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Indepth Arts News:

"Tar Beach: New Artists from New York"
2003-05-17 until 2003-06-23
Site Gallery
Sheffield, , UK United Kingdom

The exhibition explores the coexistence of past and present, fiction and reality, within the architecture of contemporary New York. Images of the urban environment are filtered through divergent aesthetic sensibilities to create a composite portrait of a city that is constantly changing, and radically different for every inhabitant. Tar Beach (the title is slang for the flat black rooftops of apartment buildings) presents one possible set of reimaginings, six stories from a choice of seven million.

Introducing the exhibition, Melissa Gould’s (MeGo) four-colour lithographic map NEU-YORK is an exercise in manipulated cartography in which the street names on a map of Manhattan circa 1939 are replaced with an equivalent from the Berlin of the same period.

Susa Templin juxtaposes the rigid box-like structures of apartment buildings with images of swimming pools and aquaria, using photography and drawing to chart a space in which the desire for escape is made manifest within the routine of everyday life.

Jen DeNike’s installation of photographs and video focusses on one particular site, a popular skateboarding spot called The Brooklyn Banks. Over a series of weeks she documented the skaters’ engagement with and functional reinterpretation of it’s architecture.

Mark Orange’s short film The morning after is inspired by Rem Koolhaas's reading of the Manhattan street grid, as 'a collection of blocks whose proximity and juxtaposition reinforce their separate meanings'. His series of photographs Open 24 Hours depicts the idiosyncracies of Manhattan’s many all-night convenience stores.

Kevin Cooley’s photographic series Night for Night depicts outdoor nighttime landscapes taken in close proximity to movie and television shoots (the title is a term used in the film industry for shooting on location after dark). These images, suffused in eerie artificial light, capture a gray area in which the Hollywood fantasy overlaps with mundane reality.

Stephen Vitiellos sound work "World Trade Center Recordings: Winds After Hurricane Floyd, 1999/2002" records the slight movements of the building in which the artist had a studio.

A selection of some of the most interesting work currently being made in New York, about the city. Featuring: Kevin Cooley, Jen DeNike, Melissa Gould (MeGo), Mark Orange, Susa Templin and Stephen Vitiello.


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