On View from June 21 - December 8, 2018Read More
The Shelley & Donald Rubin Foundation is pleased to present The Schoolhouse and the Bus: Mobility, Pedagogy and Engagement, an exhibition pairing, for the first time, work by two leading artists of the social practice movement, Pablo Helguera and Suzanne Lacy. On view at The 8th Floor from February 9 through May 12, 2018, The Schoolhouse and the Bus highlights a touchstone work by each of the artists executed in the Americas but never shown in their entirety in the United States - Helguera's School of Panamerican Unrest (2006) and Lacy's Skin of Memory (1999), a collaboration with Pilar Riaño-Alcalá. Comprised of installation, collage, sculpture, ephemera, photography, video, as well as archival documentation, this exhibition serves to highlight overlapping themes in their works, which include immigration, pedagogy, violence, memory, and community organizing. The forthcoming publication The Schoolhouse and the Bus: Mobility, Pedagogy and Engagement, to be released later this spring, will feature interviews with the artists and key collaborators, as well as essays by Shannon Jackson, and the exhibition's co-curators Elyse A. Gonzales and Sara Reisman.
Lacy, based in Los Angeles, is among the first generation of artists who began making art founded on public participation, with the goal of empowerment or change in a community. Helguera, a Mexican artist based in New York City, represents the next generation of social practice artists influenced by Lacy’s works, writings, and teachings. This traveling exhibition was co-curated by Sara Reisman, Executive and Artistic Director of The 8th Floor/The Shelley & Donald Rubin Foundation, and Elyse A. Gonzales, Assistant Director/Curator of Exhibitions, Art Design & Architecture Museum at the University of California Santa Barbara. The first presentation of The Schoolhouse and the Bus at the AD&A Museum was part of Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA where it was an official participant in the Getty’s Pacific Standard Time initiative.
The Schoolhouse and the Bus: Mobility, Pedagogy and Engagement has been generously funded by Marcia and John Mike Cohen, The Shelley & Donald Rubin Foundation, and Eva and Yoel Haller. In-kind support has been provided by Neil Sherman, Industrial Metal Supply.
Image: Left: Suzanne Lacy and Pilar Riaño-Alcalá, Skin of Memory Revisited, 2011. Courtesy of the artist.
Right: Pablo Helguera, The School of Panamerican Unrest, 2006. Courtesy of the artist.
The Shelley & Donald Rubin Foundation is pleased to present Elia Alba's The Supper Club, a solo exhibition focused on racial politics and visual culture, on view from September 21, 2017 through January 13, 2018, at The 8th Floor. Curated by Sara Reisman, Executive and Artistic Director of The Shelley & Donald Rubin Foundation, The Supper Club is comprised of three components: an ongoing series of socially-engaged dinners, an exhibition of 60 photographic portraits of the artists who participated in the dinner conversations, and a book scheduled for publication in 2018.
The project began in the summer of 2012 with Elia Alba photographing a group of artists of color: David Antonio Cruz, LaToya Ruby Frazier, Las Hermanas Iglesias (Lisa and Janelle Iglesias), Lina Puerta, and Mickalene Thomas. These were followed by a series of dinner conversations that engaged fifty artists of color to "give voice" to members of Alba's artist community. There have since been 25 dinners that have explored themes like Baltimore, Race, and Identity (in honor of Freddy Gray); the 2016 shootings in Orlando and the need for sanctuary spaces; Black Female Subjectivity; Black Male Subjectivity; and Racial Subjugation in Latin American History. The series of portraits of the dinner guests, at the core of the exhibition, were inspired by Vanity Fair magazine's annual "Hollywood Issue" and feature the guests in locations and costumes that capture their unique voices, transforming their identities into iconic images.
Image: Elia Alba, The Thespian (Wanda Raimundi-Ortiz), 2014. Archival pigment print.
VOICE = SURVIVAL, an exhibition curated by Claudia Maria Carrera and Adrian Geraldo Saldaña for Visual AIDS, examines voice as a medium and a metaphor used by artists and activists confronting oppression amid the ongoing HIV/AIDS epidemic. The multidisciplinary exhibition features work and archival materials by ACT UP, Jordan Arseneault and PosterVirus, yann beauvais, Mykki Blanco and Adinah Dancyger, Chloe Dzubilo, Gran Fury, Andrea Geyer and Sharon Hayes, Guillermo Gómez-Peña and Gustavo Vazquez, Shan Kelley, Audre Lorde, Donald Moffett, Pat Parker, Bob Rafsky, Kameelah Janan Rasheed, Marlon Riggs, LJ Roberts, James Romberger and Marguerite Van Cook, Vito Russo, Kiki Smith, Ultra-red, Rosa von Praunheim, and David Wojnarowicz. The exhibition will be on view from June 15 through August 11, 2017 at The 8th Floor.
Claudia Maria Carrera is a doctoral student and graduate instructor in the Department of Music at NYU working in sound studies, media studies, and performance studies. The exhibition VOICE = SURVIVAL grew out of her dissertation research, which examines the mobilization of the voice as a medium and a metaphor in the early years of the NYC AIDS crisis as a queer survival practice. At NYU, Carrera has co-curated the Music Department Colloquium Series and has served as a shop steward and unit representative for GSOC-UAW 2110, the first graduate employee union at a private university in the U.S. She has also worked as a stage director for theater and opera, including as a Resident Artist Director for the Opera Theater of Pittsburgh, and has written about music, arts, and culture for Capital NY and for the Tanglewood Music Festival, where she served as a Publications Fellow. Carrera lives in Astoria, Queens and holds degrees from NYU and Princeton University.
Adrian Geraldo Saldaña curated numerous exhibitions and public programs while working at the Abrons Arts Center of Henry Street Settlement and a Project Booth at NADA New York 2014. He served as a Fellow in NYFA's Emerging Leaders Boot Camp and a Prevention Justice Fellow in the Community HIV/AIDS Mobilization Project (CHAMP). Saldaña has also worked at the Streetwork Project LES, a needle exchange program serving homeless and street-based youth, and the Harm Reduction Coalition, a national organization founded by needle exchange providers, advocates and drug users. He was a member of Queer Fist, a radical queer collective formed to disrupt the 2004 Republican National Convention in New York City. He holds a Master of Public Administration from the NYU Wagner School of Public Service. Originally from Houston, TX, Saldaña lives in Brooklyn, NY.
Visual AIDS is the only contemporary arts organization fully committed to HIV prevention and AIDS awareness through producing and presenting visual art projects, while supporting artists living with HIV/AIDS. Visual AIDS is committed to preserving and honoring the work of artists with HIV/AIDS and the artistic contributions of the AIDS movement. Capturing critical and audience acclaim, Visual AIDS' art exhibitions examine the deep cultural history of the AIDS crisis and contemporary issues around HIV/AIDS today. Exhibitions are organized by guest curators and feature a range of emerging, international and HIV+ artists. VOICE = SURVIVAL was selected for The Shelley & Donald Rubin Foundation exhibition from a competitive call for proposals.
Image: LJ Roberts, Portrait of Deb from 1988-199?, detail, 2012-13. Courtesy of the artist.
The Intersectional Self, an exhibition centered on gender and feminist politics in the age of trans-identity, features the work of artists Janine Antoni, Andrea Bowers, Patty Chang, Abigail DeVille, Ana Mendieta, Catherine Opie, Adrian Piper, Genesis Breyer P-Orridge, Cindy Sherman, and Martha Wilson. The exhibition both explores how notions of femininity (and alternately, masculinity) have shifted in the context of newly defined gender identities and how family structures have been reimagined and reshaped through relatively recent advances in reproductive medicine and evolving gender roles. Ultimately, The Intersectional Self examines how feminism in its many forms has changed the world as we know it. The exhibition will have be on view from February 9 through May 19, 2017 at The 8th Floor.
Image: Martha Wilson, Thump, 2016. Courtesy of the artist and PPOW Gallery.
Enacting Stillness is an exhibition that considers the political potential of slowing down and stopping as forms of resistance, protest, and refusal. An international group of artists in the exhibition engage in practices that challenge and upend our expectations for the continuity of performative compositions, lines of movement, and thought. Working with the disciplines of choreography, theater, moving image, sculpture and performance, the exhibition presents a multivalent reflection on political histories from the Americas to Europe and Asia, with projects that employ a range of gestures and time-based practices to question what unexpected ruptures like meditation, contemplation, rest, and the reversing of movement and time might mean to both the artist and the viewer. The exhibition will be on view September 21, 2016 to January 13, 2017 at The 8th Floor, the exhibition and programming space for The Shelley & Donald Rubin Foundation, located at 17 West 17th Street, New York City.
Enacting Stillness features artists John Ahearn, Rehan Ansari, Nicolás Dumit Estévez, Brendan Fernandes, Alicia Grullón, Yoko Inoue, Joan Jonas, Claudia Joskowicz, Kirsten Justesen, Kimsooja, Carlos Martiel, Bruce Nauman, Clifford Owens, Kameelah Janan Rasheed, Emily Roysdon, and Roman Štětina. Together, the artists in this exhibition reveal the parallel connections between art and political engagement, between stillness and activation. Each of the artists works with an economy of means to test the limits of performance - for the performer, the viewer, and the participant - provoking us to question how our own positions, whether still or in motion, connect to larger social and political concerns.
Image: Bruce Nauman, Dance or Exercise on the Perimeter of a Square (Square Dance), 1967-68. Courtesy Electronic Arts Intermix (EAI), New York.
In the Power of Your Care is an exhibition about health and health care as a human right, and the interdependencies of care in our culture, from personal relationships to government policy. Addressing issues such as the politics of institutionalized care in hospitals and military detention centers, the FDA’s ban on blood donations from gay and bisexual men, and the challenges posed by medical treatments of cancer and HIV, In the Power of Your Care proposes that health care as a human right can be upheld through community-based efforts and policy change. The exhibition will be on view April 19 to August 12, 2016 at The 8th Floor, the exhibition and programming space for The Shelley & Donald Rubin Foundation, located at 17 West 17th Street, New York City.
In the Power of Your Care features artists caraballo-farman, Jordan Eagles, Pepe Espaliú, Rajkamal Kahlon, Simone Leigh, Ana Mendieta, Mladen Miljanovic, Frank Moore, Carmen Papalia, Hunter Reynolds, Jo Spence, Andreas Sterzing, Sunaura Taylor, Fred Tomaselli, Hannah Wilke, David Wojnarowicz, and Jody Wood, who courageously question how health is defined in our culture, highlighting blind spots in the public policy surrounding care. A common theme connecting many of the works in the exhibition is the unstable definition of physical and mental health, its relationship to beauty, and the illusive nature of being cured.
Andreas Sterzing, David Wojnarowicz (Silence=Death), 1989/2014. Courtesy of P.P.O.W. Gallery, New York.
When Artists Speak Truth... is conceived as a multi-vocal dialogue about how artists contribute to specific political transformation - from Soviet Russia to the U.S. presidential elections - and have helped shape an expanded and more nuanced understanding of human rights and social justice over several decades.
Drawing from multiple generations and artistic sensibilities, featured artists include ACT UP, Shimon Attie, Luis Balaguer, Félix Beltrán, Adigio Benitez, Andrea Bowers, Tania Bruguera, Matthew Buckingham, Nancy Burson, Yoan Capote, Mel Chin, Emory Douglas, Sam Durant, Dyke Action Machine!, Shepard Fairey, Charles Gaines, Rico Gatson, Guerrilla Girls, Edgar Heap of Birds, Samuel Jablon, Sister Corita Kent, Hew Locke, Raul Martínez, René Mederos, Yoko Ono and John Lennon, Adrian Piper, Favianna Rodriguez, Alfredo Rostgaard, Dread Scott, Andres Serrano, Felix Gonzalez-Torres, and Jaro Varga.
From the art world to the real world, artists in the exhibition express a multitude of messages that collectively illustrate what happens when culture is used as will to power. Ranging from political posters, interactive installations, painting, drawing, and pedagogical display, to photography and sculpture, the selected works both enact and question the role artists play in communicating the issues affecting our broader culture.
When Artists Speak Truth... explores the ways in which artists engage in political messaging, borrowing methods from mass communication such as poster campaigns, graffiti, political portraiture and satire, public interventions, and varied forms of amplification, which demonstrate art's ability to transmit and facilitate protest and critique. These forms of objection and commentary are uniquely possible in the context of art and the work of many artists in the exhibition has a continuing presence and widespread impact on public life.
Image: Andrea Bowers, Workers’ Rights Posters, 2013. Image courtesy of the artist and Andrew Kreps Gallery, New York.
Between History and the Body looks closely at the ways in which cultural identity is defined, how it is used as a force of exclusion, and how it works as a unifying and transformative energy among artists of diverse cultural backgrounds.
Between History and the Body features artists Elia Alba, Firelei Baez, Nick Cave, Jean-Ulrick Désert, Nicolás Dumit Estévez, Brendan Fernandes, Jeffrey Gibson, Shaun Leonardo, Ana Mendieta, Paul Anthony Smith, Chungpo Tsering and Saya Woolfalk, who work across a variety of media including sculpture, painting, photography, performance and video. Together, these artists generate dialogue on cultural identity and history through representation of the body as an active force in ritual, both historic and imagined, and as an agent in the production of relics that communicate narratives of the Americas, Europe, Asia and Africa.
Image: Brendan Fernandes, As One I, 2015.
The 8th Floor is pleased to announce the upcoming exhibition Mobility and Its Discontents, featuring artwork by Jane Benson, Alberto Borea, Ángel Delgado, Javier Téllez, Lan Tuazon, and Jorge Wellesley. The exhibition examines the dynamics of mobility and its physical, psychological, socio-economic, geographic, and political boundaries. Mobility and Its Discontents signals a shift in the Shelley & Donald Rubin Foundation’s mission, now focused on broadening public access to artistic and cultural activities in New York City. Featuring artists from Venezuela, Peru, the United Kingdom, and the Philippines, alongside two Cuban artists from the Shelley and Donald Rubin Private Collection, the show brings the Rubins’ dedication to contemporary Cuban art into conversation with a wider artistic community, reflecting the diversity of New York’s cultural life. The works in the exhibition convey experiences of separation, isolation, and distance, experienced on both a local and global scale, in sites such as the United States-Mexico border, New York City’s financial district, and Havana, Cuba. Collectively, they contribute to a dialogue about the barriers encountered in contemporary life, suggesting possibilities for transformation enabled by connectivity and increased access.
Aguas Malas features new work by New York-based Cuban artist Leslie Sardinias. Through his mixed media works, Sardinias creates an imagined world located within the 90-mile expanse between Cuba and the United States, and pays tribute to those who traveled those troubled waters and risk everything in pursuit of a better future. The exhibition is also a poetic tribute to the sea, simultaneously an archetype of hope and opportunity, as well as isolation and despair.
With respect to Cuba and the art currently being created there and exported all around the world (even to the United States), what gives Cuban art its current indisputable cache? Is it unique, exceptional, one of a kind (perhaps like the island’s music or even its politics?), or is it just another (lesser?) competitor in the multi-billion dollar international art market, its reputation and prices ironically enhanced because of (and thanks to?) our unending, idiosyncratic, and anachronistic embargo?
This first-ever US solo exhibition of new work by the upstart three-man art collective known as Stainless (Alejandro Piñeiro Bello, José Gabriel Capaz, and Roberto Fabelo Hung) is entitled One of A Kind precisely with the aim of playfully and pointedly invoking these kinds of questions and reflections among the public. At the same time, the art in this uniquely immersive exhibition seeks to blur if not erase completely the line that separates the artists from their public, inviting viewers to become co-creators of a joint artistic and conceptual experience or “performance” that subverts the idea of what is unique or precious.
- Ted Henken, August 2014
Drapetomanía explores the "forgotten" visual arts and cultural movement of Grupo Antillano, which thrived between 1978 and 1983. The group emphasized the centrality of African practices in Cuban national culture. The exhibition features works by artists who belonged to Grupo Antillano as well as contemporary Cuban artists.
Curated by Alejandro de la Fuente, Robert Woods Bliss Professor of Latin American History and Economics and Professor of African and African and African American Studies at Harvard University, this exhibition is a collaboration between The 8th Floor and the Afro-Latin American Research Institute at the Hutchins Center for African and African American Research at Harvard University, with support from the Ford Foundation and the Christopher Reynolds Foundation.
Groupo Antillano: Esteban Ayala, Rogelio Rodríguez Cobas, Manuel Couceiro, Herminio Escalona, Ever Fonseca, Ramón Haití, Adelaida Herrera, Arnaldo Rodríguez Larrinaga, Oscar Rodríguez Lasseria, Alberto Lescay, Manuel Mendive, Leonel Morales, Clara Morera, Miguel Ocejo, Rafael Queneditt, and Julia Valdés
Additional Artists: Belkis Ayón, Bedia, Choco, Diago, Esquivel, Marta María Pérez Bravo, Montalván, Olazábal, Douglas Pérez, Peña, Elio Rodríguez, and Leandro Soto
The 8th Floor is pleased to present Stealing Base: Cuba at Bat, a visual exploration of baseball through the varied perspectives of Cuban-born artists. The exhibition includes installation, video, and painting by established and emerging artists Jeosviel Abstengo-Chaviano, Alejandro Aguilera, Carlos Cárdenas, Arístedes Hernández (ARES), Yunier Hernández Figueroa, Rafael Lopez-Ramos, Duniesky Martín, Alfredo Manzo, Frank Martínez, Bernardo Navarro, Reynier Leyva Novo, Juan Padrón, Douglas Pérez, Arles del Río, Antuan Rodriguez, Perfecto Romero, Reynerio Tamayo, José Toirac, Harold Vázquez Ley, and Villalvilla. The exhibition features work by artists never before seen in the New York.
“Baseball is today, without distinction of classes, age and sex, the preferred diversion of all [Cubans].” - El Sport (Havana), Sept. 2, 1886
The arrival of baseball in Cuba coincided with the emergence of the independence movement in 1868. The sport quickly became a collective emblem of national identity. A love for baseball connects Cubans across race, religion, politics and geography. Pop-flys, stolen bases, and home runs provide meaningful and accessible imagery for Cuban artists. Responding not only to the sport as national pastime, their work has further sought to convey larger complexities within Cuban society. Stealing Base presents the work of a diverse range of contemporary artists, living in Cuba and in the US, who have found potency in the imagery of the sport.
Stealing Base: Cuba at Bat is a result of a continued collaboration between Orlando Hernández, Havana-based curator, and Rachel Weingeist, Director and Curator of The 8th Floor, accompanied by an exhibition essay from Hernández. A series of events celebrating baseball and Cuban culture will take place throughout the summer, including film screenings and artists’ talks. To inaugurate the exhibition, an artists’ reception will be held on Thursday, June 6th from 6-8pm.
Cuban visual artists in the last few decades have fixed on a group of icons to represent their social, cultural, and human collective: the map of Cuba, the Cuban flag, royal palm trees, makeshift boats and rafts of emigration, El Morro, the Malecón, the ruins of Havana, José Martí, Che, La Caridad del Cobre, San Lázaro, and the exoticized objects and ritualistic symbols of the Afro-Cuban religions of Palo Monte, Abakuá, Santería and Ifá, among others.
As a new era approaches, will Cuban cultural identity as depicted be an old-fashioned thing of the past? Waiting for the Idols to Fall considers how Cuban artists represent “lo cubano” without resorting to some variation on the same old icons. It’s too early to know in this transitional period if there will be a need to represent, reaffirm, or cling to something in order to continue being Cuban.
Do we know our country? Our city? As children, our impressions are etched from experience - we learn “by heart” the profile of our coasts, the sinuous lines of our rivers, the layout of our streets and avenues, the façades of our buildings. The familiarity of our journey is formed from consistency. And just as a detour reveals a new path, Ibrahim Miranda and Douglas Pérez explode our naïve confidence and divert our gaze to unusual geographies.
Thomas More’s Utopia was a work of satire, contrasting the corruption of English society with the marvels that took place on his imaginary island. Flooding our eyes with overflowing depictions of their native city and country, Ibrahim Miranda and Douglas Pérez offer a previously unimagined Havana, Cuba. Miranda blends cultural imagery such as the pottery used in Afro-Cuban rituals and classical Greek sculpture while Perez’s frenetic cityscapes include cranes amidst the Havana skyline, an indication of a new, yet stalled economy. In essence, these cultural geographies depict a revised historical account of the island and the uncertainty of its future.
The 8th Floor is pleased to present the first solo exhibition in New York of Cuban-born artist, Armando Mariño, entitled Recent Paintings from the Year of the Protester. This exhibition features over twenty new paintings and works on paper, including a 13-foot diptych among other large-scale paintings.
For this solo exhibition, Armando Mariño employs an expanded visual vocabulary that departs from his former style, to depict the global upheaval of 2011. Dynamic, anonymous figures engaged in acts that reference real footage are placed in rich, fluorescent and abstracted backdrops. Faces, obscured by either masks or the painter’s hand, correspond to Mariño’s sublimation of the source material.
Mariño’s canvases elevate the mass protests, change, and tumult of the last year to an epic level by confronting the aestheticization of violence. Familiar references are distorted to evoke the feeling of an altered account of events, bringing awareness to our increased and normalized intake of aggressive media. This domestication of violence implies an ethical dilemma that confronts the competence and responsibility of painting as a medium. In the words of the artist, “Once again, I am playing with the symbolic status of painting and its capacity to, at once, monumentalize and trivialize human drama.”
Recipient of the 2011 Pollock Krasner Foundation award, Armando Mariño was born in Santiago de Cuba and educated in Havana, Cuba and Amsterdam, Netherlands. He has exhibited extensively in museums and galleries including the Mattress Factory, El Museo del Barrio, Katonah Art Museum, Johannesburg Art Gallery, and the Wifredo Lam Center for Contemporary Art, among others. In 2010, Mariño held a residency at the International Studio and Curatorial Program (ISCP) and in 2011 was Artist-in-Residence at the Bronx Museum. His work is held globally in numerous public and private collections. This is his first solo exhibition in New York. He recently relocated to New York, where he lives and works.
A historic exhibition featuring photos of The Associated Press (AP) and the Korean Central News Agency will offer a rare glimpse into a nation long shrouded from view.
The exhibition will open on the 100th anniversary of the birth of Kim Il Sung, the founder of the communist state, and follows AP's recent opening of a bureau in Pyongyang, North Korea, the first to be established by a western news organization.
Unique access to the Korea Central News Agency (KCNA) photo archive will offer images illuminating the history of the DPRK, including visits by dignitaries over the years, landscapes, culture, and everyday life.
In addition, AP images, both historic and contemporary, will show the country through the eyes of non-Korean photojournalists, including AP Chief Asia Photographer David Guttenfelder, who has made numerous reporting trips to North Korea since 2010.
Photos taken by KCNA photographers who participated in a joint workshop led by AP instructors last October will also be in the mix.
The 8th Floor is pleased to announce Adjoining Islands: The Cuban Pavilion in Manhattan, which features Alexandre Arrechea, Yoan Capote, Duvier del Dago and Eduardo Ponjuán, who are participating in the Cuban Pavilion at the 2011 Venice Biennale.
Although contemporary Cuban artists have participated in this prestigious international exhibition since the mid 1980s, this summer marks Cuba’s first official participation as a nation. Celebrating these artists in New York affirms Cuba’s important place in international contemporary art and supports the connection forged by the Cuban Pavilion on the island of San Servolo with artists from around the world.
Adjoining Islands presents recent work including sculpture, painting, video, works on paper, and a site-specific installation by Duvier del Dago.
The 8th Floor, in collaboration with Florentine Films, the estate of William Segal, and Cynthia Reeves Projects, is pleased to present paintings and works on paper by American painter and philosopher William Segal. The exhibition In the Marketplace will include the short film In the Marketplace by acclaimed documentarian Ken Burns. The film focuses on Segal’s work, which was deeply inspired by Zen buddhism.