo; Photo by Sam Kahn

The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum is pleased to present Handheld, a group exhibition that explores the contemporary meaning of touch by charting artists’, designers’, and makers’ various responses to objects scaled to the hand. Including works by Alma Allen, Aldo Bakker, Kathy Butterly, David Clarke, Iris Eichenberg, Laura Fischer, Jennifer Lee, Shari Mendelson, Jonathan Muecke, Ron Nagle, Kay Sekimachi, Christopher Taylor, Anne Wilson, Thaddeus Wolfe, and Shinya Yamamura, Handheld, organized by Elizabeth Essner, will be on view May 20, 2018 to January 13, 2019.

Touch is, in many ways, our most intimate sense, and our hands are its primary agents. Hands are meant to hold lots of things: pencils, babies, heavy pieces of furniture, other people’s hands. Yet, for many of us in today’s world, the feeling in our hands that is most familiar is the easy weight of our handheld devices. Today, touch increasingly takes the form of a swipe, where sensation is often ignored in favor of access to the flat visual landscapes of our own selection—a place where we can look at imagery as much as we want, but we cannot touch. However, as we think of traditional forms for our most precious things the words of grandmothers echo worldwide, “Look but don’t touch.” This surprising parallel between the domestic and the digital offers viewers a point of departure to consider the relationship between haptic and optic, hand and eye, in contemporary life.

Handheld takes a multifarious approach—the hand as means of creation, a formal frame of reference, and for the viewer, a source of both delight and tension as they experience sensual objects in familiar domestic forms, scaled for touch, that can be looked upon but not felt.

Materials are central to Handheld. Clay and metal can, quite literally, record fingerprints and movement, glass is blown with our breath, and fiber traces the finger’s work. These materials also happen to be those most familiar to our everyday: the feel of our favorite coffee cup, our faucet tap, our sheets as we climb into bed. Seeking questions rather than answers, Handheld uses the common language of the domestic to examine the complex role of the hand.

Elizabeth Essner is a Brooklyn-based independent curator and writer focused on modern and contemporary design, decorative arts, and craft. Recently a curatorial fellow for the Center for Craft, Creativity & Design, she received her MA from the Bard Graduate Center: Decorative Arts, Design, History, Material Culture. Exhibition design by Jonathan Muecke.

Handheld is one chapter in a series of concurrent exhibitions brought together under the title The Domestic Plane: New Perspectives on Tabletop Art Objects, all of which explore the nature of small objects and our relationship to them.

For press inquiries, please contact Emily Devoe at 203.438.4519, extension 140, or edevoe@aldrichart.org

Generous funding for The Domestic Plane: New Perspectives on Tabletop Art Objects is provided by Crozier Fine Arts and the

Art Dealers Association of America Foundation. Media support is provided by Connecticut Cottages & Gardens (CTC&G).

Generous funding for the accompanying exhibition publication, The Domestic Plane: New Perspectives on Tabletop Art Objects, is provided by the Elizabeth Firestone Graham Foundation and Philip and Shelley Fox Aarons.

The Domestic Plane

New Perspectives On Tabletop Art Objects

May 20, 2018, to January 13, 2019

The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum is pleased to present The Domestic Plane: New Perspectives on Tabletop Art Objects, a meta-group exhibition in five chapters—organized by five curators, including more than seventy artists—that will feature tabletop art objects from the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. The experience could be likened to theatre, as viewers encounter objects that interact with each other, their audience, their setting, forging relationships to be examined and meanings to be discovered in their adventurous methods of display. The Domestic Plane will be on view at The Aldrich from May 20, 2018 to January 13, 2019.

Objects Like Us includes the work of more than fifty artists, including Robert Arneson, Mary Bauermeister, Genesis Belanger, Lynn Hershman Leeson, Christian Holstad, Tetsumi Kudo, Thomas Lanigan-Schmidt, Alice Mackler, Sheila Pepe, Vanessa Safavi, Katy Schimert, Rudy Shepherd, Francis Upritchard, and Nari Ward. This chapter explores the relational behavior of intimately scaled objects that personify or embody a human condition or attribute that transmits a performative potentiality, aura, or beingness. The objects will span nearly sixty years, including works conceived specifically for the exhibition (2017‒18). Artist/curator David Adamo will create a site-specific floor installation comprised of white school chalk laid out in a herringbone pattern to mimic antique parquet; over time the chalk will crack and crumble, tracing the viewers’ movements. The overall experience will underscore the efficacy of the works’ relativity and illuminate the interconnectedness of audience and objects. Objects Like Us is organized by Amy Smith-Stewart, curator at The Aldrich, and David Adamo.

For Kitchen Arrangement, a site-specific commission, Jessi Reaves will create a kitchen with interactive furniture and objects, such as seating, cabinetry, appliances, and lighting. This exhibition will offer an immersive experience that is an expression of the home’s primal epicenter: a social space essential to living and an area full of relational potentiality. Jessi Reaves: Kitchen Arrangement is organized by Amy Smith-Stewart and David Adamo.

On Edge considers the table as territory: its inherent boundaries, and relationship with gravity. Paul Bowen, Melvin Edwards, Michael Rees, Arlene Shechet, Venske & Spänle, and Leslie Wayne will respond to the table’s periphery with new works that reveal the edge as a site where limits are both reinforced and tested, and where safety and danger coexist. On Edge also includes tabletop sculpture by Anthony Caro (1924-2013), with the installation utilizing iconic modernist tables by designers such as Charles and Ray Eames and George Nelson generously provided by Design Within Reach. On Edge is organized by Richard Klein, exhibitions director at The Aldrich.

Organized in the anyone-can-be-a-natural-philosopher spirit of the Age of Enlightenment, Almost Everything On The Table, an installation of epistemological apparatuses conceived by artist Tucker Nichols answers questions propounded by curator Dakin Hart. Exploring the enterprise of curiosity that has produced the most absurd and ennobling understandings of man, this exhibition shows that with the right tools, you can hold infinity in the palm of your hand. Almost Everything On The Table is organized by Dakin Hart, senior curator, The Noguchi Museum.

Seeking questions rather than answers, Handheld will chart artists’, designers’, and makers’ various responses to objects scaled to the hand. This chapter will take a multifarious approach—the hand as means of creation, a formal frame of reference, and for the viewer, a source of both delight and tension as they experience sensual objects in familiar domestic forms, scaled for touch, that can be looked upon but not felt. With exhibition design by Jonathan Muecke, Handheld features work by Alma Allen, Aldo Bakker, Kathy Butterly, David Clarke, Iris Eichenberg, Laura Fischer, Jennifer Lee, Shari Mendelson, Ron Nagle, Kay Sekimachi, Bob Stockdale, Christopher Taylor, Anne Wilson, Thaddeus Wolfe, and Shinya Yamamura. Handheld is organized by Elizabeth Essner, independent curator.

The noted graphic novelist, illustrator, and animator, Richard McGuire, will be contributing an eight-page project to the exhibition publication consisting of sequential grids of 128 small line drawings depicting the interrelationship of a cast of small objects. My Things will bring a non-verbal interlude to the book, suggesting to the reader that common objects are pregnant with meaning and possibilities. McGuire will also be presenting an installation of new objects, The Way There and Back, in the Museum’s Screening Room.

Robert Longo

Untitled (Dividing Time)

September 13, 2017, to October 11, 2017

The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum is pleased to present the fourth public artwork in Creative Time’s Pledges of Allegiance series: Untitled (Dividing Time), by Robert Longo. The flag was raised on September 13 at The Aldrich and will be on view through October 11, 2017. The project is a serialized commission of sixteen flags, each created by acclaimed artists to reflect the current political climate.

“I created this flag for Creative Time’s Pledges of Allegiance project based on a large-scale charcoal drawing I completed on the day of the
most recent presidential election. The drawing, Untitled (Nov. 8, 2016), consists of a left and right panel, with five inches separating them,” said artist Robert Longo. “I chose to draw the right panel larger but with fewer stars; my intention is to present the current symptomatic divide in the United States.”

Longo’s Pledges of Allegiance flag is based on the artist’s 2016 large-scale charcoal drawing, exhibited in Longo’s “The Destroyer Cycle” exhibition at Metro Pictures in New York City.

Creative Time’s Pledges of Allegiance project continues to grow and expand nationally. In a gesture of solidarity, Robert Longo’s flag will be raised simultaneously at the following ten locations:

1. Creative Time headquarters at 59 E 4th Street in New York, NY
2. The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum in Ridgefield, CT
3. Brooklyn Museum in Brooklyn, NY
4. Herbert F Johnson Museum of Art at Cornell University in Ithaca, NY
5. Kemper Art Museum at Washington University in St. Louis
6. Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit (MOCAD) in Detroit, MI
7. RISD Museum at Rhode Island School of Design in Providence, RI
8. University of South Florida Contemporary Art Museum in Tampa, FL
9. 21c Museum Hotel in Durham, NC
10. KMAC Museum in Louisville, KY

Pledges of Allegiance is one of three major Longo projects currently showing in New York, Dividing Time is joined by the Brooklyn Museum’s Proof: Francisco Goya, Sergei Eisenstein, Robert Longo and the street-spanning public art installation American Bridge Project, curated by Creative Time board member Jill Brienza for Hunter College.

ABOUT THE ARTIST, ROBERT LONGO

Robert Longo (b. 1953) is a New York-based artist, filmmaker, and musician. He was among the five artists included in the seminal 1977 exhibition Pictures at Artists Space in New York. Longo has exhibited extensively throughout Europe, Asia and the United States, including the Venice Biennale, Documenta, and the Whitney Biennial. He has had several retrospective exhibitions, including exhibitions at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago, and the Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art in Nice. His latest solo exhibition, “The Destroyer Cycle” opened in May 2017 at Metro Pictures in New York City. Alongside Kate Fowle, Longo recently co-curated the exhibition at the Garage Museum of Contemporary Art in Moscow, “PROOF: Francisco Goya, Sergei Eisenstein, Robert Longo,” which is currently on view at the Brooklyn Museum until January 2018. Robert Longo lives and works in New York and is represented by Metro Pictures, NYC; Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac, Paris/Salzburg; and Capitain Petzel, Berlin.

ABOUT PLEDGES OF ALLEGIANCE

Pledges of Allegiance is a nationwide public art project by Creative Time. The project is a serialized commission of sixteen flags, each created by acclaimed contemporary artists: Tania Bruguera, Alex Da Corte, Jeremy Deller, LaToya Ruby Frazier, Ann Hamilton, Robert Longo, Josephine Meckseper, Marilyn Minter, Vik Muniz, Jayson Musson, Ahmet Ögüt, Yoko Ono, Trevor Paglen, Pedro Reyes, Rirkrit Tiravanija, and Nari Ward.

Each flag embodies art’s ability to channel political passion, providing a unifying symbol around which to unite, as well as a call-to-action for institutions nationwide to raise upcoming Pledges of Allegiance flags in solidarity with Creative Time.

Pledges of Allegiance aims to inspire a sense of community among cultural institutions, beginning with an urgent articulation of the political demands of the moment. Each flag points to an issue the artist is passionate about or a cause they believe is worth fighting for, and speaks to how we might move forward collectively as a country. To inaugurate the project, Creative Time raised Marilyn Minter’s RESIST FLAG on the roof of its headquarters on Flag Day, June 14.

Pledges of Allegiance was originally conceived by Alix Browne and developed in collaboration with Cian Browne, Fabienne Stephan, and Opening Ceremony.

For press inquiries, please contact Emily Devoe at 203.438.4519, extension 140, or edevoe@aldrichart.org

Alex Schweder and Ward Shelley

Your Turn

Alex Schweder and Ward Shelley In Residence on Your Turn:
March 23 to 25

The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum is pleased to present Alex Schweder and Ward Shelley: Your Turn, an architectural environment for two that shapes the occupants’ behavior. In a series of performances Schweder and Shelley will physically occupy the structure for extended periods during which they will negotiate the sharing of nine basic amenities while engaging the public with their daily routines and conversations. Schweder and Shelley’s collaboration is primarily based on balance: not only the balance needed to successfully work in a partnership, but also the social balance needed to share resources limited by the confines of their construction. Their practice conflates architectural form and function with performance art, coaxing meaning out of both the practical and the absurd. The exhibition will be on view October 1, 2017 to April 22, 2018.

Schweder and Shelley’s unique collaboration of over a decade has coalesced into what they call “performance architecture,” a new genre in which the two artists design, construct, and then physically occupy structures, blurring the boundaries between architecture, sculpture, design, and performance, exploring both the nature of social space and the way architecture influences human behavior. For their exhibition at The Aldrich, they will construct a twenty-three-foot-high living environment, which they will inhabit as both the authors and living subjects of the work. An adjacent gallery will present the first survey of their reverse paintings on Mylar, which not only act as preliminary renderings for their projects, but also as autonomous works that reinforce the formal aspects of their practice.

The artists will occupy opposing sides of the monolith with nine amenities (including a bed, a desk, an easy chair, a kitchen, a sink, and an enclosed composting toilet), each of which will slide on steel tracks from one side of the structure to the other. So, when Shelley is sleeping in the bed, Schweder cannot sleep; when Schweder is writing at the desk, Shelley cannot use it. The sharing of the amenities is based on both a pre-planned schedule and spontaneous negotiation. For the performance periods the artists will wear identical jumpsuits, bring all necessary supplies with them, and occupy the structure twenty-four hours a day. The artists’ lives, while within the structure, will be on public view when the Museum is open, and visitors are free—in fact, are encouraged by the artists—to engage them in conversation. When awake, Schweder and Shelley will each read, work, prepare meals, and complete acts of simple daily hygiene.

Alex Schweder received a BA from the Pratt Institute School of Architecture, an MArch from Princeton University School of Architecture, and a PhD from the Department of Architecture at the University of Cambridge, UK. Recent exhibitions include the 2014 Venice Biennale, the Tel Aviv Art Museum, the 2013 Moscow Biennial, the 2013 Lisbon Architecture Biennial, and the Tate Britain. He has been an artist in residence at the Kohler Company and the Chinati Foundation, and was awarded the Rome Prize in Architecture at The American Academy in Rome.

Ward Shelley received a BFA from Eckard College and an MA from New York University. Solo exhibitions of his work include Pierogi Gallery, NY; Massimo Carasi Gallery, Milan; Center for Contemporary Art and Launch Projects, Santa Fe; and Socrates Sculpture Park, NY. He has received a Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant, an award from the Joan Mitchell Foundation, two fellowships from the New York Foundation for the Arts, and a fellowship from The American Academy in Rome.

A full-color, soft-cover scholarly publication will be available during the exhibition.

Organized by Richard Klein, exhibitions director, The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum.

For press inquiries, please contact Emily Devoe at 203.438.4519, extension 140, or edevoe@aldrichart.org

Alex Schweder and Ward Shelley: Your Turn is generously supported by Crozier, Ridgefield Supply Company,and The Di Salvo Engineering Group. The official media partner for this exhibition is Connecticut Cottages & Gardens (CTC&G).

Anissa Mack

Junk Kaleidoscope

October 1, 2017, to April 22, 2018

Anissa Mack: Junk Kaleidoscope is a reflection on Mack’s The Fair project, realized in both 1996 and 2006, to be reimagined at the Museum from October 1, 2017, to April 22, 2018. Mack mines Americana, its artifacts, folklore, and rituals, and explores American vernacular traditions, examining their shifting role in a dialogue between the history of art making and the culture of collecting. Through all new objects, Junk Kaleidoscope will re-envision The Fair in a way that weaves together over two decades of work, sixty miles from the Durham Fair fairgrounds that inspired this project.

The Fair was first realized in 1996, when Mack entered all seventy-three craft categories at the Durham Fair, the largest agricultural fair in Connecticut; she had participatedin the fair, located near her hometown of Guilford, CT, throughout her childhood. In 2006, she remade the project as The Fair (10thAnniversary Edition) by generating new entries for all of the craft categories available that year. On both occasions, the objects were displayed at the fairs and then (re)presented in a commercial gallery with their winning ribbons. At The Aldrich, Mack will create a layered exhibition that engages fairs in new ways. For Junk Kaleidoscope, she will utilize a self-generated list of seventy categories—comprising actual competition categories collected from various county and state fairs, as well as those of her own invention—to generate and support the works in the show. The list will serve as a catalyst for production and as a framework for understanding the shifting, participatory display that the objects will enjoy at The Aldrich.

For Mack, “fairs serve as fascinatingly complex archives that mirror both ‘America’ and the art world.” Repetition, displacement, and distortion are constant concerns and the act of revisiting is an ongoing theme. Mack attends county and state fairs nationwide, where her experiences fundamentally reshape her approach to the creation and staging of her work. The atmosphere of the local fair and the environment of the artist’s studio share similar outtakes, as both are equally concerned with narrative, arrangement, and (e)valuation. Her appropriation of the fair’s system of categorization attempts to undo or rewrite storylines embedded within local material culture. These objects are symbolic containers of a collective memory that can travel across time. Ultimately, Mack positions herself as both an artist and maker, placing herself inside a subculture and adopting its system of classification for her own (re)invention. This enables Mack to move seamlessly between two distinctive locales and contexts, each of which has its own structure, methodology, and currency. The objects embody these alternating experiences and distinguishing histories.

The artist and the Museum invite the public to play a crucial role in Junk Kaleidoscope, through the All’s Fair program. In All’s Fair, participants will work directly with the artist, share their voice and vision, and collaborate with one another to re-install the objects in Mack’s exhibition in the Museum’s galleries in January 2018.

Anissa Mack (b. 1970, Guilford, CT) received her BA from Wesleyan University, Middletown, CT, in 1992 and her MFA from Temple University, Philadelphia, in 1996. Recent solo exhibitions include the Santa Barbara Contemporary Art Museum; Atlanta Contemporary Art Center; Josh Lilley Gallery, London; and Laurel Gitlen, New York. Her work has been included in group exhibitions at CAPC musée d’art contemporain de Bordeaux, France; Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia; Tanya Bonakdar, New York; amongst many others. She lives and works in New York City.

A full-color, soft-cover scholarly publication will be available during the exhibition.

Organized by Amy Smith-Stewart, curator, The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum.

For press inquiries, please contact Emily Devoe at 203.438.4519, extension 140, or edevoe@aldrichart.org

Generous funding for Anissa Mack: Junk Kaleidoscope is provided by the National Endowment for the Arts, the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Foundation and The Amadeo Family.

Shared Space: A New Era

Shared Space: A New Era

October 1, 2017, to April 22, 2018

The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum is pleased to present Shared Space: A New Era, an exhibition of photographs and video from 1987 through 2010 that considers the world’s social, economic, and political climate over the past thirty years and how the growing impact of technology during this time, with radically increased and diversified communication, has introduced a new phase of globalization. This exhibition has been curated by Lillian Lambrechts from the Bank of America Collection and is on loan from its Art in our Communities® program.

Shared Space features contemporary artists from twelve countries: the United States, Great Britain, Canada, Germany, the Netherlands, India, Iran, Italy, Japan, Mexico, the Czech Republic, and Switzerland. These artists capture myriad spaces for communication and interaction—urban and rural landscapes,homes and backyards, city streets and plazas, and ports and terminals. The exhibition’s point of departure is 1987, a seminal year that marks the signing of the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty by Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev, and soon thereafter the fall of the Berlin Wall, events marking the end of the Cold War and the beginning of a new age of international exchange.

Sze Tsung Leong’s cityscapes illustrate the impact of a global economy. Thomas Ruff’s and Günther Förg’s photographs show the rapid transformation of the built environment through images of Modernist architecture constructed upon utopian ideals, now derelict and failing to realize its original intention. Photographs by Raghubir Singh, Thomas Struth, and Massimo Vitali depict masses of people gathering in public spaces from Los Angeles to Vietnam, and the Netherlands—expressing an unprecedented universality of access to information. Despite the interconnectivity of this time, a distancing and disconnect remains between individuals and groups, near and afar, as evidenced in Ben Gest’s Jessica & Samantha (2003), family members in close physical proximity who seem deeply psychologically distanced from one another. Shared Space reminds viewers of their place in the world and their role and impact on current global and interpersonal affairs while also provoking them to consider how they will contribute to “shared space” in the future.

“Bank of America is committed to strengthening artistic institutions and in turn, the communities we serve,” said Bill Tommins, Bank of America Southern Connecticut Market President. “Sharing our collection with the public through partners such as The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum not only makes business sense for the bank, but also helps support museums in Connecticut.”

For press inquiries, please contact Emily Devoe at 203.438.4519, extension 140, or edevoe@aldrichart.org

Shared Space: A New Era is generously supported by the Bank of America Art in our Communities® program and Crozier.

Tony Matelli

Hera

May 6, 2017, to January 1, 2018

Tony Matelli, Hera, 2017. Courtesy of the artist and Marlborough Contemporary, New York.
Tony Matelli, Hera, 2017. Courtesy of the artist and Marlborough Contemporary, New York.

The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum is pleased to present Tony Matelli’s Hera, a monumental sculpture, as part of the Main Street Sculpture series, which offers an opportunity for artists to create site-specific work for The Aldrich’s most public site, the front lawn. Matelli will debut his singular, larger-than-life-size outdoor figurative sculpture on May 6, 2017. This work is an extension of Matelli’s Garden Sculptures series, initiated in 2015, in which he defaces garden statuary of classical or religious icons and subverts material expectation. Based on an ancient Greek statue of Hera and poised atop a pedestal, the statue, fabricated out of cast stone, is painstakingly aged to mimic a centuries old patina. An imposing nine-feet tall and sited on a three-foot tall pedestal, the neo-classical figure will be juxtaposed with flawlessly hand-painted cast bronze watermelons, whole, halved, and quartered, that balance upon her head, within the creases and folds of her drapery, and at her feet. These faux-perishables, poised upon the intentionally eroded and debased figure, are presented in an eternal state of freshness. In doing so, Matelli stages opposing entropic forces, the synthetically preserved, and the forcibly decayed. Spanning sculpture and painting, Matelli’s hyperreal practice embodies the human condition. Suspended in changing physical states or transformative stages of existence, his work concerns the very circumstance of actuality, joining the ordinary with the speculative in order to assess cultural worth: what people keep or abandon, what appears to be in or out of place, and what seems pleasing or distasteful. Often provocative and hallucinatory, Matelli’s work expresses excess, neglect, decomposition, and regeneration, the upturned and the adrift, the romantic and the surreal. At The Aldrich, Matelli’s colossal sculpture of a familiar mythological figure may read as a modern memento mori, or as a devotional offering to a saccharine present, cast against a corrosive past. Ridgefield, a Revolutionary-era Colonial town with a landmarked Main Street, is a befitting location for this tragicomic siting, as Matelli’s ancient giant testifies to history as theatrical backdrop. Tony Matelli (b. 1971, Chicago) received his BFA from the Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design in 1993 and his MFA from the Cranbrook Academy of Art in 1995. Recent solo exhibitions include the State Hermitage Museum, St. Petersburg, Russia; the Davis Museum, MA; Künsterlerhaus Bethanien, Berlin; and the Palais de Tokyo, Paris. A mid-career survey, Tony Matelli: A Human Echo, premiered at the ARoS Aarhus Kunstmuseum, Denmark in 2012 and traveled to the Bergen Kunstmuseum, Norway in 2013. His work is in numerous public collections including the FLAG Art Foundation, NY; ARoS Aarhus Kunstmuseum, Aarhus, Denmark; and the National Centre of Contemporary Art, Moscow, Russia, among others. He lives and works in New York City.

Organized by Amy Smith-Stewart, curator, The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum.

For press inquiries, please contact Emily Devoe at 203.438.4519, x 140, or edevoe@aldrichart.org

Tony Matelli: Hera is generously supported by the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Foundation and Crozier.

Jack Whitten Awarded with Third Annual A2A Award January 2017

May, 2017

Artist Jack Whitten will receive the third annual A2A Award at The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum’s annual Gala Benefit and Auction on May 6, 2017. Past recipients include Tom Sachs and Jackie Winsor.

Kay Rosen: H Is For House

H Is for House is Kay Rosen’s first solo museum exhibition in the northeast in almost twenty years. This exhibition premieres a series of new works, all painted in black and white, which the artist has completed since 2015.

Rosen’s text-based works use formalism, linguistics, and humor to reveal content that is hidden within both the structural nature of written language and the ways in which meaning can be generated through the manipulation of text. The exhibition will include fourteen works on paper, as well as two monumental wall paintings, the largest incorporating two walls and covering over 700 square feet. Rosen approaches written language as structure, with words and letterforms functioning as building blocks, and where, through unusual typographic arrangements, words and phrases can embody the thing they are describing. Rosen has created these new wall paintings to play off the interior space of the Museum, using the existing architecture to amplify each work’s content. Similarly, the vertical “architecture” of the paper works sets up a space for the text to play off, guiding meaning, letter orientation and size, and number of lines. Turning architect Louis Sullivan’s dictum that “form follows function” on its head, Rosen’s works take the forms inherent in text to create new functions for the written word.

The title H Is for House references both the alphabet—the raw material of Rosen’s work—and the architectural nature of the works included in the exhibition. The vertical portrait format relates both to the figure and the pull of gravity, and the atypical disruptions of the text have the curious quality of effecting bodily orientation, with the viewer’s eyes being put into the position of twisting to accommodate the off-kilter compositions. Related to, but different from the genre of concrete poetry, Rosen’s wordplays creatively reinforce the relationship between form and meaning.

Kay Rosen (b. 1943, Corpus Christi, TX) studied languages and linguistics at Newcomb College at Tulane University and received her MA in linguistics from Northwestern University. Realizing that the aspects of language that most interested her needed to be expressed visually, for the past four decades Rosen has channeled her exploration of language through color, scale, art materials, and non-linear composition. Her work is included in many public collections including the Whitney Museum of American Art; the Art Institute of Chicago; The Museum of Modern Art, New York; the Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney; and the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles. Rosen currently lives and works in Gary, IN ,and New York, and teaches at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago.

A full-color, soft-cover scholarly publication will be available during the exhibition.

Organized by Richard Klein, exhibitions director, The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum.

For press inquiries, please contact Emily Devoe at 203.438.4519, extension 140, or edevoe@aldrichart.orgT 06877

Major funding for exhibitions is provided by the Department of Economic and Community Development, Connecticut Office of the Arts; the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Foundation; and Crozier. Additional support is provided by Hotel Zero Degrees, Danbury.

William Powhida: After the Contemporary

William Powhida: After the Contemporary, a fictive review of today’s art world from the year 2050, is Powhida’s first solo museum exhibition and will draw from a variety of academic, curatorial, philosophical, and sociological sources, as well as the genre of speculative fiction.

For more than a decade Powhida’s work has provided a satirical, political, and sometimes despairing window into his own experience of New York’s contemporary art market. Beneath it all, he has also been tracing the outline of another, more ambitious project as he tries to answer—for himself, his peers, and the world in general—what is the strange, slippery, sometimes contradictory and farcical thing we call “Contemporary Art.” Is Contemporary Art a specific period of art history, like Modern Art? If so, what are its characteristics? Will we know when it’s over? And more importantly, what does Contemporary Art suggest about the future of society?

The less than reliable curatorial voice from Powhida’s future proposes an authoritative account of our present and near future through institutional forms—wall texts, videos, an exhibition catalogue, as well as fictional works of art, speculative drawings, and research-based diagrams, that point to the ways exhibitions shape and reflect histories. Specifically, the exhibition examines the role of the art market in defining the Contemporary through the presentation of a new gallery model for art fairs that emerged in the early twentieth century as a “period room,” within an alternative future wing of The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum which has had to make certain adjustments due to global ecological and economic turmoil.

William Powhida (b. 1976, New York, NY) received his BFA in Painting with Honors from Syracuse University in 1998 and his MFA in Painting from Hunter College in 2002. He has had recent solo exhibitions at Postmasters Gallery, New York; Charlie James Gallery, Los Angeles; Casa Maauad, Mexico City; Gallery Paulsen, Copenhagen; and Marlborough Gallery, New York. In addition to being an artist, Powhida is an active critic and writer whose work has been published in The Art Newspaper, Creative Time Reports, ArtFCity, Hyperallergic, The Brooklyn Rail, and Artnet. He lives and works in New York City.

A full-color, soft-cover scholarly publication will be available during the exhibition.

Organized by Richard Klein, exhibitions director, The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum.

For press inquiries, please contact Emily Devoe at 203.438.4519, extension 140, or edevoe@aldrichart.org

Generous funding for William Powhida: After the Contemporary is provided by The Stolbun Collection, Raymond Learsy, Seymour and Carol Cole Levin, Kim and Larry Heyman, Noah McCormack, Cebert S.J. Noonan, and Janet Phelps.

Major funding for exhibitions is provided by the Department of Economic and Community Development, Connecticut Office of the Arts; the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Foundation; and Crozier. Additional support is provided by Hotel Zero Degrees, Danbury.

Beth Campbell: My Potential Future Past

Beth Campbell: My Potential Future Past is Campbell’s first museum survey. This exhibition will present three interrelated bodies of work, the Potential Future Drawings series (1998–present), Mobiles (2008–present), and the Future Past Drawings series (2014–present).

Campbell’s practice ranges from drawing to sculpture and installation, and centers on an extensive exploration of the potential latent within everyday experience. She exploits the “what ifs,” channeling those life choices that shape who we think we want to be or who we might really become. In Campbell’s world, objects are personified, rooms multiply, mirrors become portals, and streaming thoughts predict future outcomes. She exposes the inherent beingness underlying daily phenomena through a manipulation of reality, an externalization of internal sensations, and a deft employment of humor, ultimately challenging our perception of the human dimension.

In 1998, Campbell introduced her now-acclaimed Potential Future Drawings series, channeling the Surrealists to give tangible shape to interior monologues. She begins with an event in her own life, and then uses a diagrammatic system to create a latticework of potential outcomes from the most wanted to the most devastating. Campbell mirrors our inward desire for mass acceptance and wide success, while also tapping into our general fear of ultimate failure and crushing embarrassment. The mobiles inspired by the formal acceptance of these mind maps, and appear like chandeliers, or vascular or root systems, function as abstract drawings in space as seen in My Mother’s House (2016). Comprised of bent steel and wire, some in taut primary colors, they vary in size—from body size to architecturally scaled—and cast shadows and create pulsating optical patterns that mime the circulatory matrix of her drawings. The Future Past Drawings series, initiated in 2014, includes the newest work in the exhibition. All the drawings in this series are on black paper and, like the Potential Future Drawings, they operate as a flowing feed; reflecting back and looking forward, they conflate personal and historical experience, in the end considering how subjectivity reshapes the past to condition the future.

Beth Campbell (b. 1971, Illinois) received her BFA from Truman State University in 1989, her MFA from Ohio University in 1997, and attended Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in 1997. Her work is included in the collections of the Whitney Museum of American Art and The Museum of Modern Art, New York, among others. She lives and works in New York City.

A full-color, soft-cover scholarly publication will be available during the exhibition.

Organized by Amy Smith-Stewart, curator, The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum.

For press inquiries, please contact Emily Devoe at 203.438.4519, extension 140, or edevoe@aldrichart.org

Generous funding for Beth Campbell: My Potential Future Past is provided by Bart McDonough and Cheryl Horner.

Major funding for exhibitions is provided by the Department of Economic and Community Development, Connecticut Office of the Arts; the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Foundation; and Crozier. Additional support is provided by Hotel Zero Degrees, Danbury.

Suzanne McClelland: Just Left Feel Right

Suzanne McClelland: Just Left Feel Right, is McClelland’s first museum survey. Spanning twenty-five years, Just Left Feel Right focuses on works from specific periods of her career that share a distinctive commonality, capturing the eruptive and disparate voices of a shifting American vernacular and its rippling effect on the way we communicate in our hyperkinetic time.

McClelland is most widely known for her deft use of linguistics and her sensually textured surfaces. She mines the ways in which communities speak, collecting language and choosing words that trend, are debated, heard on street corners, and absorbed from streaming news feeds; words that are rich in meaning, that reach and multiply, that drop in and out of everyday life. The words she selects hover between materials; letters press up against each other, run off the surface, join together, dissolve, loop, and collide into and onto themselves. Employing a wide range of materials, her compositions have a rhythm and beat as they perform, throb, and swagger, capturing the cadences of our speech, mimicking the physicality of how people express themselves. Pauses, utterances, and hysteria, the inflection of tone and the modulation of our tempo, bodily expressions and gesticulations, all are translated into painterly rhythmic compositions modeled after oratory repartee.

McClelland seizes these audible sensations, stealing words right out of the mouth, but also embodying our micro-expressions. In 2012, she began to incorporate numbers into her work as a reaction to the data onslaught of the Internet age. A mind-numbing rush of streaming lists for everything and anything are published on the Web. McClelland, a collector of messaging, in particular emotive and directional information, began researching the data that represents the individual and vice versa. This endless data stream is how twenty-first century society forecasts outcomes: from steady news spills that flood the imaginations, to engineering distorted images about identity and body type, and (in)forming biased estimates and postures. With the rise of social media as a primary source of content, opinion is now often misread as “news.”

This survey will include a seminal painting from the series Right (1993), originally shown as part of a group of paintings in the 1993 Whitney Biennial; the painting series Rap Sheet (2010-13), portraits of early female rap and hip hop artists during the “Roxanne Wars” in the Bronx; the painting series Action Objects (2010); paintings from the series Left (2011); the debut of three new paintings from the Before Tomorrow series (2015-16); and the premiere of a new site-engaged installation, third party (2016-17), which will incorporate materials such as glass, ceramic, and paint. Just Left Feel Right will also include many other never-before-exhibited works from past and current series.

Suzanne McClelland (b. 1959, Jacksonville, FL) received a BFA from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor 1981. She moved to New York that year and later attended the School of Visual Arts MFA program, graduating in 1989. McClelland’s work can be found in numerous public collections including the Brooklyn Museum, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Museum of Modern Art, and the Whitney Museum of American Art. She lives and works in Brooklyn, NY.

The exhibition will be accompanied by a full-color, soft-cover scholarly publication, available during the exhibition, intended to serve as an enduring archival document and limited-edition artwork. It will include images of the works in the exhibition, a checklist, an essay by the curator, and a poster designed by the artist.

Organized by Amy Smith-Stewart, curator, The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum.

For press inquiries, please contact Emily Devoe at 203.438.4519, extension 140, or edevoe@aldrichart.org

Generous funding for Suzanne McClelland: Just Left Feel Right is provided by by Agnes Gund, GS Gives, Stephanie and Tim Ingrassia, James Cottrell and Joseph Lovett, Seymour and Carol Cole Levin, Carole Server and Oliver Frankel, and Thomson Family Philanthropy, NYC.

Major funding for exhibitions is provided by the Department of Economic and Community Development, Connecticut Office of the Arts; the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Foundation; and Crozier. Additional support is provided by Hotel Zero Degrees, Danbury.

Exhibition

Kay Rosen

H Is for House

March 5, 2017, to September 4, 2017

Kay Rosen, Head Over Heels, 2017; Courtesy of the artist
H Is for House, 2017; Courtesy of the artist


H Is for House is Kay Rosen’s first solo museum exhibition in the northeast in almost twenty years. This exhibition premieres a series of new works, all painted in black and white, which the artist has completed since 2015. Rosen’s text-based works use formalism, linguistics, and humor to reveal content that is hidden within both the structural nature of written language and the ways in which meaning can be generated through the manipulation of text. The exhibition will include fourteen works on paper, as well as two monumental wall paintings, the largest incorporating two walls and covering over 700 square feet. Rosen approaches written language as structure, with words and letterforms functioning as building blocks, and where, through unusual typographic arrangements, words and phrases can embody the thing they are describing. Rosen has created these new wall paintings to play off the interior space of the Museum, using the existing architecture to amplify each work’s content. Similarly, the vertical “architecture” of the paper works sets up a space for the text to play off, guiding meaning, letter orientation and size, and number of lines. Turning architect Louis Sullivan’s dictum that “form follows function” on its head, Rosen’s works take the forms inherent in text to create new functions for the written word.

The title H Is for House references both the alphabet—the raw material of Rosen’s work—and the architectural nature of the works included in the exhibition. The vertical portrait format relates both to the figure and the pull of gravity, and the atypical disruptions of the text have the curious quality of effecting bodily orientation, with the viewer’s eyes being put into the position of twisting to accommodate the off-kilter compositions. Related to, but different from the genre of concrete poetry, Rosen’s wordplays creatively reinforce the relationship between form and meaning.

Kay Rosen (b. 1943, Corpus Christi, TX) studied languages and linguistics at Newcomb College at Tulane University and received her MA in linguistics from Northwestern University. Realizing that the aspects of language that most interested her needed to be expressed visually, for the past four decades Rosen has channeled her exploration of language through color, scale, art materials, and non-linear composition. Her work is included in many public collections including the Whitney Museum of American Art; the Art Institute of Chicago; The Museum of Modern Art, New York; the Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney; and the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles. Rosen currently lives and works in Gary, IN ,and New York, and teaches at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago.

A full-color, soft-cover scholarly publication will be available during the exhibition.

Organized by Richard Klein, exhibitions director, The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum.

For press inquiries, please contact Emily Devoe at 203.438.4519, extension 140, or edevoe@aldrichart.org

Major funding for exhibitions is provided by the Department of Economic and Community Development, Connecticut Office of the Arts; the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Foundation; and Crozier. Additional support is provided by Hotel Zero Degrees, Danbury.

Exhibition

William Powhida

After the Contemporary

March 5, 2017, to September 4, 2017

William Powhida, After the Contemporary (installation view), 2017
William Powhida, After the Contemporary (installation view), 2017; Courtesy of the artist and Postmasters Gallery


For more than a decade Powhida’s work has provided a satirical, political, and sometimes despairing window into his own experience of New York’s contemporary art market. Beneath it all, he has also been tracing the outline of another, more ambitious project as he tries to answer—for himself, his peers, and the world in general—what is the strange, slippery, sometimes contradictory and farcical thing we call “Contemporary Art.” Is Contemporary Art a specific period of art history, like Modern Art? If so, what are its characteristics? Will we know when it’s over? And more importantly, what does Contemporary Art suggest about the future of society?

The less than reliable curatorial voice from Powhida’s future proposes an authoritative account of our present and near future through institutional forms—wall texts, videos, an exhibition catalogue, as well as fictional works of art, speculative drawings, and research-based diagrams, that point to the ways exhibitions shape and reflect histories. Specifically, the exhibition examines the role of the art market in defining the Contemporary through the presentation of a new gallery model for art fairs that emerged in the early twentieth century as a “period room,” within an alternative future wing of The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum which has had to make certain adjustments due to global ecological and economic turmoil. William Powhida (b. 1976, New York, NY) received his BFA in Painting with Honors from Syracuse University in 1998 and his MFA in Painting from Hunter College in 2002. He has had recent solo exhibitions at Postmasters Gallery, New York; Charlie James Gallery, Los Angeles; Casa Maauad, Mexico City; Gallery Paulsen, Copenhagen; and Marlborough Gallery, New York. In addition to being an artist, Powhida is an active critic and writer whose work has been published in The Art Newspaper, Creative Time Reports, ArtFCity, Hyperallergic, The Brooklyn Rail, and Artnet. He lives and works in New York City. A full-color, soft-cover scholarly publication will be available during the exhibition. Organized by Richard Klein, exhibitions director, The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum. For press inquiries, please contact Emily Devoe at 203.438.4519, extension 140, or edevoe@aldrichart.org

Generous funding for William Powhida: After the Contemporary is provided by The Stolbun Collection, Raymond Learsy, Seymour and Carol Cole Levin, Kim and Larry Heyman, Noah McCormack, Cebert S.J. Noonan, and Janet Phelps. Major funding for exhibitions is provided by the Department of Economic and Community Development, Connecticut Office of the Arts; the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Foundation; and Crozier. Additional support is provided by Hotel Zero Degrees, Danbury.

Exhibition

Beth Campbell

My Potential Future Past

March 5, 2017, to September 4, 2017

Beth Campbell, My Potential Future Past (installation view), 2017; Courtesy of the artist and Kate Werble Gallery, New York
Beth Campbell, My Potential Future Past (installation view), 2017; Courtesy of the artist and Kate Werble Gallery, New York


Beth Campbell: My Potential Future Past is Campbell’s first museum survey. This exhibition will present three interrelated bodies of work, the Potential Future Drawings series (1998–present), Mobiles (2008–present), and the Future Past Drawings series (2014–present). Campbell’s practice ranges from drawing to sculpture and installation, and centers on an extensive exploration of the potential latent within everyday experience. She exploits the “what ifs,” channeling those life choices that shape who we think we want to be or who we might really become. In Campbell’s world, objects are personified, rooms multiply, mirrors become portals, and streaming thoughts predict future outcomes. She exposes the inherent beingness underlying daily phenomena through a manipulation of reality, an externalization of internal sensations, and a deft employment of humor, ultimately challenging our perception of the human dimension.

In 1998, Campbell introduced her now-acclaimed Potential Future Drawings series, channeling the Surrealists to give tangible shape to interior monologues. She begins with an event in her own life, and then uses a diagrammatic system to create a latticework of potential outcomes from the most wanted to the most devastating. Campbell mirrors our inward desire for mass acceptance and wide success, while also tapping into our general fear of ultimate failure and crushing embarrassment. The mobiles inspired by the formal acceptance of these mind maps, and appear like chandeliers, or vascular or root systems, function as abstract drawings in space as seen in My Mother’s House (2016). Comprised of bent steel and wire, some in taut primary colors, they vary in size—from body size to architecturally scaled—and cast shadows and create pulsating optical patterns that mime the circulatory matrix of her drawings. The Future Past Drawings series, initiated in 2014, includes the newest work in the exhibition. All the drawings in this series are on black paper and, like the Potential Future Drawings, they operate as a flowing feed; reflecting back and looking forward, they conflate personal and historical experience, in the end considering how subjectivity reshapes the past to condition the future.

Beth Campbell (b. 1971, Illinois) received her BFA from Truman State University in 1989, her MFA from Ohio University in 1997, and attended Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in 1997. Her work is included in the collections of the Whitney Museum of American Art and The Museum of Modern Art, New York, among others. She lives and works in New York City.

A full-color, soft-cover scholarly publication will be available during the exhibition.

Organized by Amy Smith-Stewart, curator, The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum.

For press inquiries, please contact Emily Devoe at 203.438.4519, extension 140, or edevoe@aldrichart.org

Generous funding for Beth Campbell: My Potential Future Past is provided by Bart McDonough and Cheryl Horner.

Major funding for exhibitions is provided by the Department of Economic and Community Development, Connecticut Office of the Arts; the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Foundation; and Crozier. Additional support is provided by Hotel Zero Degrees, Danbury.

Exhibition

Suzanne McClelland

Just Left Feel Right

March 5, 2017, to September 4, 2017

Suzanne McClelland, Just Left Feel Right (installation view), 2017; Courtesy of the artist.
Suzanne McClelland, Just Left Feel Right (installation view), 2017; Courtesy of the artist.



Suzanne McClelland: Just Left Feel Right, is McClelland’s first museum survey. Spanning twenty-five years, Just Left Feel Right focuses on works from specific periods of her career that share a distinctive commonality, capturing the eruptive and disparate voices of a shifting American vernacular and its rippling effect on the way we communicate in our hyperkinetic time.

McClelland is most widely known for her deft use of linguistics and her sensually textured surfaces. She mines the ways in which communities speak, collecting language and choosing words that trend, are debated, heard on street corners, and absorbed from streaming news feeds; words that are rich in meaning, that reach and multiply, that drop in and out of everyday life. The words she selects hover between materials; letters press up against each other, run off the surface, join together, dissolve, loop, and collide into and onto themselves. Employing a wide range of materials, her compositions have a rhythm and beat as they perform, throb, and swagger, capturing the cadences of our speech, mimicking the physicality of how people express themselves. Pauses, utterances, and hysteria, the inflection of tone and the modulation of our tempo, bodily expressions and gesticulations, all are translated into painterly rhythmic compositions modeled after oratory repartee.

McClelland seizes these audible sensations, stealing words right out of the mouth, but also embodying our micro-expressions. In 2012, she began to incorporate numbers into her work as a reaction to the data onslaught of the Internet age. A mind-numbing rush of streaming lists for everything and anything are published on the Web. McClelland, a collector of messaging, in particular emotive and directional information, began researching the data that represents the individual and vice versa. This endless data stream is how twenty-first century society forecasts outcomes: from steady news spills that flood the imaginations, to engineering distorted images about identity and body type, and (in)forming biased estimates and postures. With the rise of social media as a primary source of content, opinion is now often misread as “news.”

This survey will include a seminal painting from the series Right (1993), originally shown as part of a group of paintings in the 1993 Whitney Biennial; the painting series Rap Sheet (2010-13), portraits of early female rap and hip hop artists during the “Roxanne Wars” in the Bronx; the painting series Action Objects (2010); paintings from the series Left (2011); the debut of three new paintings from the Before Tomorrow series (2015-16); and the premiere of a new site-engaged installation, third party (2016-17), which will incorporate materials such as glass, ceramic, and paint. Just Left Feel Right will also include many other never-before-exhibited works from past and current series.

Suzanne McClelland (b. 1959, Jacksonville, FL) received a BFA from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor 1981. She moved to New York that year and later attended the School of Visual Arts MFA program, graduating in 1989. McClelland’s work can be found in numerous public collections including the Brooklyn Museum, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Museum of Modern Art, and the Whitney Museum of American Art. She lives and works in Brooklyn, NY.

The exhibition will be accompanied by a full-color, soft-cover scholarly publication, available during the exhibition, intended to serve as an enduring archival document and limited-edition artwork. It will include images of the works in the exhibition, a checklist, an essay by the curator, and a poster designed by the artist.

Organized by Amy Smith-Stewart, curator, The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum.

For press inquiries, please contact Emily Devoe at 203.438.4519, extension 140, or edevoe@aldrichart.org

Generous funding for Suzanne McClelland: Just Left Feel Right is provided by Agnes Gund, GS Gives, Stephanie and Tim Ingrassia, James Cottrell and Joseph Lovett, Seymour and Carol Cole Levin, Carole Server and Oliver Frankel, and Thomson Family Philanthropy, NYC.

Major funding for exhibitions is provided by the Department of Economic and Community Development, Connecticut Office of the Arts; the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Foundation; and Crozier. Additional support is provided by Hotel Zero Degrees, Danbury.

Exhibition

Virginia Overton

May 1, 2016, to February 5, 2017

Virginia Overton is a site-responsive artist. She makes sculptures, installations, photographs, and videos that relate to and interact with a venue’s architecture and defining landscape. Ultimately, what she achieves is work that is implicitly site referential, as she underscores an environment’s unassuming or extraordinary attributes by engaging the sensory features of the material.

Her sculptures and installations appear minimally composed, but their engagement with the features of a space—as well as its exterior and the landscape—generates a maximalist sensation from an efficiency of means. Performative by nature, her chosen materials are stimulated by the specificity of their situation; always initiated by the execution of a deliberate action, they maintain a relational experience predicated on a “being there” aesthetic.

Overton’s approach to the exhibition process is a combination of research and on-site decision making. For The Aldrich, she has created thirteen site-reactive sculptures and a video, presented inside the galleries, in the Sculpture Garden, and on the roofline. Each informs the other as the works reverberate throughout the building and boomerang out onto the grounds, offering multiple lines of sight. Many of the sculptures are composed of elements harvested from a dead eastern white pine felled on the Museum’s grounds. Some works feature indigenous materials scavenged on the premises alongside items Overton collected at the studio or recycled from past installations. Overton transposes the energy encapsulated within these objects, draining them of their normative purpose, and imparting them and their circumstances with a new functionality.

Whether reflecting the architectural features of a gallery or the contours of a natural landscape, Overton assesses the material—studying and learning its physical properties, seeing how far it can go, how much it can withstand—as it is processed through countless hours of experimentation. Once installed, her space-shifting sculptures and installations, through a process of re-articulation, demonstrate the inherent being-ness of an object, its materiality, its connection to a specific place at a particular time, inviting the viewer to navigate it anew as elements emerge and vanish from up close and at a distance.

- Amy Smith-Stewart, curator

Virginia Overton was born in 1971 in Nashville, Tennessee; she lives and works in Brooklyn, New York.

Virginia Overton, Untitled (Suspended log), 2016; Courtesy of the artist

Generous support for Virginia Overton is provided by White Cube and Freymond-Guth Fine Arts, Zurich.

Exhibition

Kim Jones

White Crow

May 1, 2016, to February 5, 2017

During a career that now spans over four decades, Kim Jones has created a singular and subjective body of work based on both extreme personal experience and a wide range of artistic influences. Commentary about his work often dwells on details of his biography, which include surviving a severe childhood illness and serving in the Marines during the Vietnam War. These facts certainly have a bearing on understanding aspects of his output, but Jones’s life story has a tendency to induce a viewer to presuppose meaning prior to direct acquaintance, a situation that can limit interpretation. The artist’s history, however, has clearly led to his thinking of himself as an outsider, and this estrangement has been played out throughout his career with an interrelated series of performances, sculptures, drawings, and writings that are defined by a range of elemental and expressionistic impulses. The title of this exhibition, White Crow, refers to the extremely rare occurrence when a crow is born without any pigment in its plumage. This marks the bird as not only an outsider, but also, in folk mythology, as an omen of impending change. It should be noted that Jones thinks of White Crow, which includes some individual elements that Jones has worked on over a thirty-year period, as one continuous installation, echoing the importance of memory and the life he has lived in his practice as an artist.

In this exhibition, the crow and the rat (an animal that is featured in much of Jones’s work) appear repeatedly, connecting a series of indoor installations with what is one of the artist’s largest outdoor site-specific works to date. This installation, which was created during a ten-day residency at the Museum, involved the transformation of a grove of four small crabapple trees in front of The Aldrich into a festooned and wrapped sculpture. Additionally, Jones has utilized the Museum’s camera obscura, a small room that looks out towards the grove of crabapples, for an installation involving both sculpture and wall drawing. This includes the camera obscura’s projected image of the area around the trees, linking his intervention in the landscape with the indoor environment. It should be noted that the camera obscura is the only place in the exhibition where a white crow appears, perched in the center of the camera’s upside-down photographic image.

Included in White Crow, and augmented by a surrounding drawing done directly on the gallery wall, is one of Jones’s “war drawings,” a continuing series that he began as a teenager in the late 1950s. Jones didn’t show his war drawings for many years, tentatively exhibiting them for the first time in 1980. Obsessive and labyrinthine, these drawings evoke the diagrammatic battle drawings done by children with their aerial perspective, weapon trajectory lines, and geographical and architectural abstraction. True to his overall approach to art making, the war drawings are never finished (until they leave the artist’s possession), being worked and reworked over extended periods.

Comparing a war drawing with one of the artist’s spiky wood constructions, the viewer is struck by a formal similarity: an organization of space that is tentative, web-like, and subject to forces of both creation and destruction. Jones’s constructions resemble the primitive—yet strong—bamboo scaffolding that is used in Asia, or the protective, quill- covered back of a porcupine; they frequently have specific references to the body, including pantyhose-wrapped and painted elements that resemble viscera, and surfaces covered by crepuscular, biomorphic drawing.

Many of the sculptures in White Crow include children’s toys as elements, and one work, which is constructed on top of a “Big Wheel,” incorporates a group of toy soldiers that Jones played with as a child. In the Museum’s Sound Gallery, the artist has created a school classroom* of sorts: a strange tableau that reflects on his interest in blurring the boundaries between humankind and the natural world. This use of toys and the references to childhood point once more to the importance of memory and recollection in Jones’s work.

- Richard Klein, exhibitions director

Kim Jones was born in 1944 in San Bernardino, California; he lives and works in New York City.

Kim Jones, Untitled (Big Wheel), 1973-1985-1999; Courtesy of the artist and ZENO X GALLERY, Antwerp

Generous support for Kim Jones: White Crow is provided by ZENO X GALLERY, Antwerp, and JoAnn Gonzalez Hickey.

Exhibition

Peter Liversidge

Proposals for The Aldrich…

May 1, 2016, to February 5, 2017

For the past decade, Peter Liversidge’s practice has focused on the creation of conceptually based proposals that describe artworks that might—or might not—be realized. Typed on an Olivetti manual typewriter, these proposals—complete with typographical errors and hand annotations—describe ideas from the practical to the far-fetched. Liversidge wrote sixty proposals for The Aldrich (all of the typescripts are included in the exhibition), and twenty-three have been chosen for realization, guided by the concept of connecting the interior of The Aldrich Museum with both the surrounding landscape and the community. These include working with the employees of Ridgefield Hardware, the town’s hardware store, to write a song about the store that they will publically perform;* ring a cannonball into the Museum’s wall in reference to the action during the Revolutionary War that led to a British cannonball being embedded in the wall of the Keeler Tavern, Ridgefield’s Colonial-era historical site; and the fabrication of nine shallow, circular aluminum pans whose relative sizes correspond to the nine largest lakes in Connecticut, with the pans being subsequently filled with water from the specific lakes.

Liversidge’s way of working echoes some forms of conceptual art from the 1960s and 1970s in that the realization of his ideas is open to interpretation by others. He doesn’t confine his thought process to a limited range of media; rather, he allows his imagination free rein, believing that art can be made from almost any raw material or utilize almost any human activity. His physical works are usually created by simple, transitory actions; his performative works commonly utilize people who don’t think of themselves as performers.

The artist sees his proposals as gentle invitations, not explicit instructions—which is different from most art that is based on written directives—and the realization of a specific proposal is always open to negotiation, a fact that reveals his interest in expanding conventional notions of authorship. He is just as interested in the proposals that are not realized, as they are ready to be brought to life in the imagination of each reader. Liversidge’s work stands as a reminder that the execution of a simple idea can result in anything but a simple outcome.

Proposal No. 12, the installation of twelve groups of RGB (red, green, blue) lights in public locations in Ridgefield, is one of the artist’s proposals that has been realized. The Museum would like to thank the restaurants, shops, and other venues that have participated: The Ancient Mariner Restaurant, Books on the Common, Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage, Dog and Pony Restaurant, Guilded Lynx, Hutton’s Fine Menswear, Luc’s Café, Ridgefield Conservatory of Dance, Ridgefield Library, and Ridgefield Town Hall. Two of the groups have been installed at The Aldrich: one in the South Gallery and the other on the Museum’s porch.

- Richard Klein, exhibitions director

Peter Liversidge was born in 1973 in Lincoln, UK; he lives and works in London.

* The performance by the staff of Ridgefield Hardware will be part of a day of community activities at The Aldrich on July 9, which will also include the realization of Liversidge’s Proposal No. 17, the presentation of a free public meal that features sausages made to the artist’s grandfather’s recipe; and Proposal No. 51, the creation of a public sculpture by 100 Museum visitors out of 100 rolls of pennies.

Peter Liversidge, Proposal for The Aldrich Museum No. 20: Wooden Mail Objects, 2016; First group of objects posted to The Aldrich from London for installation on “postal shelf” in Museum; Courtesy of the artist and Sean Kelly Gallery, New York

Generous support for Peter Liversidge: Proposals for The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum is provided by Sean Kelly Gallery, New York, and Francis H. Williams and Keris Salmon.

Exhibition

David Brooks

Continuous Service Altered Daily

May 1, 2016, to February 5, 2017


Continuous Service Altered Daily is a site-engaged sculptural array, or, as David Brooks refers to it, an “asteroid field without a distinctive beginning or end.” Brooks has disemboweled a beacon of agricultural technology, a 1976 John Deere 3300 series combine harvester, into hundreds of individual components, ranging from the iconic and specific to the common and standard. He has arranged every part, with not a single piece excluded, in an ambling procession that begins in the Museum’s front plaza, winds through the Atrium, front first-floor galleries, the inner courtyard, and ends in the Sculpture Garden. The project is understood as one continuous action that is expressed in a myriad of sculptural moments. From the macro to the micro, Brooks’s installation concurrently zooms in and out of view, wedging us inside the far off and the up close.

Brooks’s method of presentation offers the machine’s shell and innards in varying degrees of material transformation: 1) in its weathered condition, but with its trademark John Deere green still visible; 2) sandblasted to remove all evidence of wear and tear, returning the object back to its material origin; 3) brass plated; 4) powder coated, elevating the individualized status of the pieces as precious objects. Brooks uses the distinctive form and function of the disassembled combine analogously, allowing it to mirror the philosophical impasse at which we find ourselves as our hyperkinetic era faces an escalating ecological crisis.

The installation stages a metaphor. A combine harvester provides a quantifiable service: it reaps crops like grain and corn. Its individual elements and multitudinous functions are impossible to observe underneath its heavy metal shell, defying any one person’s perceptual capacity. Through an elaborate mechanization of moving parts it produces a product. Similarly, an ecosystem, representing a complex set of organisms and their environment functioning together, serves a life-sustaining purpose (clean air, food, energy, and filtered water) and is mistakenly likened to a mechanized instrument. Its interconnection to its natural environs and the greater planet is not only invisible, but promulgates a mistaken perception that these functions can be reduced to mere “services” available in perpetuity. Brooks makes a compelling visual correspondence here. He has chosen to group the machine parts into nine zones that represent nine ecosystem services that occur continuously in our biosphere and upon which we rely daily: water purification, pollination, disease regulation, decomposition, air purification, habitat formation, photosynthesis (primary production), ornamental resources, and erosion and flood control.

Continuous Service Altered Daily ultimately attempts to channel evolutionary time. A 1976 John Deere combine is a symbol of nineteenth-century innovation updated in a twentieth-century model. Brooks captures this progression through four stages of presentation, and thus likens it to the processes of interconnected life forms themselves. The wear and tear over its forty-year existence is self-evident in a rusty green corn head (past). The machine is then stripped of its lived history as its age is sandblasted away (present). Shiny objects with a fetish finish are re-presented as ornaments or modernist tabletop sculptures (future). But this is a temporal arrangement, one that marks time and space by compressing it within a schematic system that is itself impermanent.

- Amy Smith-Stewart, curator

David Brooks was born in 1975 in Brazil, Indiana; he lives and works in Brooklyn, New York.

David Brooks, Disassembly of combine for Continuous Service Altered Daily, 2016; Photo by David Gelfman

Generous support for David Brooks: Continuous Service Altered Daily is provided by Brad and Sunny Goldberg.

Virginia Overton

Ridgefield, CT (May 2016): A monumental interactive tree swing is the focal point of The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum’s presentation of the work of Virginia Overton as part of Site Lines: Four Solo Exhibitions Engaging Place. The exhibition, which will be on view through February 5, 2017, presents Overton’s newly commissioned sculptures within the galleries, on the surrounding campus, and atop the Museum’s roof. Suspended on a free-standing steel armature, the swing is comprised of the approximately 12-foot-long debarked trunk of a felled eastern white pine tree from the Museum’s grounds. Other sculptural works were fabricated on-site during the installation period, incorporating elements harvested from the tree as well as items found around the Museum property and neighboring community. Perched on the Museum’s signature pitched roofline, which emulates the historic Colonial homes lining Main Street, is a newly commissioned weather vane, part of an ongoing series initiated by Overton in 2013.

Curator Amy Smith-Stewart describes Overton’s process, “Whether reflecting the architectural features of a gallery or the contours of a natural landscape, Overton physically wrangles her material—studying and learning its physical properties, seeing how far it can go, how much it can withstand—as it is processed through countless hours of experimentation. Once installed, her space-shifting sculptures and installations produce shadows, light leaks, and sound echoes that, through a process of re- articulation, demonstrate the inherent beingness of an object, its materiality, its connection to a specific place at a particular time, inviting the viewer to navigate it anew.” Overton (born 1971, Nashville, Tennessee) utilizes sculpture, installation, and photography to relate to and interact with a venue’s architecture and defining landscape. Her sculptures and interventions are made up of indigenous readymade objects and materials Overton scavenges from within the surrounding community. Growing up in the rural south on a Tennessee farm, Overton’s innate sensitivity to the land, and its inherent economic value, has instilled in her an intuitive understanding of the energetic potential to be harnessed and reaped from both her materials and her environment.

Generous support for Virginia Overton is provided by White Cube and Freymond-Guth Fine Arts, Zurich.

Site Lines: Four Solo Exhibitions Engaging Place

Virginia Overton is part of Site Lines: Four Solo Exhibitions Engaging Place, which opened with a public reception on May 1, 2106. This series of exhibitions also features David Brooks, Kim Jones, and Peter Liversidge, presenting site-specific commissions, ranging from sculpture to drawing and performance-based works. The exhibitions encompass both the monumental and the ephemeral, intersecting, interconnecting, or mirroring the Museum’s galleries and two-acre Sculpture Garden, as well as the surrounding community. The artists utilize materials found on or indigenous to the grounds and the area, offering a response to “site” that underscores the institution’s material history and its visual condition by transforming scale and circumstance. The works seek to “frame” the view within and beyond of the galleries against the natural landscape while also accentuating the Museum’s unique architectural features, such as a pitched roofline, paned windows, and a room-scale camera obscura. Viewers are able to respond to works from multiple vantage points as they move around the Museum’s galleries, grounds, and the surrounding environs. Gravel Mirror (1968), a work by the influential artist and writer Robert Smithson, incorporated gravel found on the grounds of The Aldrich, and was a significant touchstone for the development of this exhibition series.

Major funding for the Site Lines exhibitions is provided by the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Foundation. Additional support is provided by Danbury Audi and DEDON.

CTC&G (Connecticut Cottages & Gardens) is the official media partner of the exhibition series.

The Artist

Overton was born in Nashville, Tennessee and lives and works in New York. Recent solo exhibitions include Museum of Contemporary Art, North Miami in 2014, Storm King Art Center, Mountainville in 2014, Westfälischer Kunstverein, Munster in 2013-14, Kunsthalle Bern in 2013, The Power Station, Dallas in 2013, and The Kitchen, New York in 2012.

The Museum

Founded by Larry Aldrich in 1964, The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum is dedicated to fostering the work of innovative artists whose ideas and interpretations of the world around us serve as a platform to encourage creative thinking. It is the only museum in Connecticut devoted to contemporary art, and throughout its fifty- year history has engaged its community with thought-provoking exhibitions and public programs.

The Museum’s education and public programs are designed to connect visitors of all ages to contemporary art through innovative learning approaches in hands-on workshops, tours, and presentations led by artists, curators, Museum educators, and experts in related fields. Area schools are served by curriculum-aligned on-site and in-school programs, as well as teachers’ professional development training.

Supporters

The Aldrich, in addition to significant support from its Board of Trustees, receives contributions from many dedicated friends and patrons. Major funding for Museum programs and operations has been provided by the Department of Economic and Community Development, Connecticut Office of the Arts; the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Foundation; the William Randolph Hearst Foundation; the Leir Charitable Foundations; The Goldstone Family Foundation; the Anne S. Richardson Fund; CTC&G (Connecticut Cottages & Gardens); The Pollock-Krasner Foundation, Inc.; The Coby Foundation; Fairfield Fine Art; The Cowles Charitable Trust; The Gage Fund; Fairfield County Bank; Tauck; and Cohen and Wolf.

WSHU Public Radio, TownVibe, and HamletHub are the official media partners of The Aldrich in 2016.

For additional information and images, please contact:

Emily Devoe
The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum
press@aldrichart.org
203.438.4519, extension 140

Peter Liversidge: Proposals for The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum

Ridgefield, CT (May 2016): For his first solo museum exhibition in the United States, currently on view at The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum, British artist Peter Liversidge wrote sixty proposals, including performances and physical artworks across a variety of mediums. Of these, twenty-four have been selected for realization and—with some help from local residents—will be presented at the Museum and in the surrounding neighborhood as part of Site Lines: Four Solo Exhibitions Engaging Place, which will be on view until February 5, 2017. For the past decade, Liversidge’s (born 1973, Lincoln, UK) practice has begun with the creation of conceptually based proposals. Typed on an old manual typewriter, these proposals—complete with typographical errors and hand annotations—describe ideas from the practical to the far-fetched. The chosen proposals, guided by the concept of connecting the interior of The Aldrich Museum with both the surrounding landscape and community, include working with the employees of Ridgefield Hardware to write a song about the store that they will publicly perform; firing a cannonball into the Museum’s wall in reference to the action during the Revolutionary War that led to a British cannonball being embedded in the wall of the Keeler Tavern, Ridgefield’s Colonial-era historical site; and the fabrication of nine shallow, circular aluminum pans whose relative sizes correspond to the nine largest lakes in Connecticut, with the pans being subsequently filled with water from the specific lakes.

Aldrich exhibitions director Richard Klein, the curator of the exhibition, explains, “Liversidge’s way of working echoes artists such as Sol LeWitt, in that his ideas are open to interpretation by others in the specific manner in which they are realized. Unlike LeWitt, however, he is anything but a formalist, engaging every conceivable approach to cultural production with an emphasis on ideas that are extremely accessible to the general public. Liversidge’s physical works are usually made of everyday materials or are created by simple, transitory actions and his performative works commonly utilize people who don’t think of themselves as performers. His work is a reminder that art can be created out of almost anything and that realizing a simple idea can result in anything but a simple outcome. Liversidge is just as interested in his proposals that are not realized, as they have their own life in each viewer’s imagination.”

Generous support for Peter Liversidge: Proposals for The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum is provided by Sean Kelly Gallery, New York, and Francis H. Williams and Keris Salmon.

Site Lines: Four Solo Exhibitions Engaging Place

Peter Liversidge: Proposals for The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum is part of Site Lines: Four Solo Exhibitions Engaging Place, which opened with a public reception on May 1, 2016. This series of exhibitions also features David Brooks, Kim Jones, and Virginia Overton, presenting site-specific commissions, ranging from sculpture to drawing and performance-based works. The exhibitions encompass both the monumental and the ephemeral, intersecting, interconnecting, or mirroring the Museum’s interior galleries and two-acre Sculpture Garden, as well as the surrounding community. The artists utilize materials found on or indigenous to the grounds and the area, offering a response to “site” that underscores the institution’s material history and its visual condition by transforming scale and circumstance. The works seek to “frame” the interiority of the galleries against the natural landscape while also accentuating the Museum’s unique architectural features, such as a pitched roofline, paned windows, and a room-scale camera obscura. Viewers are able to respond to works from multiple vantage points as they move around the Museum’s galleries, grounds, and the surrounding environs. Gravel Mirror (1968), a work by the influential artist and writer Robert Smithson, incorporated gravel found on the grounds of The Aldrich, and was a significant touchstone for the development of this exhibition series.

Major funding for the Site Lines exhibitions is provided by the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Foundation. Additional support is provided by Danbury Audi and DEDON.

CTC&G (Connecticut Cottages & Gardens) is the official media partner of the exhibition series.

The Artist

Liversidge has worked with a diverse range of institutions, including the Tate Gallery, London in 2008, the Centre d’art Santa Mónica, Barcelona in 2008, Bloomberg SPACE, London in 2009, the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, Edinburgh in 2010, the Whitechapel Gallery in London in 2014 and most recently the Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven in 2015. He has also developed projects for the Europalia Festival in 2007, Edinburgh’s sculpture park, Jupiter Artland, in 2009, The Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, Edinburgh in 2010, the Armory Art Fair in 2011, and the Tate Modern, London in 2013. In 2012, Peter Liversidge began collaborating with Low, a band from Duluth, Minnesota, which ultimately resulted in Liversidge creating a backdrop for their international tour as well as several album covers and release proposals. In 2013 the Edinburgh Art Festival commissioned Liversidge’s Flags for Edinburgh, which toured to The MAC, Belfast in 2014. Peter Liversidge lives and works in London, England.

The Museum

Founded by Larry Aldrich in 1964, The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum is

dedicated to fostering the work of innovative artists whose ideas and interpretations of the world around us serve as a platform to encourage creative thinking. It is the only museum in Connecticut devoted to contemporary art, and throughout its fifty- year history has engaged its community with thought-provoking exhibitions and public programs.

The Museum’s education and public programs are designed to connect visitors of all ages to contemporary art through innovative learning approaches in hands-on workshops, tours, and presentations led by artists, curators, Museum educators, and experts in related fields. Area schools are served by curriculum-aligned on-site and in-school programs, as well as teachers’ professional development training.

Supporters

The Aldrich, in addition to significant support from its Board of Trustees, receives contributions from many dedicated friends and patrons. Major funding for Museum programs and operations has been provided by the Department of Economic and Community Development, Connecticut Office of the Arts; the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Foundation; the William Randolph Hearst Foundation; the Leir Charitable Foundations; The Goldstone Family Foundation; the Anne S. Richardson Fund; CTC&G (Connecticut Cottages & Gardens); The Pollock-Krasner Foundation, Inc.; The Coby Foundation; Fairfield Fine Art; The Cowles Charitable Trust; The Gage Fund; Fairfield County Bank; Tauck; and Cohen and Wolf.

WSHU Public Radio, TownVibe, and HamletHub are the official media partners of The Aldrich in 2016.

For additional information and images, please contact:

Emily Devoe
The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum
press@aldrichart.org
203.438.4519, extension 140

David Brooks: Continuous Service Altered Daily

Ridgefield, CT (May 2016): Continuous Service Altered Daily, a major site-specific installation by David Brooks commissioned by The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum, marks the artist’s first solo museum exhibition. Throughout his practice, Brooks investigates the tenuous relationship between our ecological life and technological industry.

Brooks (born 1975, Brazil, Indiana) presents every single part of a used 1976 John Deere 3300 combine harvester in his exhibition at The Aldrich, which will be on view through February 5, 2017. The components are laid out in varying degrees of disassembly in a procession from the front plaza through the Leir Atrium and Leir Gallery and out into the Museum’s Sculpture Garden. Distinctive elements like the corn head and cab remain unaltered in a weathered John Deere green, while other parts are sandblasted, removing rust, paint and all traces of wear and tear; still others, like pipes and fittings, are brass-plated and housed in museum vitrines, the traditional trappings of highbrow art objects or precious natural history displays.

A combine is the ultimate example of agricultural technology, the otherworldly design of its bulky metal body concealing the integration of all stages of the harvesting process into one machine designed to reap grain, a resource that the efficiency of a combine allows us to take for granted as eternally and inexpensively available.

Curator Amy Smith-Stewart explains, “The stunning array of dismantled machine parts, exhibited in a diverse system of presentation, are designated according to the ecosystem service they represent, making it impossible to conceive of the combine in its entirety or to determine the machine’s complete functionality; similarly, an ecosystem integrates innumerable processes, many of them intangible or undetectable, into one whole, making it impossible for us to conceive of a life unfolding within it.”

She continues, “Continuous Service Altered Daily asks us to reexamine our perception of products reaped from the landscape, oftentimes those too easily interpreted as “services” for personal use: water, food, clean air, climate, energy—things we have come to expect to be delivered to us forever.”

Generous support for David Brooks: Continuous Service Altered Daily is provided by Brad and Sunny Goldberg.

Site Lines: Four Solo Exhibitions Engaging Place

David Brooks: Continuous Service Altered Daily is part of Site Lines: Four Solo Exhibitions Engaging Place, which opened with a public reception on May 1, 2016. This series of exhibitions features Kim Jones, Peter Liversidge, and Virginia Overton, presenting site-specific commissions, ranging from sculpture to drawing and performance-based works. The exhibitions encompass both the monumental and the ephemeral, intersecting, interconnecting, or mirroring the Museum’s galleries and two-acre Sculpture Garden, as well as the surrounding community. The artists utilize materials found on or indigenous to the grounds and the area, offering a response to “site” that underscores the institution’s material history and its visual condition by transforming scale and circumstance. The works seek to “frame” the view within and beyond the galleries against the natural landscape while also accentuating the Museum’s unique architectural features, such as a pitched roofline, paned windows, and a room-scale camera obscura. Viewers are able to respond to works from multiple vantage points as they move around the Museum’s galleries, grounds, and the surrounding environs. Gravel Mirror (1968), a work by the influential artist and writer Robert Smithson, incorporated gravel found on the grounds of The Aldrich, and was a significant touchstone for the development of this exhibition series.

Major funding for the Site Lines exhibitions is provided by the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Foundation. Additional support is provided by Danbury Audi and DEDON.

CTC&G (Connecticut Cottages & Gardens) is the official media partner of the exhibition series.

The Artist

David Brooks is a New York-based artist whose work investigates how cultural concerns cannot be divorced from the natural world, while also questioning the terms under which nature is perceived and utilized. Brooks has exhibited at the Dallas Contemporary; Tang Museum, New York; Nouveau Musée National de Monaco; Sculpture Center, New York; Miami Art Museum; Changwon Sculpture Biennale, South Korea; Galerie für Landschaftskunst, Germany; the Goethe-Institut, New York; and MoMA/PS1, New York, where he had a large-scale installation for two years. In 2011-12, Brooks opened Desert Rooftops in Times Square, a 5,000 square foot urban earthwork commissioned by the Art Production Fund. Other major commissions include Socrates Sculpture Park, New York; Storm King Art Center, New Windsor; the Cass Sculpture Foundation, United Kingdom; the deCordova Museum, Lincoln; and the Visual Arts Center, Austin. In 2010 he received a grant from the Foundation for Contemporary Arts, and in 2012 a research grant to the Ecuadorian Amazon from the Coypu Foundation. Brooks attended the Städelschule, Staatliche Hochschule für Bildende Künste, Germany, and earned his BFA from the Cooper Union and MFA from Columbia University. He is currently on the faculty of the Maryland Institute College of Art.

The Museum

Founded by Larry Aldrich in 1964, The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum is dedicated to fostering the work of innovative artists whose ideas and interpretations of the world around us serve as a platform to encourage creative thinking. It is the only museum in Connecticut devoted to contemporary art, and throughout its fifty-year history has engaged its community with thought-provoking exhibitions and public programs.

The Museum’s education and public programs are designed to connect visitors of all ages to contemporary art through innovative learning approaches in hands-on workshops, tours, and presentations led by artists, curators, Museum educators, and experts in related fields. Area schools are served by curriculum-aligned on-site and in-school programs, as well as teachers’ professional development training.

Supporters

The Aldrich, in addition to significant support from its Board of Trustees, receives contributions from many dedicated friends and patrons. Major funding for Museum programs and operations has been provided by the Department of Economic and Community Development, Connecticut Office of the Arts; the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Foundation; the William Randolph Hearst Foundation; the Leir Charitable Foundations; The Goldstone Family Foundation; the Anne S. Richardson Fund; CTC&G (Connecticut Cottages & Gardens); The Pollock-Krasner Foundation, Inc.; The Coby Foundation; Fairfield Fine Art; The Cowles Charitable Trust; The Gage Fund; Fairfield County Bank; Tauck; and Cohen and Wolf.

WSHU Public Radio, TownVibe, and HamletHub are the official media partners of The Aldrich in 2016.

For additional information and images, please contact:

Emily Devoe
The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum
press@aldrichart.org
203.438.4519, extension 140

Kim Jones:  White Crow

Ridgefield, CT (May 2016): Artist Kim Jones connects nature, culture, and memory through a material- and labor-intensive intervention into the galleries and surrounding landscape of The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum. His exhibition, White Crow, part of the presentation Site Lines: Four Solo Exhibitions Engaging Place, will be on view at the Museum until February 5, 2017.

Jones (born 1944, San Bernardino, California) has created a singular and subjective body of work based on extreme experiences that deeply affected his life and art making. He identifies himself as an outsider, and this estrangement has been played out through an interrelated series of performances, sculptures, drawings, and writings that exhibit a range of elemental and expressionistic impulses. White Crow refers to the extremely rare occurrence where a crow is born without any pigment in its plumage. This marks the bird as not only an outsider, but also, in folk mythology, as an omen of impending change.

Aldrich exhibitions director Richard Klein, the curator of the exhibition, explains: “Jones has often used stuffed animals and other toys as elements in his sculpture. The rat, which appears frequently, he identifies with as a species that, although usually reviled, is resourceful and intelligent, and lives in close association with human society. In this exhibition, the rat appears as a transitional element/figure, connecting a series of indoor sculptures with what will be the artist’s largest outdoor site-specific work to date. Many of the sculptures included in the exhibition are multi-media constructions that utilize wheeled toys, such as a “Big Wheel,” and their implied mobility suggest both the artist’s personal journey as well as the ad-hoc vehicle of the refugee.”

Jones’s life and work have been tempered by surviving a childhood illness, as well as serving in the Marines during the Vietnam War. The deep-seated memories of these experiences have created an undercurrent of survival in much of the artist’s work, and White Crow will expand this concern out into the landscape.

Klein continues, “Jones’s major outdoor installation, made during a two-week residency at the Museum, involves the transformation of a grove of four small crabapple trees into a group of festooned and wrapped sculptures. Additionally, he utilizes The Aldrich’s camera obscura, a small room that looks out on the grove of crabapples, by creating a wall drawing on the camera obscura’s projected image of the trees, linking his intervention in the landscape with the indoor environment.”

Generous support for Kim Jones: White Crow is provided by ZENO X GALLERY, Antwerp, and JoAnn Gonzalez Hickey.

Site Lines: Four Solo Exhibitions Engaging Place

Kim Jones: White Crow is part of Site Lines: Four Solo Exhibitions Engaging Place, which opened with a public reception on May 1, 2016. This series of exhibitions also features David Brooks, Peter Liversidge, and Virginia Overton, presenting site-specific commissions, ranging from sculpture to drawing and performance-based works. The exhibitions encompass both the monumental and the ephemeral, intersecting, interconnecting, or mirroring the Museum’s interior galleries and two-acre Sculpture Garden, as well as the surrounding community. The artists utilize materials found on or indigenous to the grounds and the area, offering a response to “site” that underscores the institution’s material history and its visual condition by transforming scale and circumstance. The works seek to “frame” the interiority of the galleries against the natural landscape while also accentuating the Museum’s unique architectural features, such as a pitched roofline, paned windows, and a room-scale camera obscura. Viewers are able to respond to works from multiple vantage points as they move around the Museum’s galleries, grounds, and the surrounding environs. Gravel Mirror (1968), a work by the influential artist and writer Robert Smithson, incorporated gravel found on the grounds of The Aldrich, and was a significant touchstone for the development of this exhibition series.

Major funding for the Site Lines exhibitions is provided by the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Foundation. Additional support is provided by Danbury Audi and DEDON.

CTC&G (Connecticut Cottages & Gardens) is the official media partner of the exhibition series.

The Artist

Kim Jones was born in San Bernardino in 1944 and lives and works in New York. For over thirty years he has been working on a consistent oeuvre of drawings, sculptures, and performances—war drawings, rat sculptures, combat vehicles, and performances as his alter ego Mudman—that all have their origin in his personal experience, including his participation as a soldier in the Vietnam War and the illness that kept him in a wheelchair between the ages of seven and ten. Jones’s work has been featured in significant group exhibitions, including Kim Jones: A Retrospective, UB Art Gallery, The State University of New York, Buffalo, and the Luckman Fine Arts Complex, California State University, Los Angeles; the 17th Sidney Biennale; The Third Mind: American Artists Contemplate Asia, Guggenheim Museum, New York; the 52nd Venice Biennial; Disparities & Deformations: Our Grotesque, Site Santa Fe; Out of Actions: Between Performance and the Object, Museum of Contemporary Art Los Angeles; and Mapping at The Museum of Modern Art, New York; amongst others. Jones’s work is held in major museum collections, including The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, The Museum of Modern Art, New York, and the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles.

The Museum

Founded by Larry Aldrich in 1964, The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum is

dedicated to fostering the work of innovative artists whose ideas and interpretations of the world around us serve as a platform to encourage creative thinking. It is the only museum in Connecticut devoted to contemporary art, and throughout its fifty- year history has engaged its community with thought-provoking exhibitions and public programs.

The Museum’s education and public programs are designed to connect visitors of all ages to contemporary art through innovative learning approaches in hands-on workshops, tours, and presentations led by artists, curators, Museum educators, and experts in related fields. Area schools are served by curriculum-aligned on-site and in-school programs, as well as teachers’ professional development training.

Supporters

The Aldrich, in addition to significant support from its Board of Trustees, receives contributions from many dedicated friends and patrons. Major funding for Museum programs and operations has been provided by the Department of Economic and Community Development, Connecticut Office of the Arts; the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Foundation; the William Randolph Hearst Foundation; the Leir Charitable Foundations; The Goldstone Family Foundation; the Anne S. Richardson Fund; CTC&G (Connecticut Cottages & Gardens); The Pollock-Krasner Foundation, Inc.; The Coby Foundation; Fairfield Fine Art; The Cowles Charitable Trust; The Gage Fund; Fairfield County Bank; Tauck; and Cohen and Wolf.

WSHU Public Radio, TownVibe, and HamletHub are the official media partners of The Aldrich in 2016.

For additional information and images, please contact:

Emily Devoe
The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum
press@aldrichart.org
203.438.4519, extension 140

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Family Partner

$1,000

$1,000 ($900 tax deductible)

Family Partner Benefits:

  • Unlimited admission per cardholder
  • $5 guest admission
  • Invitations to members-only events
  • Complimentary current exhibition catalogues
  • Fairfield/Westchester Museum Alliance reciprocal benefits*
  • Priority registration and program discounts
  • Free admission to curator and artist-led family tours
  • Unlimited admission for immediate family
  • 10% discount on Camp Aldrich
  • Early access to tickets and special pricing for premier social gatherings
  • Exclusive pre-event experiences at social gatherings
  • Reciprocal benefits to over 900 museums in North America**
  • 10% discount of children’s birthday party
  • Acknowledgment on donor wall and website
  • Four guest passes
  • Free admission for two adults and up to 4 children (17 and younger) to Storm King Art Center in New Windsor, NY. (Members must show their Aldrich membership cards and photo ID’s)

New Benefit for 2018! Enjoy 10% off café purchases at Franklin Street Works, Stamford with your Aldrich membership card.

*Bruce Museum, The Barnum Museum, Hudson River Museum, Hudson Valley Center for Contemporary Art, Katonah Museum, Neuberger Museum of Art,Wave Hill

** To view participating North American Reciprocal Museums, click here

**To view participating Modern and Contemporary Reciprocal Museums, click here

If you prefer, please mail a check made payable to The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum, 258 Main Street, Ridgefield, CT 06877. For further assistance, contact Kris Honeycutt, Development Associate,
at khoneycutt@aldrichart.org, or 203.438.4519, extension 125.

Educator (Pre-K – higher education with a school ID)

FREE

Educator Benefits:

  • Unlimited admission per cardholder
  • $5 guest admission
  • Invitations to members-only events
  • Complimentary current exhibition catalogues
  • Fairfield/Westchester Museum Alliance reciprocal benefits*
  • Priority registration and program discounts
  • Early access to tickets and special pricing for premier social gatherings
  • Free admission to curator and artist-led family tours

New Benefit for 2018! Enjoy 10% off café purchases at Franklin Street Works, Stamford with your Aldrich membership card.

*Bruce Museum, The Barnum Museum, Hudson River Museum, Hudson Valley Center for Contemporary Art, Katonah Museum, Neuberger Museum of Art, Wave Hill

For further assistance, contact Kris Honeycutt, Development Associate,at khoneycutt@aldrichart.org, or 203.438.4519, extension 125.

Painting In Four Takes

Hayal Pozanti, 18, 2015. Courtesy of the artist and Jessica Silverman Gallery, San Francisco
Hayal Pozanti, 18, 2015. Courtesy of the artist and Jessica Silverman Gallery, San Francisco


Ridgefield, CT (September 2015):

The last one hundred years have witnessed the explosion of virtually every available means and medium in the service of art making, yet painting has not only maintained a central position in visual art, but has also adapted creatively to rapid changes in our culture as a whole. Today, painting is embedded in the broad debate of actual vs. virtual, and its ability to balance what is illusive and what is real, what is tactile and what is optical, and what is emotive and what is formal, providing fertile ground for a diverse range of artists.

This fall, The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum in Ridgefield, Connecticut, will present Painting in Four Takes, a series of solo exhibitions that will provide a window into the practices of four engaging painters who imbue the medium with relevance and character. The series, on view from November 15, 2015, through April 3, 2016, will mark the first time in over twenty years that The Aldrich has dedicated all of its galleries to painting.

“While some point to marketability as the basis for the unwavering position of painting as a leading visual arts medium, for many artists, painting provides the most relevant platform for expression, allowing for both the potential of innovation and deep historical continuity,” says Richard Klein, The Aldrich’s exhibitions director.

Aldrich curator Amy Smith-Stewart explains, “The four artists selected span generations, methods, and intentions, but all are deeply entrenched in what painting is and can be in the image-dominated atmosphere of our twenty-first century.”

The four exhibitions will be celebrated at a free opening reception from 2 to 5 pm on Sunday, November 15, to which the public is invited.

Steve DiBenedetto: Evidence of Everything

In a career that spans three decades, Steve DiBenedetto (b. 1958, Bronx, New York) has established himself as an idiosyncratic artist who has brought the pursuit of painting into the unpredictable chaos and flux that categorize the Post-Modern world. Evidence of Everything is his first major solo museum exhibition.

DiBenedetto has consistently rejected formalism throughout an era where both formal and conceptual approaches to painting have become de rigueur, taking

a position where the canvas and the act of painting initiate a site for struggle, invention, and, ultimately, reinvention. Utilizing an inventory of leitmotifs, including the helicopter, octopus, wheel, and glass office tower, DiBenedetto paints and repaints his subjects in states of apocalyptic trauma where content and technique become unified, while the boundaries between the objective and subjective become uncertain. The artist’s work has prophetic, philosophical, and mystical undercurrents, with imagery often forming geometric webs or mandala-like vortices that tear themselves apart only to recongeal in thick, spectral passages of paint. Through his work, DiBenedetto has cast himself as a kind of baroque symbolist, working in the deep tradition of European Romanticism, with his excesses tempered by a terrible, yet transcendental beauty. “You never know what is enough,” wrote William Blake, “unless you know what is more than enough.” Marked by both foresight and revelation, DiBenedetto’s painting exists in a continuum that flows from Blake to speculative novelist William Gibson.

Steve DiBenedetto: Evidence of Everything has been organized by Aldrich exhibitions director Richard Klein.

Hayal Pozanti: Deep Learning

The practice of Hayal Pozanti (b. 1983, Istanbul, Turkey) spans painting, digital animation, and sculpture. For her first solo museum exhibition, she will debut a new series of paintings and digital animations. Pozanti negotiates two opposing image- producing interfaces, the digital, with its mechanical, frenetic pace, and traditional studio practice, with its slowness, imperfection, and tactile insistence. To do so, she has invented “Instant Paradise”: a thirty-one-character “alphabet,” which she uses to generate shapes that never repeat themselves, nor have a recognizable equivalent in visual culture. Embedded within these shapes are bundles of mined data relating to the impact of contemporary technological developments on human lives. Through this process, Pozanti acts as a digital-to-analog encryption system so as to preserve information that could be lost or altered in the cloud. Her movement, from freehand to track pad, reinforces her intent, so that the final composition is equally successful online and in person. Alongside her paintings, and sometimes shown side by side, she creates digital animations, both informed by her back and forth translation of mechanical and digital processes and her desire for the means via which they are seen to be interchangeable, non hierarchical, and streamlined.

Hayal Pozanti: Deep Learning has been organized by Aldrich curator Amy Smith- Stewart.

Julia Rommel: Two Italians, Six Lifeguards

For her first solo museum exhibition, Julia Rommel (b. 1980, Salisbury, Maryland) will debut a series of new paintings presented alongside small works from 2010– 2012. Rommel’s oil paintings range from head to body size, and oscillate between cool and warm palettes, color fields of denim blues, moody greys, creamy whites, salmon pinks, and citrus hues. All are intimately connected to their edges, as they are stretched and re-stretched numerous times over the course of their making in

a physical wrangle of layering and effacing. As with a haiku, Rommel’s seemingly accessible surfaces belie their mysterious complexity, involving a laborious choreography of cutting, sanding, wiping, expunging, and overlaying, as the build-up and break down of the composition both reveals and disguises a history of choices and decisions, giving the paintings a rhythm and expression not unlike a life cycle. Taken in concert, Rommel’s stressed surfaces, with their bends, folds, cracks, frayed edges, and staple holes, have a vitality that connects them to the viewer— and the viewer to the works—in various stages of being and becoming.

Julia Rommel: Two Italians, Six Lifeguards, has been organized by Aldrich curator Amy Smith-Stewart.

Ruth Root: Old, Odd, and Oval

Old, Odd, and Oval will be Ruth Root’s (b. 1967, Chicago, Illinois) first solo museum exhibition in the United States. Root’s practice centers on an intensive investigation of color, material, form, and support. For more than two decades, she has worked within the language of abstract painting, exploring the physical and illusory boundary of wall and object, foreground and background, even inventing her own color wheel to challenge canonized color theory. Old, Odd, and Oval, will focus on her latest body of work, medium- to large-scale to site-engaged paintings that demonstrate her experimentations with new materials and fabrication methods as she combines hand-painted Plexiglas with colorful fabric patterns she designs digitally. Alongside these new works, The Aldrich will present an intimate salon-style hanging of Root’s painted paper collages, initiated in 1998, to demonstrate her advancing investigation of color, pattern, and composition as noted influencers of what was to come (evidenced by the new works in the adjacent galleries). These small, shaped, works on paper are geometric abstractions that feature quirky cartoonish elements to rupture color fields—madcap flourishes humanizing pure abstract reduction.

Ruth Root: Old, Odd, and Oval organized by Aldrich curator Amy Smith-Stewart.

Publications

Each exhibition will be accompanied by a free, fully illustrated, full-color publication with an essay by the curator. Ruth Root’s publication will include an artist-designed takeaway: a limited-edition bookmark. Root began making the bookmarks when she had finished a large body of work and was trying to restart her practice by reading art books, bookmarking images as she read. She explains, “Somehow, my old drawings that were pieced from painted paper and printed scraps were around the studio and started to be used to bookmark oversized art books, then the bookmarks became a project of their own. It was as if these huge monumental paintings became smaller and elongated, functional and bookmarking other things that I wanted to think about or incorporate into my work.”

About the Museum

Founded by Larry Aldrich in 1964, The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum is dedicated to fostering the work of pioneering artists whose interpretations of the world around us serve as a platform to encourage creative thinking. The Aldrich is one of the few independent, non-collecting contemporary art museums in the United States and the only museum in Connecticut devoted to contemporary art, and engages its diverse audiences with thought-provoking, interdisciplinary exhibitions and programs.

The Museum’s education and public programs are designed to connect visitors of all ages to contemporary art through innovative learning approaches in hands-on workshops, tours, and presentations led by artists, curators, Museum educators, and experts in related fields. Area schools are served by curriculum-aligned on-site and in-school programs, as well as teachers’ professional development training.

Supporters

Generous support for exhibitions has been provided by The Coby Foundation, Jennifer and Claude Amadeo, Valerie and Greg Jensen, Andrew Kreps Gallery, and the Patrons Circle.

The Aldrich, in addition to significant support from its Board of Trustees, receives contributions from many dedicated friends and patrons. Major funding for Museum programs and operations has been provided by the Department of Economic and Community Development, Connecticut Office of the Arts; the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Foundation; the William Randolph Hearst Foundation; the Leir Charitable Foundations; The Goldstone Family Foundation; the Anne S. Richardson Fund; the National Endowment for the Arts; the Pollock-Krasner Foundation, Inc.; The Coby Foundation; JoyRide Ridgefield; Newman’s Own Foundation; the SAHA Association; Fairfield Fine Art; The Cowles Charitable Trust; The Gage Fund; Fairfield County Bank; Fairfield County’s Community Foundation; Ridgefield Education Foundation; and Cohen and Wolf.

HamletHub; TownVibe, publishers of <i>Ridgefield Magazine</i>; and WSHU Public Radio are the official media sponsors of The Aldrich in 2015.

For additional information and images, please contact:

Kris Honeycutt
The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum press@aldrichart.org
203.438.4519, extension 125

Exhibition

Steve DiBenedetto

Evidence of Everything

November 15, 2015, to April 3, 2016

In a career that spans three decades, Steve DiBenedetto (b. 1958, Bronx, New York) has established himself as an idiosyncratic artist who has brought the pursuit of painting into the unpredictable chaos and flux that categorize the Post-Modern world. Evidence of Everything is his first major solo museum exhibition. DiBenedetto has consistently rejected formalism throughout an era where both formal and conceptual approaches to painting have become de rigueur, taking a position where the canvas and the act of painting initiate a site for struggle, invention, and, ultimately, reinvention. Utilizing an inventory of leitmotifs, including the helicopter, octopus, wheel, and glass office tower, DiBenedetto paints and repaints his subjects in states of apocalyptic trauma where content and technique become unified, while the boundaries between the objective and subjective become uncertain. The artist’s work has prophetic, philosophical, and mystical undercurrents, with imagery often forming geometric webs or mandala-like vortices that tear themselves apart only to recongeal in thick, spectral passages of paint. Through his work, DiBenedetto has cast himself as a kind of baroque symbolist, working in the deep tradition of European Romanticism, with his excesses tempered by a terrible, yet transcendental beauty. “You never know what is enough,” wrote William Blake, “unless you know what is more than enough.” Marked by both foresight and revelation, DiBenedetto’s painting exists in a continuum that flows from Blake to speculative novelist William Gibson. Curated by Richard Klein

Steve DiBenedetto, Captured Shadow, 2005
Hall Collection

Exhibition

Hayal Pozanti

Deep Learning

November 15, 2015, to April 3, 2016

The practice of Hayal Pozanti (b. 1983, Istanbul, Turkey) spans painting, digital animation, and sculpture. For her first solo museum exhibition, she will debut a new series of paintings and digital animations. Pozanti negotiates two opposing image-producing interfaces, the digital, with its mechanical, frenetic pace, and traditional studio practice, with its slowness, imperfection, and tactile insistence. To do so, she has invented “Instant Paradise”: a thirty-one-character “alphabet,” which she uses to generate shapes that never repeat themselves, nor have a recognizable equivalent in visual culture. Embedded within these shapes are bundles of mined data relating to the impact of contemporary technological developments on human lives. Through this process, Pozanti acts as a digital-to-analog encryption system so as to preserve information that could be lost or altered in the cloud. Her movement, from freehand to track pad, reinforces her intent, so that the final composition is equally successful online and in person. Alongside her paintings, and sometimes shown side by side, she creates digital animations, both informed by her back and forth translation of mechanical and digital processes and her desire for the means via which they are seen to be interchangeable, non hierarchical, and streamlined. Curated by Amy Smith-Stewart

Hayal Pozanti, 18, 2015
Courtesy of the artist and Jessica Silverman Gallery, San Francisco

Exhibition

Julia Rommel

Two Italians, Six Lifeguards

November 15, 2015, to April 3, 2016

For her first solo museum exhibition, Julia Rommel (b. 1980, Salisbury, Maryland) will debut a series of new paintings presented alongside small works from 2010 to 2012. Rommel’s oil paintings range from head to body size, and oscillate between cool and warm palettes, color fields of denim blues, moody greys, creamy whites, salmon pinks, and citrus hues. All are intimately connected to their edges, as they are stretched and re-stretched numerous times over the course of their making in a physical wrangle of layering and effacing. As with a haiku, Rommel’s seemingly accessible surfaces belie their mysterious complexity, involving a laborious choreography of cutting, sanding, wiping, expunging, and overlaying, as the build-up and break down of the composition both reveals and disguises a history of choices and decisions, giving the paintings a rhythm and expression not unlike a life cycle. Taken in concert, Rommel’s stressed surfaces, with their bends, folds, cracks, frayed edges, and staple holes, have a vitality that connects them to the viewer—and the viewer to the works—in various stages of being and becoming. Curated by Amy Smith-Stewart

Generous support for this exhibition has been provided by The Coby Foundation.

Julia Rommel, Moroccan Boyfriend, 2015
Courtesy of the artist and Bureau, New York

Manager of Academic Programs

SUPERVISOR: Director of Public Programs & Audience Engagement

STATUS: Full time

About The Aldrich:

It is the mission of The Aldrich to advance creative thinking by connecting today’s artists with individuals and communities in unexpected and stimulating ways. It is the mission of the Public Programs and Education department of The Aldrich to foster direct interaction with contemporary art and artists, inspire and nurture ideas that cultivate critical and creative thinking, encourage curiosity and reflection, and create transformative learning experiences. The studio practices of the Museum’s exhibiting artists inspire our laboratory approach to learning, which engages diverse communities of children, teens, adults, seniors, families, educators, and artists. Founded by Larry Aldrich in 1964, The Aldrich is dedicated to fostering innovative artists whose ideas and interpretations of the world around us serve as a platform for dialogue and learning. First located in a landmark 1783 house on Ridgefield’s historic Main Street, used today for administrative offices, the galleries have since 2004 been housed in an AIA-award-winning 25,000 square-foot facility. The Aldrich is one of the few independent, non-collecting contemporary art museums in the United States, the only museum in Connecticut devoted to contemporary art, and one of just twenty museums in Connecticut and 318 art museums in the country to be accredited by the American Alliance of Museums.

The Aldrich has a 50-year track record of identifying and supporting significant artists at seminal moments in their development and interpreting their work for a broad and cross-generational public, and a history of engaging the community through exhibitions that investigate current cultural and societal issues as well as complementary art-making workshops and thought-provoking interdisciplinary programs. The ideas motivating the artists, and how their concepts and endeavors are presented to diverse audiences, define the activities and character of the Museum.

Position Overview:

The Manager of Academic Programs (Manager) reports to and works closely with the Director of Public Programs and Audience Engagement (Director), to research, develop, implement and assess pioneering programs for schools, educators, and the adult volunteer Museum Guide team.

The Manager will develop innovative, forward thinking strategies that increase service to regional schools and educators, and position The Aldrich as a leader in the field of museum education. These strategies and the resulting programs will be developed in dialogue with administrators, educators, and curriculum specialists from the schools and districts served by The Aldrich. The Manager will develop an annual plan for assessing the short- and long-term impact of the Museum’s education programs on the students and teachers served. The Manager will be knowledgeable about trends and approaches in the field of museum education and will make recommendations for program change and/or growth within her/his area of responsibility to the Director, Executive Director, Board of Directors, and Board Committees as needed.

The Manager will maintain an active, productive, and communicative relationship with area educators, administrators, parents, regional arts and culture institutions, arts education organizations, and other institutions and individuals whose mission it is to serve students and teachers. The Manager will position The Aldrich as a primary resource for students and teachers, incorporating all subject areas in programmatic offerings and materials, and will serve as the Museum’s expert on Common Core, STEM to STEAM, and other issues, policies and programs that impact and effect schools and teachers.

In keeping with the collaborative and cooperative structure of the Public Programs and Education department, the Manager will work in partnership with the Manager of Education Programs and Youth Initiatives to (1) develop pilot programs for all audiences; (2) develop and foster key partnerships with schools, school districts, teachers, school administrators, and community and peer organizations; (3) develop interpretive content for programs for all visitors, including but not limited to lesson plans for school groups, family gallery guides, and adult tour scripts; and (4) train the Museum Guide team.

The Manager will maintain a current mailing list of regional educators and administrators, and will organize and manage programs and events within her/his area of responsibility, including but not limited to Teacher Advisory Committee meetings, Museum Guide meetings and trainings, culminating program receptions, peer group forums, and professional development opportunities for educators and administrators.

The Manager will develop and maintain a professional team of Museum Guides who are prepared to serve as museum ambassadors and gallery educators, equipped with the most current and relevant understanding of museum education theory and practice.

The Manager will foster and participate in the department’s and the Museum’s collaborative culture, and will work in partnership with the Director and other departments as needed to develop, implement, promote, and assess public programs and strategic community partnerships.

Responsibilities will include, but are not limited to: Experience and Skills: The successful candidate is an innovative thinker and dynamic leader with a minimum of 5 years experience working in a museum, art center, or similar setting with docent volunteers, as well as demonstrable excellence in teaching K-12 school and educator audiences with original works of art in a museum or gallery setting. The candidate will have experience developing fundable, innovative school and teacher programs, setting strategic goals for programs and prioritizing tasks to support these goals, and implementing and evaluating such programs. The successful candidate is a self-motivated individual who excels in a fast-paced creative environment and thinks both strategically and logistically. The candidate will possess excellent organizational and communication skills, and provide evidence of well-developed collaborative skills and experience leading teams through complex projects. The exceptional candidate will have demonstrable experience in developing public programs for all ages, including youth, family and adult. Experience working with artists and in artist-driven programs and audience engagement required.

  • Develop annual strategies for new programs, existing program growth and revision, assessment, and student and teacher audience development
  • Manage all aspects of school programs (grades K-12, and university level) including program development, administration, scheduling, transportation, curriculum development, training of Museum staff and Guides, and annual assessment
  • Manage all aspects of Teacher Professional Development programs including program development, administration, scheduling, content development, and annual assessment
  • Manage Teacher Advisory Committee, including recruitment
  • Manage all aspects of the Museum Guide program, including administration, scheduling, content development, recruitment and training, and annual assessment of the individual docents and overall program
  • Work proactively and collaboratively with teachers and administrators in program development to assure Museum programs and curricula support and meet the changing needs of the education community
  • Develop and manage community partnerships as assigned
  • Attend weekly departmental meetings and participate in collaborative process to develop hands-on projects for the Education Center and interpretive and visitor experience tools for the galleries
  • Develop and manage annual program budgets
  • Assist in the research and development of funding proposals for school, teacher and docent programs
  • Assist in writing interpretative materials including wall texts, labels, family guides and website content
  • Work with Director on strategic planning for department, including mission and vision statements and goals
  • Other or additional duties as assigned in accordance with the job title

Knowledge and Education: A Masters Degree in art history, art education, museum education or a related field is preferred. The successful candidate will demonstrate knowledge of contemporary art, museum program management, K-12 education, National Learning Standards, Common Core State Standards, and the STEM to STEAM initiative. Familiarity with Connecticut and Westchester school districts is preferred. Please send (1) a cover letter including salary requirements, (2) current resume, and (3) a description of a program for K-12 students designed, implemented, and evaluated by the applicant to: jobs@aldrichart.org, and note “Manager of Academic Programs” in the subject line. Calls will not be accepted. Only qualified applicants will be contacted. The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum is committed to: Consistent with these principles, The Aldrich does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, expression and characteristics, age, religion, national or ethnic origin, visible or invisible disability, veteran status, or any other protected status.

Application Process:

The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum Non-Discrimination Policy

  • The goal of achieving equal opportunity for all.
  • Providing an inclusive and welcoming environment for all members of the community.
  • Providing an inclusive and nondiscriminatory work environment in which all employees are valued and empowered to succeed.
  • Providing a workplace free from harassment of all kinds.
  • Compliance with all federal and state legislation and regulations regarding non-discrimination.

Exhibition

Virginia Poundstone

Flower Mutations

May 3, 2015, to October 25, 2015

Virginia Poundstone’s practice spans photography, sculpture, video, and installation, and is exclusively focused on the history and botany of the flower and its socio-economic and cultural significance. Her exhibition at The Aldrich is dedicated to two important sources of inspiration: Giacomo Balla’s series of Futurist Flowers and traditional American flower-pattern quilts. Poundstone debuts a new outdoor sculpture, Quilt Square (Tulip) (2015), and an earthwork, Tulips (2014–15), on the Museum’s grounds; in an interior room, artworks and objects investigate the visual representation of flowers through abstraction in art and design. The outdoor sculpture, a geometric flower in stone and glass, is based on the geometry of a traditional quilt pattern. Placed in the interior courtyard, where it is visible from within the Museum’s Leir Atrium, it is seen for a fleeting period in relation to a field of colorful tulips (more than three thousand bulbs were planted in eight dynamic hues) that form a resplendent garden across the sloping grassy embankment. Inside the Museum’s expansive Project Space and Balcony Gallery, visitors encounter a new glass sculpture by Poundstone, as well as a monumental wall print of Rainbow Rose (2013), alongside seminal inspirational works by artists that span generations and art historical movements. Adjacent to these influential works, on loan from institutions around the country, she also includes objects from her own collection.

Amy Smith-Stewart, curator

Virginia Poundstone was born in 1977 in Great Lakes, Illinois, and lives and works in Brooklyn, New York.

Virginia Poundstone, Rainbow Rose, 2013Courtesy of the artist

Circumstance highlights inspiration and its influence across object- making, through the specifically commissioned work of six multi- generational artists. The exhibitions underscore the intersection of installation art and exhibition design, and show how the convergence of fine art, design, and non-art objects within the exhibition format informs and elucidates creative expression. For six months, the entire museum facility — whose distinctive galleries range from the intimate to the spacious — will be transformed into “rooms” designed by the exhibiting artists, which will “read” as total works of art as they show their own work alongside objects and/or artworks by other artists they have selected. In some instances, works may extend outside of the Museum’s walls, providing alternative ways of perceiving space by offering extended lines of sight across the campus. In doing so, Circumstance attempts to explore the interstices where art and object come together, come apart, and reunify, by examining context, its many shifts and permutations, and tracing the movement of art and objects from the studio to the museum. In the captivating maze of intersecting rooms, craft, found, utilitarian, historical design, and everyday objects will sit beside works of art, informing us as to how artists take inspiration from what is around them. Selected artworks and objects will enhance our “reading” and innovatively offer—vis-à-vis a visual form of storytelling—intersecting and interdynamic narratives about these works of art and their makers, confronting us with larger questions about history, culture, and society. Participating artists Virginia Poundstone, Nancy Shaver, Ruby Sky Stiler, Penelope Umbrico, Elif Uras, and B. Wurtz will take center stage in the development, conceptualization, and reception of their work, as the Museum assists them to reveal never-before-seen aspects of their practice.

Exhibition

Ruth Root

Old, Odd, and Oval

November 15, 2015, to April 3, 2016

Old, Odd, and Oval will be Ruth Root’s (b. 1967, Chicago) first solo museum exhibition in the United States. Root’s practice centers on an intensive investigation of color, material, form, and support. For more than two decades, she has worked within the language of abstract painting, exploring the physical and illusory boundary of wall and object, foreground and background, even inventing her own color wheel to challenge canonized color theory. Old, Odd, and Oval, will focus on her latest body of work, medium- to large-scale to site-engaged paintings that demonstrate her experimentations with new materials and fabrication methods as she combines hand-painted Plexiglas with colorful fabric patterns she designs digitally. Alongside these new works, The Aldrich will present an intimate salon-style hanging of Root’s painted paper collages, initiated in 1998, to demonstrate her advancing investigation of color, pattern, and composition as noted influencers of what was to come (evidenced by the new works in the adjacent galleries). These small, shaped, works on paper are geometric abstractions that feature quirky cartoonish elements to rupture color fields—madcap flourishes humanizing pure abstract reduction. Curated by Amy Smith-Stewart

Ruth Root: Old, Odd, and Oval

November, 2015

Image: Ruth Root, Untitled, 2013
Courtesy of the artist and Bureau, New York

Ridgefield, CT (September 2015): The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum will present Old, Odd, and Oval, the first solo museum exhibition in the United States by Chicago-born artist Ruth Root, from November 15, 2015, through April 3, 2016.

Root’s practice centers on an intensive investigation of color, material, form, and support. For more than two decades, she has worked within the language of abstract painting, exploring the physical and illusory boundary of wall and object, foreground and background, even inventing her own color wheel to challenge canonized color theory. Old, Odd, and Oval, part of the Painting in Four Takes series of exhibitions, will focus on her latest body of work, medium- to large-scale to site-engaged paintings that demonstrate her experimentations with new materials and fabrication methods as she combines hand-painted Plexiglas with colorful fabric patterns she designs digitally. Alongside these new works, The Aldrich will present an intimate salon-style hanging of Root’s painted paper collages, initiated in 1998, to demonstrate her advancing investigation of color, pattern, and composition as noted influencers of what was to come (evidenced by the new works in the adjacent galleries). These small, shaped, works on paper are geometric abstractions that feature quirky cartoonish elements to rupture color fields—madcap flourishes humanizing pure abstract reduction.

Ruth Root: Old, Odd, and Oval, organized by Aldrich curator Amy Smith-Stewart, is generously supported by The Coby Foundation.

Painting in Four Takes

Ruth Root: Old, Odd, and Oval is part of Painting in Four Takes, a series of solo exhibitions that will provide a window into the practices of four engaging painters who imbue the medium with relevance and character. In addition to Root, Steve DiBenedetto, Hayal Pozanti, and Julia Rommel will be featured. On view from November 15, 2015, through April 3, 2016, the exhibitions will mark the first time in over twenty years that The Aldrich has dedicated all of its galleries to painting.

The last one hundred years have witnessed the explosion of virtually every available means and medium in the service of art making, yet painting has not only maintained a central position in visual art, but has also adapted creatively to rapid changes in our culture as a whole. Today, painting is embedded in the broad debate of actual vs. virtual, and its ability to balance what is illusive and what is real, what is tactile and what is optical, and what is emotive and what is formal, providing fertile ground for a diverse range of artists.

“While some point to marketability as the basis for the unwavering position of painting as a leading visual arts medium, for many artists, painting provides the most relevant platform for expression, allowing for both the potential of innovation and deep historical continuity,” says Richard Klein, The Aldrich’s exhibitions director.

Aldrich curator Amy Smith-Stewart explains, “The four artists selected span generations, methods, and intentions, but all are deeply entrenched in what painting is and can be in the image-dominated atmosphere of our twenty-first century.”

The public are invited to a free reception celebrating the four exhibitions from 2 to 5 pm on Sunday, November 15.

The Artist

Ruth Root was born in Chicago in 1967 and works in New York City. Her work has been exhibited at Andrew Kreps Gallery, New York; Maureen Paley gallery, London; Galerie Nikolaus Ruzicska, Salzburg, Austria; Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire; The Suburban, Oak Park, Illinois; MoMA PS1, Long Island City, New York; ArtPace, San Antonio, Texas; LACMA, Los Angeles; and the Seattle Art Museum, among others.

The Museum

Founded by Larry Aldrich in 1964, The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum is dedicated to fostering the work of pioneering artists whose interpretations of the world around us serve as a platform to encourage creative thinking. The Aldrich is one of the few independent, non-collecting contemporary art museums in the United States and the only museum in Connecticut devoted to contemporary art, and engages its diverse audiences with thought-provoking, interdisciplinary exhibitions and programs.

The Museum’s education and public programs are designed to connect visitors of all ages to contemporary art through innovative learning approaches in hands-on workshops, tours, and presentations led by artists, curators, Museum educators, and experts in related fields. Area schools are served by curriculum-aligned on-site and in-school programs, as well as teachers’ professional development training.

Supporters

The Aldrich, in addition to significant support from its Board of Trustees, receives contributions from many dedicated friends and patrons. Major funding for Museum programs and operations has been provided by the Department of Economic and Community Development, Connecticut Office of the Arts; the National Endowment for the Arts; the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Foundation; the Leir Charitable Foundations; the Goldstone Family Foundation; the Anne S. Richardson Fund; and Fairfield Fine Art.

Support for Education and Public programs has been provided by the William Randolph Hearst Foundation, JoyRide Ridgefield, the Newman’s Own Foundation, Fairfield County Bank, Fairfield County’s Community Foundation, Ridgefield Education Foundation, The Cowles Charitable Trust, and The Gage Fund.

HamletHub; TownVibe, publishers of Ridgefield Magazine; and WSHU Public Radio are the official media sponsors of The Aldrich in 2015.

For additional information and images, please contact:

Kris Honeycutt The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum press@aldrichart.org 203.438.4519, extension 125

Press Release

Julia Rommel: Two Italians, Six Lifeguards

November, 2015

Image: Julia Rommel, Moroccan Boyfriend, 2015
Courtesy of the artist and Bureau, New York

Ridgefield, CT (September 2015): The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum will present Julia Rommel’s first solo museum exhibition, Two Italians, Six Lifeguards, as part of the Painting in Four Takes exhibition series from November 15, 2015, through April 3, 2016.

Rommel will debut a series of new paintings presented alongside small works from 2010 to 2012. The oil paintings range from head to body size, and oscillate between cool and warm palettes, color fields of denim blues, moody greys, creamy whites, salmon pinks, and citrus hues. All are intimately connected to their edges, as they are stretched and re-stretched numerous times over the course of their making in a physical wrangle of layering and effacing. As with haiku poetry, Rommel’s seemingly accessible surfaces belie their mysterious complexity, involving a laborious choreography of cutting, sanding, wiping, expunging, and overlaying, as the build-up and break down of the composition both reveals and disguises a history of choices and decisions, giving the paintings a rhythm and expression not unlike a life cycle. Taken in concert, Rommel’s stressed surfaces, with their bends, folds, cracks, frayed edges and staple holes, have a vitality that connects them to the viewer—and the viewer to the works—in various stages of being and becoming.

Julia Rommel: Two Italians, Six Lifeguards has been organized by Aldrich curator Amy Smith-Stewart.

Painting in Four Takes

Julia Rommel: Two Italians, Six Lifeguards is part of Painting in Four Takes, a series of solo exhibitions that will provide a window into the practices of four engaging painters who imbue the medium with relevance and character. In addition to Rommel, Steve DiBenedetto, Hayal Pozanti, and Ruth Root will be featured. On view from November 15, 2015, through April 3, 2016, the exhibitions will mark the first time in over twenty years that The Aldrich has dedicated all of its galleries to painting.

The last one hundred years have witnessed the explosion of virtually every available means and medium in the service of art making, yet painting has not only maintained a central position in visual art, but has also adapted creatively to rapid changes in our culture as a whole. Today, painting is embedded in the broad debate of actual vs. virtual, and its ability to balance what is illusive and what is real, what is tactile and what is optical, and what is emotive and what is formal, providing fertile ground for a diverse range of artists.

“While some point to marketability as the basis for the unwavering position of painting as a leading visual arts medium, for many artists, painting provides the most relevant platform for expression, allowing for both the potential of innovation and deep historical continuity,” says Richard Klein, The Aldrich’s exhibitions director.

Aldrich curator Amy Smith-Stewart explains, “The four artists selected span generations, methods, and intentions, but all are deeply entrenched in what painting is and can be in the image-dominated atmosphere of our twenty-first century.”

The public are invited to a free reception celebrating the four exhibitions from 2 to 5 pm on Sunday, November 15.

The Artist

Julia Rommel was born in 1980 in Salisbury, Maryland, and lives and works in New York. She received her MFA from American University in Washington, DC. She has mounted solo exhibitions, Delaware (2012) and The Little Matchstick (2014), at Bureau, New York; Girl with Silver Rings, at Sorry We’re Closed, Brussels (2104); and Mother Superior (2013) at Gaudel de Stampa, Paris. She has been included in group exhibitions at the Flag Foundation, New York; White Flag Projects, St Louis; T293, Naples; and Greene Naftali, New York; among others. Her work was presented by Bureau at Art Basel Statements in June 2015 and at Lora Reynolds Gallery, Austin, in a three-person exhibition.

The Museum

Founded by Larry Aldrich in 1964, The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum is dedicated to fostering the work of pioneering artists whose interpretations of the world around us serve as a platform to encourage creative thinking. The Aldrich is one of the few independent, non-collecting contemporary art museums in the United States and the only museum in Connecticut devoted to contemporary art, and engages its diverse audiences with thought-provoking, interdisciplinary exhibitions and programs.

The Museum’s education and public programs are designed to connect visitors of all ages to contemporary art through innovative learning approaches in hands-on workshops, tours, and presentations led by artists, curators, Museum educators, and experts in related fields. Area schools are served by curriculum-aligned on-site and in-school programs, as well as teachers’ professional development training.

Supporters

The Aldrich, in addition to significant support from its Board of Trustees, receives contributions from many dedicated friends and patrons. Major funding for Museum programs and operations has been provided by the Department of Economic and Community Development, Connecticut Office of the Arts; the National Endowment for the Arts; the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Foundation; the Leir Charitable Foundations; the Goldstone Family Foundation; the Anne S. Richardson Fund; and Fairfield Fine Art.

Support for Education and Public programs has been provided by the William Randolph Hearst Foundation, JoyRide Ridgefield, the Newman’s Own Foundation, Fairfield County Bank, Fairfield County’s Community Foundation, Ridgefield Education Foundation, The Cowles Charitable Trust, and The Gage Fund.

HamletHub; TownVibe, publishers of Ridgefield Magazine; and WSHU Public Radio are the official media sponsors of The Aldrich in 2015.

For additional information and images, please contact:

Kris Honeycutt The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum press@aldrichart.org 203.438.4519, extension 125

Press Release

Hayal Pozanti: Deep Learning

November, 2015

Image: Hayal Pozanti, 18, 2015
Courtesy of the artist and Jessica Silverman Gallery, San Francisco

Ridgefield, CT (September 2015): Turkish-born artist Hayal Pozanti will debut a new series of paintings and digital animations in her first solo museum exhibition, Deep Learning, to be presented at The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum as part of the Painting in Four Takes series from November 15, 2015, through April 3, 2016.

The practice of Hayal Pozanti spans painting, digital animation, and sculpture. For the exhibition, she will debut a new series of paintings and digital animations. Pozanti negotiates two opposing image-producing interfaces, the digital, with its mechanical, frenetic pace, and traditional studio practice, with its slowness, imperfection and tactile insistence. To do so, she has invented “Instant Paradise”: a thirty-one-character “alphabet,” which she uses to generate shapes that never repeat themselves, nor have a recognizable equivalent in visual culture. Embedded within these shapes are bundles of mined data relating to the impact of contemporary technological developments on human lives. Through this process, Pozanti acts as a digital-to-analog encryption system so as to preserve information that could be lost or altered in the cloud. Her movement, from freehand to track pad, reinforces her intent, so that the final composition is equally successful online and in person. Alongside her paintings, and sometimes shown side by side, she creates digital animations, both informed by her back and forth translation of mechanical and digital processes and her desire for the means via which they are seen to be interchangeable, non hierarchical, and streamlined.

Hayal Pozanti: Deep Learning has been organized by Aldrich curator Amy Smith- Stewart.

Painting in Four Takes

Hayal Pozanti: Deep Learning is part of Painting in Four Takes, a series of solo exhibitions that will provide a window into the practices of four engaging painters who imbue the medium with relevance and character. In addition to Pozanti, Steve DiBenedetto, Julia Rommel, and Ruth Root will be featured. On view from November 15, 2015, through April 3, 2016, the exhibitions will mark the first time in over twenty years that The Aldrich has dedicated all of its galleries to painting.

The last one hundred years have witnessed the explosion of virtually every available means and medium in the service of art making, yet painting has not only maintained a central position in visual art, but has also adapted creatively to rapid changes in our culture as a whole. Today, painting is embedded in the broad debate of actual vs. virtual, and its ability to balance what is illusive and what is real, what is tactile and what is optical, and what is emotive and what is formal, providing fertile ground for a diverse range of artists.

“While some point to marketability as the basis for the unwavering position of painting as a leading visual arts medium, for many artists, painting provides the most relevant platform for expression, allowing for both the potential of innovation and deep historical continuity,” says Richard Klein, The Aldrich’s exhibitions director.

Aldrich curator Amy Smith-Stewart explains, “The four artists selected span generations, methods, and intentions, but all are deeply entrenched in what painting is and can be in the image-dominated atmosphere of our twenty-first century.”

The public are invited to a free reception celebrating the four exhibitions from 2 to 5 pm on Sunday, November 15.

The Artist

Hayal Pozanti was born in Istanbul in 1983 and now lives in New York. She earned an MFA from Yale University and a BA from Sabanci University. She was featured in Prospect 3, the New Orleans biennial, and is in the collections of JP Morgan and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Pozanti has exhibited in Berlin, Chicago, Los Angeles, Milan, and New York. She was recently included in group exhibitions such as Women and Abstraction at Cornell Fine Arts Museum in Winter Park, Reunion at Sabanci Museum in Istanbul, Turkey, and Then They Form US at MCA Santa Barbara.

The Museum

Founded by Larry Aldrich in 1964, The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum is dedicated to fostering the work of pioneering artists whose interpretations of the world around us serve as a platform to encourage creative thinking. The Aldrich is one of the few independent, non-collecting contemporary art museums in the United States and the only museum in Connecticut devoted to contemporary art, and engages its diverse audiences with thought-provoking, interdisciplinary exhibitions and programs.

The Museum’s education and public programs are designed to connect visitors of all ages to contemporary art through innovative learning approaches in hands-on workshops, tours, and presentations led by artists, curators, Museum educators, and experts in related fields. Area schools are served by curriculum-aligned on-site and in-school programs, as well as teachers’ professional development training.

Supporters

Generous support for Hayal Pozanti: Deep Learning is provided by Jennifer and Claude Amadeo and Patrons Circle contributors Serge and Ian Krawiecki Gazes.

The Aldrich, in addition to significant support from its Board of Trustees, receives contributions from many dedicated friends and patrons. Major funding for Museum programs and operations has been provided by the Department of Economic and Community Development, Connecticut Office of the Arts; the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Foundation; the William Randolph Hearst Foundation; the Leir Charitable Foundations; The Goldstone Family Foundation; the Anne S. Richardson Fund; the National Endowment for the Arts; the Pollock-Krasner Foundation, Inc.; The Coby Foundation; JoyRide Ridgefield; Newman’s Own Foundation; the SAHA Association; Fairfield Fine Art; The Cowles Charitable Trust; The Gage Fund; Fairfield County Bank; Fairfield County’s Community Foundation; Ridgefield Education Foundation; and Cohen and Wolf.
HamletHub; TownVibe, publishers of Ridgefield Magazine; and WSHU Public Radio are the official media sponsors of The Aldrich in 2015.

Kris Honeycutt The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum press@aldrichart.org 203.438.4519, extension 125

Press Release

Steve DiBenedetto: Evidence of Everything

November, 2015

Image: Steve DiBenedetto, I, Robot, 2015
Collection of Molly and William Rand, New York

Ridgefield, CT (September 2015): In a career that spans three decades, Steve DiBenedetto has established himself as an idiosyncratic artist who has brought the pursuit of painting into the unpredictable chaos and flux that categorize the Postmodern world.

DiBenedetto’s first major solo museum exhibition, Evidence of Everything, will be on view at The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum from November 15, 2015, through April 3, 2016, as part of the Painting in Four Takes exhibition series.

The artist has consistently rejected formalism throughout an era where both formal and conceptual approaches to painting have become de rigueur, taking a position where the canvas and the act of painting initiate a site for struggle, invention, and, ultimately, reinvention. Utilizing an inventory of leitmotifs, including the helicopter, octopus, wheel, and glass office tower, DiBenedetto paints and repaints his subjects in states of apocalyptic trauma where content and technique become unified, while the boundaries between the objective and subjective become uncertain. The artist’s work has prophetic, philosophical, and mystical undercurrents, with imagery often forming geometric webs or mandala-like vortices that tear themselves apart only to recongeal in thick, spectral passages of paint. Through his work, DiBenedetto has cast himself as a kind of baroque symbolist, working in the deep tradition of European Romanticism, with his excesses tempered by a terrible, yet transcendental beauty. “You never know what is enough,” wrote William Blake, “unless you know what is more than enough.” Marked by both foresight and revelation, DiBenedetto’s painting exists in a continuum that flows from Blake to speculative novelist William Gibson. The exhibition will include works from 1997 to the present with a focus on the past five years.

Steve DiBenedetto: Evidence of Everything has been organized by Aldrich exhibitions director Richard Klein.

Painting in Four Takes

Steve DiBenedetto: Evidence of Everything is part of Painting in Four Takes, a series of solo exhibitions that will provide a window into the practices of four engaging painters who imbue the medium with relevance and character. In addition to DiBenedetto, Hayal Pozanti, Julia Rommel, and Ruth Root will be featured. On view from November 15, 2015, through April 3, 2016, the exhibitions will mark the first time in over twenty years that The Aldrich has dedicated all of its galleries to painting.

The last one hundred years have witnessed the explosion of virtually every available means and medium in the service of art making, yet painting has not only maintained a central position in visual art, but has also adapted creatively to rapid changes in our culture as a whole. Today, painting is embedded in the broad debate

of actual vs. virtual, and its ability to balance what is illusive and what is real, what is tactile and what is optical, and what is emotive and what is formal, providing fertile ground for a diverse range of artists.

“While some point to marketability as the basis for the unwavering position of painting as a leading visual arts medium, for many artists, painting provides the most relevant platform for expression, allowing for both the potential of innovation and deep historical continuity,” says Richard Klein, The Aldrich’s exhibitions director.

Aldrich curator Amy Smith-Stewart explains, “The four artists selected span generations, methods, and intentions, but all are deeply entrenched in what painting is and can be in the image-dominated atmosphere of our twenty-first century.”

The public are invited to a free reception celebrating the four exhibitions from 2 to 5 pm on Sunday, November 15.

The Artist

Steve DiBenedetto was born in the Bronx, New York, in 1958. He has exhibited widely, including recent shows with Derek Eller Gallery, New York; Daniel Weinberg Gallery, Los Angeles; David Nolan Gallery, New York; Half Gallery, New York; and a two person exhibition with Terry Winters at National Exemplar, New York. His work is in the permanent collections of the American Academy of Arts and Letters; the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; The Museum of Modern Art, New York; and the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York. Also an accomplished drummer, DiBenedetto’s band, Bob Carol Ted, performed in Venice during the 2015 Venice Biennale.

The Museum

Founded by Larry Aldrich in 1964, The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum is dedicated to fostering the work of pioneering artists whose interpretations of the world around us serve as a platform to encourage creative thinking. The Aldrich is one of the few independent, non-collecting contemporary art museums in the United States and the only museum in Connecticut devoted to contemporary art, and engages its diverse audiences with thought-provoking, interdisciplinary exhibitions and programs.

The Museum’s education and public programs are designed to connect visitors of all ages to contemporary art through innovative learning approaches in hands-on workshops, tours, and presentations led by artists, curators, Museum educators, and experts in related fields. Area schools are served by curriculum-aligned on-site and in-school programs, as well as teachers’ professional development training.

Supporters

Generous support for Steve DiBenedetto: Evidence of Everything is provided by Patrons Circle contributors David Nolan Gallery, Alvin Hall, Melvin and Helen Heller, Brooke and Daniel Neidich, Anna and Martin Rabinowitz, and Sara and John Shlesinger.

The Aldrich, in addition to significant support from its Board of Trustees, receives contributions from many dedicated friends and patrons. Major funding for Museum programs and operations has been provided by the Department of Economic and Community Development, Connecticut Office of the Arts; the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Foundation; the William Randolph Hearst Foundation; the Leir Charitable Foundations; The Goldstone Family Foundation; the Anne S. Richardson Fund; the National Endowment for the Arts; the Pollock-Krasner Foundation, Inc.; The Coby Foundation; JoyRide Ridgefield; Newman’s Own Foundation; the SAHA Association; Fairfield Fine Art; The Cowles Charitable Trust; The Gage Fund; Fairfield County Bank; Fairfield County’s Community Foundation; Ridgefield Education Foundation; and Cohen and Wolf.

HamletHub; TownVibe, publishers of Ridgefield Magazine; and WSHU Public Radio are the official media sponsors of The Aldrich in 2015.

For additional information and images, please contact:

Kris Honeycutt The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum press@aldrichart.org 203.438.4519, extension 125

Exhibition

B. Wurtz

Four Collections

May 3, 2015, to October 25, 2015

For more than forty years, B. Wurtz has been transforming throwaway objects found in daily life—shoelaces, plastic bags, food containers, buttons, socks, hangers—into elegant, poetic compositions that evoke the condition of being human. Wurtz’s sculptures and wall pieces employ a strategy of arrangement hinged upon a simple and direct means of expression, a balancing of two opposing forces—the cast-off and the collectible, the timeless and the ephemeral—that speaks at once to the mind and the heart.

Since 1990, Wurtz has produced an ongoing body of work that he refers to as “pan paintings.” These wall pieces are made from ordinary aluminum food containers and roasting pans purchased at grocery or variety stores. These inexpensive and disposable pans transcend socio-economic class, passing through every home; but by painting over the patterns and texts on the exterior of the pans with various colors of acrylic paint, Wurtz has transformed the ordinary into something invaluable. For The Aldrich, he covers three walls of the Erna D. Leir Gallery, salon style, with over 200 of his pan paintings dating from 1991 to 2015. Appearing like geometric abstractions, their compositions are predetermined not by Wurtz, but by a nameless maker, as he accentuates the full range of their embossed designs. Alongside his own works, on a long shelf, Wurtz presents a collection of common domestic objects he’s been acquiring over the years from second-hand shops and eBay. The objects—from American Brilliant cut glassware to Wedgwood pottery and mid-century Danish modern Krenit bowls—represent a number of distinctive styles and periods, and have no immediate connection to each other. In bringing them together, Wurtz offers up a compelling dialogue about high art, decorative art, form and function, as well as the act of collecting.

Amy Smith-Stewart, curator

B. Wurtz was born in 1948 in Pasadena, California, and lives and works in New York City.

Image: B. Wurtz, Untitled (Pan Painting), 2013
Courtesy of the artist and Metro Pictures, New York

Circumstance highlights inspiration and its influence across object- making, through the specifically commissioned work of six multi- generational artists. The exhibitions underscore the intersection of installation art and exhibition design, and show how the convergence of fine art, design, and non-art objects within the exhibition format informs and elucidates creative expression. For six months, the entire museum facility — whose distinctive galleries range from the intimate to the spacious — will be transformed into “rooms” designed by the exhibiting artists, which will “read” as total works of art as they show their own work alongside objects and/or artworks by other artists they have selected. In some instances, works may extend outside of the Museum’s walls, providing alternative ways of perceiving space by offering extended lines of sight across the campus. In doing so, Circumstance attempts to explore the interstices where art and object come together, come apart, and reunify, by examining context, its many shifts and permutations, and tracing the movement of art and objects from the studio to the museum. In the captivating maze of intersecting rooms, craft, found, utilitarian, historical design, and everyday objects will sit beside works of art, informing us as to how artists take inspiration from what is around them. Selected artworks and objects will enhance our “reading” and innovatively offer—vis-à-vis a visual form of storytelling—intersecting and interdynamic narratives about these works of art and their makers, confronting us with larger questions about history, culture, and society. Participating artists Virginia Poundstone, Nancy Shaver, Ruby Sky Stiler, Penelope Umbrico, Elif Uras, and B. Wurtz will take center stage in the development, conceptualization, and reception of their work, as the Museum assists them to reveal never-before-seen aspects of their practice.

Exhibition

Elif Uras

Nicaea

May 3, 2015, to October 25, 2015

The paintings and ceramic sculptures of Elif Uras explore what she describes as “shifting notions of gender and class within the context of the struggle between modernity and tradition.” Uras’s sculptures are made onsite in Iznik, Turkey (originally Nicaea, named after a nymph in Greek mythology), a town celebrated for its tile and ceramic production during the Ottoman Empire. Uras’s imagery merges traditional nonfigurative Turkish art with the Western figurative tradition, while also exploring the representation of the female body across cultures.

Historically, Iznik reflected the patriarchy of the traditional society, with male artists and craftspeople producing work that adorned the walls of spaces mostly limited to men, such as their segregated quarters in mosques and baths. In Iznik today, women are very dominant in both the management and labor of ceramic production. Uras’s sensous vessels reflect this transformation of gender roles by placing the female figure center stage. Whether depicting women farming olives and making pottery—two industries that connect the present with the past—or alluding to the pregnant body, Uras’s vessels and plates populate the gallery with distinctly feminine forms and imagery.

Uras has transformed The Aldrich’s Screening Room to resemble an interior courtyard, a prominent feature in traditional Turkish architecture, incorporating domestic objects and architectural motifs. A functioning ceramic fountain sits in the center of the gallery atop a carpet-like grid of painted tiles. Water and its constant flow, popular symbols of fertility and prosperity, reinforce the exhibition’s primordial focus. In a tiled wall niche, small vessels are placed on a long shelf, a nod to their inherent domesticity. On the outside wall, a painted tile mural inspired by a historic Iznik panel from the Topkapi Museum presents central figures that resemble Art Nouveau water nymphs.

Alongside Uras’s own work, created especially for The Aldrich, the exhibition presents an original Iznik plate dating from the first half of the sixteenth century, on loan from the collection of The Metropolitan Museum of Art. The Iznik plate is positioned in dialogue with Uras’s plates and vessels, some of which incorporate its intricate spiral motif.

Amy Smith-Stewart, curator

Elif Uras was born in 1972 in Ankara, Turkey, and lives and works in New York City and Istanbul, Turkey.

Elif Uras, Installation View at The Aldrich, 2015
Courtesy of the artist and Galerist, Istanbul
Photo: Barış Özçetin

Circumstance highlights inspiration and its influence across object- making, through the specifically commissioned work of six multi- generational artists. The exhibitions underscore the intersection of installation art and exhibition design, and show how the convergence of fine art, design, and non-art objects within the exhibition format informs and elucidates creative expression. For six months, the entire museum facility — whose distinctive galleries range from the intimate to the spacious — will be transformed into “rooms” designed by the exhibiting artists, which will “read” as total works of art as they show their own work alongside objects and/or artworks by other artists they have selected. In some instances, works may extend outside of the Museum’s walls, providing alternative ways of perceiving space by offering extended lines of sight across the campus. In doing so, Circumstance attempts to explore the interstices where art and object come together, come apart, and reunify, by examining context, its many shifts and permutations, and tracing the movement of art and objects from the studio to the museum. In the captivating maze of intersecting rooms, craft, found, utilitarian, historical design, and everyday objects will sit beside works of art, informing us as to how artists take inspiration from what is around them. Selected artworks and objects will enhance our “reading” and innovatively offer—vis-à-vis a visual form of storytelling—intersecting and interdynamic narratives about these works of art and their makers, confronting us with larger questions about history, culture, and society. Participating artists Virginia Poundstone, Nancy Shaver, Ruby Sky Stiler, Penelope Umbrico, Elif Uras, and B. Wurtz will take center stage in the development, conceptualization, and reception of their work, as the Museum assists them to reveal never-before-seen aspects of their practice.

Exhibition

Penelope Umbrico

Shallow Sun

May 3, 2015, to October 25, 2015

For artist Penelope Umbrico, light, and our changing relationship to it, has become one of the main subjects of a practice that challenges what normally constitutes ideas about photography and its presence in our lives. Umbrico is part of the first generation of artists to have participated in the transition from traditional photography to digital media and its attendant complexity. Rather than just swapping one technology for another, however, Umbrico has completely embraced the world in which photography now finds itself—a world where light is transformed into code and completely disassociated from its original context, and where even the sun has become a digital artifact.

This exhibition presents a ricocheting trajectory through photographic history: sunlight, shadows, apertures, dark rooms, chemical-based photography, photocopies, mechanical and electronic hardware (strobe lights, CRTs, ink-jet printing, pixel grids, LEDs), digital processing (image authoring software, video editing software, smart phone camera apps), and the infinite universe of images on the Internet.

Shallow Sun brings together a series of works that play off The Aldrich’s camera obscura, a feature that was included in the Museum’s new building in 2004. The most fundamental of all photographic technologies, the image in a camera obscura is based on contingency: the sunlit landscape that is immediately outdoors is projected “live” onto an interior wall. Here, Umbrico has subverted that process by placing an enclosure that houses a flat-screen monitor on the outside of the camera’s aperture. Playing on the monitor is a version of Umbrico’s piece Sun Screen, a looped, digital animation composed of still sun images the artist has found on the Internet. Sun Screen (Camera Obscura) has taken the fundamental contingent nature of the image in a camera obscura and replaced it with information that comes from the Cloud: sunlight that was turned into code, uploaded onto the Internet, and downloaded as code, converted into screen light, then “reprocessed” back into an image of the sun through analog technology.

In other works in the exhibition, Umbrico has photocopied images of solar eclipses from the picture collection of the New York Public Library and transformed them both by hand and with cell phone camera apps, expanding and engaging the way that an eclipse inverts the usual roles played by the sun and the moon. In the work Light Leaks (from smartphone camera apps) Umbrico has built a “black box,” a space that references both the camera obscura and the inside of a camera, and used it to house a video installation that is composed of an animated library of fake light leak camera app effects in an attempt to return these digital artifacts to the transcendental quality of natural light.

Richard Klein, exhibitions director

Penelope Umbrico was born in 1957 in Philadelphia. She lives and works in Brooklyn, New York.

Image: Penelope Umbrico, Suns (from Sunsets) from Flickr, 2006-ongoing
Courtesy of the artist and Mark Moore Gallery, Culver City, CA

Circumstance highlights inspiration and its influence across object- making, through the specifically commissioned work of six multi- generational artists. The exhibitions underscore the intersection of installation art and exhibition design, and show how the convergence of fine art, design, and non-art objects within the exhibition format informs and elucidates creative expression. For six months, the entire museum facility — whose distinctive galleries range from the intimate to the spacious — will be transformed into “rooms” designed by the exhibiting artists, which will “read” as total works of art as they show their own work alongside objects and/or artworks by other artists they have selected. In some instances, works may extend outside of the Museum’s walls, providing alternative ways of perceiving space by offering extended lines of sight across the campus. In doing so, Circumstance attempts to explore the interstices where art and object come together, come apart, and reunify, by examining context, its many shifts and permutations, and tracing the movement of art and objects from the studio to the museum. In the captivating maze of intersecting rooms, craft, found, utilitarian, historical design, and everyday objects will sit beside works of art, informing us as to how artists take inspiration from what is around them. Selected artworks and objects will enhance our “reading” and innovatively offer—vis-à-vis a visual form of storytelling—intersecting and interdynamic narratives about these works of art and their makers, confronting us with larger questions about history, culture, and society. Participating artists Virginia Poundstone, Nancy Shaver, Ruby Sky Stiler, Penelope Umbrico, Elif Uras, and B. Wurtz will take center stage in the development, conceptualization, and reception of their work, as the Museum assists them to reveal never-before-seen aspects of their practice.

Exhibition

Ruby Sky Stiler

Ghost Versions

May 3, 2015, to October 25, 2015

Ruby Sky Stiler’s (b. 1979, Portland, Maine) experimentation with Hydrocal plaster evolved alongside her interest in the scholarly history of classical plaster cast replications. Through time these objects have fallen in and out of favor. Her cast reliefs originate from compositions of detritus from previous works and fragments of left-over materials salvaged from around her studio, making ghostly references to objects she describes as “not present and no longer in existence.” For The Aldrich, her site-specific installation will display her own wall-scale plaster reliefs with a selection of classical casts. The wall arrangement will consist of multiple casts of her works, designed as a tiled repeat pattern. This process calls to mind classical bas-relief, design elements in Le Corbusier’s concrete architecture, Picasso’s sgraffito works, low relief in municipal sculpture, and decorative relief. This interplay of references, espousing both the high and low, explores questions of taste, originality and value.

Curated by Amy Smith-Stewart.

Image: Ruby Sky Stiler, Pattern Frieze (diptych), 2015
Courtesy of the artist and Nicelle Beauchene Gallery, New York

Circumstance highlights inspiration and its influence across object- making, through the specifically commissioned work of six multi- generational artists. The exhibitions underscore the intersection of installation art and exhibition design, and show how the convergence of fine art, design, and non-art objects within the exhibition format informs and elucidates creative expression. For six months, the entire museum facility — whose distinctive galleries range from the intimate to the spacious — will be transformed into “rooms” designed by the exhibiting artists, which will “read” as total works of art as they show their own work alongside objects and/or artworks by other artists they have selected. In some instances, works may extend outside of the Museum’s walls, providing alternative ways of perceiving space by offering extended lines of sight across the campus. In doing so, Circumstance attempts to explore the interstices where art and object come together, come apart, and reunify, by examining context, its many shifts and permutations, and tracing the movement of art and objects from the studio to the museum. In the captivating maze of intersecting rooms, craft, found, utilitarian, historical design, and everyday objects will sit beside works of art, informing us as to how artists take inspiration from what is around them. Selected artworks and objects will enhance our “reading” and innovatively offer—vis-à-vis a visual form of storytelling—intersecting and interdynamic narratives about these works of art and their makers, confronting us with larger questions about history, culture, and society. Participating artists Virginia Poundstone, Nancy Shaver, Ruby Sky Stiler, Penelope Umbrico, Elif Uras, and B. Wurtz will take center stage in the development, conceptualization, and reception of their work, as the Museum assists them to reveal never-before-seen aspects of their practice.

Exhibition

Nancy Shaver

Reconciliation

May 3, 2015, to October 25, 2015

Nancy Shaver, in a career that has spanned four decades, has consistently worked to challenge expectations on the aesthetic hierarchies found in visual culture. Her practice, which involves finding objects, making objects, and recontextualizing objects, has been informed by a critical eye that looks—and looks hard—at the culture of materiality with an attitude approaching that of an anthropologist. But Shaver’s practice is not just based in an intellectual pursuit; it is equally informed by personal experience—specifically a life that has been lived in the dichotomy between her rural, working-class roots and the high-art world that she has engaged since the 1970s.

The majority of exhibitions of Shaver’s work include hierarchy-bending components, and Reconciliation is no exception, bringing together the artist’s recent sculpture, works by other artists, found objects, folk art objects, and utilitarian objects. But in this instance, the exhibition is framed by the presence of two artists whose names have probably never been linked before: Walker Evans (1903–1975) and Sonia Delaunay (1885–1979). Evans is the American photographer who became known in the 1930s for his stark depictions of life during the Depression, particularly in the rural south; Delaunay, the French Modernist artist, was a painter and textile and fashion designer. Shaver, through this juxtaposition, is positing her life and work as a reconciliation between the make-do aesthetics of Allie Mae Burroughs, a cotton sharecropper whose home in Alabama was extensively photographed by Evans in 1935, and Delaunay’s sophisticated endeavors in the Parisian art and fashion world of the 1920s.

Shaver’s sculpture primarily utilizes fragments of used clothing fabric and other textiles that reflect the demographics of the region around her home in upstate New York. She selects fabrics not just for the abstract patterning and color, but also for their encoded sociological meaning. For instance, fancy dress material is placed adjacent to camouflage fabric; tweed is butted up against boy’s pajama material printed with sports motifs. Besides “cheap” cloth, Shaver frequently incorporates fragments of highly refined Japanese textiles, as well as patterned fabric that she creates by drawing with a china marker on muslin. Shaver’s work suggests horizontal movement, a socioeconomic leveling where there really isn’t much of a difference between haute couture and Walmart. The collaged fabric-scrap nature of these works resembles quilting, and Shaver is very aware that her process relates to vernacular fabric collage; but by wrapping fabric around wooden blocks and assembling the blocks into three dimensional objects, she is declaring them to be more a part of the world of art—not craft—a position where both making and philosophical inquiry are on an equal footing.

Richard Klein, exhibitions director

Nancy Shaver was born in 1946 in Appleton, New York; she lives and works in Jefferson, New York.

Image: Nancy Shaver, Untitled, 2014
Courtesy of the artist

Circumstance highlights inspiration and its influence across object- making, through the specifically commissioned work of six multi- generational artists. The exhibitions underscore the intersection of installation art and exhibition design, and show how the convergence of fine art, design, and non-art objects within the exhibition format informs and elucidates creative expression. For six months, the entire museum facility — whose distinctive galleries range from the intimate to the spacious — will be transformed into “rooms” designed by the exhibiting artists, which will “read” as total works of art as they show their own work alongside objects and/or artworks by other artists they have selected. In some instances, works may extend outside of the Museum’s walls, providing alternative ways of perceiving space by offering extended lines of sight across the campus. In doing so, Circumstance attempts to explore the interstices where art and object come together, come apart, and reunify, by examining context, its many shifts and permutations, and tracing the movement of art and objects from the studio to the museum. In the captivating maze of intersecting rooms, craft, found, utilitarian, historical design, and everyday objects will sit beside works of art, informing us as to how artists take inspiration from what is around them. Selected artworks and objects will enhance our “reading” and innovatively offer—vis-à-vis a visual form of storytelling—intersecting and interdynamic narratives about these works of art and their makers, confronting us with larger questions about history, culture, and society. Participating artists Virginia Poundstone, Nancy Shaver, Ruby Sky Stiler, Penelope Umbrico, Elif Uras, and B. Wurtz will take center stage in the development, conceptualization, and reception of their work, as the Museum assists them to reveal never-before-seen aspects of their practice.

Entrepreneur

$3,000

$3,000

  • Free admission to The Aldrich for all employees and accompanying family members.
  • Corporate entertaining opportunity to host an event or staff retreat at The Aldrich with 10% discount on rental fee—a savings of $350+
  • Invitations to members-only exhibition preview, upon request, for 10 clients and 10 employees
  • 30 guest passes for general admission to the Museum

To join at this level, please contact Ashley Prymas, Associate Director, Marketing and Partnerships at aprymas@aldrichart.org or call 203.438.4519 extension 112 during regular museum hours.

Thank you for your support.

Stakeholder

$5,000

$5,000

  • Free admission to The Aldrich for all employees and accompanying family members
  • Private tour for up to 25 accompanying guests with executive director or curator, by appointment
  • Corporate entertaining opportunity to host an event or staff retreat at The Aldrich with 20% discount on rental fee—a savings of $700+
  • Invitations to members-only exhibition preview, upon request, for 20 clients and 10 employees
  • 45 guest passes for free admission to the Museum

To join at this level, please contact Ashley Prymas, Associate Director, Marketing and Partnerships at aprymas@aldrichart.org or call 203.438.4519 extension 112 during regular museum hours.

Thank you for your support.

Philanthropist

$10,000

$10,000

  • Free admission to The Aldrich for all employees and accompanying family members
  • Philanthropist partners will have the opportunity to directly impact and support local education programs in conjunction with The Aldrich
  • Support Pre-K to 12 class visits
  • Support Art Write—a program for Grades 1 through 12 in which participants investigate works of art as a platform for critical and creative thinking
  • Support School in Residence—a program for Grades 2 through 12 in which participants look at contemporary art and explore interdisciplinary topics such as English, Social Studies, and Science
  • Support Art Onsite—a program for pre-schoolers where the Museum becomes their classroom and art studio during multiple visits that complement school curriculum.
  • Private tour for up to 25 accompanying guests with executive director or curator and exhibiting artist, by appointment, for each exhibition

To join at this level, please contact Ashley Prymas, Associate Director, Marketing and Partnerships at aprymas@aldrichart.org or call 203.438.4519 extension 112 during regular museum hours.

Thank you for your support.

Investor

$10,000

$10,000

  • Free admission to The Aldrich for all employees and accompanying family members
  • Acknowledgment as an exhibition sponsor for an exhibition of choice per year
  • Private tour for up to 25 accompanying guests with executive director or curator and exhibiting artist, by appointment, for each exhibition
  • Corporate entertaining opportunity to host an event or staff retreat at The Aldrich with 20% discount on rental fee—a savings of $700+
  • Invitations to members-only exhibition preview, upon request, for 20 clients and 10 employees
  • 60 guest passes for free admission to the Museum

To join at this level, please contact Ashley Prymas, Associate Director, Marketing and Partnerships at aprymas@aldrichart.org or call 203.438.4519 extension 112 during regular museum hours.

Thank you for your support.

Family Guild

$500

$500 ($440 tax deductible)

Family Guild Benefits:

  • Unlimited admission per cardholder
  • $5 guest admission
  • Invitations to members-only events
  • Complimentary current exhibition catalogues
  • Fairfield/Westchester Museum Alliance reciprocal benefits*
  • Priority registration and program discounts
  • Free admission to curator and artist-led family tours
  • Unlimited admission for immediate family
  • 10% discount on Camp Aldrich
  • Early access to tickets and special pricing for premier social gatherings
  • Exclusive pre-event experiences at social gatherings
  • Reciprocal benefits to over 900 museums in North America**
  • 10% discount on children’s birthday party
  • Acknowledgment on donor wall and website
  • Free admission for two adults and up to 4 children (17 and younger) to Storm King Art Center in New Windsor, NY. (Members must show their Aldrich membership cards and photo ID’s)

New Benefit for 2018! Enjoy 10% off café purchases at Franklin Street Works, Stamford with your Aldrich membership card.

*Bruce Museum, The Barnum Museum, Hudson River Museum, Hudson Valley Center for Contemporary Art, Katonah Museum, Neuberger Museum of Art, Wave Hill

** To view participating North American Reciprocal Museums, click here

**To view participating Modern and Contemporary Reciprocal Museums, click here

If you prefer, please mail a check made payable to The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum, 258 Main Street, Ridgefield, CT 06877. For further assistance, contact Kris Honeycutt, Development Associate,
at khoneycutt@aldrichart.org, or 203.438.4519, extension 125.

Family Supporter

$250

$250 ($220 tax deductible)

Family Supporter Benefits:

  • Unlimited admission per cardholder
  • $5 guest admission
  • Invitations to members-only events
  • Complimentary current exhibition catalogues
  • Fairfield/Westchester Museum Alliance reciprocal benefits*
  • Priority registration and program discounts
  • Free admission to curator and artist-led family tours
  • Unlimited admission for immediate family
  • 10% discount on Camp Aldrich
  • Early access to tickets and special pricing for premier social gatherings
  • Exclusive pre-event experiences at social gatherings
  • Reciprocal benefits to over 900 museums in North America**
  • Free admission for two adults and up to 4 children (17 and younger) to Storm King Art Center in New Windsor, NY. (Members must show their Aldrich membership cards and photo ID’s)

New Benefit for 2018! Enjoy 10% off café purchases at Franklin Street Works, Stamford with your Aldrich membership card.

*Bruce Museum, The Barnum Museum, Hudson River Museum, Hudson Valley Center for Contemporary Art, Katonah Museum, Neuberger Museum of Art, Wave Hill

** To view participating North American Reciprocal Museums, click here

**To view participating Modern and Contemporary Reciprocal Museums, click here

If you prefer, please mail a check made payable to The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum, 258 Main Street, Ridgefield, CT 06877. For further assistance, contact Kris Honeycutt, Development Associate,
at khoneycutt@aldrichart.org, or 203.438.4519, extension 125.

Family

$125

$125 ($110 tax deductible)

Family Benefits:

  • Unlimited admission per cardholder
  • $5 guest admission
  • Invitations to members-only events
  • Complimentary current exhibition catalogues
  • Fairfield/Westchester Museum Alliance reciprocal benefits*
  • Priority registration and program discounts
  • Early access to tickets and special pricing for premier social gatherings
  • Free admission to curator and artist-led family tours
  • Unlimited admission for immediate family
  • 10% discount on Camp Aldrich
  • Free admission for two adults and up to 4 children (17 and younger) to Storm King Art Center in New Windsor, NY. (Members must show their Aldrich membership cards and photo ID’s)

New Benefit for 2018! Enjoy 10% off café purchases at Franklin Street Works, Stamford with your Aldrich membership card.

*Bruce Museum, The Barnum Museum, Hudson River Museum, Hudson Valley Center for Contemporary Art, Katonah Museum, Neuberger Museum of Art, Wave Hill

If you prefer, please mail a check made payable to The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum, 258 Main Street, Ridgefield, CT 06877. For further assistance, contact Kris Honeycutt, Development Associate,
at khoneycutt@aldrichart.org, or 203.438.4519, extension 125.

Leadership Circle

$2,500

$2,500 ($2,370 tax deductible)

Leadership Circle Benefits:

  • Unlimited admission for two cardholders
  • $5 guest admission
  • Invitations to members-only events
  • Complimentary current exhibition catalogues
  • Fairfield/Westchester Museum Alliance reciprocal benefit*
  • Priority registration and program discounts
  • Early access to tickets and special pricing for premier social gatherings
  • Exclusive pre-event experiences at social gatherings
  • Reciprocal benefits to over 900 museums in North America**
  • Acknowledgment on donor wall and website
  • Invitations to collection, gallery, and studio visits
  • Four guest passes
  • Advance previews and 10% discounts on Aldrich Editions
  • VIP passes to art fairs, including Frieze New York
  • Private tour with 10 guests
  • Luncheons with artists and speakers
  • Contemporary Council gift membership
  • Free admission for two adults and up to 4 children (17 and younger) to Storm King Art Center in New Windsor, NY. (Members must show their Aldrich membership cards and photo ID’s)

New Benefit for 2018! Enjoy 10% off café purchases at Franklin Street Works, Stamford with your Aldrich membership card.

*Bruce Museum, The Barnum Museum, Hudson River Museum, Hudson Valley Center for Contemporary Art, Katonah Museum, Neuberger Museum of Art, Wave Hill

** To view participating North American Reciprocal Museums, click here

**To view participating Modern and Contemporary Reciprocal Museums, click here

If you prefer, please mail a check made payable to The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum, 258 Main Street, Ridgefield, CT 06877. For further assistance, contact Kris Honeycutt, Development Associate, at
khoneycutt@aldrichart.org, or 203.438.4519, extension 125.

    Collectors Circle

    $1,000

    $1,000 ($900 tax deductible)

    Collectors Circle Benefits:

    • Unlimited admission for two cardholders
    • $5 guest admission
    • Invitations to members-only events
    • Complimentary current exhibition catalogues
    • Fairfield/Westchester Museum Alliance reciprocal benefits*
    • Priority registration and program discounts
    • Early access to tickets and special pricing for premier social gatherings
    • Exclusive pre-event experiences at social gatherings
    • Reciprocal benefits to over 900 museums in North America**
    • Acknowledgment on donor wall and website
    • Invitations to collection, gallery, and studio visits
    • Four guest passes
    • Advance previews and 10% discounts on Aldrich Editions
    • VIP passes to art fairs, including Frieze New York
    • Free admission for two adults and up to 4 children (17 and younger) to Storm King Art Center in New Windsor, NY. (Members must show their Aldrich membership cards and photo ID’s)

    New Benefit for 2018! Enjoy 10% off café purchases at Franklin Street Works, Stamford with your Aldrich membership card.

    *Bruce Museum, The Barnum Museum, Hudson River Museum, Hudson Valley Center for Contemporary Art, Katonah Museum, Neuberger Museum of Art, Wave Hill

    ** To view participating North American Reciprocal Museums, click here

    **To view participating Modern and Contemporary Reciprocal Museums, click here

    If you prefer, please mail a check made payable to The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum, 258 Main Street, Ridgefield, CT 06877. For further assistance, contact Kris Honeycutt, Development Associate, at
    khoneycutt@aldrichart.org, or 203.438.4519, extension 125.

    Collaborators Circle

    $500

    $500 ($440 tax deductible)

    Collaborators Circle Benefits:

    • Unlimited admission for two cardholders
    • $5 guest admission
    • Invitations to members-only events
    • Complimentary current exhibition catalogues
    • Fairfield/Westchester Museum Alliance reciprocal benefits*
    • Priority registration and program discounts
    • Early access to tickets and special pricing for premier social gatherings
    • Exclusive pre-event experiences at social gatherings
    • Reciprocal benefits to over 900 museums in North America**
    • Acknowledgment on donor wall and website
    • Invitations to collection, gallery, and studio visits
    • Free admission for two adults and up to 4 children (17 and younger) to Storm King Art Center in New Windsor, NY. (Members must show their Aldrich membership cards and photo ID’s)

    New Benefit for 2018! Enjoy 10% off café purchases at Franklin Street Works, Stamford with your Aldrich membership card.

    *Bruce Museum, The Barnum Museum, Hudson River Museum, Hudson Valley Center for Contemporary Art, Katonah Museum, Neuberger Museum of Art, Wave Hill

    ** To view participating North American Reciprocal Museums, click here

    **To view participating Modern and Contemporary Reciprocal Museums, click here

    If you prefer, please mail a check made payable to The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum, 258 Main Street, Ridgefield, CT 06877. For further assistance, contact Kris Honeycutt, Development Associate, at khoneycutt@aldrichart.org, or 203.438.4519, extension 125.

    Contemporary Council

    $250

    $250 ($220 tax deductible)

    Contemporary Council Benefits:

    • Unlimited admission for two cardholders
    • $5 guest admission
    • Invitations to members-only events
    • Complimentary current exhibition catalogues
    • Fairfield/Westchester Museum Alliance reciprocal benefits*
    • Priority registration and program discounts
    • Early access to tickets and special pricing for premier social gatherings
    • Exclusive pre-event experiences at social gatherings
    • Reciprocal benefits to over 900 museums in North America**
    • Free admission for two adults and up to 4 children (17 and younger) to Storm King Art Center in New Windsor, NY. (Members must show their Aldrich membership cards and photo ID’s)

    New Benefit for 2018! Enjoy 10% off café purchases at Franklin Street Works, Stamford with your Aldrich membership card.

    *Bruce Museum, The Barnum Museum, Hudson River Museum, Hudson Valley Center for Contemporary Art, Katonah Museum, Neuberger Museum of Art, Wave Hill

    ** To view participating North American Reciprocal Museums, click here **To view participating Modern and Contemporary Reciprocal Museums, click here

    If you prefer, please mail a check made payable to The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum, 258 Main Street, Ridgefield, CT 06877. For further assistance, contact Kris Honeycutt, Development Associate, at khoneycutt@aldrichart.org, or 203.438.4519, extension 125.

    Student/Artist

    $50 Individual

    $50 Individual (fully tax deductible)

    Student/Artist Benefits:

    • Unlimited admission per cardholder
    • $5 guest admission
    • Invitations to members-only events
    • Complimentary current exhibition catalogues
    • Fairfield/Westchester Museum Alliance reciprocal benefits*
    • Priority registration and program discounts
    • Early access to tickets and special pricing for premier social gatherings
    • Free admission to curator and artist-led family tours

    New Benefit for 2018! Enjoy 10% off café purchases at Franklin Street Works, Stamford with your Aldrich membership card.

    *Bruce Museum, The Barnum Museum, Hudson River Museum, Hudson Valley Center for Contemporary Art, Katonah Museum, Neuberger Museum of Art, Wave Hill

    If you prefer, please mail a check made payable to The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum, 258 Main Street, Ridgefield, CT 06877. For further assistance, contact Kris Honeycutt, Development Associate, at khoneycutt@aldrichart.org, or 203.438.4519, extension 125.

    Senior

    $50 Individual — $90 Dual

    $50 Individual (fully tax deductible)
    $90 Dual ($75 tax deductible)

    Senior Benefits:

    • Unlimited admission per cardholder
    • $5 guest admission
    • Invitations to members-only events
    • Complimentary current exhibition catalogues
    • Fairfield/Westchester Museum Alliance reciprocal benefits*
    • Priority registration and program discounts
    • Early access to tickets and special pricing for premier social gatherings
    • Free admission to curator and artist-led family tours

    New Benefit for 2018! Enjoy 10% off café purchases at Franklin Street Works, Stamford with your Aldrich membership card.

    *Bruce Museum, The Barnum Museum, Hudson River Museum, Hudson Valley Center for Contemporary Art, Katonah Museum, Neuberger Museum of Art, Wave Hill

    If you prefer, please mail a check made payable to The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum, 258 Main Street, Ridgefield, CT 06877. For further assistance, contact Kris Honeycutt, Development Associate,
    at khoneycutt@aldrichart.org, or 203.438.4519, extension 125.

    Membership Level

    Friend

    $65 Individual — $100 Dual

    $65 Individual (fully tax deductible)
    $100 Dual ($85 tax deductible)

    Friend Benefits:

    • Unlimited admission per cardholder
    • $5 guest admission
    • Invitations to members-only events
    • Complimentary current exhibition catalogues
    • Fairfield/Westchester Museum Alliance reciprocal benefits*
    • Priority registration and program discounts
    • Early access to tickets and special pricing for premier social gatherings
    • Free admission to curator and artist-led family tours

    New Benefit for 2018! Enjoy 10% off café purchases at Franklin Street Works, Stamford with your Aldrich membership card.

    *Bruce Museum, The Barnum Museum, Hudson River Museum, Hudson Valley Center for Contemporary Art, Katonah Museum, Neuberger Museum of Art, Wave Hill

    If you prefer, please mail a check made payable to The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum, 258 Main Street, Ridgefield, CT 06877. For further assistance, contact Kris Honeycutt, Development Associate, at khoneycutt@aldrichart.org, or 203.438.4519, extension 125.