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Main Gallery Oct 07, 2016 - Dec 18, 2016

Cecily Brown

Rehearsal

Cecily Brown. //Strolling Actresses//, 2015. Watercolor and ink on paper. 51 1/2 x 79 inches. Courtesy of the artist. Cecily Brown. //Strolling Actresses//, 2015. Watercolor and ink on paper. 51 1/2 x 79 inches. Courtesy of the artist. Cecily Brown. //Strolling Actresses//, 2015. Watercolor and ink on paper. 51 1/2 x 79 inches. Courtesy of the artist.

Cecily Brown. Strolling Actresses, 2015. Watercolor and ink on paper. 51 1/2 x 79 inches. Courtesy of the artist.

Cecily Brown: Rehearsal is the artist’s first solo museum show in New York and the first exhibition dedicated to her drawings. Arranged thematically, the more than eighty small drawings, large-scale works, and sketchbooks on view will foreground Brown’s iterative reworking of motifs from her wide-reaching arsenal of source material—prints by eighteenth-century draftsman William Hogarth, pages from animal encyclopedias, and Jimi Hendrix’s 1968 album cover for Electric Ladyland are just some of the images that Brown has rendered again and again in her own hand. Best known for her canvases that revel in the visceral immediacy of paint, her drawings are more open in their appearance, offering fragmentary motifs that build upon and undo each other in an endlessly renewed quest. They embody a unique aesthetic approach while simultaneously bringing attention to the investigatory impulse that grounds Brown’s art in general. Painstaking and obsessive in their efforts to capture an entire scene or the slightest of gestures—a turn of a lion’s head here, the edge of a Bruegel painting there—Brown’s drawings take the act of looking as their very subject.

Curated by Claire Gilman, Senior Curator

Cecily Brown: Rehearsal is made possible by support from the James Family Foundation, Nancy and Fred Poses, Jane and Ned Sadaka, and Marlies Verhoeven.

Special thanks to Thomas Dane Gallery.

Image: Cecily Brown, Strolling Actresses (After Hogarth), 2015. Watercolor and ink on paper. 51 1/2 x 79 inches. Courtesy of the artist.

Drawing Room Oct 07, 2016 - Dec 18, 2016

Olga Chernysheva

Vague Accent

Olga Chernysheva’s investigations of Russia’s post-Soviet political and social atmosphere depict a side of Russia that is rarely seen. Her charcoal drawings provide the viewer with an arrestingly intimate view of her subjects – security guards, commuters, shoppers, the homeless, and other anonymous citizens. Though she has been depicting the urban landscape for decades, she has rarely strayed from portraits of her home country. For the Drawing Center exhibition, Chernysheva spent a month in New York, a city in which she had spent time but never resided, creating an idiosyncratic travelogue of drawings and accompanying texts, exploring the notion of dislocation in relation to both language and image.

Curated by Nova Benway, Assistant Curator and Open Sessions Curator

Olga Chernysheva: Vague Accent is made possible by the support of Josef and Margot Lakonishok; GRAD: Gallery for Russian Arts and Design, London; Dita Amory; Suzanne Dubois; Erika Hoffmann; Meryl Rose; Anna L. Zelenova; and Jan ter Haar.

Special thanks to Pace London; Gallery DIEHL, Berlin; Foxy Production, New York; Matthew Stephenson; and Yulia Dultsina.

Image: Olga Chernysheva, From the series
Briefly, 2013. Charcoal on paper, Ten drawings: 14 1/2 x 23 1/4 inches ((36.8 x 59 cm) each. Courtesy Gallery DIEHL, Berlin and Pace London.

The Lab Oct 07, 2016 - Nov 06, 2016

Open Sessions 8

Planes and Corridors

\\James Mercer, //People Looking at People//, ink on paper, 18 x 30 inches, 2016, Courtesy of the artist. \\James Mercer, //People Looking at People//, ink on paper, 18 x 30 inches, 2016, Courtesy of the artist. \\James Mercer, //People Looking at People//, ink on paper, 18 x 30 inches, 2016, Courtesy of the artist.


James Mercer, People Looking at People, ink on paper, 18 x 30 inches, 2016, Courtesy of the artist.

Open Sessions 8: Planes and Corridors is a group exhibition which considers drawing as a shifting outline around narratives of alienation, proximity and distance. Featuring artists Ruby Amanze, Eric Ramos Guerrero, Nsenga Knight, Lei Lei, James Mercer, Edwin Torres and Ezra Wube, the exhibition explores real and imagined landscapes, whose fluid borders and disorienting geographies reference issues around migration and a complicated topographies of the everyday. Including work that features poetry, drawing, and miniaturized land, Planes and Corridors presents drawing as an open equation where the strange and ordinary meet.

Curated by Lisa Sigal and Nova Benway

Open Sessions is made possible by The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, the Helen Frankenthaler Foundation, the Tom Slaughter Open Sessions Fund, Faber-Castell, and with public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council.

James Mercer, People Looking at People, ink on paper, 18 x 30 inches, 2016, Courtesy of the artist.

Oct 07, 2016 - Oct 06, 2017

Gary Simmons

Ghost Reels

Rendering for Gary Simmon's upcoming stairwell drawing. Rendering for Gary Simmon's upcoming stairwell drawing. Rendering for Gary Simmon's upcoming stairwell drawing.

Rendering for Gary Simmon's upcoming stairwell drawing.

As part of its on-going stairwell project, The Drawing Center has commissioned American artist Gary Simmons to create a site-specific wall drawing in the lobby stairwell. Simmons’s installation will be the second in the series following Abdelkader Benchamma’s Representation of Dark Matter (April 2015 – August 2016).

Mining the iconography of American popular culture, Gary Simmons’s work addresses personal and collective experiences of race and class. He is best known for his “erasure drawings,” which he began while working in an abandoned school that contained an abundance of blackboards. Using white chalk on slate-painted panels or walls, Simmons blurs the drawings with his hands resulting in hazy but persistent images that evoke faded memories or classrooms at the end of the school day. For The Drawing Center, Simmons will create a text-based work consisting of names of African-American actors and actresses from the early days of silent film. The artist describes the installation whose scroll-like format recalls movie “credit-crawls” frozen in mid-motion, as invoking “the memories of actors that have been blurred in the history of Hollywood film…. [The piece depicts] a kind of silence in both voice and visibility.”

Curated by Claire Gilman, Senior Curator

Gary Simmons: Ghost Reels is made possible by the support of Jeffrey A. Hirsch and Alyssa Fanelli.

Special thanks to Metro Pictures.

Image: Detail from Gary Simmons's rendering for his upcoming stairwell installation.

The Lab Nov 18, 2016 - Dec 18, 2016

Open Sessions 9

Open Sessions Lab exhibition, Fall 2015. Installation view. Open Sessions Lab exhibition, Fall 2015. Installation view. Open Sessions Lab exhibition, Fall 2015. Installation view.

Open Sessions Lab exhibition, Fall 2015. Installation view.

The Open Sessions program was created by Lisa Sigal and Nova Benway, Open Sessions Curators, as an opportunity for selected artists to find new approaches for contextualizing and exhibiting their work, through exhibitions, public programs, and conversation. The artists selected for Open Sessions may or may not draw as their primary means of art-making. The two-year program engages musicians, architects, dancers, poets—anyone who is interested in expanding the boundaries of drawing. Open Sessions fosters a dynamic, ever-evolving conversation with new drawing practices and practitioners, viewing drawing as an activity rather than a product.

Curated by Lisa Sigal and Nova Benway

Open Sessions Lab exhibition, Fall 2015. Installation view.

Main Gallery Jan 20, 2017 - Mar 19, 2017

Mateo López

Undo List

Mateo Lopez, still from stop-motion film //El Minutero//, 2015. Mateo Lopez, still from stop-motion film //El Minutero//, 2015. Mateo Lopez, still from stop-motion film //El Minutero//, 2015.

Mateo Lopez, still from stop-motion film El Minutero, 2015.

Trained as an architect in his native Bogotá, Colombia, Mateo López has long used drawing to explore the relationship between organic and constructed form. For this, his first solo museum exhibition in the United States, López expands the range of his approach to the medium, presenting a multi-disciplinary installation that features works on paper, sculpture, architectural form, and projected film. At set times during the run of the exhibition, the dancer and choreographer Lee Serle will accompany the film in the space, responding to its movements with his own physical gestures, and occasionally rearranging objects in the exhibition. Using line as a bridge between two- and three-dimensional realities, López’s exhibition pulls drawing off the page and into space and performative action.

Curated by Claire Gilman, Senior Curator

Image: Mateo Lopez, still from stop-motion film El Minutero, 2015

Drawing Room Jan 20, 2017 - Mar 19, 2017

Jackson Mac Low

Jackson Mac Low, //Drawing Asymmetry// #8, 1961. Jackson Mac Low, //Drawing Asymmetry// #8, 1961. Jackson Mac Low, //Drawing Asymmetry// #8, 1961.

Jackson Mac Low, Drawing Asymmetry #8, 1961.

The Drawing Center will present a group of visual works by the poet Jackson Mac Low. The works presented in this exhibition reflect Mac Low’s early association with the Fluxus movement and build on the chance operations and minimally egoic forms that Mac Low explored in poetry during the mid-1950s. The exhibition will present a group of Mac Low’s “Vocabularies”, drawn poems that are meant to be performed, including the “Gathas”, which Mac Low wrote on graph paper as omnidirectional scores with visual cues for silence, spoken letters, and musical notes. The exhibition will also include works from Mac Low’s “Drawing-Asymmetry” series, written constructions that emphasize the visual and aural qualities of words. In tandem with this exhibition, The Drawing Center will screen Mac Low’s Tree* Movie, one of the earliest known Fluxus films.

Curated by Brett Littman, Executive Director

Image: Jackson Mac Low, Drawing-Asymmetry #8, 1961.

The Lab Jan 20, 2017 - Mar 19, 2017

Amy Sillman

Amy Sillman, Film still from //Metamorphoses//, 2015. 5 min. looped. Video animation with iPad drawings. Music by Wibke Tiarks. Courtesy of the artist. Amy Sillman, Film still from //Metamorphoses//, 2015. 5 min. looped. Video animation with iPad drawings. Music by Wibke Tiarks. Courtesy of the artist. Amy Sillman, Film still from //Metamorphoses//, 2015. 5 min. looped. Video animation with iPad drawings. Music by Wibke Tiarks. Courtesy of the artist.

Amy Sillman, Film still from Metamorphoses, 2015. 5 min. looped. Video animation with iPad drawings. Music by Wibke Tiarks. Courtesy of the artist.

For her exhibition at The Drawing Center, Amy Sillman will present an animated double-screen video entitled Metamorphoses. Sillman produced the work as a retelling of Ovid’s fifteen-book tale during a 2015 fellowship at the American Academy in Rome. To create the video, Sillman overlaid abstract drawings, which she worked on in her bathtub in Berlin, with iPad sketches that precisely follow Ovid’s epic narrative. Set to a score by the Berlin-based musician Wibke Tiarks, the film features two animations, On one screen, a variegated background flashes by as figures in the foreground transform, one into another. Adjacent to the screen featuring narrative images, a second animation showing only the changing background pursues its own temporal rhythm. In Metamorphoses, Sillman exercises the possibility of endless change, a theme that she first developed in her animated works and that has continued to inform her paintings and drawings. Her adaptation of Ovid is one of a number of works Sillman has made in collaboration with poets, including Gregg Bordowitz, Lisa Robertson, and Charles Bernstein, among others.

Curated by Claire Gilman, Senior Curator

Image: Amy Sillman, Film still from Metamorphoses, 2015. 5 min. looped. Video animation with iPad drawings. Music by Wibke Tiarks. Courtesy of the artist.

Main Gallery, Drawing Room Apr 14, 2017 - Jun 25, 2017

Exploratory Works

Drawings from the Department of Tropical Research Field Expeditions

//Chiasmodon niger Stomach Contents//, Else Bostelmann
Bermuda 1931. Watercolor on paper. 11 x 14 inches (27.9 x 35.6 cm). Else Bostelmann © Wildlife Conservation Society.
//Chiasmodon niger Stomach Contents//, Else Bostelmann
Bermuda 1931. Watercolor on paper. 11 x 14 inches (27.9 x 35.6 cm). Else Bostelmann © Wildlife Conservation Society.
//Chiasmodon niger Stomach Contents//, Else Bostelmann
Bermuda 1931. Watercolor on paper. 11 x 14 inches (27.9 x 35.6 cm). Else Bostelmann © Wildlife Conservation Society.

Chiasmodon niger Stomach Contents, Else Bostelmann
Bermuda 1931. Watercolor on paper. 11 x 14 inches (27.9 x 35.6 cm). Else Bostelmann © Wildlife Conservation Society.

This exhibition brings to light for the first time an archive of images that illustrate the formation of our modern definition of nature. William Beebe (1877–1962) was one of America's greatest popularizers of ecological thinking and biological science. Beebe literally took the lab into the jungle, rather than the jungle to the lab. The Department of Tropical Research was pioneering in that, under Beebe’s direction, women were hired as lead scientists and field artists. Artist Isabel Cooper, joining in 1919, publicly relished her opportunity to travel through the jungles of Guyana juggling a “vivid serpent or tapestried lizard in one hand, and the best grade of Japanese paintbrush in the other.” The structure of The Drawing Center’s exhibition will mirror the two salient stages of the Department of Tropical Research's investigations: jungle field station work and floating laboratories for marine biology —revealing that artists and scientists worked closely and productively in the near past and that scientists once understood art as a valuable tool for promoting ecological thinking to a broad public.

Curated by Mark Dion, Katherine McLeod, and Madeleine Thompson

Image: Chiasmodon niger Stomach Contents, Else Bostelmann Bermuda 1931. Watercolor on paper. 11 x 14 inches (27.9 x 35.6 cm). Else Bostelmann © Wildlife Conservation Society.

The Lab Apr 14, 2017 - Jun 04, 2017

Open Sessions 10

Open Sessions Lab exhibition, Fall 2015. Installation view. Open Sessions Lab exhibition, Fall 2015. Installation view. Open Sessions Lab exhibition, Fall 2015. Installation view.

Open Sessions Lab exhibition, Fall 2015. Installation view.

The Open Sessions program was created by Lisa Sigal and Nova Benway, Open Sessions Curators, as an opportunity for selected artists to find new approaches for contextualizing and exhibiting their work, through exhibitions, public programs, and conversation. The artists selected for Open Sessions may or may not draw as their primary means of art-making. The two-year program engages musicians, architects, dancers, poets—anyone who is interested in expanding the boundaries of drawing. Open Sessions fosters a dynamic, ever-evolving conversation with new drawing practices and practitioners, viewing drawing as an activity rather than a product.

Curated by Lisa Sigal and Nova Benway

Open Sessions Lab exhibition, Fall 2015. Installation view.