Curators’ Series #12. The Season of Cartesian Weeping. By Hana Noorali and Lynton Talbot (30 Oct – 8 Dec 2019)

Curated by Hana Noorali and Lynton Talbot
David Roberts Art Foundation – Curators Series #12
Exhibition: 30 October – 8 December 2019
Preview: 29 October – 7pm-9.30pm
Lecture by Johanna Hedva: 8 November – 7pm-9.30pm
Am Nuden Da Book Launch: 4 December – from 7pm
DRAF, 111 Great Titchfield Street, W1W 6RY

The gallery is opened from Tuesdays to Saturdays (12pm-5pm). Please note that the gallery will be exceptionally closed this Friday, the 8th of November, in anticipation of the sold-out lecture by Johanna Hedva, at DRAF from 7pm-9.30pm.

Am Nuden Da 
East London Cable
-f-r-i-e-n-d-s– with Mark Aerial Waller
OFFSHORE 
Parrhesiades with Johanna Hedva

The Season of Cartesian Weeping, is a group exhibition that invites five artist collectives to reveal their respective methodologies, producing the platforms and conditions necessary for more discursive forms of practice. It is an exhibition that examines the tools and protocols of self-organisation that these collectives depend on, rather than the object based outcomes they produce.

In Anne Boyer’s 2018 essay, The Season of Cartesian Weeping, the author describes perpetual tears as a side effect of the medication she used during her battle with cancer. Despite her sadness, disease has bullied her into a Cartesian dualism (Descartes’ theory of a mind-body split) that separates cause from effect and denies her any sorrow. But rather than fight her body to grant space for her grief, Anne Boyer simply adds tears of emotion to the mechanical tears that constantly flow. Once shed, she asks, “can the tears of sadness be extracted from the general waters anyway?” This sly refusal, revives her agency and reimagines the mind and body in unison; a new disposition as discrepant to the authority of the disease.

In the manner of Anne Boyer’s refusal, this exhibition prompts a reconsideration of how we understand our bodies and their agency at a time when techno-capitalism increasingly builds in division between people and outsources our communication via codified systems of likes and shares. This exhibition also recognises the paradoxical status institutions and territories for art hold; as simultaneously open spaces to play out political dissent whilst also sustaining and upholding many of the problematics that art intends to critique. These five organisations attempt a form of self-instituting that utilises the body (its speech, its movement, its action) and demands more discrepant forms of knowledge production in order to evade the relentless market capture of ideas, language and sociality that defines our current political climate.

Under the borrowed title The Season of Cartesian Weeping, Hana Noorali and Lynton Talbot invite Am Nuden Da launch Let’s Not Dispute The Useless. …, a book that makes available to the public for the first time, a series of solo ‘exhibitions’ with five artists; Gerry Bibby, Juliette Blightman, Kerstin Brätsch, Oliver Laric and Ghislaine Leung.

East London Cable, who explore the potential of the TV studio to operate as a locus for community-building and knowledge exchange, in a contemporary media climate that is dominated by global corporations presenting homogeneity under the guise of choice.

-f-r-i-e-n-d-s- presents a reorganising of the physical architectures of The Wayward Canon, which is itself an artist-led platform for event-based interventions in cinematic practices founded in 2001 by Mark Aerial Waller. Through both denials and concessions to authorship, -f-r-i-e-n-d-s- simultaneously resists easy categorisation and confers new status on the materials presented.

OFFSHORE offers its structure and its language as a graphic articulation of its architectures. If OFFSHORE’s knowledge is kept in the bodies of its participants, the textual framework presented here can be read as its score. Considering itself a ‘school for embodied knowledge’, it asks; how might we live, work and perform without falling into the traps of exploitation found within the neoliberal machinery of exchange?

Parrhesiades, who have invited Johanna Hedva to produce a project across its four sites called Reading is Yielding. Its materials are the voice, private libraries, self-destructing messages, video, gifs, astrology charts, taxonomies of mysticism, and secret knowledges. In a private residence in London SE5, in the gallery of DRAF, online at parrhesiades.com and later in a parrhesiades publication, the project communes with different kinds of reading.

Here, then, five organisations have been asked to ruminate on their own working practices. Whether it is in the consideration of poetry as a methodology, fiction as a form of resistant politics, the offer of multiplicity over homogenisation or by instigating ways to privilege the discursive over the aesthetic, Hana Noorali and Lynton Talbot aim to highlight the role language itself plays, and in what way it too can be discrepant to the dominant infrastructures that frame our experience and codify our behaviour in the world.

The curators would like to extend their thanks to Anne Boyer for engaging with their project and kindly loaning them the title for the exhibition.

 


 

On the 8th November, Johanna Hedva will deliver a lecture: “They’re Really Close to My Body: A Hagiography of Nine Inch Nails and Their Resident Mystic Robin Finck.”

Hedva writes“This lecture is from my book-in-progress, The Mess, which deals with the weird truth of how music was my first encounter with both masculinity and mysticism, and what a fucking mess that was. Encountering the mystical fury of Nine Inch Nails at age 10 was an encounter with everything I wanted the world to be: chaotic, feverish, ungovernable. After being a devoted fan for 25 years (yes, they are my favorite band), I still want the world to be like this.” 

On the 4th December, DRAF will host the book launch of Am Nuden Da, Let’s Not Dispute The Useless. … published by NERO, Rome, 2019.

Between 2013-2014 Am Nuden Da invited five artists to participate in a series of “solo exhibitions” that forewent some of the typical structures of exhibition making, such as a gallery space, audience and visual documentation. The resulting events, that took place between the UK, France, Italy and Germany were later written into a series of texts in collaboration with the participating artists; Gerry Bibby, Juliette Blightman, Kerstin Brätsch, Oliver Laric and Ghislaine Leung. As their contribution to the exhibition, the resulting book Let’s Not Dispute The Useless. … will be launched at the gallery, making the project available to the public for the first time.

A full programme of events will be announced shortly.

Accessibility information:

111 Great Titchfield Street is accessible by wheelchair but unfortunately there is no disabled bathroom. The space has non-gender-specific toilet. Regrettably we do not have any parking on Great Titchfield Street, however car and taxi drop-offs are possible.

Johanna Hedva’s video work will include open captions and visual descriptions.

If you have an access requirement which we haven’t listed here, please do get in touch in advance of your visit. We will make our best endeavours to assist you. Please contact us in advance of your visit for more information at info@davidrobertsartfoundation.com.

 


The Curators’ Series supports independent curators by commissioning research-based exhibitions. The series presents diverse fields of knowledge, methodologies and practices. Each year, DRAF invites an individual, duo or organisation to curate an original exhibition.

Hana Noorali and Lynton Talbot work collaboratively with artists to produce text, exhibitions and live events. Together they have started non-profit galleries in both London and Berlin and have curated exhibitions in public institutions, project spaces and commercial galleries across London and internationally.

Hana Noorali co-founded RUN gallery in 2007, a non-profit project space and curatorial collective active until 2011. She curated Lisson Presents at Lisson Gallery, London from 2017-2018 and from 2017 -2019 she wrote, produced and presented the podcast series Lisson ON AIR. In 2018 Hana edited a monograph on the work of artist and Benedictine Monk, Dom Sylvester Houédard. Its release coincided with an exhibition of his work at Lisson Gallery, New York that she co-curated with Matt O’Dell. Hana has been a Visiting Tutor at Goldsmiths University and Chelsea College of Arts.

Lynton Talbot is the founding director of Parrhesiades, a multi-platform project space for artists who work with language either written, spoken, or otherwise performed. Lynton also writes specifically with artists and for exhibitions as a form of curatorial practice. He holds academic posts at Chelsea College of Arts and Kings College London in their curatorial departments and works within Tate Public Programmes to deliver Museum Curating Now. He is also a sometime participant in OFFSHORE, an itinerant performance company and pedagogical structure, initiated by Cally Spooner in 2017.

Am Nuden Da is a London based artist collective comprised of Adam Gibbons, Lewis Ronald and Jesper List Thomsen. Active as a group since 2008 their practice moves between the guises of artist, publisher, commissioner and curator. Frequently they collaborate with, and host other artists through their projects. Just as often, they are invited to exhibit as an artist using the alias Am Nuden Da, under which they have participated in numerous group and solo shows both nationally and internationally.

East London Cable is Aoibheann Greenan, Dan Marre, Eve Stainton, Florence Peake, Jos Bitelli, Louis Brown, Sung Tieu and Wojciech Kosma. Since early 2018 the collective has been producing, platforming and commissioning moving image and performance works under the umbrella of ‘TV.’ Drawing from a wide range of sources including 70’s/80’s public access television which foregrounded local content and issues, ELC considers how live-to-digital and streaming technologies can enrich the contemporary production and consumption of this media. Furthermore, the collective are exploring the potential of the TV studio operating as a locus for community-building and knowledge exchange; hosting live events, screenings, panel discussions, workshops, and providing technical support to multiple groups and individuals. The collective’s curatorial outcomes manifest as a televisual series titled ELC TV Dinners. The patchwork event format of ELC TV Dinners emulates the eclecticism of channel-hopping. This preceded digital streaming and has largely vanished in our current media climate that is dominated by global corporations presenting homogeneity under the guise of choice. Since forming, collaborators and clients have included Goldsmiths University and Michelle Williams Gamaker, Harold Offeh, Healing Justice London, Science Museum, Stuart Hall Foundation, Sung Im Her, This Is Tomorrow and Voices That Shake!

-f-r-i-e-n-d-s- is a collaborative project and gallery space of sorts that began in Brussels in 2015. -f-r-i-e-n-d-s- is interested in its own invisibility, ambiguity and active forms of de-authoring and chooses not to provide biographical information or a CV. For The Season of Cartesian Weeping, they will be presenting some Wayward Cannon ephemera and related material as a set of reorganised physical architectures. The Wayward Canon was an artist-led platform for event-based interventions in cinematic practices founded in 2001 by Mark Aerial Waller.

OFFSHORE is an itinerant performance company, laboratory and pedagogical structure. Its aim is to draft new vocabulary and terms of how to organise, work, and perform. Arriving from literature, theatre, and a messy, unrequited love affair with philosophy, OFFSHORE sits somewhere between a school for embodied knowledge, an engine, an alibi, a backroom, a rehearsal, and some deliberate, unguaranteed, social plumbing. OFFSHORE is probably though best described simply as an organisational structure. It enables a number of persons, some of whom will have met before, some of whom will not have met to maintain a state of rehearsal, over a number of days, in public. Comprised of a growing number of performers, academics, writers, scientists, psychologists, economists and philosophers, OFFSHORE has been in formation since 2017, when it was initiated by Cally Spooner. Her role in the project now continues as the OFFSHORE ACCOUNTANT, ALIBI BROKER, and LEGIBILITY COORDINATOR. OFFSHORE was born in 2017 through an initial grant from Corpus, an international network for commissioning performance-related work, co-funded by the Creative Europe programme of the European Union. A funded exhibition and event opportunity at REDCAT first set the stage for testing ideas. Among Corpus’ partnering institutions, the Playground Festival (STUK arts centre and M Museum) in Leuven and Bulegoa z/b in Bilbao then acted as generous hosts for research and rehearsals. The Stanley Picker Fellowship for Fine Art (in collaboration with Kingston University) has since offered the key sponsor to realise further research gatherings and live events. These were supported by public institutions and initiatives who contributed to the pool and offered public platforms: The Whitechapel Gallery, London; Serpentine Galleries, London; PS/Y Festival, London; Walmer Yard, London; Open School East, Margate; and NTU CCA Singapore, Singapore, Centre National de la Danse, Paris, and the Swiss Institute, New York, offer the financial support for OFFSHORE to remain itinerant and in rehearsal into 2019 and beyond.

Parrhesiades is a multi-platform project, working with artists for whom language, either written, spoken or otherwise performed, is an important component in the construction of their work. As an online platform, a physical location in SE5, an annual reader and with institutional partners for live events and launches, Parrhesiades actively considers the circumstances and curatorial support such practices need and re-thinks the conditions of exhibition-making that this necessitates. No single aspect or route to the encounter with art is privileged as superior. Language, as an event, in its multiplicity, resides across all of Parrhesiades platforms equally. This is an attempt to offer the exhibitionary-complex to artists in an ‘exploded’ or deconstructed form, allowing them to work through the different physicalities and temporalities that this offers and explore the possibilities for language that this presents. Artists are invited to make a single work or constellation of related ideas available to publics in a way that complicates a single reading of the work. Through 2019 Parrhesiades has collaborated with South London Gallery, Flat Time House, Camden Arts Centre with artists Sung Tieu, Jesper list Thomsen, Elaine Cameron-Weir, Johanna Hedva, Cally Spooner and Eva Gold.

Johanna Hedva is a Korean-American writer, artist, musician, and astrologer, who was raised in Los Angeles by a family of witches, and now lives in LA and Berlin. They are the author of the novel, On Hell (2018, Sator Press). Their work has been shown at The Institute of Contemporary Arts in London, Performance Space New York, the LA Architecture and Design Museum, and the Museum of Contemporary Art on the Moon. Their fiction and nonfiction has appeared in Triple Canopy, The White Review, Black Warrior Review, and anthologized in GenderFail and Asian American Literary Review. Their essay “Sick Woman Theory,” published in 2016 in Mask, has been translated into six languages. Their album The Sun and the Moon was released in March 2019. Two of its tracks were played on the moon. In 2019, they’ve been touring Black Moon Lilith in Pisces in the 4th House, a drone metal guitar and voice performance influenced by Korean shamanist ritual.

  • Curators’ Series #12, Installation view. Johanna Hedva,
    Curators’ Series #12, Installation view. Johanna Hedva, "Reading is Yielding", 2019. A project in conjunction with Parrhesiades. East London Cable, untitled, 2019. Image description: There are three works installed in a white gallery space with a metal tiled floor. Two posters that are the astrological charts for Simone Weil and Robin Finck and one hand written poster containing the hand written definition of the word "Yield". These are all made by Johanna Hedva. Lastly there is a model of Raven Row's gallery space atop metal legs that has a small TV screen playing a video. Black headphones are balanced on the model's metal legs. This work is made by the collective East London Cable.
  • Curators’ Series #12, Installation view. Johanna Hedva,
    Curators’ Series #12, Installation view. Johanna Hedva, "Failed Poet", 2015. Johanna Hedva, "Reading is Yielding", 2019. A project in conjunction with Parrhesiades. East London Cable, untitled, 2019. Image description: There are four works installed in a white gallery space with a metal tiled floor. Johanna Hedva's two posters that are the astrological charts for Simone Weil and Robin Finck are visible. Two pairs of black headphones are hanging on a wall that play an audio reading of the Simone Weil astrological chart. A projector sits on the floor projecting Johanna Hedva's work 'Failed Poet' 2015, next to it there are another pair of black headphones hanging on the wall that play audio image descriptions for the projected work. Lastly there is a model of Raven Row's gallery space atop metal legs that has a small TV screen playing a video. Black headphones are balanced on the model's metal legs. This work is made by the collective East London Cable.
  • Curators’ Series #12. Johanna Hedva,
    Curators’ Series #12. Johanna Hedva, "Failed Poet", 2015 (3 works, Leopard, Metanoia and Mnemosyne played in sequence), video projection, 18 mins 55 seconds. Image description: The installation "Failed Poet" consists of a projector placed on the metal tiled floor of the white gallery space. In this image, one can see the projector located on the floor projecting onto the wall a 19-minute video including images and texts made by Johanna Hedva.
  • Curators’ Series #12. Johanna Hedva,
    Curators’ Series #12. Johanna Hedva, "Failed Poet", 2015 (3 works, Leopard, Metanoia and Mnemosyne played in sequence), video projection, 18 mins 55 seconds. Image description: this image shows the overall installation view of Johanna Hedva’s “Failed Poet.” A projector sits on the metal tiled floor of the white gallery projecting Johanna Hedva's work 'Failed Poet' onto the wall. On the left, a pair of black headphones are hanging on the wall that play audio descriptions of the images projected onto the wall to enable people to access the work in different ways.
  • Curators’ Series #12, Installation view. Johanna Hedva,
    Curators’ Series #12, Installation view. Johanna Hedva, "Reading is Yielding", 2019. A project in conjunction with Parrhesiades. East London Cable, untitled, 2019. Image description: in this image, we can see two works installed in the white gallery space. On the right is a work produced by the collective East London Cable. It is a model of Raven Row's gallery space atop black metal legs. Inside the model gallery space, a small TV screen is playing a video. Black headphones are balanced on the model's metal legs. On the left of the image, a poster hangs on the wall, the poster contains a handwritten definition of the word "Yield" by Johanna Hedva.
  • Curators’ Series #12, East London Cable, untitled, 2019.

Image description: this image features a close-up of the work presented by the collective East London Cable. The image is of a model of Raven Row's gallery space atop black metal legs that has a small TV screen playing a video of East London Cable’s annual general meeting. One is intended to look at the small TV screen as well as listen to the headphones hanging on the model’s legs.
    Curators’ Series #12, East London Cable, untitled, 2019. Image description: this image features a close-up of the work presented by the collective East London Cable. The image is of a model of Raven Row's gallery space atop black metal legs that has a small TV screen playing a video of East London Cable’s annual general meeting. One is intended to look at the small TV screen as well as listen to the headphones hanging on the model’s legs.
  • Curators’ Series #12, East London Cable, untitled, 2019.

Image description: this image features a close-up of the work by the collective East London Cable in the white gallery space. It is a model of Raven Row's gallery space atop black metal legs that has a small TV screen playing a video. Looking from the backside, a small description of the work is attached on the wall of the model gallery. One can read it while they walk around the model.
    Curators’ Series #12, East London Cable, untitled, 2019. Image description: this image features a close-up of the work by the collective East London Cable in the white gallery space. It is a model of Raven Row's gallery space atop black metal legs that has a small TV screen playing a video. Looking from the backside, a small description of the work is attached on the wall of the model gallery. One can read it while they walk around the model.
  • Curators’ Series #12, Installation view. Johanna Hedva,
    Curators’ Series #12, Installation view. Johanna Hedva, "Reading is Yielding", 2019. A project in conjunction with Parrhesiades. Image description: this image shows two works by Johanna Hedva installed in the white gallery space with metal tiled floor. On the left, two posters are hanging on a white wall. These two works are the astrological charts for Simone Weil and Robin Finck produced by Johanna Hedva. On the right, one yellow poster featuring the handwritten definition of the word "Yield" is hung on the wall.
  • Reading is Yielding, 2019, Astrological natal chart reading of Simone Weil. 1 hour, 9 mins and 9 secs + typed transcription on invigilator's desk.

Image description: this image shows one of the Johanna Hedva’s work installed in the white gallery space. A yellow poster featuring the hand-written definition of the word
    Reading is Yielding, 2019, Astrological natal chart reading of Simone Weil. 1 hour, 9 mins and 9 secs + typed transcription on invigilator's desk. Image description: this image shows one of the Johanna Hedva’s work installed in the white gallery space. A yellow poster featuring the hand-written definition of the word "Yield" is hanging on a white wall.
  • Reading is Yielding, 2019. Digital prints on paper Astrological natal chart of Simone Weil and astrological natal chart of Robin Finck, cast using the whole-sign house system on Astrodienst.

Image description: 2 posters are hanged on the white wall of the gallery. Both are presenting a large circle respectively displaying the astrological natal chart of Simone Weil and Robin Finck. Inside each circle are featured geometrical shapes, calculations and figures.
    Reading is Yielding, 2019. Digital prints on paper Astrological natal chart of Simone Weil and astrological natal chart of Robin Finck, cast using the whole-sign house system on Astrodienst. Image description: 2 posters are hanged on the white wall of the gallery. Both are presenting a large circle respectively displaying the astrological natal chart of Simone Weil and Robin Finck. Inside each circle are featured geometrical shapes, calculations and figures.
  • Curators’ Series #12, Installation view. OFFSHORE,
    Curators’ Series #12, Installation view. OFFSHORE, "OFFSHORE IN KINGSTON ROTA". OFFSHORE, "KEEPER OF SPACE AND TIME'S TOOL". Image description: This image features OFFSHORE installation in the white gallery space. On the left, a clock is set on a white wall, approximately 2 meters from the floor. In the centre of the image, one can see another white wall featuring text shaped as an organisational chart. The text details the schedule of the activities that happened in previous OFFSHORE events, including the time of events and their content.
  • Curators’ Series #12, Installation view. -f-r-i-e-n-d-s,
    Curators’ Series #12, Installation view. -f-r-i-e-n-d-s, "Window cover", 2010-2019. OFFSHORE, "KEEPER OF SPACE AND TIME'S TOOL". Image description: This image shows 2 works both by collectives, on the left by -f-r-i-e-n-d-s and on the right by OFFSHORE on a white wall. On the left is the work "Window cover" presented by -f-r-i-e-n-d-s, a large canvas with green and white stripes. The green colour has faded from the sun in the centre of the canvas. From a distance, one can think the work is only made of only one large canvas. However, as we get closer to the work one discovers that the canvas is made of two parts: one canvas measuring approximately 1 metre length by 2.5 metres height and another canvas measuring approximately 2 metres by 2 metres. In the top right corner of the image, one can see a clock set on the white wall, the clock is a tool used in a previous iteration of OFFSHORE.
  • Curators’ Series #12, -f-r-i-e-n-d-s,
    Curators’ Series #12, -f-r-i-e-n-d-s, "Window cover", 2010-2019. Image description: This image is a close-up of the work "Window cover" presented by -f-r-i-e-n-d-s, a large canvas with green and white stripes on a white wall of the gallery space. The green colour has faded from the sun in the centre of the canvas. From a distance, one can think the work is only made of only one large canvas. However, as we get closer to the work one discovers that the canvas is made of two parts: one canvas measuring approximately 1 metre length by 2.5 metres height and another canvas measuring approximately 2 metres by 2 metres.
  • Curators’ Series #12, Installation view. -f-r-i-e-n-d-s,
    Curators’ Series #12, Installation view. -f-r-i-e-n-d-s, "Hornby Railways R.629 Level Crossing, complete, boxed, excellent condition", 2019. OFFSHORE, "KEEPER OF SPACE AND TIME'S TOOL". Image description: This image features one work presented by -f-r-i-e-n-d-s which is by Mark Aerial Waller as part of the installation Hornby Railway R. 629 level crossing complete, boxed, excellent condition and one work by OFFSHORE. On the left part of the image, 4 pictures are set up on the wall in a grid formation. Each picture is the same size 46 x 64.5cm and is framed with transparent glass. These images shows various elements of model train sets such as gates, buildings and tracks, mainly in red balck and white. To the pictures’ right, a light brown-colour broom is leaning against the white wall, this is a tool used in a previous iteration of OFFSHORE.
  • OFFSHORE IN PARIS, Centre National de la Danse, Paris, France, 2018. Courtesy of OFFSHORE. Photo: Marc Domage.
    OFFSHORE IN PARIS, Centre National de la Danse, Paris, France, 2018. Courtesy of OFFSHORE. Photo: Marc Domage.
  • Am Nuden Da, RETROSPECTIVE w/ Tyler Coburn, Viola Yeşiltaç, xxxxxxxxx. Chelsea Space, London, 2017. Photo: Lewis Ronald. Courtesy of the artists.
    Am Nuden Da, RETROSPECTIVE w/ Tyler Coburn, Viola Yeşiltaç, xxxxxxxxx. Chelsea Space, London, 2017. Photo: Lewis Ronald. Courtesy of the artists.
  • ELC TV Dinner E02. Courtesy of East London Cable.
    ELC TV Dinner E02. Courtesy of East London Cable.
  • OFFSHORE IN KINGSTON, Stanley Picker Gallery, Kingston University, London, 2018. Courtesy of OFFSHORE. Photo: Lewis Ronald.
    OFFSHORE IN KINGSTON, Stanley Picker Gallery, Kingston University, London, 2018. Courtesy of OFFSHORE. Photo: Lewis Ronald.
  • Friends with Mark Gonzales. Mark Gonzales Not Skating 1991-2017, 2017. 1Hr 13min Colour video with sound.
    Friends with Mark Gonzales. Mark Gonzales Not Skating 1991-2017, 2017. 1Hr 13min Colour video with sound.
  • Sung Tieu, Formative Years on Dearth, Parrhesiades at Flat Time House and Sceaux Gardens, 2019.
    Sung Tieu, Formative Years on Dearth, Parrhesiades at Flat Time House and Sceaux Gardens, 2019.
  • Simone Weil (right) and Robin Finck (Left). Robin Finck image copyright Jospeh Cultice, 1994.
    Simone Weil (right) and Robin Finck (Left). Robin Finck image copyright Jospeh Cultice, 1994.
  • Portrait of Hana Noorali and Lynton Talbot. Courtesy of DRAF and Hana Noorali. Photo: Yuki Shima.
    Portrait of Hana Noorali and Lynton Talbot. Courtesy of DRAF and Hana Noorali. Photo: Yuki Shima.