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Collecting, Presenting, and Conserving a ‘Living Art’” -- The Gilbert and Lila Silverman Fluxus Collection

Posted by Hanna Hoelling
20 Mar 2014 14:12

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Perhaps one of the most fascinating collections of Fluxus artworks, objects, photographs, scores and ephemera is the Lila and Gilbert Silverman Fluxus Collection housed since 2008 at the Museum of Modern Art in New York. It is also an interesting example of how the emergence of new forms of artistic expression of the 1960s and 1970s influenced the intuitional ways of collecting, archiving and presenting. On the occasion of the class Fluxus: An Introduction to an Attitude (course Beyond the Object Principle) joint in the second part by curator Kim Conaty of the MoMA, the students had the opportunity to explore the arcane of cataloguing and presenting this Fluxus collection.

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Tags: archive art collection conservation continuity ephemerality event fluxus living moma silverman


Memorializing the Dead in Manhattan: Ephemeral Expressions of Love and Loss

Posted by Gabrielle Berlinger
11 Mar 2014 15:19

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Last week, in preparation for a visit to our "'Cultural Conservation'" class by Dr. Kay Turner, Director of the Folk Arts Program at the Brooklyn Arts Council, lecturer at New York University, and author of Beautiful Necessity: The Art and Meaning of Women’s Altars (1999), half of our class visited the African Burial Ground National Monument and the other half visited St. Paul’s Chapel at Trinity Church, both located in lower Manhattan, and both sites of shared, memorializing practices in our urban environment.

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Tags: conservation cultural guest monument sacred site speaker visit


Architectural Walking Tour with Molly Garfinkel: Places that Matter

Posted by Gabrielle Berlinger
08 Mar 2014 23:02

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On a bone-chilling evening, the “Cultural Conservation” class eagerly braved the cold for a walking tour of vernacular architecture through the East Village and Lower East Side with Molly Garfinkel, Director of Place Matters. Place Matters is a public history and preservation initiative that explores the intersections of place and public life, and that offers shared authority for the designation of significant sites in New York City.

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Tags: architecture east lower place preservation side site visit


Performance art: mapping spatial geographies

Posted by Hanna Hoelling
07 Mar 2014 20:45

By Lisa Adang

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In the dense urban environment of New York City inhabitants are constantly maneuvering for space. The bounded geography of Manhattan creates a type of real-estate game akin to a sliding puzzle where a vacancy is only created when another is filled. This interlocking configuration creates unexpected social collisions and coalescences, linking New Yorkers in a network of spatial interdependencies. Key landmarks appear fixed in this landscape, like the Chrysler Building, the General Electric Building, the Empire State Building or the Woolworth Building, just to name a few of the 1,332 individual historic structures designated by the Landmarks Preservation Commission in New York City's five boroughs. [1] Yet, the fixity of these landmarks masks the fluctuating tides of tenants moving in and out of these spaces, as well as the surrounding architecture which changes at an entirely different pace according to the needs and wants of the city. On the other hand, certain populations and their traditions manage to remain constant in this city despite unceasing architectural reconfiguration. Neighborhoods, though they may witness dramatic structural and cultural change, tend to maintain their general location and namesake.

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Performance / Prop-formance

Posted by Hanna Hoelling
03 Mar 2014 21:49

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The act of performance begins to live its afterlife immediately, during the very moment of its creation. Students in the course Beyond the Object Principle (Hanna Hölling) continue to ask questions related to the status of performance art, its archive, left-overs and documentation. What is left after the spectacle, which often has a spontaneous character and is usually based on nothing more than improvisation? What can be shown again if there are no strict instructions on how to handle recordings of performances? Do those recordings live the independent life of works of art as well, or do they deserve an extraordinary classification in terms of a separate genre of artistic documentation? And, last but not least, can we legitimize retaining the immediate “now”, keeping performance alive, presenting it over and over again, commodifying, re-contextualizing or simply activating it, knowing that this genre was originally thought to act against precisely these mechanisms of the art world?

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