June 17, 2013 - The Power Plant - Summer 2013 exhibitions
June 17, 2013

Summer 2013 exhibitions

Jimmy Robert, Untitled, 2013. Black-and-white photograph, dimensions variable. Courtesy the artist and Galerie Diana Stigter.

Jimmy Robert
Draw the Line

Postscript: Writing After Conceptual Art
22 June–2 September 2013

Opening: 21 June, 8–11pm

The Power Plant
231 Queens Quay West
Toronto, Ontario 
M5J 2G8 Canada


The Power Plant’s summer season engages text, language and performance as a way to consider the past in relation to contemporary art practices.

Jimmy Robert: Draw the Line
22 June–2 September 2013
Curated by Julia Paoli
In partnership with the Consulate General of France in Toronto with support from the Institut Français as part of Paris-Toronto. Supported by Air France.

The Power Plant is pleased to present a solo exhibition of work by Brussels-based artist Jimmy Robert. Robert’s practice typically explores the corporeal potential of a range of media including photography, drawing, film, video, sculpture, and performance. In his first Canadian solo exhibition, Robert addresses questions of limits: of his body, of the media he uses, of our understanding of exhibitions, and the various disciplines his work encompasses. At the centre of Draw the Line is a commissioned performance project that takes place within an installation of new and past work on 27 June at 7pm.

Robert’s performance will draw from artist Carolee Schneemann’s seminal performance Up To and Including Her Limits (1976). Schneeman’s work speaks to a moment in art history when artists began rethinking the distinctions and limitations of artistic media by creating work that aimed to move drawing and painting off the page. Using chance movement to activate the objects in the gallery, Robert’s live work will transform the exhibition from its initial installation. Following his performance, text and sculptural remnants will remain in the gallery for the duration of the exhibition to evoke the movement seen in Robert’s live work.

Robert’s performance coupled with its remaining ephemera will be accompanied by his sculptural installation Reprise (2010). The work references artist Jeff Wall’s photograph A Sudden Gust of Wind (after Hokusai) (1993), which captures four figures physically responding to a strong wind. The composition in Wall’s work is a recreation of Japanese painter and printmaker Katsushika Hokusai’s woodcut Ejiri in Suruga Province (Sunshū Ejiri) (1830–33). The theatricality in the movement of the figures in both works acts as a point of departure for Robert’s Reprise. Here, he captures in large-scale photographs the movements of dancer Shiho Ishihara with gestures akin to those seen in Hokusai’s and Wall’s pieces. Depicting movement in both the dancer’s body as well as in the installation of the photographs, Robert demonstrates the ability for objects to become performative. Together with his live work, Reprise offers new possibilities for movement and performativity to exist outside a live event. 

Movement is evoked in every sense of Draw the Line: in the works we see, in the performing body and in the exhibition framework. Above all else, Draw the Line is an attempt to rethink the limitations of an exhibition, challenging viewer expectations as it unfolds and transforms over time.

Postscript: Writing After Conceptual Art
22 June–2 September 2013
Participating Artists:
Mark Amerika & Chad Mossbacher, Carl Andre, Fiona Banner, Erica Baum, Derek Beaulieu, Caroline Bergvall, Jen Bervin, Jimbo Blachly & Lytle Shaw, Christian Bök, Marcel Broodthaers, Pavel Büchler, Luis Camnitzer, Ricardo Cuevas, Tim Davis & Robert Fitterman, Monica de la Torre, Craig Dworkin, Tim Etchells, Ryan Gander, Michelle Gay, Kenneth Goldsmith, Dan Graham, Alexandra Grant, James Hoff, Bill Kennedy & Darren Wershler, Seth Kim-Cohen, Sol LeWitt, Glenn Ligon, Tan Lin, Gareth Long & Derek Sullivan, Michael Maranda, Helen Mirra, Jonathan Monk, Simon Morris, João Onofre, Michalis Pichler, Paolo Piscitelli, Vanessa Place, Kristina Lee Podesva, Seth Price, Kay Rosen, Joe Scanlan, Dexter Sinister, Frances Stark, Joel Swanson, Nick Thurston, Triple Canopy, Andy Warhol, Eric Zboya

Organized by the Museum of Contemporary Art Denver 
Co-curated by Nora Burnett Abrams and Andrea Andersson
Sponsored in part by the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts. Support at The Power Plant provided by the 2013 Power Players Program: BMO Financial Group, Manulife Financial, Rogers and TD Bank.

Postscript: Writing After Conceptual Art is a group exhibition featuring the work of more than fifty Canadian and international artists and writers. It is the first exhibition to examine the work of conceptual writing, investigating the roots of the movement in the art of the 1960s and ’70s and presenting contemporary examples of text-based art practices. The Power Plant brings Postscript to the gallery to explore the place of language within contemporary art and broadly examine its relationship to history.

Postscript includes a selection of writing by Conceptual artists of the 1960s that were specifically distributed in traditional codex form. The contemporary conceptual writing filling the galleries includes paintings, drawings, prints, 16mm films, digital video, photographs, mixed-media sculpture, sound installations, and iPad applications; the historical works on view are distinguished by their increasingly obsolete bound structure. For an exhibition full of copies—of found and reproduced texts, of visual and literary art that mimic one another and echo works from preceding generations—the book binding introduces questions about the role of disciplinary specificity in contemporary reading and writing practices. 

The historical works in this exhibition are examples of text-based art generated through practices of appropriation, transcription, translation, redaction, and constraint. The contemporary works on view borrow these same strategies, and in many cases, turn the strategies back onto historical works of literature and art Postscript brings together works from different generations and different disciplines to demonstrate that works that look alike can still signify differently.


Summer 2013 exhibitions at The Power Plant
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