Renée Green | Excerpts: New York, Berlin, Madrid, Middletown, CT

Renée Green, Excerpts, Bortolami Gallery, 2020.
ACT at MIT

The beginning of the pandemic saw a succession of texts and essays by philosophers and writers, novelists and theorists which analyzed, with barely any distance though with ethical (and in some cases also publishing) urgency, what was bound to mark a decisive turning point in this fledgling twenty-first century. Han, Zizek, Butler, Latour, Bifo, Hutsvedt, Chomsky, Tokarczuk, Harvey… are just some of the intellectuals and writers who responded effectively to the new globalized situation that was breaking down barriers and walls through the “used saliva” of conversations, thus redefining our place in the world. As Jorge Carrión argued in Lo viral—a fake diary of the pandemic made with a certain temporal perspective—this pandemic could be taken as the true beginning of the 21st century, replacing the generally accepted view that our century began with the attacks on the Twin Towers in 2001.”

Jumpstarting an engaged fall season, Professor Renée Green opened a solo exhibition at Bortolami Gallery, New York this past Saturday. That same week, Green’s work was also featured in a variety of international locations and group exhibitions.

The pandemic might be the beginning of the 21st century and changed our reality, but as we continue to live a fraught social and political moment in the world, Green’s current international projects point to the fact that human resilience, a wish for beauty, thought, art, and sociality are ongoing, worldwide.

Title: Excerpts
Format: Solo exhibition
Location: Bortolami Gallery, New York
Dates: September 12 – October 31, 2020

From the press release: “Since the late 1980s, Green has explored the concept of color in myriad ways. Spanning the artist’s three decades of working with color’s polyvalent effects, the works in Excerpts manifest her open-ended questioning of invented yet established taxonomies, in order to play with and to displace designations that may seem to be known.

For the exhibition, Green presents two recent Space Poems, a series of works which expand and contract language and color in order to facilitate its exploration over space and time. Green’s 2020 Space Poem #7 (Color Without Objects: Intra-Active May-Words) is composed of 28 banners hanging from the gallery ceiling, and Space Poem #2 (Laura’s Words) (2011/2020), a colorful silkscreen suite surrounding the gallery’s perimeter. Invoking the words of poets May Swenson and Laura Riding Jackson, both Space Poems unfold a series of linguistic collisions punctuated by Green’s spatial and chromatic operations.

Indicating the artist’s ongoing methodology of transmutation and translation, the exhibition includes two early works, Color / No Color (1990) and Colour Games (1989). The categories to which these artworks refer slide between their definitions, exceeding their own delimits in the process of attempting to define their forms. Green’s early paintings in the exhibition seek to dismantle an understanding of color as “natural,” in turn revealing the concept to be a pretext for ever pervasive ideological constructs, but at the same time, as an excellent vehicle for the artist’s poetic imaginings and thought.”

Title: A SCULPTURE, A FILM & SIX VIDEOS
Format: Group exhibition, online streaming
Location:  Ezra and Cecile Zilhka Gallery, Wesleyan University, Middletown, CT [Due to the pandemic, the gallery is currently limited to visits by Wesleyan students, faculty, and staff]
Dates: September 8 – November 22, 2020

Renée Green’s works in the exhibition: In the gallery: Americas : Veritas, 2018. Digital film, color, sound, 7 min. [September 8-19, 2020]; Online streaming: ED/HF, 2017. Digital film, color, sound, 33 min. [September 8 – November 22, 2020]

Other artists in the exhibition: Tacita Dean, Arthur Jafa, Karrabing Film Collective, Trisha Baga, Stanya Kahn, Charlotte Prodger

Online public event: artist talk by Renée Green, Thursday, November 19, 2020 at 6pm

From the press release:A SCULPTURE, A FILM, & SIX VIDEOS is an exhibition of a sculpture, a film and a survey of six recent video works presented in a nontraditional, temporal framework. Nestled into a custom-built atrium in the gallery, the sculpture, Peter Fischli & David Weiss’ Son et lumière (Le Rayon Vert), acts as the pivot or fulcrum for the entire exhibition, the kinetic center around which everything else revolves. Acting as a counterweight, a proto-cinematic object, and a foil, the sculpture will be installed for the entire run of the exhibition and the videos will rotate out, one work projected continuously for two weeks. The vaulted space of the main gallery is darkened into a projection space. As the videos will not be seen in the same place at the same time, they will exist in relation to each other only through memory, engaging one of the fundamental properties of the moving image in the structure of the exhibition itself.”

Title: Lost in America
Format: Group exhibition
Location:  Neuer Berliner Kunstverein (n.b.k.), Berlin
Dates: September 10, 2020-January 17, 2021

Renée Green’s works in the exhibition: Commemorative Toile Suit, 1994, suit made of custom-made fabric designed by the artist; Commemorative Toile: Mise-en-Scène, 2020. Digital film, color, sound, 6 min.

Other artists in the exhibition: Michael Asher, Sam Durant, Jimmie Durham, Andrea Fraser, Dan Graham, Mike Kelley, Ken Lum, Adrian Piper, Martha Rosler, Cameron Rowland, Robert Venturi / Denise Scott Brown, and others

From the press release: “With Lost in America, Neuer Berliner Kunstverein (n.b.k.) presents a group exhibition [curated by artist John Miller] of works by American artists from 1937 to the present which sharpens our understanding of the current political situation in the USA. The exhibition revisits American history with investigations of the influences and developments that have shaped the identity of the United States through its specific national and political economy […] Lost in America is concerned with the ideological formation of modes of production and urban planning, architecture, and design, and with the overarching institutionalization of discriminatory dispositives. In doing so, it ultimately highlights the inherent potential of conceptual art practices to expose and critique the structures that underpin society.”

Title: A discourse of uncertainties
Format: Group exhibition
Location: 1 Mira Madrid, Madrid
Dates: September 10 – Novermber 11, 2020

Renée Green’s work in the exhibition: From Space Poem #2 (Laura’s Words) Series: That Cannot Lie, In Words Not Born Yet, 2011, silkscreen, 18 x 23 in.; All-Wise Impermanence, 2011; silkscreen, 18 x 23 in.; From Sigetics Color Series: William Morris, 2011; letterpress and digital print, 18 x 22 in.

Other artists in the exhibition: Juan Downey, Fernando Bryce, Sanja Iveković, Jaime Davidovich, Graciela Carnavale, Hamish Fulton, Esther Ferrer, Joan Fontcuberta, Nil Yalter, Braco Dimitrijević, Bleda y Rosa, Cabello – Carceller, Juan Uslé, and many others

From the press release: “Responding to the proposal, each artist has made a series of small-format works that sit side by side in the gallery space (along with a selection of pre-existing works), generating a discourse which is continued and at once interrupted, built through the transversal and polysemic gazes of a heterogeneous group of artists. The complexity of Mira Bernabeu’s atypical curatorship nonetheless reaffirms the coherence of his artists: thinkers able to produce contemporary art that reflects on the key issue of the present: the paradigm shift and the complete absence of operative forecasts in the face of the unknown, and doing so from the total lack of perspective on the present itself. In this aliveness that has the same lack of distance in space and time as the critical theory of art that is being written as it takes place.”