Gaia Alessi

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PublisherAfterall2013
Bas Jan Ader disappeared at sea in 1975 while attempting to sail from the east coast of the United States to Europe as part of a project titled In Search of the Miraculous. The circumstances of his disappearance have led many interpreters to identify Ader with the role of the tragic romantic hero. This identification has obscured the fact that Ader’s art was a critical investigation of precisely those romantic motives his persona has now come to be associated with. In this book, Jan Verwoert highlights the specific ways in which Ader’s cycle of works explores those motives with an artistic ...
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PublisherAfterall2012
Dan Graham’s Rock My Religion (1982–84) is a video essay populated by punk and rock performers (Patti Smith, Jim Morrison, Black Flag and Glenn Branca) and historical figures (including Ann Lee, founder of the Shakers). This coming together of several narrative voice-overs, of singing and shouting voices, of jarring sounds and text overlaid onto shaky, gritty images, proposes a historical genealogy of rock music and an ambitious thesis on the origins of America. In this illustrated book, Kodwo Eshun examines this landmark work of contemporary moving image in relation to Graham’s wider body of work and to the broader culture of ...
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PublisherAfterall2013
Initially associated with the Rio de Janeiro-based Neo-Concretist group, Hélio Oiticica later became one of the key figures of Brazil’s Tropicália movement. During his stay in New York, and in collaboration with film-maker Neville D’Almeida, Oiticia conceived Block-Experiments in Cosmococa – program in progress (1973–74), a series of nine ‘supra-sensorial’ environments, each incorporating slide projections, soundtracks, cocaine powder drawings and a set of instructions for visitors. The work is the epitome of what Oiticica called his ‘quasi-cinemas’ and constitutes his desire to merge individual ‘life-experience’ with art. In this book, Sabeth Buchmann and Max Jorge Hinderer Cruz consider the influence the ...
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PublisherAfterall2011
Jeff Wall’s Picture for Women (1979) marks the transition of photography as an art form from the printed page to the gallery wall. In the photograph a woman looks outward, as if at the viewer; a camera occupies the centre of the image; the photographer stands on the right. Modelled on Édouard Manet’s painting Un Bar aux Folies-Bergère, Picture for Women is an ambitious attempt to relate the artistic and spectatorial demands of the late 1970s to modernist pictorial art. In this book, David Campany offers an account of Wall’s move from a Conceptual approach to a reengagement with the idea ...
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PublisherAfterall2014
Lee Lozano’s Dropout Piece (begun c.1970) is one of her most challenging and elusive works. First and foremost, it is the name Lozano gave to her self-imposed transformation from art world insider to outsider. It is also a large-scale action carried out with lifelong, indeed posthumous, consequences. Sarah Lehrer-Graiwer presents Dropout Piece as a great experiment in art and endurance. Situating the work within the context of ‘Life-Art’ pieces such as Dialogue Piece, General Strike Piece, Grass Piece and Boycott Women, she demonstrates how Dropout Piece exhibits an extraordinary range of artistic intents. Drawing closely upon Lozano’s private notebooks, Lehrer-Graiwer argues ...
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PublisherAfterall2015
A ‘complex’ can be an architectural configuration, a psychological syndrome or a political apparatus. In this book, John Miller approaches Educational Complex through corresponding lines of enquiry, considering the representation of Kelley’s schools (and his childhood home) as architectural models; popular fantasies associated with false memory syndrome; and the liberal democratic premises underpinning education. During his lifetime, Mike Kelley worked with a wide range of media, exploring themes as varied as grassroots politics, religious systems and social class. Miller shows that in Educational Complex, Kelley expands this political and aesthetic focus to test the ideological horizon of art as an institution. This ...
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The One Work series is a library of small books, each title focusing on a single artwork that has significantly shaped the way we understand art and its history.
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PublisherAfterall2013
Urban parkland, invention and repetition are the key motifs of Rodney Graham’s Phonokinetoscope (2001). Drawing together Graham’s early commitment to photography and subsequent investigations into film, music and installation, the work consists of a turntable driving a projector, a vinyl LP with psychedelic rock song written and performed by the artist, and a 16mm film loop featuring Graham riding a bicycle around Berlin’s Tiergarten, while tripping on acid. In this book, Shepherd Steiner discusses Phonokinetoscope as a pivotal work in the context of the artist’s early explorations of proto-cinema and later preoccupations with the ‘temporal object’. He uncovers a practice indebted ...
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PublisherAfterall2013
Sanja Iveković’s Triangle is an 18-minute performance that took place on 10 May 1979: while Yugoslavian president Josip Broz Tito’s motorcade passes by below, the artist is sitting on her balcony, reading a book, sipping whiskey and making ‘gestures’ as if performing masturbation, until a security official arrives and asks her to leave. Exhibited as four black-and-white photographs and a short descriptive text, Triangle is one of the most resonant and defiant works of performance made in the 1970s. Focusing on the genesis of the work, its documentation and the politics of canon construction, Ruth Noack discusses Triangle in relation to ...
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PublisherAfterall2014
Thomas Hirschhorn’s Deleuze Monument was conceived for ‘La Beauté’ in Avignon in 2000. It comprised four elements: a rock inscribed with a quotation, an altar, a monumental sculpture and a library including books by and about Deleuze. Located in the Cité Champfleury, outside Avignon’s historical walls, Deleuze Monument embodied Hirschhorn’s desire to put his work ‘in a difficult situation’ between reality, politics and aesthetics, and marks a significant turning point in his approach to producing and maintaining public works. In this generously illustrated book, Anna Dezeuze examines Deleuze Monument, the second in Hirschhorn’s series of four Monuments, and its relation to ...

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