1. March 10, 2002

    This exhibition will survey thirty years of work by a pioneer in the field of video. Originally a filmmaker, Auder (b. 1944) took as his models Jean-Luc Goddard and Andy Warhol. Auder, who was closely associated with Warhol's Chelsea Hotel circle, had been interested in film as a form of personal expression, one crafted exclusively from daily life. But until the advent of video, a film-based diary practice was cost prohibitive. In 1969 Auder purchased the first commercially available video camera. Since then, he has recorded hundreds of hours, documenting the people, places and events that have made up his life. These he distills into highly intimate portraits and personal reflections, at times lightly scripted and at others using only his raw footage that in and of itself is an invaluable document of New York's Lower East Side. This exhibition will be accompanied by a catalogue and a series of related film and video screenings.

    # vimeo.com/38234834 Uploaded
  2. March 11, 2001 - Artist Talk with Raoul de Keyser

    Since the 1960s, the paintings of Raoul De Keyser have uniquely defined a place for themselves within the scope of contemporary art. Influenced by the post-war American Modernist movement, De Keyser's canvases reference Color-field painting and Minimalism. Like the work of the pioneers of abstract painting, each of his paintings contains its own individuality. He has created a successful formal marriage between the artistic dichotomies of figuration versus abstraction, the physicality of paint versus the ephemerality of the image, and exploration of the fundamentals of painting versus references to his personal life and surroundings. We are treated to particularity, unpredictability and the flux and anxiety of the everyday. In their allusion to reality, they spark a poetry which is hard even for the least sentimental viewer to resist.

    De Keyser was born in 1930 and in the mid -1960s he joined New Vision, a group of painters interested in revitalizing earlier strains of European formalism. Since then, he has become an increasingly important figure in contemporary painting, having exhibited widely in Europe including Documenta IX in 1992.

    This extraordinary survey of twenty paintings will reflect De Keyser's work from 1980 through 1999. His series of monochrome, dualchrome and abstract forms illustrate the broad range of painterly possibilities, boundaries explored, and broadened palette since 1980. This exhibition has been organized by independent curator Greg Salzman and will have two venues on its North American tour: The Goldie Paley Gallery at Moore College of Art and Design in Philadelphia and The Renaissance Society. The exhibition is accompanied by a fully illustrated catalog edited by principle essayist Steven Jacobs with writings by Roberta Smith, Ulrich Loock, Wim Van Mulders and others.

    # vimeo.com/37959598 Uploaded
  3. May 10, 1998
    National book Award winner Orlando Patterson conducts an informal interview with Kerry James Marshall during the opening reception.

    Conceived as an installation for the Society, it features three new paintings, two sculptural components, a video projection and is replete with an angelic pantheon of African-American cultural and political figures who died between 1959 and 1979. Marshall uses the genre of history painting to reread the legacy of the Civil Rights Movement and the whole of African-American History in relation to a very complex present.

    # vimeo.com/37612028 Uploaded
  4. May 6, 1997
    Artist talk with Giovanni Anselmo

    As a key member of the Arte Povera circle of the early 1960s, Giovanni Anselmo qualifies as an elder statesman of contemporary sculpture. Since the 1960s, Anselmo has continued to produce a striking body of work at each and every turn in his career, bringing an intellectual rigor to the sparse yet poetic foundations of Arte Povera. One of the hallmarks of Anselmo's work is the potency with which the most elemental materials signify our understanding of the world from its most basic to its most complex relationships. Anselmo has steadily refined his ability of inserting the poetics of geology into the particularities of a given architectural space. His installations make it impossible to speak of the boundaries between painting, sculpture, and architecture. For the past decade, Anselmo has been using granite, and pigment applied directly to walls and windows to further blur the boundaries between genres. Conceptually taut but still lyrical, these installations have been nothing short of a formal tour de force.

    "I, the world, things, life - we are points of energy, and it is not necessary to crystallize these points as it is to keep them open and alive, functioning in our life." In the case of this statement, made by the artist in 1969, the words "open, alive, functioning" can be equated with an artistic restlessness which has made his associations with any particular movement somewhat misleading. Although his initial lines of inquiry were formed in the early 60s, Anselmo has continued to produce a striking body of work at each and every turn in his career. In addition to exhibiting several older works, The Society has invited Anselmo to continue his investigations by creating a site specific work using the unique architectonics of this space.

    # vimeo.com/37607084 Uploaded
  5. September 29, 1996, The Renaissance Society, Chicago, IL
    An informal discussion with Ben Nicholson, conducted by Daniel Libeskind and David F. Krell, during the opening reception.

    Ben Nicholson has never shared the presumption that the union of form and function constitutes the truth in architecture. Throughout his body of work, from his collages to his full-scale constructions, Nicholson has been multiplying rather than fixing meaning within architecture. For Nicholson, a house is not a home. It's an appliance. In Nicholson's most fully realized project, aptly dubbed Appliance House, form not only emphasizes but exaggerates function. One of the Appliance House's six rooms, the Kleptoman Cell, has been constructed and will be on display at The Society. As a room whose sole function is to act as a container for items of the utmost value whether sentimental or practical, the Kleptoman Cell is an attempt to realize an architecture that reflects the fact that we are what we own.

    While his projects are a pointed and poignant critique of a culture of industrial excess, Nicholson's engagement with architecture can be considered theoretical only if it is first acknowledged as philosophical. If his logic and interest appear fragmentary, it is because they are situated within a very grand scope.

    The entrance to Nicholson's exhibition will be graced with the shredded remains of a B-52 bomber, a reminder that architecture must share the witness stand with destruction when testifying on behalf of civilization. But this logic is subverted as the icon of nuclear destruction has itself been violently dismantled. It is precisely this type of thinking, not to mention the multiplication and dispersion of meaning that allows Nicholson's work to be discussed within the context of Deconstruction, an architectural movement which crystallized over the last fifteen years. But Nicholson's work assumes rather than illustrates the premises of that movement. For, Nicholson, uncertainty within architecture is an invitation for forays into the imagination and a chance to seize upon unrealized possibilities.

    # vimeo.com/37606036 Uploaded

Artist/Gallery Talks at The Renaissance Society

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The Renaissance Society features artist talks and gallery tours accompanying each exhibition.

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