March 10, 2015 - Afterall - Issue 38 out now
March 10, 2015

Issue 38 out now

Afterall issue 38
Sharon Hayes
James Richards
R.H. Quaytman
Solo Exhibitions
The Artist as Translator
L’Internationale Roundtable 

www.afterall.org

Afterall is pleased to present issue 38, spring 2015, which looks at appropriation and montage as means of bending historical and affective time in the work of Sharon Hayes, James Richards and R.H. Quaytman. Accompanying essays consider the institutional frameworks through which art history is written and assessed: from the role that solo exhibitions play in the political economy of art to that of public museums in the construction of the commons. 

Julia Bryan-Wilson focuses on an often-overlooked aspect of Sharon Hayes‘s practice: her attention to the refusal to speak, rather than speaking up, and how queer understandings of speech inflect silence and listening. Kris Cohen, meanwhile, sets some of Hayes’s performances against the backdrop of networked society, suggesting that the breakdown of communication staged therein reflects the pervasive monetisation of online social relations. 

Within this saturated media landscape, Ed Halter argues, James Richards‘s work attempts to refashion images and sounds as instruments of communication, making materials pulled from different sources and historical periods vulnerable to each other. Reflecting upon how Richards’s videos and screening programmes have themselves changed over time, Anders Kreuger studies his use of composition as a means of giving form to thought. 

Composition is also central to R.H. Quaytman‘s work, in which images and texts by others are folded in what she calls an “artist’s art history”—one intent on building its own system of classification and interpretation. Sarah Ganz Blythe considers Quaytman’s relationship to the surfaces and spaces of painting while Richard Birkett unpacks the artist’s subversive literary methodology. 

Quaytman’s self-devised archiving system is mirrored in the self-initiated exhibitions that João Ribas revisits in his critical study of the origins of the solo show in 18th-century Europe, an invitation to reconsider the critical role of this exhibition format in the face of its current surrender to commercial speculation. In their conversation with Nathalie Zonnenberg, the directors of the European network of museums L’Internationale voice a similar desire to develop new institutional frameworks based upon sharing rather than ownership. 

Finally, Marcus Verhagen considers translation as an artistic trope which refracts artists’ engagement with experiences of migration and nomadism, and the parallels between these shared peripatetic life-worlds and the globalisation of the art system.

This spring Afterall Books also presents the sixth publication in its “Exhibition Histories” series, Cultural Anthropophagy: The 24th Bienal de São Paulo 1998, as well as the “One Work” title Mike Kelley: Educational Complex by John Miller. Please join us at Central Saint Martins in London on 19 March for a talk by Mark Lewis and on 25 March for a conversation between Laura Mulvey and Constanze Ruhm, organised in collaboration with Birkbeck’s Essay Film Festival and the Art Programme at CSM. The next guest in our “Exhibition Histories” talks series, co-organised with the Whitechapel Gallery, London, is curator Hou Hanru, who will be in conversation with Lucy Steeds on 21 May. 

Afterall journal is published by Central Saint Martins, London, in editorial partnership with M HKA, Antwerp and the Department of Visual Arts–Open Practice Committee (DOVA–OPC), University of Chicago, and in association with the University of Chicago Press

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