Studio for Propositional Cinema at Swiss Institute

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Artist: Studio for Propositional Cinema

Exhibition title: & faintly heard (as it sinks, slowly): with The Tenderness of Maggots

Venue: Swiss Institute, New York, US

Date: January 7 – Feburary 5, 2017

Photography: Daniel Perez, all images copyright and courtesy of the artist and Swiss Institute, New York

IF THERE IS STILL ENOUGH TIME TO DO SO:
AS DARKNESS APPROACHES:
&/OR:
AS DARKNESSES APPROACH:
LIKE CANARIES INTO MINES:
WITH THE FREQUENCIES OF BATS:

& faintly heard (as it sinks, slowly): with The Tenderness of Maggots is an exhibition by Studio for Propositional Cinema (founded 2013). Structured as two overlapping plays, the exhibition addresses the intrinsic brutality of the political, societal and physical institutions humans have made for themselves, while suggesting moments of hope in their cracks.

The first play, & faintly heard (as it sinks, slowly):, by Studio for Propositional Cinema, is installed in the exhibition space as a wall text, printed documents, and scenographic elements. The play is enacted by the spectator as they read and traverse the space, and contains four monologues by the play’s central characters – A BAND of RATS, A GUST of WIND, A COPPER-GLEANER, and A PANE of GLASS. Their soliloquies are printed in the style of the US Immigration Customs Declaration form, a legal document that must be filled in by all persons entering the country.

The installation concludes with The Tenderness of Maggots, a theatrical adaptation of Comte de Lautréamont’s (1846-1870) brutal, proto-Surrealist novel Les Chants de Maldoror, re-edited and re-configured for the stage by Studio for Propositional Cinema. Beginning with a short speech during the opening reception, and performed each Saturday during the duration of the exhibition, the narrator of the text gleefully confesses his gruesome and evil acts on a glass stage behind a “curtain” of text asking: AS WE ENTER UNWANTED FUTURES: ARE VIRUSES NOT ALSO SEEKING CONNECTIONS?: DO MAGGOTS NOT ALSO HAVE MOMENTS OF TENDERNESS?: &: WHAT CAN WE BUILD IN AN AGE OF WALLS?: WHAT CAN WE DISMANTLE IN AN AGE OF EROSION?…

Studio for Propositional Cinema was inaugurated in 2013 with a public call to action. Through language, actions, sounds, and images, through production, publication, exhibition, and fictions, they seek to reconfigure culture from a network of ideological formations into a dialogue of hypothetical gestures. Their activities have taken many forms, including an exhibition space in Düsseldorf, Germany, various publishing projects, sustained collaborations with other artists, as well as exhibitions, realized both individually and together with a loose network of artists and cultural producers. Recent exhibitions were presented at Kunstverein für die Rheinlande und Westfalen, Düsseldorf, Bonner Kunstverein, Bonn, Kunsthaus Bregenz, Bregenz, and MuMoK, Vienna. This is their first exhibition in the U.S. and marks their first in-depth collaboration with Comte de Lautréamont.

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Studio for Propositional Cinema, & faintly heard (as it sinks, slowly): with The Tenderness of Maggots, 2017

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Studio for Propositional Cinema, & faintly heard (as it sinks, slowly): with The Tenderness of Maggots, 2017

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Studio for Propositional Cinema, & faintly heard (as it sinks, slowly): with The Tenderness of Maggots, 2017

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Studio for Propositional Cinema, & faintly heard (as it sinks, slowly): with The Tenderness of Maggots, 2017

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Studio for Propositional Cinema, & faintly heard (as it sinks, slowly): with The Tenderness of Maggots, 2017

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Studio for Propositional Cinema, & faintly heard (as it sinks, slowly): with The Tenderness of Maggots, 2017

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Studio for Propositional Cinema, & faintly heard (as it sinks, slowly): with The Tenderness of Maggots, 2017

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Studio for Propositional Cinema, & faintly heard (as it sinks, slowly): with The Tenderness of Maggots, 2017

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Studio for Propositional Cinema, & faintly heard (as it sinks, slowly): with The Tenderness of Maggots, 2017

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Studio for Propositional Cinema, & faintly heard (as it sinks, slowly): with The Tenderness of Maggots, 2017

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Studio for Propositional Cinema, & faintly heard (as it sinks, slowly): with The Tenderness of Maggots, 2017

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Studio for Propositional Cinema, & faintly heard (as it sinks, slowly): with The Tenderness of Maggots, 2017

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Studio for Propositional Cinema, & faintly heard (as it sinks, slowly): with The Tenderness of Maggots, 2017

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Studio for Propositional Cinema, & faintly heard (as it sinks, slowly): with The Tenderness of Maggots, 2017

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Studio for Propositional Cinema, & faintly heard (as it sinks, slowly): with The Tenderness of Maggots, 2017

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Studio for Propositional Cinema, & faintly heard (as it sinks, slowly): with The Tenderness of Maggots, 2017

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Studio for Propositional Cinema, & faintly heard (as it sinks, slowly): with The Tenderness of Maggots, 2017

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Studio for Propositional Cinema, & faintly heard (as it sinks, slowly): with The Tenderness of Maggots, 2017

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Studio for Propositional Cinema, & faintly heard (as it sinks, slowly): with The Tenderness of Maggots, 2017

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Studio for Propositional Cinema, & faintly heard (as it sinks, slowly): with The Tenderness of Maggots, 2017

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Studio for Propositional Cinema, & faintly heard (as it sinks, slowly): with The Tenderness of Maggots, 2017

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Studio for Propositional Cinema, & faintly heard (as it sinks, slowly): with The Tenderness of Maggots, 2017, OUR NARRATOR, performed by Griffin Sparks

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Studio for Propositional Cinema, & faintly heard (as it sinks, slowly): with The Tenderness of Maggots, 2017, OUR NARRATOR, performed by Griffin Sparks

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