Artists: Dana DeGiulio & Molly Zuckerman-Hartung
Exhibition title: QUEEN
Venue: Lyles & King, New York, US
Date: January 8 – February 7, 2016
Photography: images copyright and courtesy of the artists and Lyles & King, New York
She decides the palette, the setting, the sequence. When it comes time to film, it’s all done out of order: that actor is only available this month, there are intensities that cannot be repeated, certain relationships take time to accrue. She imagines the film projected in the order of its making. Actors expecting paychecks receive IOUs; turns out the budget’s been blown on make-up.
She performs postures that someone made before her, and because of this she can never forget history. Particular positions are painful to endure and she practices the action repeatedly. Each time, the emphasis shifts; this marks time. The audience is eclipsed by the stage lights. The show never stops and they never go home.
– Michaela Murphy
For conservators, an accretion is defined as “a growth or accumulation of material on the exterior surface of an object.” A kind of thickness. “Accretions may be unintentional (dirt, salts, corrosion, insect deposits, guano, drips, burial deposits) or intentional (expansion, alteration) additions that change the appearance of the object.” Until recently (before moving to New York), Molly Zuckerman-Hartung’s paintings have been something akin to accretions. The time Molly spent in her studio was visible as layers, deposits, accumulations––reflecting (she told me) a kind of anxiety or self-doubt about when a painting was finished, as well as a desire to make every idea ever cohere within the space of a painting (which sometimes meant extruding from or expanding the edges of the frame).
It’s December, and Molly, Dana DeGiulio, Michaela Murphy and I are sitting in Molly’s studio, talking about the relationship between Molly’s and Dana’s paintings. Molly says (with some envy) that Dana is a “narrative” thinker (and painter), capable of building up a story over time: Dana’s work is “durational.” Molly claims she’s incapable of thinking that way (despite aspiring to)—that for her, painting has often been a struggle to force a temporal narrative into the frame of a painting. Her new paintings reflect a “relational” approach to painting, rather than a durational one. They’re loosely structured by patchwork grids, but unlike the rigid aesthetics of a chart these porous grids are a way to say that proximate does not imply equivalent. Viscous paint seeps back to front, the “text” can be read in any direction. Thick Description, without the thickness.
Dana lives in her studio, for the first time in a decade. This means co-existing with things (whether they are flowers or paintings or paintings of flowers) and seeing how they change over time; confronting duration from your bed, or while washing the dishes. Or, as Dana says, “Having to live with what you make.” But that’s also relational. Everything is there, next to everything else. A rectangle of lavender and grey, next to seven dead/alive roses on an oblong of black. Proximate doesn’t imply equivalent. It’s just the space we’re living in.
To distract myself from my anxiety about writing about paintings (my fear of an inability to make a coherent narrative), I start reading some old anthropologists. It makes sense, in a way, since painting feels like a foreign country to me. In his manifesto for Thick Description, Clifford Geertz writes: “Coherence cannot be the major test of validity for a cultural description.” This applies equally to the individual paintings in this show; to the paintings hung together as A Show; and to my writing about these paintings in this show.
– Lisa Darms
Dana DeGiulio (b. 1978) lives and works in Booklyn, NY. She received her MFA in 2007 from the School of the Art institute of Chicago. Recent solo exhibitions include Dana DeGiulio at The Suburban (Chicago, IL); Flash!Dana DeGiulio at the Museum of Contemporary Photography (Riverside, CA). Recent group exhibitions include Instead of being born, with Michaela Murphy and Ilie Paun Capriel at an airbnb in Midtown (NYC), Sensitive Instruments, curated by Molly Zuckerman-Hartung at Corbett vs. Dempsey (Chicago, IL) and Noncompliance, curated by Carrie Schneider at Iceberg Projects (Chicago, IL). She is a founder of Julius Caesar, an artist-run exhibition space in Chicago. Queen is her first exhibition with Lyles & King.
Molly Zuckerman-Hartung (b.1975) lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. She received her MFA in 2007 from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Her work is included in the collections of The Walker Art Center (Minneapolis, MN), the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago (Chicago, IL); and the Booth School of Business at the University of Chicago (Chicago, IL). Recent exhibitions include Painter, Painter at the Walker Art Center, (Minneapolis, MN); 2014 Whitney Biennial at the Whitney Museum of American Art (New York, NY); The Program at ReMap4 (Athens, Greece); Michelle Grabner: I Work From Home at MOCA Cleveland (Cleveland, OH); and Violet Fogs Azure Snot at Corbett vs. Dempsey (Chicago, IL). Queen is her first exhibition with Lyles & King. She is represented by Corbett vs. Dempsey.
Molly Zuckerman-Hartung, What Are Years, 2015
Dana DeGiulio, no title, 2015
Dana DeGiulio, Attendant, 2015
Dana DeGiulio, mono, 2015
Dana DeGiulio, Lighthouse, 2015
Molly Zuckerman-Hartung, Fruited Void, 2014
Molly Zuckerman-Hartung, Dirty Window, 2015
Molly Zuckerman-Hartung, How Much Such a Little Moon, 2015
Molly Zuckerman-Hartung, Plus & Minus, 2015
Dana DeGiulio, Pina Bausch, 2015
Molly Zuckerman-Hartung, To be no one’s sleep under so many lids, 2015
Molly Zuckerman-Hartung, Gimme Shelter, 2015
Molly Zuckerman-Hartung, Enigma-Riddle-Joke, 2015
Dana DeGiulio, Fresh Hell, 2015
Molly Zuckerman-Hartung, Perfect Bound, 2015
Dana DeGiulio, Pool, 2011
Dana DeGiulio, Citizens, 2015
Dana DeGiulio, Spring and All, 2015