Higher! Higher! Lower, Lower, Louder! Louder! Softer, Softer at Shimmer

Artists: Zarouhie Abdalian, Gwenneth Boelens, Shanta Rao, Elena Narbutaitė

Exhibition title: Higher! Higher! Lower, Lower, Louder! Louder! Softer, Softer

Curated by: Shimmer (Eloise Sweetman and Jason Hendrik Hansma)

Venue: Shimmer, Rotterdam, The Netherlands

Date: September – December, 2019

Photography: all images copyright and courtesy of the artists and Shimmer, Rotterdam

Higher! Higher! Lower, Lower. Louder! Louder! Softer, Softer is an exhibition that unfolds over one year. Since September 2019, we have shared space with works by Zarouhie Abdalian, Gwenneth Boelens, Liu Chao-tze, Elena Narbutaitė, and Shanta Rao. We will continue with the exhibition until July 2020 with works by stanley brouwn, Marcel Duchamp, Joseph Grigely, JCJ van der Heyden, Ian Kiaer, Kate Newby, Katie West and Ma Qiusha. Kindly see our exhibition schedule for when the artworks enter and exit the exhibition.

Building from Shimmer’s first program of fading exhibitions in, through, and out of each other, we now shift rhythms by curating singular artworks over stretches of time. Higher! Higher! Lower, Lower. Louder! Louder! Softer, Softer embodies slow deliberate processes with a changing register. By doing so the exhibition moves like water, unfixed, in motion. We understand the exhibition as a choreographic score where through shifting rhythms, registers, and movements artworks overlap, where ideas and generations cross-over. The format of our exhibition unfolds over time, opening up and crossing conceptual, spatial, and temporal borders. We are entering into times of deep environmental, global and mechanical change, where we need all the knowledge and crossovers we can get our hands-on. On our horizon are radical shifts of what and how we mean to each other, how we come together and how we share. With this in mind, we curate to reconsider the past to shape the future and to better accommodate us in the present. To not confine a history, a practice, a thought, an audience particular categories, but to give us all as much room as possible to draw alliances with artworks and each other.

September
Enter: Gwenneth Boelens & Shanta Rao
Still present: Liu Chao-tze

Higher! Higher! Lower, Lower. Louder! Louder! Softer, Softer embodies slow deliberate processes, a repetitive changing register, embodying the algorithmic, becoming more supple. As such it is fitting that Waterfall#2: Look At The View by Liu Chao-tze opens Shimmer up to works by Gwenneth Boelens and Shanta Rao.

Gwenneth and Shanta’s works are woven from, and cast out of, industrial material creating intimate works that call for a slowing of time to reveal themselves fully. Radiant Liar’s Cloth (strip), 2017 by Gwenneth Boelens is a handwoven cloth of electro-conductive and reflective fibres. Whereas the semi-translucent glittering soft sculpture, Untitled, 2018, by Shanta Rao was developed through the use of marine paint. A highly elastic paint originally intended for ship hulls dries with a skin-like consistency. Installed by the window Waterfall #2: Look at the View by Liu Chao-tze reflects the port and “soothes” the industrial zone with the sound of falling water and birds twittering away. Far from the sublime, but still moving, we look at the view itself instead of something in particular. Together and apart, we are struck how the artworks appears at once digital yet tactile and amorphous, fixed and unfixed.

October
Exit: Liu Chaotze
Enter: Elena Narbutaite  & Zarouhie Abdalian
Still present: Gwenneth Boelens & Shanta Rao

Entering into the exhibition in October is with Fumy Frig Sour, 2018 by Elena Narbutaite (b.1984, LI) a long laser line will cut across the exhibition space. In Fumy Frig Sour we see a sharp ‘cut’ of light between the exhibition space and the artwork, but also the sharpness of industrial light and tools. The kind of light is used to read and write optical disks, to transfer data. We are excited to curate Fumy Frig Sour with the soft tactility of Rao’s sculpture that allows light to pass through it and a reflective, conductive textile installation of Boelen.

Fumy Frig Sour is exhibited alongside Joints, 2019 by Zarouhie Abdalian (b.1982, US/AR). In this work Zarouhie grinds back the surface of simple hand held tools by reducing them to their surface before time has altered them. Zarouhie hand mirrors these tools to create an ethereal quality of light that evokes the aura of self-worth that once ennobled workers who now often feel sidelined by widespread workplace changes. For Shimmer, Joints will be installed in different positions to adapt to Shimmer when other artworks enter the exhibition.

About the artists

Zarouhie Abdalian (1982, US/AR) has had shows at Berkeley Art Museum, Secession, Vienna; Wattis Institute of Contemporary Art, San Francisco; Whitney Biennial, New York; and SFMOMA San Francisco and many more. Courtesy of the artist and Altman Siegal.

Gwenneth Boelens (1980, NL) has exhibited at MIT List Visual Arts Center, Cambridge; Klemm, Berlin; Kunsthalle Exnergasse, Vienna among many others.

Elena Narbutaitė (1984, LI) exhibited in Liverpool Biennial; Lithuanian and Cyprus Pavilion at the Venice Biennale; Tai Kwun Contemporary, Hong Kong, and Contemporary Art Center, Vilnius and more. Courtesy of the artist and PM8 Gallery.

Shanta Rao’s (1980, IN/FR) shows were at galerie Joseph Tang, Paris; Kunstverein am Rosa–Luxemburg–Platz, Berlin; Fondation Ricard, Paris among others.

About Shimmer

On the edge of Rotterdam’s port, Shimmer is an exhibition space that operates with an ever-changing studio-like mentality where knowledge arises through participation and experimentation. Alongside the exhibitions are platforms such as the events program Sunday Mornings and the online mixtapes On the Waves, as a means to move through personal and public space. Shimmer is co-initiated by Eloise Sweetman and Jason Hendrik Hansma.

Higher! Higher! Lower, Lower. Louder! Louder! Softer, Softer With Gwenneth Boelens, Shanta Rao, Elena Narbutaitė

Higher! Higher! Lower, Lower. Louder! Louder! Softer, Softer With Gwenneth Boelens, Shanta Rao, Elena Narbutaitė

Zarouhie Abdalian, Joint (xi), Joint (xii), Joint (xiii), hand-mirrored tools, 2019. Artwork courtesy of the artist and Altman Siegal

Zarouhie Abdalian, Joint (xi), Joint (xii), Joint (xiii), hand-mirrored tools, 2019. Artwork courtesy of the artist and Altman Siegal

Zarouhie Abdalian, Joint (xi), Joint (xii), Joint (xiii), hand-mirrored tools, 2019. Artwork courtesy of the artist and Altman Siegal

Gwenneth Boelens, Liar’s Cloth (strip), electro conductive and reflective fibers, 2017. Artwork courtesy of the artist and galerie Klemm; Elena Narbutaite, Fumy Frig Sour, laser, 2018. Artwork courtesy of the artist and PM8 Gallery

Gwenneth Boelens, Liar’s Cloth (strip), electro conductive and reflective fibers, 2017. Artwork courtesy of the artist and galerie Klemm; Shanta Rao, Untitled, Polymer paint, 2018. Artwork courtesy of the artist & galerie Joseph Tang, Avin Jarijs & Tuukka Laurila

Gwenneth Boelens, Liar’s Cloth (strip), electro conductive and reflective fibers, 2017. Artwork courtesy of the artist and galerie Klemm

Gwenneth Boelens, Liar’s Cloth (strip), electro conductive and reflective fibers, 2017. Artwork courtesy of the artist and galerie Klemm

Gwenneth Boelens, Liar’s Cloth (strip), electro conductive and reflective fibers, 2017. Artwork courtesy of the artist and galerie Klemm

Gwenneth Boelens, Liar’s Cloth (strip), electro conductive and reflective fibers, 2017. Artwork courtesy of the artist and galerie Klemm

Elena Narbutaite, Fumy Frig Sour, laser, 2018. Artwork courtesy of the artist and PM8 Gallery

Elena Narbutaite, Fumy Frig Sour, laser, 2018. Artwork courtesy of the artist and PM8 Gallery

Shanta Rao, Untitled, Polymer paint, 2018. Artwork courtesy of the artist & galerie Joseph Tang, Avin Jarijs & Tuukka Laurila

Shanta Rao, Untitled, Polymer paint, 2018. Artwork courtesy of the artist & galerie Joseph Tang, Avin Jarijs & Tuukka Laurila

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