Paul Brach Lecture Series

Marnie Weber

Shifting between media, Marnie Weber’s multifaceted, interconnected practice encompasses performance, film, video, sculpture, collage, music and costume. Blending the carnivalesque, the bacchanalian, the mystical and the absurd, Weber creates uncanny worlds that exist in a realm between fantasy and reality, and invite viewers to an exploration of the subconscious. 

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EJ Hill & Lauren Halsey

Lauren Halsey builds fantasy sculptures and environments that remix ephemera she gathers with hyperreal nature, technicolors, outerspace and Funk. The works exist as spatial metaphors for optimism, self-determination and love. EJ Hill practices endurance-based performance and incorporates painting, sculpture, and writing to examine the many ways in which physical and ideological bodies may transcend their afflictions. 

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Elliot Reed

Elliot Reed is an LA based musician and performance artist and current nominee for the 2018 Rema Hort Mann Emerging Artist Grant. He has shown original work in venues across Los Angeles including The Hammer Museum, The LA Public Art Biennial, The Broad, Human Resources, PØST, The Box, Commonwealth & Council, University of Southern California, and OUE Skyspace. He has also shown work at Northwestern University, The Illinois Institute of Technology, University of Chicago, The Gene Siskel Film Center, and internationally in Paris, London, Tokyo, Osaka, and Mexico City. To date he has given visiting artist presentations at The School of The Art Institute of Chicago, Macalester College, and University of Minnesota. Elliot's work creates space for intimacy and play by parodying his personal history within the gallery. To date his output has included live performances, experimental pop music, dance, a video game, short films, poetry, and sculpture.  

 

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Samara Golden

Samara Golden was born in Michigan in 1973 and received her MFA from Columbia University in 2009. Her most recent project “The Meat Grinder’s Iron Clothes” was featured in the 2017 Whitney Biennial. Golden has had recent solo exhibitions at MoMA PS1, New York; YBCA, San Francisco; Night Gallery, Los Angeles; and CANADA, New York. Her work was included in the 2014 Hammer Biennial, and Room to Live at MOCA Los Angeles. 

 

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Jon Rafman

Jon Rafman (*1981 in Montreal, Canada) studied Philosophy and Literature at McGill University in Montreal and received an MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. His work examines the relationship between technology and subjectivity. Rafman's recent solo exhibitions include I Have Ten Thousand Compound Eyes and Each is Named Suffering, Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam (2016), Westfälischer Kunstverein, Münster (2016), Musée d'art Contemporain de Montréal (2015), and The Zabludowicz Collection, London (2015). 

 

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Barbara Imhoff

Barbara Imhof is an internationally active space architect, design researcher and educator. Her projects deal with spaceflight parameters such as with living with limited resources, minimal and transformable spaces, resource-conserving systems; all aspects imperative to sustainability.

Barbara Imhof is the co-founder and CEO of LIQUIFER Systems Group, an interdisciplinary team comprising engineers, architects, designers and scientists. Projects she has led for LIQUIFER include the design of the first transportable European space simulation habitat SHEE (Self-deployable Habitat for Extreme Environments), the design of sampling tools for human-robot collaboration in project Moonwalk. 

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Patricia Fernández Carcedo

Patricia Fernández Carcedo (b. 1980 in Burgos, Spain; lives and works in Los Angeles) studied at Saint Martins College of Art, University of California, Los Angeles, and received an MFA from California Institute of the Arts (2010). Fernández uses personal narrative, memory, omission and abstraction to transmit histories and build connection between people and places. She works primarily with painting, sculpture and archives in order to investigate the inaccuracy of inherited memories and the subjectivity of experience.

 

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Jim Shaw

The practice of American artist Jim Shaw (b. 1952, Midland, Michigan) spans a wide range of artistic media and visual imagery. Since the 1970s, Shaw has mined the detritus of American culture, finding inspiration for his artworks in comic books, pulp novels, rock albums, protest posters, thrift store paintings – his ever-growing collection of found artworks has been the subject of its own exhibition on several occasions – and advertisements. At the same time, Shaw has consistently turned to his own life and, in particular, his unconscious, as a source of artistic creativity. Providing a blend of the personal, the commonplace and the uncanny, Shaw’s works frequently place in dialogue images of friends and family members with world events, pop culture and alternate realities. Often unfolding in long-term, narrative cycles, the works contains systems of cross-references and repetitions, which rework similar symbols and motifs, allowing a story-like thread to be perceived.

 

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Jamillah James

Jamillah James is Curator at the Institute of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles (ICA LA). Previously, she was Assistant Curator at the Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, and organized exhibitions and programs for Art + Practice in Leimert Park. In Los Angeles, James has organized the first solo institutional presentations of artists Abigail DeVille, Sarah Cain, Simone Leigh, Alex Da Corte, Njideka Akunyili Crosby, and Charles Gaines. James has held curatorial positions at the Studio Museum in Harlem and Queens Museum, and has independently organized exhibitions, performances, and screenings throughout the US and Canada since 2004. 

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Leigh Ledare

Leigh Ledare pushes social systems to lay bare their underlying structures. His fundamentally collaborative projects depend on interpersonal negotiations and examine the dynamics that bind artist, subject, and viewer. CalArts will be screening a film Ledare directed in Chicago earlier this year titled The Task, which utilizes an experiential social-psychology method initially developed by London’s Tavistock Institute. The film unfolds over the course of an immersive three-day conference organized by Ledare in which a group of participants and a team of psychologists construct and analyze a social “ecosystem” whose task it is to study itself and its own unconscious dynamics. 

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Herb Alpert Visiting Artist: Amy Franceschini

Amy Franceschini is a contemporary American artist and designer. Her practice spans a broad range of media including drawing, sculpture, design, net art, public art and gardening. She was a 2010 Guggenheim Fellow.

 

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Angela Dufresne

Angela Dufresne is a painter, teacher and occasional writer who has shown her work in the U.S. and Europe since 1993. She has been the subject of 23 solo exhibitions and participated in over 100 group shows. Notable solo exhibitions were held at the Hammer Museum in Los Angeles, CA and Macalester College in Minneapolis, MI. Selected venues for group exhibitions include Greater New York 2005 at P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center in NY, The National Academy of Arts and Letters in NY, the RISD Museum in Providence, RI, the Kemper Museum in Kansas City, Brooklyn Academy of Music in NY, The University of Richmond Museum in Richman, VA, The Aldridge Museum in CT, Sarah Lawrence College in Yonkers, NY, the Rose Museum in Waltham, MA, Mills College in Oakland, CA, Minneapolis School of Art and Design, among others.

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Tehching Hsieh

Tehching Hsieh was born in 1950 in Nan-Chou, Taiwan. His father, Ching Hsieh, was an atheist and his mother, Su-Choung Hong, a devoted Christian. Hsieh dropped out of high school in 1967 and took up painting. After finishing his army service (1970-1973), Hsieh had his first solo show at the gallery of the American News Bureau in Taiwan. Shortly after this show, he stopped painting. In 1973, Hsieh made a performance action, Jump Piece, in which he broke both of his ankles. He was trained as a sailor, which he then used as a means to enter the United States. In July of 1974, Hsieh arrived at the port of a small town by the Delaware River near Philadelphia. He was an illegal immigrant for fourteen years until he was granted amnesty in the US in 1988.

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Gaylan Gerber

Gaylen Gerber’s practice has long been characterized as part of institutional critique and the realist tradition in the arts defined by an attitude of irony and skepticism towards various ideological tenets. Incorporating other artworks and artifacts into its realization, Gerber’s work during the last decade has increasingly focused on a series of Supports in which he’s moved what is normally perceived as the background out of its usual location and into the foreground by literally painting over the supporting artwork and artifact colors that are normally understood as neutral background. The painted surface combined with the original object constitutes the final artwork, called Support. The painted surface’s institutional quality continues to function as a background to everything around it even though the Support now has an individually recognizable form. The result is an inversion of established ideas of art that locates history within a particular context. 

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Alex Olson

Olson is known for her abstract paintings, which juxtapose patterns, shapes, textures, and colors to create disjointed visual and linguistic symbols.

Olson earned her bachelor’s degree from Harvard in 2001, and an M.F.A. from the California Institute of the Arts in 2008. Since then, she has shown work in group exhibitions at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art; the University of Michigan Museum of Art, Ann Arbor; the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis; the Hammer Museum in Los Angeles; the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago; Shane Campbell Gallery in Chicago; and Laura Bartlett Gallery in London. She is also repped by Shane Campbell and Laura Bartlett.

 

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Wizard Apprentice (Tieraney Carter)

U.R.L.G.U.R.L. was created by independent electronic music producer, motion graphics and live performance artist Wizard Apprentice. As a highly-sensitive introvert, her multimedia projects are strategies for energetically managing an overwhelming world. Her music is a combination of lyrical precision, minimalistic composition, and technically amateurish charm. She creates digitally-based media that takes advantage of accessible, user-friendly technology; allowing her to skip time consuming learning curves and get straight to focusing on inventing personalized yet highly relatable language for deeply subtle and internal experiences. She's not a gear-head, rather, a digital folk artist who vividly and simplistically expresses her inner world using resourcefulness and honesty. Her video work incorporates green screen graphics, digital puppetry, and minimalistic compositing to produce imagery that's cerebral, psychedelic, campy, and hypnotic. She combines song and video to create multimedia live performances that explore intimate emotional themes ranging from the challenges/triumphs of being an empath to overstimulation in the Internet Age. 

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Martha Friedman

Martha Friedman is a New York-based sculptor who works with solid and plastic materials to form, deform and test the boundaries of the physical world. Often building towering sculptures out of unstable materials, interjected with malleable elements, the works are infused with a sense of subverted ambition, precariousness, irony, and humor. Friedman’s recent works have included collaborations with choreographers and dancers Susan Marshall and Silas Riener, extending her work into a visceral and flexible dimension, exploring material sculpture, the human body, and the relationships that can exist between the two.

 

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Helen Molesworth

Helen Molesworth is the Chief Curator at The Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA), Los Angeles, where she recently curated the first US retrospective of the Brazilian artist Anna Maria Maiolino and the monographic survey Kerry James Marshall: Mastry. From 2010–2014 she was the Barbara Lee Chief Curator at the Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA) Boston, where she assembled one person exhibitions of artists Steve Locke, Catherine Opie, Josiah McElheny, and Amy Sillman, and the group exhibitions Leap Before You Look: Black Mountain College 1933–1957Dance/Draw, and This Will Have Been: Art, Love & Politics in the 1980's

 

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Bojana Cvejić

Bojana Cvejić's work spans philosophy, theater and education. She is author of several books in performance theory and philosophy (Choreographing Problems, Palgrave 2015, Public Sphere by Performance, with A. Vujanović, books 2012 etc. Drumming & RainA Choreographer’s Score (co-authored with A. T. De Keersmaeker, Mercatorfonds 2013.). She has collaborated as a dramaturg in a number of choreographies by X. Le Roy, Eszter Salamon, Mette Ingvartsen, Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker, C. De Smedt). As a co-founding member of TkH/Walking Theory editorial collective and performing arts theory magazine, Cvejić engages theoretical-artistic research projects, currently an investigation of performances of the self and transindividuality. In 2013, Cvejić curated the exhibition Danse-Guerre at Musée de la danse, Rennes. In 2014, she devised a choreography and lecture program titled Spatial Confessions for Tate Modern’s Turbine Hall. Cvejić is Associated Professor of Dance and Dance Theory in KHIO Oslo and Professor of Philosophy of Art at FMK, Singidunum University in Belgrade.

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Young Joon Kwak

Young Joon Kwak (b. 1984 in Queens, NY) is a LA-based multi-disciplinary artist. Kwak’s sculptures reimagine the function, material, and form of objects, in order to create spaces and scenarios that propose different ways of viewing and interpreting bodies as mutable and open-ended. She is the founder of Mutant Salon, a roving beauty salon/platform for experimental performance collaborations with her community of queer, trans, femme, POC artists and performers, and the lead performer in the electronic-dance-noise band Xina Xurner. Performances and exhibitions include: the Hammer Museum, The Broad, REDCAT, and ONE National LGBT Archives, Los Angeles; Regina Rex and Smack Mellon, Brooklyn; Southern Exposure, San Francisco; Museum of Contemporary Art, Denver; and Pavillon Vendôme Centre d’Art Contemporain, Clichy, France. Kwak was recently awarded the Art Matters Grant and the Rema Hort Mann Foundation’s Artist Community Engagement Grant. She received an MFA from the University of Southern California (2014), MA in Humanities from the University of Chicago (2010), and a BFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (2007).

 

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Artie Vierkant

Artie Vierkant (b. 1986, Brainerd, MN) studied Fine Arts at the University of Pennsylvania, and graduated with an MFA at the University of California. He now lives and works in New York. Vierkant makes art that is centred upon the importance of representation across media. This is evidenced throughout his practice, whether in the documentation or the process of creating his works. The interaction between physical and digital entities propagates debates related to both the development of art in a “post-internet” age and to its contemporaneous Intellectual Property rights.

 

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Jimena Sarno

Jimena Sarno is a multidisciplinary artist and organizer. She works across a range of media including installation, sound, video, text and sculpture. Born in Buenos Aires, Argentina and currently living in Los Angeles, her experience as a South American immigrant informs her practice. She is the organizer of analog dissident, a monthly discussion gathering that features work and work-in-progress by two invited artists. As an informal, open studio visit, analog dissident encourages intersectional approaches and is aimed at radical/immigrant/queer artists and thinkers to engage critically outside of traditional art institutions, school, gallery openings and most importantly, outside of social media; and resident alien, a free, short-term, project specific, need-based residency, for local and visiting underrepresented artists.


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Hank Willis Thomas

HANK WILLIS THOMAS is a conceptual artist working primarily with themes related to identity, history and popular culture. His work has been exhibited throughout the U.S. and abroad including, the International Center of Photography, Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, Musée du quai Branly, and the Cleveland Museum of Art. Thomas’ work is in numerous public collections including the Museum of Modern Art New York, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Brooklyn Museum, the High Museum of Art and the National Gallery of Art in Washington DC, among others. His collaborative projects include Question Bridge: Black Males, In Search Of The Truth (The Truth Booth), and For Freedoms which Thomas co-founded in 2016 as the first artist-run super PAC.

 

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Mara McCarthy

Mara McCarthy is a curator based in Los Angeles and owner of The Box. Since launching the gallery in 2007, McCarthy has curated an uncompromising program concentrating on radical artists, many of whose careers took off in the 1960s and ’70s. The gallery has hosted shows by influential artists such as Judith Bernstein and McCarthy’s father, Paul, but gives equal precedence to neglected figures. In 2012, McCarthy curated ‘The Historical Box’ for Hauser & Wirth, aiming to bring overlooked American artists before a wider audience.

 

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Saya Woolfalk

Saya Woolfalk (Japan, 1979) is a New York based artist who uses science fiction and fantasy to re-imagine the world in multiple dimensions. With the multi year projects No PlaceThe Empathics, and ChimaTEK, Woolfalk has created the world of the Empathics, a fictional race of women who are able to alter their genetic make-up and fuse with plants. With each body of work, Woolfalk continues to build the narrative of these women's lives, and questions the utopian possibilities of cultural hybridity.

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Tala Madani

Tala Madani’s work is characterised by loose expressive brushwork rendered in a bold, distinctive palette. Rich in narrative and heavy in irony Madani’s paintings depict darkly comic mise-en-scénes. Whilst her more abstract large-scale works usually contain a mass, group or collective, Madani’s more descriptive and intimately scaled paintings, and painterly video animations, depict uncomfortable scenes in which bald, middle-aged men engage in absurd scenarios that fuse playfulness with violence and perversity.

 

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Dorit Cypis

Dorit Cypis is an artist, educator, and mediator. Her work, which explores themes of history, identity, and social relations, has been presented in diverse cultural contexts across the US and internationally since the 1980s. Moving fluidly between the studio and the street, Cypis’ career covers a varied landscape: performance, photography, and immersive media installation; curriculum development and teaching at colleges and universities; civic programs that engage conflict in order to build capacity for generative relations. At the core of all her work is an exploration of the artist’s role as creator, educator, mediator, and community-builder, asking the question: “Who am I to you?” 

 

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Chris Kraus

Chris Kraus is the author of the bestselling I Love Dick, ‘the most important book written about men and women in the last century’ (Guardian), as well as Aliens and AnorexiaTorpor; Summer of Hate and two books of cultural criticism. She was a 2016 Guggenheim Fellow and teaches writing at European Graduate School. Kraus is a co-editor, with Hedi El Kholti and Sylvere Lotringer, of Semiotexte and lives in Los Angeles.

 

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Jennifer Doyle

Jennifer Doyle is a Professor of English at the University of California, Riverside. She is a queer theorist, art critic and sports writer. 

Currently, Jennifer Doyle is working on a collection of essays on art and sport. She is also writing about paranoia, harassment and the workplace. In 2015, she curated Nao Bustamante: Soldadera, for the Vincent Price Art Museum. She is also the curator of “The Tip of Her Tongue,” a feminist performance art series presented by The Broad Museum, in Los Angeles. She is a member of the Board of Directors at Human Resources, Los Angeles, a space dedicated to performance-based and interdisciplinary experimental art. 

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Laura Aguilar

Laura Aguilar (b.1959) is an American photographer born and raised in the San Gabriel Valley. She studied photography at East Los Angeles College and for more than thirty years she has shown her work extensively. Between 1993 and 2005, she was included in more than fifty exhibitions, including La Biennale di Venezia, Aperto 93, the Smithsonian Institution’s International Gallery in Washington DC, and the International Center of Photography in New York City. While Aguilar’s photography renders visible people of color, Latinx and LGBT communities through candid portraits, she is renowned for her nude self-portraiture in nature.

 

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Laida Lertxundi

Laida Lertxundi (Bilbao,1981) works in moving image, photography and printmaking. Her main body of work is shot on 16mm in a process she calls Landscape Plus, which combines filmic records of people and places with a strong emphasis on sound and pop music, resulting in languid passages of cinematic language, bodily desire, and existential awareness. She employs a fragmentary approach to editing in which cinematic forms of storytelling are replaced by a focus on process and materiality. Her work highlights the tension between form and the experience that will always exceed it.

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MPA

MPA (b.1980) has explored a range of meditative, durational, theatrical, and actionist modes of performance to engage “the energetic” as a potential material in live work. Enriched with ritual, her performances and installations critically examine behaviors of power in personal and social spaces. In previous works, she has proposed questions on the global arms race,  patriarchy as governance, and the dysfunctional union of art and capitalist commodity. 

 

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