May 1, 2011 - May 22, 2011
CCS Bard Galleries


Opening Reception: Sunday, May 1, 1:00 – 4:00 p.m.
Counter-relief (CCS Bard) 2011 Performance: Sunday, May 1, 2:00 p.m.
Artist Talk with Jimmy Robert and Maria Hassabi: Monday, May 2nd, 5:00 p.m.


Over the last three years, Counter-relief has had three distinct iterations: at the 5th Berlin Biennial of Contemporary Art in May 2008, at the Kunsthalle Bern in March 2009 and, now here, at the Center for Curatorial Studies Bard College. Counter-relief is a performance and installation work that inverts choreographic thinking to dissolve the distinction between the process and production of image-making.

This third iteration, titled Counter-relief (CCS Bard) 2011, evolved through a commissioned collaboration between the visual artist Jimmy Robert and the choreographer Maria Hassabi. With a focus on temporality and physicality, Hassabi’s choreographic experience will direct and experiment with various ways in which the body engages with the established formal elements from the previous iterations: a black and white 16mm film (shot by Robert), a collection of wooden planks, and a non-linear abstract text (written by Robert).

The live performance of Counter-relief (CCS Bard) 2011, featuring Jimmy Robert and Maria Hassabi, will occur during the opening reception on Sunday, May 1st. Following the performance, the projected film, the resultant wooden plank object-sculpture, and text will all remain (precisely in the place they were left) as an movement-inscribed installation for the duration of the exhibition.

Counter-relief (CCS Bard) 2011 seeks to reveal that choreographic action and its intentions are always provisional, always created (whether before or after the fact) by the artistic process that represents it.

Maria Hassabi (b. 1973, Cyprus)
Maria Hassabi is a New York-based director/choreographer/performer. Over the past decade, she has created seven evening-long works and seven short-form pieces. She collaborates regularly with artists from various disciplines and her works have been presented across the US in theater venues, galleries, museums and in numerous European festivals. Hassabi is a recipient of the Foundation for Contemporary Arts, 2009 Grants to Artists Award and a 2011 John Simon Guggenheim fellow for Choreography.

Jimmy Robert (b.1975, Guadeloupe)
Jimmy Robert is a graduate of Goldsmiths, University of London, and the Rijksakademie, Amsterdam. In recent years, Robert has exhibited at 5th Berlin Biennale of Contemporary Art, Berlin; Tate Britain, London; WIELS, Brussels; Art:Concept, Paris; CCA KITAKYUSHU Project Gallery, Japan; Cubitt Gallery, London; Neuer Aachen Kunstverein, Germany; Sorcha Dallas, Glasgow; CAC Bretigny, France and Diana Stigter, Amsterdam. Jimmy Robert was the 2009 laureate of the Follow Fluxus–After Fluxus grant. Robert lives and works in Brussels.

With special thanks to Katleen Van Langendonck, Guy Gypens and Esther Michiels from Kaaitheater, Brussels, as well as Frédérique Bergholtz from If I Can’t Dance, I Don’t Want to be Part of Your Revolution, Amsterdam.


Counter-relief is curated by Kelly Kivland as part of the requirements for the master of arts degree in curatorial studies.

Student-curated projects at CCS Bard are made possible with support from the Rebecca and Martin Eisenberg Student Exhibition Fund; the Mitzi and Warren Eisenberg Family Foundation; the Audrey and Sydney Irmas Charitable Foundation; the Board of Governors of the Center for Curatorial Studies, and by the Center’s Patrons, Supporters, and Friends. Additional support is provided by the Monique Beudert Award Fund.