Plan Your Vote

Newsroom

News from Barbara Kasten’s Studio

11 Feb 2014

Aperture-Image-600x539
Aperture Magazine Issue 214 Spring 2014

Congratulations to Immaterial artist Barbara Kasten, who has a number of exciting events coming up.

First, Kasten’s work is currently featured in A World of Its Own: Photographic Practices in the Studio at the Museum of Modern Art. The show strives to bring together:

Photographs, films, videos, and works in other mediums, A World of Its Own: Photographic Practices in the Studio examines the ways in which photographers and artists using photography have worked and experimented within the four walls of the studio space, from photography’s inception to today. Featuring both new acquisitions and works from the Museum’s collection that have not been on view in recent years, A World of Its Own includes approximately 180 works, by approximately 90 artists, such as Berenice Abbott, Uta Barth, Zeke Berman, Karl Blossfeldt, Constantin Brancusi, Geta Brătescu, Harry Callahan, Robert Frank, Jan Groover, Barbara Kasten, Man Ray, Bruce Nauman, Paul Outerbridge, Irving Penn, Adrian Piper, Edward Steichen, William Wegman, and Edward Weston.

Second, Kasten is part of another current show at the Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art in New Paltz, NY. The exhibition is entitled: 1980’s Style: Image and Design in The Dorsky Museum Collection.
From the museum:

The 1980s had a look all its own. 1980s Style includes prints, photographs, and jewelry from the collection of The Dorsky Museum that exemplify the stark geometries and vibrant colors of the decade. The exhibition asks to what extent are bold shapes, bright colors, asymmetry, and cartoonish figuration the visual and formal manifestations of emotional turmoil and artistic activism? Featuring work by Tina Barney, Richard Bosman, Frank Gillette, Lisa Gralnick, Barbara Kasten, George McNeil, Judy Pfaff, Andy Warhol, and others.

Finally, for those of us unable to get to New York, the artist will also be the subject of a feature article in the upcoming issue of Aperture Magazine (Issue #214, Spring 2014).

A World of Its Own: Photographic Practices in the Studio opened on February 8 and is on display until October 5, 2014.

1980’s Style: Image and Design in The Dorsky Museum Collection opened on February 5 and will close on July 13, 2014.

For additional information and to look at Kasten’s work,

Like Shards From Some Vanished Civilization: An Introduction to Space Is the Place

29 May 2013

Space Is the Place screens at 8pm on 29 May 2013 at the Crowley Theater in Marfa, Texas as part of Ballroom’s New Growth Film Program, co-curated by Rashid Johnson and Josh Siegel, MoMA. Admission is free and open to the public.

Like Shards From Some Vanished Civilization: An Introduction to Space Is the Place

In the 1970s, Sun Ra wasn’t yet recognized as the eccentric genius that he is understood as today. He’d been leading bands for almost three decades, placing ecstatic chanting alongside percolating synthesizer pieces, using improvisational percussion and cosmic expansions of big band styles to create a voluminous if obscure repertoire that placed classic jazz and swing in an extraterrestrial timeline. This destabilized polyglot sound was too conspicuously wacky to fit in with the jazz establishment or its free jazz fringes, and though he’d already graced the cover of Rolling Stone in 1969, his music seemed as equally confusing for the Anglo psychedelic music scene.

His canonization as one of the pioneers of Afrofuturism would have to wait until later in his career, though of course his work now looks right at home next to similar explorations from Miles Davis and Herbie Hancock, and would help set the stage for Funkadelic’s Afro-cosmic psychedelia, MC5’s liberation rock, Sonic Youth’s deep noise grooves and the Boredoms’ melted drum ensembles.

One place where Sun Ra did find a home was as an artist-in-residence at the University of California at Berkeley, where he delivered a series of lectures in 1971 under the heading “The Black Man in the Cosmos, Hyperstition and Fast-Forward Theory.” The course’s now legendary syllabus included the King James Bible, the Tibetan Book of the Dead, work from 19th century occultist Madame Blavatsky, poetry from Henry Dumas, as well as texts about the pagan roots of the Catholic Church, Egyptology and African American folklore.

Someone in the Berkeley AV department had the foresight to record one of these lectures — archived at ubu.com — wherein Sun Ra holds forth in such a way as to indicate that he’s both serious about his cosmological thinking, while at the same time deliberately provoking laughter from the gathered students as he tsk-task-tsks his chalk across the blackboard.