January 26, 2011 - Americas Society - Arturo Herrera
January 26, 2011

Arturo Herrera

Arturo Herrera
Les Noces (The Wedding)

Thursday, February 3 – Saturday, April 30, 2011

Thursday, February 3 from 7 to 9 pm.

680 Park Ave. at 68 Street
New York, NY 10065

Gallery Hours:
Wednesday through Saturday, 12-6 p.m.


Arturo Herrera: Les Noces (The Wedding) is an exhibition anchored by a digital projection—the artist’s first work to incorporate sound and moving images. This two-channel projection is based on the 1923 ballet, scored by the composer Igor Stravinsky for Sergei Diaghilev’s Les Ballets Russes, one of the 20th century’s most significant modernist experiments of gesamtkunstwerk. According to Herrera, “Stravinsky actually built The Wedding from snatches of song—some vulgar, some poetic—that accompany a wedding ritual… The text is carefully constructed through fragmentation and repetition from anthologies of Russian folklore. He built it out perfectly to his specifications, but it’s based totally on nonliterary verse. So the film is based also on that kind of arrangement.”

Presented for the first time in New York, Les Noces, shows fragments of Herrera’s own work in an ever-shifting dance of abstract black-and-white images set to Stravinksy’s music. The artist worked with a computer programmer to develop software that draws randomly from this database of images to create a changing sequence in response to the pitch of Stravinsky’s music. This chance-based process intentionally invokes the mutable nature of performance, as well as the transformative power of collage: no dance is ever performed exactly the same way twice.

The exhibition curated by the Director of Visual Arts and Chief Curator, Gabriela Rangel, will also feature several pieces in which Herrera’s fragmentation process is revealed, including one of his early collages from the 1990s, recent works on paper, sculpture, an artist’s book, and cut-outs, in addition to the black-and-white photograph series from which the artist departed for the creation of Les Noces.

Arturo Herrera was born in 1959 in Caracas, Venezuela. He received a BA from the University of Tulsa, Oklahoma, and an MFA from the University of Illinois at Chicago. Since 2003, Herrera has lived and worked in Berlin. He was the recipient of the prestigious Deutscher Akademischer Austausch Dienst’s Fellowship (DAAD), as well as the Guggenheim and the Pollock-Krasner awards. Herrera has exhibited extensively throughout the world at institutions such as, Haus am Waldsee, Berlin; Centro Gallego de Arte Contemporánea, Santiago de Compostela; Ikon Gallery, Birmingham; Le Centre d’Art Contemporain, Geneva; The Dia Center for the Arts, New York; The Art Institute in Chicago; the Hammer Museum, Los Angeles; and the Art Gallery of Ontario.


• Thursday, February 3, 2011, 7:00-9:00 P.M.
Exhibition Opening

• Monday, February 7, 2011, 6:00 P.M.
Panel Discussion- Exploring Abstraction in Les Noces with guest speakers: Sherry Dobbin (Director, The Watermill Center); Lynn Garafola (Professor of Dance, Barnard College); Arturo Herrera (Artist); Moderated by Gabriela Rangel (Exhibition Curator, Americas Society).

• Wednesday, March 15, 6:00 P.M.
Discussion and Performance: Igor Stravinsky’s Influences for Les Noces

Americas Society gratefully acknowledges the following donors for their generous support of this exhibition: Chevron, Mercantil, and Estrellita and Daniel Brodsky.
We also thank Sikkema Jenkins Gallery for their in-kind support and collaboration.

Americas Society’s Visual Arts Program is supported by Sharon Schultz Simpson and in part by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council.

All our culture programs are free, and open to the public. We are located at 680 Park Avenue at 68th Street in New York City. To arrive by public transportation, take the 6 train to 68th Street / Hunter College. Map.
For more information, visit www.as-coa.org/VisualArts. If you have questions or comments, please email us at artgallery@as-coa.org

Arturo Herrera
Americas Society
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