Please join us Thursday, January 19 for the opening receptions of Mateo López: Undo List, Jackson Mac Low: Lines-Letters-Words, and Amy Sillman: After Metamorphoses.
The event is FREE and open to the public.
In our Main Gallery, The Drawing Center presents Mateo López: Undo List, a multidisciplinary installation that will be the Colombian artist’s first solo museum exhibition in the United States and that will feature works on paper, sculpture, performance, and projected film. Trained as an architect in his native Bogotá, López has long used drawing as a conceptual tool to cross disciplines and aesthetic categories. Drawing is more than an artistic medium for López; it is a way of conceiving and indeed inhabiting the world. Simple drawn constructions that can be manipulated in various ways; trompe l’oeil paper renderings of two and three dimensional objects (for example, near-exact replicas of lined sheets of paper); drawings made out of the leftovers produced by cutting into other works—these are just some of the devices López uses to reveal that, as he says himself, just as everything manufactured was at one point a drawing, so too, “an image is not flat; it is an atmosphere, it contains time and space.”
In our Drawing Room gallery, Jackson Mac Low: Lines-Letters-Words, the first solo museum exhibition of visual works by Jackson Mac Low (1922–2004), will show the multidisciplinary artist’s practice from the 1940s to the 2000s. Mac Low, who is known for composing poetry through chance procedures and automatism, first experimented with these creative processes in his drawings. The earliest drawings in the exhibition, created in the late 1940s and early 1950s, resemble pre-linguistic marks made with gestural ink brushstrokes. Later works created during the 1960s through the 1990s include series of drawings—Drawing-Asymmetries, Vocabularies, and Gathas—that emphasize the visual and aural qualities of written languages, acting as both graphic representations and performance scores. The exhibition closes with a series of thirteen drawings made in 1995; echoing the unsettled system of marks in Mac Low’s early works, these drawings were composed by repeatedly handwriting terms that describe natural scenery, creating a ghostly impression with layered graphite marks. Through Jackson Mac Low: Lines–Letters–Words, The Drawing Center identifies the foundational character of drawing, a medium that significantly informed Mac Low and influenced his multidisciplinary practice for more than sixty years.
Concurrently in the Lab Amy Sillman: After Metamorphoses will present an animated video entitled After Metamorphoses, a work based on Ovid’s epic narrative poem that she began during a 2015 fellowship at the American Academy in Rome. To create the video, Sillman overlaid abstract drawings (which she worked on in a bathtub in Berlin) with iPad sketches that precisely follow the sequence of changes that occur in Ovid’s fifteen-book narrative. Set to a score by the Berlin-based musician Wibke Tiarks, the film features a variegated background that flashes beneath a series of figures as they transform one into another with a temporal rhythm. In After Metamorphoses, Sillman exercises the possibility of endless change, a theme first developed in her animated works and that continues to inform her paintings and drawings. Her adaptation of Ovid is one of a number of works that Sillman has made in collaboration with poets, including Lisa Robertson and Charles Bernstein, among others. In tandem with the exhibition, Sillman will create a limited edition zine, the eleventh in her series of zines entitled O.G.
Mateo Lopez, still from Time as Activity, 2016. 2-channel video projection, 54 minutes. Courtesy of the artist and Casey Kaplan, New York.