Spotlightness is a pop-up group show organized by Sébastien Maloberti at Flux Factory.
Reception on January 28th, 6pm–9pm
Featuring works by Jimmy Beauquesne, Mathilde Bezon, Kevin Desbouis, Marine Joulie, Sébastien Maloberti, Valentine Ridde and Bruno Silva.
The exhibition will present the work of seven artists, all based in France, and currently in residence at Flux Factory (Queens) and Triangle Arts Association (Brooklyn), with the partnership of Artistes en Résidence and the École Supèrieure d’Art de Clermont Métropole. This project’s format is lightweight, much like the artists’ methods of working: simple means, found materials and tools. All these works were produced this week in the fresh air of NYC.
Flux Factory is one of NYC’s oldest and most affordable collectively-run art spaces. On Saturday, May 7th, we’re holding the 1st Annual“Flux-a-Thon“ putting our own jubilant, collaborative twist on a traditional walk-a-thon to raise money for another year of our residency program. Teams of artists and marchers will wander through the streets of Long Island City with their best mobile art projects, floats, performances, and roving spectacles.
We’ll head from Flux Factory to Smiling Hogshead Ranch, an all-volunteer urban farm located on an abandoned rail spur in Long Island City, where our guest judges Hrag Vartanian (Editor-in-Chief & Co-founder, Hyperallergic), Paddy Johnson (Founder & Editorial Director, Art F City), Harriet Taub (Director, Materials for the Arts), Kevin Balktick (co-founder, FIGMENT) and Connie Wang (Fashion Features Director, Refinery 29) will award prizes for best costume, best use of recycled materials, most funds raised, best performance, and more! The day will conclude with a Garden Dance party and BBQ featuring the Center for the Holographic Arts behind the grill, scrumptious dishes donated by Beija Flor, Dutch Kills Centraal, and Tom Cat Bakery and music by none other than DJ Vinyl Richie and DJ Seaarch.All funds raised in the “Flux-a-thon” will go directly into Flux’s operating costs.
Each year, our roster of cultural producers run ambitious and challenging programs, that are always free and open to the public. In addition to providing low-cost facilities and support that premise creativity, we pay every artist who participates in a Flux program, providing over $30,000 in 2015 to support the creation of new works.
In 2016, Flux Factory has narrowly avoided displacement from Long Island City. We are thrilled to have signed a 5 year lease extension, and to continue to serve our neighborhood and the greater NYC arts community long-term. However, starting April 1st, our rent went up 8.5%, and we’re working to raise the funds necessary to keep our doors open, our woodshop sawing, and our studios humming with emerging and off-the-wall cultural producers.
Sunday, February 28th, 4-8 pm (with music by DJ Vinyl Richie)
Wieteke Heldens is pleased to invite you to Once Upon a Line, her third solo-show. She will share her paintings and drawings made during her current residency at Flux Factory. Together, the paintings form a never-ending story or an endless poem with their titles and content. ‘Once upon a time’ refers to the title of the first work made during the residency. The second work is made by the first and so forth. But the first is never the first and the last is never the last. Everything has history and everything has consequences.
Wieteke Heldens was born in Ottersum, The Netherlands in 1982. Heldens works in the medium of painting. She graduated from the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in The Hague in 2007. She had her first solo show at Flux Factory in 2011 and exhibited in the The Hague Gemeente museum, Royal Palace in Amsterdam and internationally in Switzerland, France, Germany, Denmark and the US. In 2013 Heldens won the Royal prize for Painting in the Netherlands. Heldens is currently represented by gallery Borzo in Amsterdam and is an active member of Quartair Contemporary Art Initiatives in The Hague. She lives and works in New York and in The Hague.
These artists and / or their works listed below will be present on these specific buses:
The Biennial Project, Marco Castro, Eric Doeringer, Fan Letters (Alex Nathanson + Dylan Neely), Sunita Prasad, Joshua Caleb Wiebley, Ariel Abrahams + Rony Efrat, Magali Duzant, Keith Hartwig + Daniel Newman, Heather Kapplow, Seth Timothy Larson + Abigail Entsminger, Manuel Molina Martagon, Kristoffer Ørum, Ruth Patir, Pines / Palms (Emily Ensminger + Sophie Trauberman), Jonah Levy, Roopa Vasudevan, Tereza Szwanda, Documentarian: Bryan Chang
Boston Partners: Atlantic Works Gallery (Hosted by Anna Salmeron), Make Shift Space
Michael Barraco, Chloë Bass, Adam Milner, Marjan Verstappen + Jessica Valentin, Meg Wiessner, Joshua Caleb Wiebley, Ariel Abrahams + Rony Efrat, Magali Duzant, Keith Hartwig + Daniel Newman, Seth Timothy Larson + Abigail Entsminger, Manuel Molina Martagon, Kristoffer Ørum Ruth Patir, Pines / Palms (Emily Ensminger + Sophie Trauberman), Jonah Levy, Roopa Vasudevan, Tereza Szwanda, Documentarian: Alex Nathanson
Philadelphia Partners: Asian Arts Initiative (Hosted by Nancy Chen) , R.F. Kampfer Revolutionary Literature Archive (Hosted by Bradley Duncan), Space 1026 (Hosted by Jacqueline Quinn) ,Vox Populi (Hosted by Bree Pickering)
Dillon De Give, Ursula Nistrup, Kristoffer Ørum, Ariel Abrahams + Rony Efrat, Fan Letters (Alex Nathanson + Dylan Neely), Magali Duzant, Keith Hartwig + Daniel Newman, Seth Timothy Larson + Abigail Entsminger, Manuel Molina Martagon, Ruth Patir, Pines / Palms (Emily Ensminger + Sophie Trauberman), Kristoffer Ørum, Jonah Levy, Roopa Vasudevan, Tereza Szwanda, Documentarian: Alex Nathanson
Baltimore Partners: Current Space Gallery (hosted by Michael Benevento + Andrew Liang)
In March 2016, Flux will commission 25 US-based and international artists / artist groups to create site-specific works for three Chinatown bus routes in the North-Eastern United States for the inaugural Fung Wah Biennial. During trips to Boston, Philadelphia, and Baltimore artists will share performances, projections, sound-works, web-based projects, and other social interventions that amplify experiences or tease out the nuanced politics of transit.
On each Saturday in March, a bus will depart from NYC to venture to a new city and back. Artists were invited to create works in response to the history and infrastructure of these particular bus lines, as well as the physical and emotional experience of travel. Some works look at transit through the lens of leisure, or challenge its banality and isolation, while others contend with migration as an act of necessity or survival. The works will be presented on the bus while en route to and from their respective destinations, as well as on the ground in each city. The audience will comprise of mostly knowing Fung Wah Biennial exhibition participants, however it may also include those who are simply traveling on each selected bus (i.e. innocent bystanders).
The impetus for this exhibition is three-fold: The impending migration of most emerging art spaces in New York City due to increasing cost of living; The experience of travel whether for leisure or out of necessity; The incredible, inexpensive network of buses between Chinatowns in the Northeastern U.S. and beyond, and especially honoring the closure of the original company in 2015, Fung Wah Bus line.
In Roopa Vasudevan’s “eMOTION Mapping” passengers’ varied emotional states, typically internalized, become collected and visualized on a web-based map designed by the artist.
A trip to the bathroom may ask one to consider the meaning of permanent residency status, while washing away labels associated with it embossed on Tereza Swanda’s hand cast soaps.
Weary travelers are treated to customized comforts found in seat-pocket travel kits tailored especially for each bus journey by Pines // Palms (Emily Entsminger and Sophie Trauberman), while Marjan Verstappen’s “Fung Wah Onboard Service” allows passengers to taste the topography rolling by outside the windows through her specially created snack menu.
Reminding us of the legacy of artists inspired by travelling between cities in the northeast, Eric Doeringer will revisit artist Douglas Huebler’s cartographic exploration of two cities by recreating his 1968 artwork “Boston – New York Exchange Shape” during the Fung Wah Biennial’s Boston leg.
In the “The Legend of Buspar” Abigail Entsminger and Seth Timothy Larson will translate an epic, multi-act saga of forced urban migration and transformation into a miniature theatrical production staged in two seats at the rear of the bus.
In each city Fung Wah Biennial will partner with local art and cultural spaces for lectures and tours to get to know better our neighboring city centers and their creative output. Our current partners include: Current Space (Baltimore), Space 1026 (Philadelphia), Vox Populi (Philadelphia), Atlantic Works Gallery (Boston), and more to be announced. The last week of the month will culminate in an exhibition held in the Flux Factory gallery, 6pm Friday March 25th, 2016 showing both documentation and replication of works from the month’s travels.
Will Owen, organizer and co-curator of Fung Wah Biennial states, “The Fung Wah Biennial was an idea now taken a little too far. We’re essentially creating a series of gallery exhibitions on chinatown buses– while traveling between cities in the Northeast with artist interventions, snacks, and all the joys and frustrations of a regular gallery opening, but traveling at 70 miles per hour.”
Gallery visits by appointment (email firstname.lastname@example.org)
Who makes me laugh out loud? Who holds my hair back when I vomit? Who takes care of me when I am sick? Tell me of the mysteries of friendship. Of a strength that goes beyond the physical. It brings such a quality of joy that on the merit of its strength it must exist long after we die. That we speak every day for 3 months and then stop for 3 years; a friendship lightly peppered with emoji text messages. Yet we are not broken. That there are some who bring me down, and yet they are my friends. That there are some who make my heart sing, and yet we are not friends. Why? And that through and through it is understood, ubiquitously and through the ages, that friendship is golden, and at that, it is the most solid of goldens.
FRIENDSHIP features work by friends of Ariel Abrahams, as well as work by their friends. FRIENDSHIP will also host two sleepovers, one at the start of the show (January 22nd) and one at the closing (January 26th). These sleepovers will feature performances, games, television watching, cooking, and sleeping. Please email (email@example.com) for details on how to attend.
Ariel Abrahams was born in New York in 1988 and graduated from New York University in 2010. His work has been performed in venues and universities worldwide including the Embros Theater in Athens, Greece, Front Space in Kansas City, Princeton University, Night Kitchen in Philadelphia and numerous venues in New York City. He writes poetry and opera in email, inky pen drawings, .zip files, audio, sleepovers, long walks, shabbat dinners, and records under the name lonohomo. He is fascinated by religion, group dynamics, and imagination. Ariel is currently a resident at Flux Factory in Queens, New York, and is the Director of Public Engagement for the theater group Odyssey Works.
With the growth of mass communication channels, media wars have become a strong and powerful machine of creating, conducting and escalating conflicts between countries, nations and communities. In the current political agenda, when global relations between main players on the world’s political arena are again being reconsidered, the power of media in forming and broadcasting ideologically charged discourse becomes especially obvious and disturbing. Since television the Internet have become easily accessible and embraced by the masses, they have influenced our world views and fed us with selectively constructed news in order to shape our thinking and prevent us from critical analysis of the information we are being delivered.
TOK’s new exhibition ‘Propaganda News Machine’ will explore the notion of propaganda, the news construction and designs of multiple realities in the media today. The show attempts to present, analyze and unveil some of the strategies that governments use in order to create specific images/views of political and social events and influence audience’s opinions when it comes to broadcasting cases in the global political arena.
TOK curators Anna Bitkina and Maria Veits analyze the media discourse related to the conflict between Russia and the U.S. during the Cold War, as well as the new wave of opposition between the U.S. and Russia today. TOK questions if artistic practice can create an alternative media discourse free of propaganda and whether curators and artists can be independent cultural diplomats. Can art influence politics and oppose global political games?
Invited artists and researchers will analyze strategies and mechanisms of the media and mass culture realm in the era of mass television development of the Cold War era and determine whether some are still used today. Through printed series of postcards and stamps Emily Newman looks at the figure of the spy in American mass culture during the time of the Cold War and in contemporary films and TV series. In his series of posters with quotes of American politicians Yevgeniy Fiks investigates espionage concepts in the US mass culture and relations between communism and homosexuality used in the United States’ propaganda in the 50’s-60’s. Fiks draws a historical parallel to the antigay law in Russia and how it is presented today in the U.S. media. Media researcher and activist Stephen Duncombe provides theoretical insight on the notion of ‘propaganda’ throughout history, as well as quotes of famous speakers and politicians. American filmmaker Mark Boswell will create a new work combined of short Soviet didactic films screened in movie theaters as propaganda.
‘Propaganda News Machine’ is a result of the research that TOK curators have conducted over their 3 month residency at Flux Factory. The exhibition includes documentation of the public events that TOK organized at Flux Factory prior to the exhibition in December 2015 and January 2016 to challenge a critical discourse and accumulate knowledge around the theme of propaganda and media realities it creates. The installation will comprise some archival materials found by exhibition curators in New York City Public Library and some readymade items (books, TV sets, etc.) that will be connected with art works by the invited artists.
‘Propaganda News Machine’ is supported by Trust for Mutual Understanding and Flux Factory.
Please RSVP for an individual tour with exhibition curators: firstname.lastname@example.org
Dinner at 8 pm. Presentations begin at 9:15 pm.
The event is free, but please do bring something (edible) to share!
‘Re-‘ curator Naiyi Wang and participating artist/ Flux resident Yi Zhou will dive into the inspiration behind the show (in Flux’s gallery January 9-14). The exhibition was partly inspired by a conversation with Yi at Flux, a space for artists that is filled with “re” purposed objects. Flux residents Seth Larson and Abby Entsminger will host a special performance in the gallery.
Facilitated by Ayden LeRoux, SexEd is a month-long series of workshops to be held at Flux Factory that will give participants an opportunity to talk about sexuality safely, practice and become more comfortable with open communication, and to discuss theory about sexuality. Each workshop will last approximately 2 hours and be held on Sunday evenings from 5-7 pm. Anyone is welcome to attend and the class will be free (with a suggested $5 donation). It is strongly encouraged but not required that people attend all four workshops in order to create a cohesive atmosphere.
Week 1: Communicating Desire
Learning how to create safe spaces for discussion (asking for and outlining certain communication practices)
Authentic expressions of desire, talking without fear (or acknowledging fear when it is there)
Alternative sexual practices
Invitations and fantasy
Week 2: Shaping Relationships
Getting out of default formations
Boundaries and consent
Jargon: Open relationships, polyamory, partnered nonmonogamy, solo non-monagamy and other shapes of relationship (jargon)
Sexlessness: Asexuality and celibacy
The notion of virginity
Week 3: Sex and Community
Privacy vs. Openness
Who do you sleep with? Deciding what feels appropriate for you and for the group you live with (at work, at home, at school)
How do you talk about sex and with whom?
Male dominance being demonized
Gender equality in partnerships and living spaces
Intimacy and Affection
Week 4: Intersections of Art and Sex (with guest speaker Katy McCarthy, from Flirtmoji)
Why is it important to be discussing sex in an art space?
Depicting sex inclusively
Art as a way to communicate about sex
Art as a place of sexual expression
INTENTIONS OF THE CLASS:
to practice open communication (with friends, lovers, partners)
to practice expressing ourselves sexually, positively (physically and verbally)
to practice receiving others sexual expressions and desires (whether or not one reciprocates)
to talk about sexuality and community, and the language of such
This is a safe and confidential space. We encourage you to extend the discussions we have here outside this space with those here and those that aren’t here, but please if you repeat what we talk about here, do so with anonymity.
This is an open space that is here to receive you as you are. We won’t judge you and we ask that you don’t judge others.
This is a sex positive space. We are all for pleasure, health and safety. Please ask for what you need, state what you want, and feel empowered to voice if something makes you uncomfortable.
Artists, creative practitioners, researchers, and educators are invited to submit proposals for objects, experiences, workshops, performances, or actions that repurpose debt in its broadest interpretation. Debt might be the fundamental basis of human relations, but today it is also tricky business. Individuals shun it, but organizations seek to go into debt in order to grow. Debt seems to drive the economy yet appears abstracted to absurdity. Most people in the US share debt, yet debt is borne out privately. How do we put our finger on the debt, which is everywhere powerful and nowhere seen?
Debt Positive beckons artists and alchemists to re-envision debt, sublimate it, or provide entrance points and possibilities for eliminating wasteful implementations of debt. The national debt, student debt, climate debt, nutritional (or microbial) debt, and even the everyday debts arising out of daily lived experience are all fair game for transformation and repurposing.
Political Conflicts: Media Strategies and Construction of Multiple Realities
America vs Russia
‘House of Cards'(Netflix), 3 episode, film still, 2015 President Petrov greets members of Pussy Riot together with U.S. president Frank Underwood and his wife at the White House
Join us for TOK‘s second roundtable discussion in Flux Factory’s kitchen. It will be a semi-formal talk amongst speakers and attendees on TOK’s research of the role and strategies of media within global political conflicts, starting from the era of the Cold War till nowadays.
The conversation will revolve around the processes of news construction and design in the media today. Also, how audiences’ opinions are being formed and shaped by ideologically charged media information and what strategies governments use in order to create a certain image/view of a political or social event for viewers. Are there alternative sources of information? What are ways to stimulate a critical approach amongst viewers to mainstream media sources when we are presented with very convincing (but misleading) information? The talk will gather journalists, filmmakers and scriptwriters interested in the Cold War era, covering the political processes of today.
Speakers will also discuss their own artistic practices and professions. Inspired by the ‘House of Cards’ Netflix TV series, TOK will analyze its portrayal of the character President Petrov (based on President Vladimir Putin).
Featured speakers include:
Stephen Duncombe is Professor of Media and Culture at the Gallatin School of Individualized Study and the Department of Media, Culture and Communications at the Steinhardt School of New York University. He is currently co-founder and co-director of the Center for Artistic Activism, a research and training institute that helps activists to think more like artists and artists to think more like activists.
Mark Boswell, an artist and filmmaker whose been interested in the USSR/Russia and USA relations through his practice. His films USSA: Secret Manual of the Soviet Politburger (2001), Agent Orange (2002) and upcoming Nova Conspiracy are based on stereotypes, collective memories and archival materials on Russia and the US in times of the Cold War which he bridges with contemporary political situation.
Olga Kopenkina is a Belarus-born, New York-based independent curator and art critic. Her exhibitions and projects includeLenin Icebreaker Revisited, the NY Austrian Cultural Forum, 2015; Sound of Silence: Art during Dictatorship, EFA Project Space, NY, 2012; Reading Lenin with Corporations (2008-); Russia: Significant Other, Anna Akhmatova Museum, St. Petersburg, Russia, 2006, Post-Diasporas: Voyages and Missions at the First Moscow Biennale, Moscow, 2005. Kopenkina contributed to such publications as Art Journal, Moscow Art Magazine, ArtMargins, Manifesta Journal, Modern Painters, Afterimage, and others. She is an adjunct professor at New York University, Steinhardt School for Arts and Art Professions, Department of Media, Culture and Communication.
David Klion is an opinion editor at Al Jazeera America who has studied and worked in Russia and writes about Russian politics and international affairs. He previously worked as an editor at World Politics Review. He holds a master’s degree in Soviet history from the University of Chicago.