Parable of the Planes

Parable of the Planes

Protocinema / Rhode Island School of Design (RISD)

Tamara Khasanova, 2024.

June 4, 2024
Parable of the Planes
June 13–30, 2024
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Opening reception: June 13, 6–8pm
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NADA Exhibition Space
311 East Broadway
New York, NY
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Protocinema, in partnership with Rhode Island School of Design Sculpture Department, presents Parable of the Planes, a group exhibition with Aiza Ahmed, Jaimie An, Ashley Bergner, Christine Jung, Da eun Lee, Elena Bulet i Llopis, Julia Helen Murray, Lorena Park, Shori Sims, and Suiyuan Jin, curated by Tamara Khasanova for the 2024 Protocinema Emerging Curator Series. Artists in Parable of the Planes engage with the stories, voices, forms of knowledge and modes of artistic production that wrestle against the impending tendencies to recede into isolation, detachment, and self-service.

Parable of the Planes doesn’t idealize close vicinities or take them for granted. Instead, it suggests that the space of proximity and coexistence is far more complex and intricate than we imagine. Some distances are hard to bridge, and some impossible. But how and whether we cross these distances is entirely up to us. Drawing inspiration from Ursula Le Guin’s collection of stories Changing Planes, the exhibition utilizes planes as a metaphor to question the boundaries and delinations of our subjectivities. Conceived as a sequence of four planes that groups artists based on their differing, colluding, and overlapping positions, Parable of the Planes is constructed on the tension between a plane as an environment of fixed principles and a plane as a ground for shifting orientations. 

The conceptual, formal, and aesthetic languages of Aiza Ahmed, Ashley Bergner, Julia Helen Murray, and Shori Sims investigate reckoning with grief, family, and nostalgia within the realms of the public and private through film and video collage, installation, and painting. Meanwhile, installation-driven pieces by Christine Jung and Lorena Park respond to the hierarchies associated with histories of control, domination, and class divides. Working at the intersections of photographic, sculptural, and performative practices, Da eun Lee, Elena Bulet i Llopis, and Suiyuan Jin grapple with the scale of personal narrative against the narratives of grandeur and conquest. All the while, the scientifically charged work of Jaimie An gazes toward dimensions beyond our immediate grasp. These artists are committed to redefining and challenging the boundaries of their artistic practices and subjectivities while also striving to engage with issues beyond their immediate microcosms. This group of artists demonstrates a dynamic interplay that occurs when we find ourselves in close proximity to one another, at times not by choice, and form relationships akin to knots on a thread, tightening and loosening as we navigate our lives. 

While Le Guin’s Changing Planes is often described as a tale about the challenges of comprehending different cultures, languages, and societies, its narrative also points to the socioeconomic and political imbalances between the individual and the collective, history and time. And while the world we inhabit frequently appears as one, flat, all-encompassing plane, once we start unearthing the truth, it’s impossible to deny that its essence is more layered than it appears. As we feel our planes of existence confine and close in upon us, the ability to change planes, relate to a story that is not immediately our own, and resist retreating into the isolation of set beliefs is what allows us to endure the forces of life alongside one another.  

The exhibition will be accompanied by Protozine: Parable of the Planes, with a text by Tamara Khasanova.

Launched in 2015, the Protocinema Emerging Curator Series (PECS) is a mentorship program that provides professional training, first-hand experience, network building, and camaraderie utilizing the exhibition-making process as a teaching tool. Protocinema Emerging Curator for 2024, Tamara Khasanova, was mentored by Natasha Ginwala, Artistic Director of Colomboscope, Sri Lanka, and co-visionary of the Sharjah Biennial 16; Ajay Kurian, artist and founder of New Crits, New York, and Mari Spirito, Executive Director and Curator, Protocinema, Istanbul, New York.

Artists’ and curator biographies here.

Special thanks: Heather Rowe, Department Head, RISD Sculpture, Amber Hawk Swanson, Critic, RISD, Brooks Hagan RISD Dean of Fine Arts, Taylor Baldwin, Graduate Program Director, RISD Sculpture, Katherine Cooper, Associate Director, RISD Strategic Partnerships, and Sarah Cunningham, Vice Provost, RISD Strategic Partnerships; Innocent Ekejiuba and Norma Nelson Cardillo. 

Press inquiries: Tamara Khasanova, tamara [​at​], Mari Spirito, mari [​at​], T +1 917 660 7332.

Rhode Island School of Design Sculpture MFA Program’s AfterSchool Special is a course divided into two six week sections taught by a visiting artist and visiting curator. Through these differing and connected perspectives, students develop a deeper understanding into the ways that art is viewed, contextualized and experienced. The course explores the many roles that the artist plays in society in addition to elaborating the ways that visual art influences contemporary thought through the history of curation and exhibition-making. 

Protocinema is an itinerant cross-cultural art organization that commissions and presents site-aware art around the world. Our purpose is to support dialogue between cultures on equal footing and create opportunities for creative expression. Protocinema works towards an understanding of difference across regions through its exhibitions, commissions, public programs, screening tours, mentorship and Protodispatch, a monthly digital publication edited with Laura Raicovich. Protocinema was founded in 2011 by Mari Spirito.

Hours: June 13–30, 2024, Thursdays–Sundays 12–6pm
Address: NADA Exhibition Space, 311 East Broadway, New York

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Protocinema  / Rhode Island School of Design (RISD)
June 4, 2024

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