Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Aesthetic Life of Cities

The following text is copied from suddenly.org, the project of Portland's own Matthew Stadler, and the group the brought Thomas Sieverts to Town Hall a few weeks ago. Tomorrow is the final day of the Aesthetic Life of Cities exhibition and I'll be arriving about 12:15. Please join me if you're interested; I'll be wearing very bright shoes.

7.3 - 7.15 art exhibition: aesthetic life of cities

An Exhibition Exploring the Aesthetic Life of Cities

July 3-15, 2009
312 Occidental Avenue
Seattle, WA, 98104
gallery hours: July 5-15, closed July 4, 12-6 p.m. Free

suddenly: where we live now will be on view from July 3 through July 15, 2009 in a storefront space in Seattle’s Pioneer Square neighborhood. An opening reception with curator Stephanie Snyder, director of the Douglas F. Cooley Memorial Art Gallery at Reed College, and participating artists Elias Hansen, Boris Sieverts, Michael Hebb, Michael McManus, Hannes Wingate, and Molly Dilworth will be held at the space on Friday, July 3 at 9:00 p.m.

Visual artists exhibiting work in the Seattle iteration of suddenly include: Marc Joseph Berg, New York; Zoe Crosher, Los Angeles; Molly Dilworth, Brooklyn; Elias Hansen, Tacoma; Michael Hebb, Seattle; Hadley+Maxwell, Berlin; Michael McManus, Portland; Boris Sieverts, Frankfurt; and Hannes Wingate, Portland.

In addition, a bookstore has been created in the space, offering works by suddenly artists and participating writers: Fritz Haeg, Los Angeles; Frank Heath, Brooklyn; Anne Focke, Seattle; Lisa Robertson, San Francisco; Thomas Sieverts, Frankfurt; Stephanie Snyder, Portland; Matthew Stadler, Portland; Storm Tharp, Portland; and Oscar Tuazon, Paris.

suddenly was born of German urban planner Thomas Sieverts’s observation that “the shaping of the landscape where we live can no longer be achieved by the traditional resources of town planning, urban design, and architecture. New ways must be explored, which are as yet unclear.” suddenly seeks to imagine the possibilities of spaces and experiences that have an indigenous history (the parking lot, for instance), but that exist beyond historical definitions of city and countryside, and conventional material cycles of development and disuse. Through a myriad of objects, texts, and activities constructed as symbolic and strategic alternatives, the artists and writers in this project are re-imagining our relationship to the built and natural environment—its materials, textures and histories. suddenly explores the where we live now as an independent identity to be reshaped in the hands and minds of its occupants.

suddenly comprises a set of exhibitions curated by Stephanie Snyder, an annotated reader edited by author Matthew Stadler, and a series of additional publications and public events by a variety of suddenly artists and contributors. The exhibition projects began on June 29, 2008, in Portland, Oregon with Michael Hebb’s Corridor Project expedition to Ross Island—a culinary expedition onto to an uninhabited island in Portland’s Willamette River. suddenly has since evolved in various forms in projects in Oregon, California, New York, and now Washington, and will continue around the globe for the next few years. For additional information, including event listings and audio recordings, and to order project publications, visit: www.suddenly.org.

The visual art exhibitions and related projects of suddenly: where we live now are a collaborative initiative of the Douglas F. Cooley Memorial Art Gallery at Reed College in Portland, Oregon. www.reed.edu

The mission of the Douglas F. Cooley Memorial Art Gallery is to enhance the academic offerings of Reed College with a diverse range of visual art exhibitions—both historical and contemporary—lectures, and colloquia. The Cooley Gallery is a secured, professional museum-quality exhibition space with environmental controls that meet the highest standards set by the American Association of Museums. The Cooley Gallery was established by a generous 1988 endowment from Sue and Edward Cooley and John and Betty Gray “in support of the teaching of art history at Reed College, as part of an interdisciplinary educational experience that strengthens the art history component of Reed’s distinctive humanities program.” In addition to its stated mission to support the teaching of art history, the Cooley Gallery works closely with the Reed College studio art faculty in order to bring art and artists to Reed that advance studio practice at the highest conceptual and material levels. Exhibitions are curated and organized by Stephanie Snyder ‘91, the John and Anne Hauberg Director and Curator, and often coordinated in collaboration with Reed faculty members and courses, with attention to the needs and interests of the larger Portland and Northwest arts communities. A schedule of three to four exhibitions during the academic year brings to Reed and the Portland community, work that “would not otherwise be seen in the region.”

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