March 25, 2018 - Remai Modern - Jimmie Durham: At the Center of the World
March 25, 2018

Remai Modern

Jimmie Durham, Head, 2006. Wood, papier-mâché, hair, seashell, turquoise, and metal tray, 25 × 40 × 40 cm. Fondazione Morra Greco, Naples, Italy. Courtesy of kurimanzutto, Mexico City.

Jimmie Durham
At the Center of the World
March 25–August 12, 2018

Remai Modern
102 Spadina Crescent E
Saskatoon SK S7K 0L3
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Jimmie Durham: At the Center of the World makes its only Canadian stop at Remai Modern starting March 25. The exhibition is the first North American career retrospective of this compelling and inventive artist and features nearly 175 works dating from 1970 to today.

A political organizer for the American Indian Movement during the 1970s, Durham was an active participant in New York City's downtown artistic community in the 1980s. In 1987, Durham moved to Cuernavaca, Mexico and then to Europe in 1994, where he has lived ever since. Predominantly a sculptor, Durham frequently combines everyday objects and natural materials and incorporates text to expose Western-centric views and prejudices hidden in language, objects and institutions or to speak directly to the viewer with his characteristic mix of humour and candour. Calling himself an "interventionist," Durham is often critical in his analysis of society, but with a distinctive wit that is simultaneously generous and humorous. 

At the Center of the World traces his remarkable attentiveness to materials and characteristic approach to assemblage while demonstrating his commitment to shedding light on the complexities of historical narratives, notions of authenticity and the borders and boundaries that try to contain us. For Durham, a rock, a piece of driftwood, a dirty shirt, a car bumper, a piece of trash or a bear skull[AE2]  are all equally fertile objects to be incorporated into his work. The exhibition outlines how Durham's insatiable curiosity and adeptness with materials have led to an expansive practice—spanning sculpture, drawing, collage, printmaking, painting, photography, video, performance and poetry.

Durham's life and career are extraordinary, in part, for the way he embraces a particular type of "homelessness"—one that has led him to live and work in numerous places. While many would feel unmoored and disoriented by this constant relocation, it is the artist's natural state. He immerses himself in the culture, history and culinary habits of each temporary and adopted home, always choosing to consider wherever he happens to be "the center of the world."

At Remai Modern, the exhibition is accompanied by a lecture series featuring the exhibition’s curator Anne Ellegood, art historian Richard William Hill, and curator, artist and educator Gerald McMaster, adding perspectives on Durham’s influence in Canada. The museum will also present a series of films selected by Durham, giving insight into his interests and influences.

Jimmie Durham: At the Center of the World is organized by the Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, and curated by Anne Ellegood, Senior Curator, with MacKenzie Stevens, Curatorial Associate. Remai Modern's presentation is organized by Sandra Guimarães, Director of Programs & Chief Curator.

The Hammer's presentation of this exhibition was funded by Beverly Center and its owner Taubman. Lead support for the exhibition is provided by the Henry Luce Foundation and the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts. Generous support is provided by Maggie Kayne and the National Endowment for the Arts. Additional funding is provided by Lonti Ebers, The Ampersand Foundation/ Jack Kirkland and Adam Lindemann.

Remai Modern's presentation of this exhibitions was made possible by the generous support of the Frank & Ellen Remai Foundation.

Remai Modern
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At the Center of the World
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