Hot Topic

May 7, 2006 - May 21, 2006
CCS Bard Galleries

Hot Topic is organized around two New York based artist-produced publications–LTTR and Ridykeulous–devoted to the concerns of a multi-faceted community involved in queer and feminist politics. Individual works by artists who participate in this community are presented along with the publications. The artists included in the exhibition–Ginger Brooks Takahashi, Nicole Eisenman, Wynne Greenwood, K8 Hardy, Ulrike Müller, Emily Roysdon, and A.L. Steiner–are engaged in artistic practices informed by the history of feminism, while also expressing a desire to reinvent their relationship to feminist strategies in both their individual and collective endeavors.

In the words of Wynne Greenwood, LTTR can be seen as a body, a person, an ‘individual’ and expresses the idea that our community can stand next to us, the individual, the one person.” The publications can additionally be seen as archives, as a way for the artists to show their work alongside other critical thinkers. Organizing shared and opposing politics in accessible formats that linger somewhere between a zine and an artist’s book, the publications allow various readings of the works presented. The artists also curate exhibitions and organize events such as panel discussions, performances, and film and video screenings to further elaborate their ideas.

This exhibition presents a diverse range of multi-disciplinary works, which reveal various aspects of the artists’ politics of sexual identity. As Ulrike Müller recently commented, “feminism structures how people interact…it does more than just inform content.” An intimate relationship to language–a critical component of the gay and women’s rights movements–is crucial to the work produced by the artists in Hot Topic. This is evidenced in their publications and exhibitions, but additionally through involvement in education, participation in public forums, and ultimately as a result of on-going dialogue with each other as well as those who share similar concerns.

The notion that women–and in this case queer feminist women–have to write themselves into history is nothing new, though there has been a recent visible resurgence of such practices. An extremely conservative administration paired with a dominant art market has produced a cultural climate in crisis, heightening the need for cultural producers to create space for desires of their surrounding community. The artists included in Hot Topic are building a social economy, a place where people can grow together, and where they can find support and artistic exchange. Often considered the motto of the women’s movement, “the personal is political,” embodies a new urgency today as the personal and political have become more visibly bound in an unstable political environment.

Hot Topic is an exhibition that attempts to reveal the boundless potential for artmaking and writing emerging from a queer feminist community and to share it with a larger public. The song Hot Topic praises feminist artists, musicians, and writers, and encourages the audience to “shout out” the names of those who have inspired them. This empowering method of communication and collaboration surfaces in several works in the exhibition, raising a profusion of disparate voices and ideologies.

EXHIBITION CHECKLIST

Ginger Brooks Takahashi

An Army of Lovers Cannot Fail
2004 – present (in progress) 
8 x 9 feet 
Quilt/Interactive Installation (see Schedule of Events) 
Courtesy of the artist 

An Army of Lovers Cannot Fail
2004 
18 x 24 inches 
Screenprint on paper 
Courtesy of the artist
(not included in the exhibition)

Poster for Visual AIDS – a pile 
2006 
8 x 11 inches 
Courtesy of the artist & Visual AIDS 

Poster Commission for Hot Topic 
2006 
8 x 11 inches 
Limited Edition Silkscreen on paper 
Courtesy of the artist

Wynne Greenwood

Tracy + the Plastics
2000 – 2006
4 enlarged posters
24 x 36 inches (each)
Courtesy of the artist

Wynne Greenwood + K8 Hardy
New Report
2005
Video (12 minutes)
Courtesy of the artists & 
Reena Spaulings Fine Art

K8 Hardy
Beautiful Radiating Energy
2005
Performance (See Schedule of Events)
SMOG
May 8, 2006 – 9pm

Nicole Eisenman

Opening Tropic-Anna
1993
Ink on paper
23 x 27 inches 
Collection of Rebecca and 
Martin Eisenberg, New York

I don’t know what I’m doing
1998
Ink and pencil on paper
10 x 14 inches
Courtesy of the artist

Mrs. Elizaville
2004
Oil and gesso on paper
22 x 30 inches
Courtesy of the artist

George’s Dream of France
2005
Ink and pen on paper
10 x 10 inches
Courtesy of the artist

Stumpy
2003
Ink on paper
17 x 13 inches
Courtesy of Jack Tilton Gallery

Death Playing Checkers
2002
Ink on paper
11 x 15 inches
Courtesy of Jack Tilton Gallery

Swimmers
1996
Oil on canvas
49 x 56 inches
Collection of Diane Wallace, New York

Support Systems for Women
1998 – 2002
Ink on paper
43 x 56 inches
Courtesy of Jack Tilton Gallery

Swinger
2002
Ink on paper
11 x 15 inches
Courtesy of Jack Tilton Gallery

What’s up?
1994 – 2005
Ink and photo on paper
20 x 16 inches
Courtesy of the artist

Untitled
1994 
Ink on paper
20 x 15 inches
Courtesy of the artist

Sad Guy
2000
Mixed media on paper
26 x 22 inches
Courtesy of the artist

Growing up in the Village of the Damned
1996
Ink on paper
16 x 12 inches 
Collection of Rebecca and 
Martin Eisenberg, New York

Village of the Damned II
1996 
Ink on paper
16 x 12 inches
Collection of Rebecca and 
Martin Eisenberg, New York

Ulrike Müller

Mock Rock
2004
Video (3 minutes) and plastic rock
Courtesy of the artist

Curiosity
2006
Pencil and spray paint
48 drawings on paper/5 on mirror
8 x 11 inches (each)
Courtesy of the artist

Emily Roysdon

Strategic Form
2006
Photo Installation – 11 photos
27 x 27 inches (each)
Courtesy of the artist

POW
2005
Video (1:30 minutes)
Courtesy of the artist

A.L. Steiner

Muse off
2006
Photo Installation
Dimensions variable
Courtesy of the artist

A.L. Steiner with Chicks on Speed

Is Bigger Better
2005
Video (5 minutes)
Courtesy of the artist

PUBLICATIONS

LTTR no. 1
Lesbians to the Rescue
pages: 32
dimensions: 9 x 8.5 inches
edition: 1000
first 300 include limited edition artist multiples
release date: September 2002
editors: Ginger Brooks Takahashi, K8 Hardy, Emily Roysdon

LTTR no. 2
Listen Translate Translate Record
pages: unpaginated
dimensions: folded 12.5 x 12.5 inches
edition: 1000
release date: August 2003
editors: Ginger Brooks Takahashi, K8 Hardy, Emily Roysdon

LTTR no. 3
Practice More Failure
pages: 32
dimensions: 10 x 7.5 inches
edition: 1000 
release date: July 2004
editors: Ginger Brooks Takahashi, K8 Hardy, Emily Roysdon

LTTR no. 4
Do you wish to direct me?
pages: 80
dimensions: 5.5 x 8.5 inches
edition: 1000
release date: July 2005
editors: Ginger Brooks Takahashi, K8 Hardy, 
Ulrike Müller, Emily Roysdon, Lanka Tattersall

Ridykeulous
pages: 48
dimensions: 6 x 9 inches
edition: 500 
release date: March 2006
editors: Nicole Eisenman and A.L. Steiner

SCHEDULE OF EVENTS

Opening Reception
Sunday, May 7, 2006 – 1 – 4pm
Center for Curatorial Studies

Interactive Installation
(Quilting Session)
Monday, May 8, 2006 – 4pm
Ginger Brooks Takahashi
An Army of Lovers Cannot Fail
Campus Center (on the lawn)

Performance
Monday May 8, 2006 – 9pm
K8 Hardy
Beautiful Radiating Energy
SMOG

Conversation
Tuesday, May 9, 2006 – 4:30pmv LTTR in dialogue with Ridykeulous
How to think critically in your underwear
Moderated by Amy Mackie
Weis Cinema (in the Campus Center)

ARTISTS

Ginger Brooks Takahashi (1977) has initiated numerous collaborative projects. Among them, LTTR, a queer and trans-feminist art journal, and projet MOBILIVRE-BOOKMOBILE project, a traveling exhibit of artist books and zines. LTTR has presented public projects at The Kitchen, Art In General, and Printed Matter, and received Printed Matter’s Emerging Artist Publication Award in 2005. Takahashi is currently a resident at the Lower East Side Printshop and plays violin with The Ballet. Exhibitions include: Artists Space, New York; La Centrale, Montreal; Cinders, Brooklyn; Space 1026, Philadelphia; and The Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia.

Nicole Eisenman was born in Verdun, France in 1965 and grew up in Scarsdale, NY. She received her BFA from the Rhode Island School of Design in 1987. She currently lives and works in Brooklyn and teaches at Bard College. She has shown extensively in the United States and abroad including Bad Girls (1993) at the Institute of Contemporary Arts, London, TheSeventh Wave (1994) at the University of Southampton in England, A/drift (1996) at Bard College in Annandale-on-Hudson, New York and Gender, Fucked (1996) at the Center for Contemporary Art in Seattle. She has had solo exhibitions at Jack Tilton Gallery, Leo Koenig Gallery, Centraal Museum, Utrecht and Barbara Weiss Gallery, Berlin. Ridykeulous curated an exhibition at Participant Inc in March 2006. Nicole has an upcoming exhibition at Leo Koenig Gallery in May 2006.

Wynne Greenwood is a video artist, musician, and performance artist who makes parts of feminist interactions. After studying video production and art history at Rutgers University, New Jersey, in the late 90′s, Greenwood moved back to her home state of Washington and began performing the punk band Tracy + the Plastics in 2000. She toured the project extensively for six years, and in that time received her M.F.A. from the Milton Avery Graduate School for the Arts, and began collaborations w/ Fawn Krieger (ROOM) and K8 Hardy (New Report).

K8 Hardy was born in Fort Worth, Texas in 1977. She received her BA from Smith College and also attended the Whitney Independent Study Program. She currently lives and works in Brooklyn. K8 is co-founder and editor of the queer feminist journalLTTR. She has made numerous short films including Disquiet funded by the Wexner Center for the Arts. In 2004 she performedBeautiful Radiating Energy at Reena Spaulings Fine Arts. She often collaborates with artist Wynne Greenwood for their amorphous project New Report. She also worked with a team of artists from Art in General known as “The Generals” and produced a publication entitled Art and Leisure. She will attend the Milton Avery Graduate School for the Arts at Bard College this summer.

Ulrike Müller is an artist currently living and working in New York. Since 2005 she has been an editor for the queer feminist art journal LTTR. Exhibitions, performances and and video screenings include Diagonale, Festival of Austrian Film (Graz, 2005),LTTR Explosion (with Marie Thérèse Escribano, New York, 2004); Mothers of Invention, Where is Performance Coming From (Mumok, Vienna, 2003). The artist’s book Every little bit helps, Ulrike Müller: Two Audio Works (2005) with essays by Gregg Bordowitz, Barbara Schröder, Lanka Tattersall, and Walter Johnston is distributed by Revolver and Printed Matter.

Emily Roysdon is a Los Angeles and New York-based interdisciplinary artist whose projects engage language, gesture and memory. Imaging collectivity and communicability as metonymic structures, the works try to simultaneously exhibit ecstatic resistance and structural collapse. She is also an editor and co-founder of LTTR, a feminist genderqueer artist collective with a flexible project oriented practice. LTTR produces an annual independent art journal, performance series, events, screenings and collaborations. Roysdon’s work has been shown at Vera List Center for Art and Politics, NY; Freedom Salon, Deitch Projects, NY; MIT List Visual Art Centre, Cambridge; Longwood Arts Project, Bronx; and The Kitchen, NY. Roysdon completed the Whitney Museum Independent Study Program in 2001 and an Interdisciplinary MFA at UCLA in 2006.

A.L. Steiner is a NYC-based photo/videographer, collaborates with Chicks on Speed & choreographers robbinschilds, is the co-editor of Ridykeulous and an instructor at the School of Visual Arts. Her work has been featured at Nicole Klagsbrun, Andrea Rosen Gallery, New Langton Arts, The Tel Aviv Museum of Art, Contemporary Museum of Baltimore, Colette, RIXC Media Centre/Riga and is in the permanent collection of the Brooklyn Museum of Art. Ridykeulous curated an exhibition at Participant Inc in March 2006. Upcoming exhibitions for A.L. include John Connelly Presents (NYC), Marco Museum (Spain) and ROVE (UK) in 2006.

THANK YOU

My deepest gratitude to the artists, Ginger Brooks Takahashi, Nicole Eisenman, Wynne Greenwood, K8 Hardy, Ulrike Müller, Emily Roysdon, and A.L. Steiner, with whom I have had the privilege to work throughout the entire organizational process. And thanks to Le Tigre for the inspiration.

I am sincerely grateful for the support of Susan Aberth, Marcia Acita, Rhea Anastas, Julie Ault, Norton Batkin, Johanna Burton, Lynne Cooke, Colleen Egan, Tom Eccles, Karl Lampson, Kay Larson, Susan Leonard, Ivo Mesquita, Michael Pilon and the installation team at CCS, Tatjana von Prittwitz und Gaffron, Letitia Smith, and the graduate committee.

Special thanks to Jack Tilton Gallery, Reena Spaulings Fine Art, Rebecca and Martin Eisenberg, and Diane Wallace. I am especially thankful for the unwavering love and support of my wonderful friends and family.

A Master of Arts Thesis Exhibition curated by Amy Mackie

 


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