Site and Insight: an Assemblage of Artists
June 29–September 22, 2003
P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center presents Site and Insight: an Assemblage of Artists, a group exhibition curated by Agnes Gund. The exhibition is comprised of fifteen artists whose work Ms. Gund has followed for many years. Encompassing painting, video, photography, sculptures, and installations, Site and Insight reflects the artists’ personal and poetic vocabularies. The works in this exhibition reveal subjective explorations of beauty, architecture, nature, and visual perception. Many of the artists use an intense “hand-made” aesthetic.
Intended as poetic mediations on the self, nature, and mortality, Peter Campus’s (b. 1937) recent video works, made after producing photography for two decades, record events in the artist’s daily life, addressing the minimalist sensibilities and the relationship between the viewer and the camera that characterized his early work.
West coast artist Bruce Conner (b. 1933) has worked in assemblage, drawing, collage, photography, film, and conceptual art since the 1950’s. Works such as Guadalupe (1962) are visually dense compositions that rely on repetition and reference the human body.
In three sculptures from the early 1970’s, Rosemarie Castoro (b. 1939) employs graphite on hollocore panels or formed fiberglass cloth, creating abstract forms that invite the viewer to move around, between, and under them.
New York-based painter Judy Glantzman (b. 1956) relies on automatism and the unconscious to create her sensual and evocative paintings. The artist struggles to translate her inner reality into visual form through androgynous, feminine, or child-like figures, which indicate the facets of an evolving personality.
Brooklyn-based artist Maria Elena Gonzalez (b. 1957) is known for her post-minimalist sculptures and installations, which manipulate context and connotation to introduce cultural and personal associations. Resting Spots (1999), which encourages the viewer to emotionally and physically participate, is Gonzalez’s most recent exploration of the theme of the memorial.
In her recent work, Nene Humphrey (b. 1947) records the laborious processes of tying, sewing, and embroidering, evoking her individual memories of domestic tasks, and, more generally, the centrality of manual labor in the lives of most women. Self-discipline, sacrifice, and renunciation are also recurrent themes. Exploring nature and the self through anatomical references, she uses the body as a point of departure.
Jim Hodges (b. 1957) uses materials from everyday life and images from nature to create installations, hybrid objects, and collages. These labor-intensive compositions are often constructed as chains, webs, or collages and involve the viewer in a range of physical interactions. In this work, he takes sheet music and transforms it into colorful expression.
In his paintings, Julian Lethbridge (b. 1947) explores the materiality of paint, expressive gesture, texture, and pattern. His recent works incorporate a luminous ground overlaid with a web-like veil of patterned marks. He introduces color in a departure from his earlier tonal paintings, establishing a sublime mood and a sense of place.
British artist Andrew Lord (b. 1950) has long explored the cultural and historic connotations of the vase, breaking down distinctions between the functional and the aesthetic. Imprints of various parts of the artist’s body animate his newest projects, recording the movements and gestures intrinsic to their creation. His drawings are more lyrical and delicate than their three-dimensional counterparts.
Winifred Lutz (b. 1942) employs natural and artificial materials, shape, and color in her sculptures and installations to mimic natural forms and to stand as metaphors for organic and spiritual growth. She brings natural elements such as moss and oak bark into the gallery to create meditative spaces.
Ellen Phelan (b. 1943) refines landscape, still life, and the figure through painted forms, evoking both the actual experience and the memory of nature. Her paintings reference the past and require the physical or imaginative involvement of the viewer, re-defining the tradition of landscape painting.
Brooklyn-based artist Arthur Simms (b. 1961) fuses modernist assemblage with folk traditions of African and Afro-Atlantic object-making in his near-abstract sculptures. These works link objects and materials, articulating a personal and cultural history.
For decades, Julian Stanszak (b. 1928) has explored perception, color and geometry through systematic experimentation to create virtuoso compositions enlivened by bright colors and interesting tensions. In Constellation in Red (2002-2003), thirty-six small canvases map the surface of the gallery wall.
Michael Vessa (b. 1948) creates installations that engage with existing architectural structures. This large, room-sized “drawing” of couches, white paper, and stretched irregular canvases builds line and tone with black light and white materials.
Kathryn Walker (b. 1943), a photographer and sculptor, has been active in theater, television and film. In these photographs, she employs either an inexpensive Chinese Holga camera, with a plastic lens, or pinhole cameras to transform specific places into otherworldly spaces. Subtle color, luminous surfaces and beautifully balanced compositions have an immediate sensual appeal.
This exhibition is curated by Agnes Gund. Ms. Gund is President Emerita of The Museum of Modern Art, Chairman of its International Council, and the Founder and a Trustee of Studio in a School. Ms. Gund also chairs the Mayor's Cultural Affairs Advisory Commission for the City of New York.
Site and Insight: an Assemblage of Artists is made possible by the Lily Auchincloss Foundation and The Friends of Education and The Contemporary Arts Council of The Museum of Modern Art. Additional support is provided by AOL Time Warner Inc., Irving Blum, Estrellita and Daniel Brodsky, an anonymous donor, Mrs. Frances Lewis, David Teiger, Mr. and Mrs. C. Bagley Wright, The Junior Associates of The Museum of Modern Art, Mary Sharp Cronson, and other generous funders. The accompanying publication is supported by Jo Carole and Ronald S. Lauder.