As a visual equivalent of the Critics Page in the Brooklyn Rail edited by Greg Lindquist, the exhibition Social Ecologies exemplifies the thought form of artists who work directly or indirectly with the environment. The exhibition addresses ecological and social issues embedded within the landscape through both images and objects, as well as actions, relational networks and discourses.
Featuring David Brooks, The Canary Project, Laura Grace Chipley, Cynthia Daignault, Rackstraw Downes, Josephine Halvorson, Marc Handelman, Ellie Irons, Trevor Paglen, Mary Miss, Roxy Paine, Alexis Rockman, Martha Rosler, Charles Simonds, Robert Smithson, Gio Sumbadze, Tattfoo Tan, Mierle Laderman Ukeles, Allyson Vieira, Matthew C. Wilson, and Kevin Zucker, this exhibit does not necessarily set out to directly solve social and ecological dilemmas, but expose them in all their complexities in integral, rich and provocative ways.
Social Ecologies will evoke and widen the dialogue on the urgency of the subject of ecology, rather than generalizing, romanticizing or poeticizing. Many artists not only visualize the invisible land, water and air pollution, but also its often-ignored social and economic impact. Other artists invoke meditations on our complex links between human impact on the environment, the relations among people, and the natural world’s response. By integrating the social and the ecological, this exhibition aims to complicate the conventions of landscape.
Creating an immersive space for meditation on these urgent issues, walls painted with color and an elliptical perimeter of more than 9,000 pounds of soil will bring the tactile and retinal sensation of elements of the outdoors into the gallery environment. Forming an interior and exterior space within the exhibition space, the soil will draw a mutable boundary between nature and urbanity and, in a sisyphean task, be swept back daily after it migrates into the main space of the gallery. As an ecosystem, the gallery will provide an experience with objects and immersive space as well as dialogue about environmental and social concerns, through various programming such as workshops, film screenings, panel discussions and performances. Social Ecologies will be accompanied by a free catalogue supported by the Daedalus Foundation.
Greg Lindquist is an artist and writer, and the editor of the Art Books in Review section of the Brooklyn Rail. He has also taught at MoMA, Parsons, Pratt Institute, Ramapo, RISD and SUNY Purchase. His latest series of ecologically responsive paintings will be shown in an installation at the North Carolina Museum of Art in spring of 2016. He was recently a resident of the Marie Walsh Sharpe Space Program, and received the Pollock Krasner Grant in 2009. He is currently developing several collaborative projects that focus on the Newtown Creek, the polluted three-and-a-half mile estuary that forms the border between Brooklyn and Queens.
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