Ulla von Brandenburg, It Has a Golden Sun and an Elderly Grey Moon, 2016 (still) Courtesy the artist and Art : Concept, Paris Photo: Martin Argyrogla
Alluding to diverse histories rooted in Western traditions, Ulla von Brandenburg, 1974, born in Germany and lives in Paris, makes films, drawings, performances, wall paintings, and installations to create multilayered narratives. Her work often references late 19th century expressionist theater, magic, occultism, pre-Freudian psychoanalysis, color theory, and early 20th century Hollywood cinema to investigate how these pre-archaic forms relate to modern-day social norms. She creates her own visual vocabulary, combining a range of media to make immersive installations that reconsider contemporary collective experiences. Von Brandenburg often uses the motif of the theater curtain—a threshold between reality and artifice-interpreted as a tool to challenge the relationship between actors, audience, and the stage. She is also interested in the study of European carnival as a legitimate form of social transgression when individuals employ the notion of mask to explore alternative identities. Engaging with popular customs, von Brandenburg’s work takes the viewer to the space that separates reality and imagination, where time is insignificant, prompting new collective associations. At PAMM, the artist will produce a large-scale installation at the museum’s double height project gallery.
Project Gallery: Ulla von Brandenburg is curated by María Elena Ortiz, Assistant Curator, at PAMM
It Has a Golden Sun and an Elderly Grey Moon, 2016
Ulla von Brandenburg
Image and artworks courtesy of the Estate of Ana Mendieta Collection, LLC and Galerie Lelong, New York
Sweating Blood is a 3-minute long silent film created on super-8 color film in November of 1973. Mendieta’s stance and facial expression in Sweating Blood evoke images of self-sacrifice and martyrdom. Her silence adds to the spiritual, ritualistic aura as cow’s blood slowly trickles over her face. The integration of blood, as a primal and primitive element, reduces Mendieta to her essential self. Drawing the viewer into her spiritual space and presenting this reduction of herself, she traces phenomenological terms of identity. In the fall of 1973, Mendieta began teaching art at an Iowa City public school. Eight months after the rape and murder of fellow University of Iowa student Sara Ann Otten, Mendieta was still actively creating response pieces surrounding violence enacted on women and rape. She employed blood as a powerful symbol with strong violent and political connotations. Many of her pieces created around this time, such as Untitled (Rape Performance) and Untitled (Bloody Mattress), involved very literal implications in her usage of blood. She clearly communicated an emotional response to Otten’s death and a call for awareness and action on violence against women.
Frank Benson | The Rubell Family Collection Contemporary Arts Foundation
Frank Benson, Juliana _ Image courtesy of The Rubell Family Collection
High Anxiety: New Acquisitions presents selections of artworks from 32 artists acquired since 2014, many of whom explore polarizing social and political concerns through a broad spectrum of contemporary artistic practices. In gauging the output and energies of these artists we find creative currents that speak to our shared state of uncertainty, nervousness and pessimism. Frank Benson, one of the artists, gained widespread attention for his piece in the 2015 at the New Museum Triennial Surround Audience, a realistic sculpture of the transgender artist and poet Juliana Huxtable whose work was also included in the exhibition.