ARTPIL Profiles of the Arts
One Day at a Time
Through Mar 11, 2019 / MOCA

Manny Farber / One Day at a Time MOCA

MOCA / Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, presents One Day at a Time: Manny Farber and Termite Art, an ambitious exhibition inspired by American painter and film critic Manny Farber and his legendary underground essay “White Elephant Art vs. Termite Art” (1962). The exhibition is organized by Helen Molesworth and features approximately thirty artists and more than one hundred carefully selected works of painting, sculpture, photography, film, video, and sound dating from the 1950s to the present. One Day at a Time is conceived as a cross between a monographic exhibition and a group show – an experiment in exhibition-making in the spirit of Farber’s call for “termite art.”

 

Aliza Nisenbaum, Kayhan reading the New York Times

Becky Suss, “August” (2016) courtesy of Jack Shainman Gallery, New York

Joan Brown, Woman Waiting in a Theatre Lobby, 1975

Becky Suss, Bathroom (Ming Green), 2016 / Jennifer Guidi, Eclipse, 2017

Originally appearing in Film Culture magazine, “White Elephant Art vs. Termite Art” was written as a screed against the idea of the masterpiece and works of art produced by “overripe technique shrieking with preciosity, fame, ambition.” Farber championed art that was committed to observation, deep attention, and the unique temporalities of the quotidian. In his words, termite art was produced through the act of “both observing and being in the world, a journeying in which the artist seems to be ingesting both the material of his art and the outside world through horizontal coverage.”

 

Charles Ray, Tractor, 2005 / One Day at a Time MOCA, Photo Zak Kelley

Beverly Buchanan / One Day at a Time MOCA, Photo Zak Kelley

Lorna Simpson, 31 , 2002 / One Day at a Time MOCA, Photo Zak Kelley

One Day at a Time uses Farber’s idea of termite art as a methodology for assembling the contemporary works of disparate artists as a means to think about time in its many dimensions, from the daily to the cosmological. The genre of still life plays an important role in this endeavor. Long the area of Western painting in which the passage of time – and the implications of that passing in both ethical and natural terms – has been explored, still life remains a form that exemplifies Farber’s commitment, both as a writer and a painter, to the daily, the modest, and the space in between things.

 

Rodney McMillian, “a lemon” (2006–12)

Jennifer Guidi, Pink Sky Mountain (Painted White Sand SF #2C, White and Multicolor), 2017 / Josiah McElheny, An End to Modernity, 2005, One Day at a Time MOCA, Photo Zak Kelley

Moyra Davey, One Day at a Time MOCA, Photo Zak Kelley

Farber’s eye-level perspective on the subtle connections that undergird the stuff of daily life provides One Day at a Time with its structure: the hybrid approach of the exhibition is itself an outgrowth of Farber’s horizontal viewpoint. It begins with a group of Farber’s idiosyncratic still-life paintings and works on paper from the late 1970s and 1980s, then fans out from this monographic presentation to explore the ways other artists have dedicated themselves to the pursuit of the everyday. The rooms of the exhibition are envisioned as small galaxies, each orbiting around a work by Farber and bound by the gravitational pull of artists “observing and being in the world.” The manifestations of this simultaneous immersion in and reckoning with the world are both distinct and interrelated. The artists gathered in One Day at a Time immerse themselves in the natural world and record the details of daily life. In so doing, they reorder the priorities of our culture away from fame, celebrity, grandiosity, and money and instead present the detailed, the minor, and the overlooked as a way to better connect with the realm of the everyday, offered here as the space of ethics and love.

 

Roni Horn The Selected Gifts, (1974 – 2015) One Day at a Time MOCA, Photo Zak Kelley

Wolfgang Tillmans

Wolfgang Tillmans, Window New Inn Yard / Wolfgang Tillmans, One Day at a Time MOCA Photo Zak Kelley

Artists featured in the exhibition include: Dike Blair, Joan Brown, Beverly Buchanan, Jordan Casteel, Vija Celmins, Leidy Churchman, Moyra Davey, Taylor Davis, Tacita Dean, Manny Farber, Fischli & Weiss, Jean-Pierre Gorin, Jennifer Guidi, Maurice Harris, Roni Horn, Kahlil Joseph, Sylvia Plimack Mangold, Chris Marker, Josiah McElheny, Roy McMakin, Rodney McMillian, Aliza Nisenbaum, Catherine Opie, Patricia Patterson, Quintron, Charles Ray, Rachel Rose, Sue Schardt, Nancy Shaver, Lorna Simpson, Becky Suss, Wolfgang Tillmans, and Jonas Wood.

A substantial full-color exhibition catalogue published by Prestel will accompany the exhibition. It will include an essay by Helen Molesworth and reprints of some of Farber’s most memorable pieces of writing, as well as an interview with filmmaker Jean-Pierre Gorin on the subject of termite art, a reminiscence of Farber as a teacher by artist and filmmaker Jason Simon, and a commissioned project by artists Gregg Bordowitz and Glenn Ligon.

Lead support is provided by Annenberg Foundation and The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts. Major support is provided by Maria Seferian. Generous support is provided by Matthew Marks Gallery.

 

One Day at a Time: Manny Farber and Termite Art
Through March 11, 2019 / MOCA
Curator: Helen Molesworth / Curatorial Assistant: Rebecca Lowery
For more information please visit the exhibition page >

Recent Articles
Conceptions / Hans Lannér
Through Mar 2, 2019 / Galleri Magnus Karlsson
If you repeat a word long enough, the meaning will disappear, and…
If you repeat a word long enough, the meaning will disappear, and left is only a sound. Same…
Concrete Contemporary
Through May 5, 2019 / Haus Konstruktiv
How does contemporary art deal with the constructivist, concrete, and conceptual art…
How does contemporary art deal with the constructivist, concrete, and conceptual art of the 20th century? 34 artists…
Proceed to the Route / Tania Franco Klein
Almanaque / Material Art Fair
The color is red and the woman is ready. The color is…
The color is red and the woman is ready. The color is blue and the phone is ringing….
ARTPIL / Prescription .083
Blacker is the new Black
Museum admission off-sets gender pay gap; Andy Warhol eats a burger on…
Museum admission off-sets gender pay gap; Andy Warhol eats a burger on TV; Salvador Dali is resurrected as…
Works with the Body / Anna Winteler
Through Apr 28, 2019 / Kunsthaus Baselland
The body and its movements in a space are indeed the key…
The body and its movements in a space are indeed the key topics that define Anna Winteler’s practice,…
The Young Picasso / Blue & Rose Periods
Through May 26, 2019 / Fondation Beyeler
As an exceptional cultural highlight, the Fondation Beyeler is mounting a unique…
As an exceptional cultural highlight, the Fondation Beyeler is mounting a unique exhibition devoted to Pablo Picasso’s poignant…
Imaginary Islands / Lotta Törnroth
Through Feb 24, 2019 / Hippolyte
With the subtle gesture of melting seawater, Lotta Törnroth, whose artistry has…
With the subtle gesture of melting seawater, Lotta Törnroth, whose artistry has been fascinated by the ocean, its…
From Gesture To Form
Through Mar 18, 2019 / Peggy Guggenheim
Abstract imagery, as a quest into issues of color, form and space…
Abstract imagery, as a quest into issues of color, form and space as well as their interrelationships, characterized…
One Day at a Time
Through Mar 11, 2019 / MOCA

Manny Farber / One Day at a Time MOCA

MOCA / Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, presents One Day at a Time: Manny Farber and Termite Art, an ambitious exhibition inspired by American painter and film critic Manny Farber and his legendary underground essay “White Elephant Art vs. Termite Art” (1962). The exhibition is organized by Helen Molesworth and features approximately thirty artists and more than one hundred carefully selected works of painting, sculpture, photography, film, video, and sound dating from the 1950s to the present. One Day at a Time is conceived as a cross between a monographic exhibition and a group show – an experiment in exhibition-making in the spirit of Farber’s call for “termite art.”

 

Aliza Nisenbaum, Kayhan reading the New York Times

Becky Suss, “August” (2016) courtesy of Jack Shainman Gallery, New York

Joan Brown, Woman Waiting in a Theatre Lobby, 1975

Becky Suss, Bathroom (Ming Green), 2016 / Jennifer Guidi, Eclipse, 2017

Originally appearing in Film Culture magazine, “White Elephant Art vs. Termite Art” was written as a screed against the idea of the masterpiece and works of art produced by “overripe technique shrieking with preciosity, fame, ambition.” Farber championed art that was committed to observation, deep attention, and the unique temporalities of the quotidian. In his words, termite art was produced through the act of “both observing and being in the world, a journeying in which the artist seems to be ingesting both the material of his art and the outside world through horizontal coverage.”

 

Charles Ray, Tractor, 2005 / One Day at a Time MOCA, Photo Zak Kelley

Beverly Buchanan / One Day at a Time MOCA, Photo Zak Kelley

Lorna Simpson, 31 , 2002 / One Day at a Time MOCA, Photo Zak Kelley

One Day at a Time uses Farber’s idea of termite art as a methodology for assembling the contemporary works of disparate artists as a means to think about time in its many dimensions, from the daily to the cosmological. The genre of still life plays an important role in this endeavor. Long the area of Western painting in which the passage of time – and the implications of that passing in both ethical and natural terms – has been explored, still life remains a form that exemplifies Farber’s commitment, both as a writer and a painter, to the daily, the modest, and the space in between things.

 

Rodney McMillian, “a lemon” (2006–12)

Jennifer Guidi, Pink Sky Mountain (Painted White Sand SF #2C, White and Multicolor), 2017 / Josiah McElheny, An End to Modernity, 2005, One Day at a Time MOCA, Photo Zak Kelley

Moyra Davey, One Day at a Time MOCA, Photo Zak Kelley

Farber’s eye-level perspective on the subtle connections that undergird the stuff of daily life provides One Day at a Time with its structure: the hybrid approach of the exhibition is itself an outgrowth of Farber’s horizontal viewpoint. It begins with a group of Farber’s idiosyncratic still-life paintings and works on paper from the late 1970s and 1980s, then fans out from this monographic presentation to explore the ways other artists have dedicated themselves to the pursuit of the everyday. The rooms of the exhibition are envisioned as small galaxies, each orbiting around a work by Farber and bound by the gravitational pull of artists “observing and being in the world.” The manifestations of this simultaneous immersion in and reckoning with the world are both distinct and interrelated. The artists gathered in One Day at a Time immerse themselves in the natural world and record the details of daily life. In so doing, they reorder the priorities of our culture away from fame, celebrity, grandiosity, and money and instead present the detailed, the minor, and the overlooked as a way to better connect with the realm of the everyday, offered here as the space of ethics and love.

 

Roni Horn The Selected Gifts, (1974 – 2015) One Day at a Time MOCA, Photo Zak Kelley

Wolfgang Tillmans

Wolfgang Tillmans, Window New Inn Yard / Wolfgang Tillmans, One Day at a Time MOCA Photo Zak Kelley

Artists featured in the exhibition include: Dike Blair, Joan Brown, Beverly Buchanan, Jordan Casteel, Vija Celmins, Leidy Churchman, Moyra Davey, Taylor Davis, Tacita Dean, Manny Farber, Fischli & Weiss, Jean-Pierre Gorin, Jennifer Guidi, Maurice Harris, Roni Horn, Kahlil Joseph, Sylvia Plimack Mangold, Chris Marker, Josiah McElheny, Roy McMakin, Rodney McMillian, Aliza Nisenbaum, Catherine Opie, Patricia Patterson, Quintron, Charles Ray, Rachel Rose, Sue Schardt, Nancy Shaver, Lorna Simpson, Becky Suss, Wolfgang Tillmans, and Jonas Wood.

A substantial full-color exhibition catalogue published by Prestel will accompany the exhibition. It will include an essay by Helen Molesworth and reprints of some of Farber’s most memorable pieces of writing, as well as an interview with filmmaker Jean-Pierre Gorin on the subject of termite art, a reminiscence of Farber as a teacher by artist and filmmaker Jason Simon, and a commissioned project by artists Gregg Bordowitz and Glenn Ligon.

Lead support is provided by Annenberg Foundation and The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts. Major support is provided by Maria Seferian. Generous support is provided by Matthew Marks Gallery.

 

One Day at a Time: Manny Farber and Termite Art
Through March 11, 2019 / MOCA
Curator: Helen Molesworth / Curatorial Assistant: Rebecca Lowery
For more information please visit the exhibition page >