Carpenter Center for the Visual Arts Publications


Tony Cokes – If UR Reading This It’s 2 Late: Vol. 1-3

Published on the occasion of Tony Cokes’s solo exhibitions across Goldsmiths CCA, Carpenter Center for the Visual Arts, Harvard University and ARGOS centre for audiovisual arts, Brussels, Tony Cokes – If UR Reading This It’s 2 Late: Vol. 1-3 is the first monograph on Cokes’ practice, and creates a visual cartography of a body work that spans twenty years. It features four critical pathways into Cokes’s decades-long practice, with an introduction by the exhibition’s curators, Dan Byers, Sarah McCrory and Niels Van Tomme, and essays contributed by Christoph Cox, Denise Ferreira da Silva, Sohrab Mohebbi, and a dialog between Cokes and artist Kerry Tribe. Tony Cokes’s work deals with mediation and distribution, and as such, this book becomes another conduit for the dissemination of theory, critique, and counter-narrative – a process that he so powerfully engages in as an artist.

Tony Cokes – If UR Reading This It’s 2 Late: Vol. 1-3 provides an opportunity to see a broad range of powerful artworks made by Cokes since the 1990s, alongside two newly commissioned films. Cokes’ video works are eviscerating critiques and affective art works, bringing together color theory, sound, music, and texts quoting a polyphony of voices such as Louis Althusser, Malcolm X, David Bowie, Public Enemy and Donald Trump. Meeting political and social commentary with cultural theory and a critique of capitalism, Cokes’ films viscerally confront the social condition, as well as the specific prejudices and threats suffered by black subjects. Recent works range across minimal techno, the Bush administration’s use of color to engender a perpetual culture of fear, and music used to torture detainees during the so-called ‘war on terror’. 

Hardcover
122 pages
9.4 in x 11.8
ISBN: 9781912685523
Designer: Scott King
Publisher: Goldsmiths Press

Tony Cokes – If UR Reading This It’s 2 Late: Vol. 1-3  is available for purchase at the Carpenter Center Bookshop. 


 

Anna Oppermann: Drawings

Published on the occasion of her first solo show in the United States in twenty years, Anna Oppermann: Drawings surveys the early drawings of this underrecognized German artist. Co-published with Inventory Press, this book is the first on Oppermann produced in the United States and features a number of new texts on her work by Connie Butler, Chief Curator, Hammer Museum, UCLA; Meta Marina Beeck, Assistant Curator, Kunsthalle Bielefeld; and a conversation between Carpenter Center director Dan Byers and Ute Vorkoeper, Curator, Anna Oppermann Estate.

Beginning in the mid-1960s through the early ‘70s, Oppermann (1940–1993), best known for her immersive installations, created an astonishing series of surreal drawings that uniquely explode the private space of the home, a traditionally feminine sphere.

These early drawings contribute to a feminist re-centering of such spaces associated with women, casting everyday objects as symbolic, consequential protagonists: houseplants sprawl to take over the picture plane, windows and mirrors provide views into other worlds, and tables display drawings that open out into new domestic scenes.

By placing her own body—her knees, arms, the back of her head—as reference points in the work, Oppermann coaxes the viewer to take on her subjectivity and perspective, emphasizing the gendered realms of the home and the relationships that we form both within and to our private spaces.

Softcover
112 pages
8.5 x 13.5 inches
ISBN: 978-1-941753-32-3
Designer: Chad Kloepfer
Publisher: Inventory Press

Anna Oppermann: Drawings is available for purchase at the Carpenter Center Bookshop. 


 

Liz Magor: BLOWOUT

In 2018, the Carpenter Center for the Visual Arts and Renaissance Society at the University of Chicago co-organized an exhibition of a newly commissioned body of work by the Canadian artist Liz Magor. The accompanying publication, Liz Magor: BLOWOUT, is the artist’s first US catalog in ten years, and it features thorough photographic documentation of the new work, commissioned texts by Sheila Heti and Mitch Speed, and a conversation between the artist and curators Dan Byers Solveig Øvstebø.

For more than four decades, Liz Magor’s practice has quietly dramatized the relationships that develop among objects, and she describes this body of work as “a collection of tiny and intense narratives.” Each written contribution responds in its own way to Magor’s new installations, which feature altered stuffed toys, bits of paper, and rat skins—sculptural “agents”—suspended in transparent Mylar box forms, and thirty pairs of secondhand shoes each displayed within its own box amidst elaborate embellishments.

Hardcover
136 pages
10 x 8 inches
ISBN: 978-0-941548-78-6
Designer: James Goggin and Shan James, Practise
Publisher: University of Chicago Press.

Liz Magor: BLOWOUT  is available for purchase at the Carpenter Center Bookshop. 


 

Martin Beck: An Organized System of Instructions

Martin Beck’s exhibition Program at the Carpenter Center for the Visual Arts manifested through a sequence of interventions, installations, events, and displays that drew upon the exhibition histories and academic pursuits housed in the famed 1963 Le Corbusier building at Harvard University. The sequence of explorative strategies—each node of which Beck considered an “episode”—lent particular attention to the founding aspirations of the Carpenter Center, which sought to cultivate its position as simultaneously an iconic modernist building, school, and exhibition venue. Beck performed and critically reflected on the kinds of activity an institution uses to build, organize, and engage with its audiences, and, in the case of the Carpenter Center, how it performed a kind of exhibition of education in both its pedagogical framework and its public outreach. From its physical infrastructure to its communication strategies, from its foundational curricular principles to visitor tallies, from building usage to welcome rituals, Program, which transpired for two years, examined institutional behaviors that collectively form institutional identity and integrate audiences into a cohesive program of public address.

This book, An Organized System of Instructions, is both a document of Program and an extension of the exhibition. It is available for purchase at the Carpenter Center Bookshop

Contributions by Martin Beck, Keller Easterling, James Goggin, Alex Kitnick, James Voorhies.
Edited by James Voorhies

Published by Carpenter Center for the Visual Arts and Sternberg Press, 2017
Designed by James Goggin, Practise


 

What Ever Happened to New Institutionalism?

New Institutionalism, a mode of curating that originated in Europe in the 1990s, evolved from the legacy of international curator Harald Szeemann, the relational art advanced by French critic and theorist Nicolas Bourriaud, and other influential factors of the time. New Institutionalism’s dispersed and varied approaches to curating sought to reconfigure the art institution from within, reshaping it into an active, democratic, open, and egalitarian public sphere. These approaches posed other possibilities and futures for institutions and exhibitions, challenging the consensual conception, production, and distribution of art. Practitioners engaged the art institution with renewed confidence by imbuing it with the potential for new aesthetic experiences and different relationships among artists, institutions, and spectators beyond engrained modernist ideologies. Working in these new modes, the art institution could become a site of fluidity, unpredictability, and risk.

What Ever Happened to New Institutionalism? reflects upon the aspirations of these curatorial strategies and assesses their critical efficacy today within the landscape of contemporary art and globalized culture. The first in a series of readers examining changing characteristics of art institutions, this publication thinks through New Institutionalism by bringing together facsimiles of seminal texts, new critical essays, a history of trends and practices, and commissioned artist projects and contributions. These are complemented by documentation from the inaugural year of programming at the Carpenter Center for the Visual Arts at Harvard University focused on reimagining CCVA as a twenty-first-century institution.

Artists and Writers

Martin Beck, Nina Beier, Silvia Benedito, Ulla von Brandenburg, Katarina Burin, Simon Dybbroe Møller, Jonas Ekeberg, Alex Farquharson, Fernanda Fragateiro, Simon Fujiwara, James Goggin, Tone Hansen, Owen Hatherley, Henriette Huldisch, Damon Krukowski, Maria Lind, Markus Miessen, Eline Mugaas, Elise Storsveen, Gloria Sutton, James Voorhies, Naomi Yang, Amy Yoes

Edited by James Voorhies

Published by Carpenter Center for the Visual Arts and Sternberg Press, 2016
Designed by James Goggin of Practise
192 pages; 9.5 x 6.625 inches

What Ever Happened to New Institutionalism? is available for purchase at the Carpenter Center Bookshop