A group show featuring Carolee Schneemann, Betty Tompkins, Marilyn Minter, Thomas Lanigan Schmidt, Pruitt & Early, Sean Landers, Cary Liebowitz (a.k.a. CandyAss), Tony Oursler, Mickalene Thomas, Simone Leigh, Christopher Winter, and Monica Cook.
(February 27, 2014 New York, NY) Edelman Arts presents “Aftershock: The Impact of Radical Art,” a group show curated Dara Schaefer. The exhibit will run from March 3 – May 12, 2014. Edelman Arts is located at 136 E 74th St, New York, NY 10021, and will host an opening reception for the artists on Monday, March 3, 2014 from 6:00pm – 8:00pm.
Since the 1960’s, contemporary art has paralleled the racial, gender, and sexual revolutions that have radically altered contemporary culture. This exhibition traces the evolution of art through the view of 12 key contemporary artists, who have undertaken racial, cultural and gender differences over the last 4 decades. The artists in this show all emerged within the context of these radical transformations and represent a cross section of gay, straight, male and female artists from different racial and cultural backgrounds. Carolee Schneemann, Betty Tompkins, Marilyn Minter, Thomas Lanigan Schmidt, and Rob Pruitt & Jack Early, are artists whose radical works in the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s shocked the art world enough to cause destruction to their lives and careers, while simultaneously urging their contemporaries and a new generation of artists like Sean Landers, Cary Liebowitz, Tony Oursler, Mickalene Thomas, Simone Leigh, Christopher Winter and Monica Cook to take on controversial cultural issues. All of the works in this show embrace a visual language redefining beauty through highly charged objects and images and help elucidate why so many facets of our identities are formed by imposed stereotypes, distorted imagery and oppressive histories. Through the exploration of oppressive power dynamics, we are invited to examine our own complex relationships to those systems.
This exhibition is curated by Dara Schaefer; architect and curator. With a focus on integration of art and architecture, she specializes in contemporary and emerging artists. She is the founder of Wonderground Studios, which exhibits emerging art in a salon setting, while raising funds for Kids with Cancer.
MARILYN MINTER (b. 1948) tackled the subject of hardcore porn in 1989 by asking the question: Does the meaning of porn change when women own the production? She felt that nobody has “politically correct” fantasies and wanted to give women back their sexual identity “I was really this pro-sex feminist…” but there was a huge backlash. “My New York dealer shut my show down a week early… I was in group shows, and then all of a sudden I wasn’t in them anymore... I think the reason was because I was considered a traitor to feminism…” Minter wasn’t “rediscovered” until the Whitney Biennial of 2006, where she was lauded for her painting showing the seedy side of glamour.
THOMAS LANIGAN-SCHMIDT (b. 1948) an openly gay artist, was part of the 1963 Stonewall riots in Greenwich Village, a seminal moment in gay history. His art explored catholic iconography alongside sexuality explicit and gay motifs embracing kitsch and intentionally tacky modalities using common materials like tinsel, foil, cellophane, saran wrap and glitter. During an era where minimalism was the vogue, his art was never really taken seriously. He is now widely considered to have influenced a new wave of artists.
CAROLEE SCHNEEMANN’s (b.1939) focus was on the separation between eroticism and the politics of gender. In 1975, she performed Interior Scroll where she undressed, got on a table, outlined her body with dark paint. She would take "action poses", similar to those in figure drawing classes, while reading from her book “Cézanne, She Was a Great Painter.” Following this, she dropped the book and slowly extracted from her vagina a scroll from which she read. Art critic Robert C. Morgan states that it is necessary to acknowledge the period during which Interior Scroll was produced in order to understand it. He argues that by placing the source of artistic creativity at the female genitals, Schneemann is changing the masculine overtones of minimalist art and conceptual art into a feminist exploration of her body.
ROBERT “ROB” PRUITT (b. 1964) and JACK EARLY were an openly gay couple who moved to New York in the ‘80s, at the height of the exploding art market. Their 1990 solo show at 303 Gallery called “Artwork for Teenage Boys.” was a readymade accumulation of beer cans, head shop stickers, heavy-metal idol posters and iron-on motorcycle logos. Their ironic subversion criticized both American youth and commercial culture gained them enough acclaim to secure a show at Leo Castelli in 1992. Their exhibit “Red, Black, Green, Red, White and Blue,” of mass-market posters of black celebrities and naked women — athletes, entertainers and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. — were mounted on obelisk-shaped posts inside a paint splattered gallery lined with gold foil. Their examination of the kitsch manufactured for African American consumption was critically lambasted by the New York Times’ Michael Kimmelman.
BETTY TOMPKINS (b. 1945) The large scale photorealistic paintings of heterosexual intercourse which Betty Tompkins made between 1969 and 1974 were practically unknown when they were exhibited together for the first time in New York in 2002. Knowledge of Tompkins’ paintings immediately broadened the repertoire of first generation feminist-identified imagery. More significantly, their materialization made manifest an unacknowledged precursor to contemporary involvement with explicit sexual and transgressive imagery.
CARY LEIBOWITZ AKA CANDYASS (b. 1963), is a “connoisseur of all things gaudy, queer, Jewish, and beautiful.” He makes his work in the form of schlocky and tacky knick-knacks. He inscribes mundane objects such as teddy bears, frisbees, baseball bats, pennants, rain ponchos, shopping bags, buttons, trashcans, wallpaper, coffee mugs and T-shirts with his expressions of doubt and self-loathing. He turns stereotypes on their ass and back again. Leibowitz almost courts failure. Rich, layered ideas are tossed off pre-maturely as two-bit one-liners, but the sentiments resonate unexpectedly and linger long.