7-9pm, March 16, 2018
Hannah B Higgins, Mitsu Salmon, Shawn Michelle Smith, and Spectralina
@ the Mahoney room at Ace Hotel Chicago
311 N Morgan St, Chicago, IL 60607
On March 16, 2018 from 7-9pm in the Mahoney room at Ace Hotel Chicago, the Green Lantern Press celebrates the launch of its latest publication, SHADOWED!, a new book about the work of Chicago-based artist Ellen Rothenberg. For this event, Hannah B Higgins and Shawn Michelle Smith will read their work; thereafter Mitsu Salmon and Spectralina (Dan Bitney and Selina Trepp) will present original audio visual performances created in direct response to the book.
SHADOWED! features the collected writings of Mark Booth, Alexandria Eregbu, Simone Forti, Becky Grajeda, Hannah B Higgins, Terri Kapsalis, Tim Kinsella, Anne Elizabeth Moore, Dao Nguyen, Caroline Picard, Jeffrey Skoller, and Shawn Michelle Smith.
Image excerpted from “A Response in Six Acts: Dao Nguyen” (p 157, Shadowed!, Green Lantern Press, 2018, Book design by Sonia Yoon).
About the BOOK
SHADOWED! confronts the slippage of time and action within Ellen Rothenberg’s 2015 Sector 2337 exhibition, elsetime. Sweeping through the studio of Bertolt Brecht, Woodstock in the sixties, Berlin in the nineties, and the Syrian protests of today, SHADOWED! projects a dispersive, unfolding temporality. Beginning with a suite of elsetime photographs, the book continues with reflections by Hannah B Higgins, Jeffrey Skoller, Caroline Picard, and Shawn Michelle Smith—spreading out from there into an artist’s archive that includes scanned fragments of writings by Stefan Brecht, Allen Ginsberg, Angela Davis, and transcribed contributions from Simone Forti. A subsequent section includes documentation of performances produced in response to elsetime by artists, activists, and musicians. SHADOWED! ends with the transcript of a public conversation that took place within the original exhibit, capturing a discussion that incorporates an active audience. By layering these performative, photographic, and written encounters, SHADOWED! allows the afterimage of an exhibition to unfurl beyond the gallery, beyond this book, and into its own elsetime.
Praise For SHADOWED!
“Ellen Rothenberg’s multimodal installation elsetime interlaced performance actions, installation, objects, public invitations to fellow artists, and visual essays. In this beautiful and thoughtfully designed book, you’ll find each of these aspects explored anew as though readied for further action. New pieces by collaborators enter the scene and become enmeshed in photographic echoes from ‘60s collective rallying, music documentary, contemporary migrancy, material icons, and the live events generated during the exhibition. The great exclamation mark of the title brings all these absents squarely into view, while posing the pressing question: how does one avoid reenacting shadows from the past!”
—CAROLINE BERGVALL, artist, writer, performer, and author of Drift.
“Rothenberg’s feminist social sculpture and animated objects echo radical en-actions from Brecht, Fluxus, suffrage street theatre, and Black Lives Matter protests. Worn shoes declare that the way lies both forward and backward, for the past always underlies the present and reverberates deeply in the desires of our current work and lives. This radical book should be in your backpack at a May Day parade or protest strike! Mourn and organize!”
—FAITH WILDING, artist, writer, and educator.
“Ellen Rothenberg’s book/archive serves as a complex memory machine where the global 20th century’s cultural, political, and social revolutions encounter the local now. The captivating imagery of Rothenberg’s reflexive and expansive work lifts you out of history’s shadows and makes you feel alive, resisting the wave of inevitability. Shadowed! is timely. This book is a gift to anyone curious about or deeply interested in material culture, history, social change, and contemporary art.”
—IRINA ARISTARKHOVA, author of Hospitality of the Matrix: Philosophy, Biomedicine, and Culture.
About Launch performers
Hannah B Higgins has been a professor in the Department of Art History at UIC since 1994. She is sole author of dozens of articles on the history of the avant-garde, multi-modal artistic experiences, Fluxus, performance art, and art and technology. This work appears in scholarly journals as well as Fluxus Experience (University of California Press, 2002) and The Grid Book (MIT Press, 2009). Higgins is coeditor with Douglas Kahn of Mainframe Experimentalism: Early Computing and the Foundations of Digital Art (University of California Press, 2012). She is also co-executor of the Estate of Dick Higgins and the Something Else Press. For more information and samples of her scholarship, visit www.hannahbhiggins.com
Mitsu Salmon creates performance and visual works that fuse multiple disciplines. She was born in Los Angeles to a Japanese mother and American father. Creating in differing mediums—translating one medium to another—is connected
to the translation of differing cultures and languages. Her work draws from familial and personal narratives and archives and then abstracts, expands and contradicts them. Salmon received her MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2014 and her undergrad degree from NYU. She has presented work at places such as the Chicago Cultural Center, Julius Caesar, Comfort Station and internationally at Hebbel Am Uffer in Berlin, Made Budhiana Gallery in Bali and Urbanguild in Kyoto, Japan. She was awarded artist residencies at Tsung Yeh in Taiwan, Villa Pandan Harum in Bali, High Concept Lab, Links Hall, the Chicago Cultural Center and Oxbow. She is currently a HATCH resident through CAC. www.mitsusalmon.com
Shawn Michelle Smith is a professor of Visual and Critical Studies at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago where she has taught for the past twelve years. She writes about the history and theory of photography and gender and race in U.S. visual culture, and she maintains a photo-based visual art practice. She has published six books, including most recently Photography and the Optical Unconscious (Duke University Press, 2017), co-edited with Sharon Sliwinski, and At the Edge of Sight: Photography and the Unseen (Duke University Press, 2013), which won the 2014 Lawrence W. Levine Award for best book in American cultural history from the Organization of American Historians and the 2014 Jean Goldman Book Prize from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.
Spectralina is the audio-visual performance project of Dan Bitney and Selina Trepp, collaborators, lovers, and magicians. Working in an improvised format, the goal of Spectralina is to create an image-sound relationship that treats each medium as equal, resulting in performances in which projection and sounds come together as visual music. Dan Bitney (American b. 1964) is a multi instrumentalist, improviser, sound designer, composer, bird watcher, gardener, and lover and is still learning what it could mean to be a human being. Dan Bitney is part of the musical group Tortoise. In addition to Tortoise, Dan is involved with many musical projects, Isotope 217, Bumps, Spectronix, A Grape Dope, and Ghost Rest to name a few. As one half of the duo Spectralina, Dan uses a computer, synthesizers, drums, voice and analog processors to improvise with sounds and images. Selina Trepp (Swiss/American, b. 1973) is an artist who works across disciplines. Finding a balance between the intuitive and conceptual is a goal, living a life of adventure is a way, embarrassment is often the result. “If in doubt be radical” is the best advice she ever got. In Spectralina Selina sings and plays the videolah, her instrument that creates animated projections in real-time.
About ELLEN ROTHENBERG
Ellen Rothenberg’s work has been presented in North America and Europe at The Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago; The Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; The Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston; The Museum of London, Ontario; The Contemporary Jewish Museum, San Francisco; The Neues Museum Weserburg, Bremen; Royal Festival Hall, London; The Brukenthal National Museum, Sibiu, Romania; among others. Awards include NEA Fellowships, The Bunting Institute Fellowship, Radcliffe College Harvard University, Illinois Arts Council Fellowships, The Massachusetts Artist Foundation Fellowships, and grants from CEC Artslink, The Charles Engelhard Foundation, The LEF Foundation, and NEA Artists Projects. She has worked in collaboration with the Chicago Torture Justice Memorial Project, Future Force Geo Speculators, and Chelen Amenca, Romania. Rothenberg teaches at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago and is a Faculty Research Fellow of the Institute for Curatorial Research and Practice at SAIC. Her exhibition ISO 6346: ineluctable immigrant is currently on view at the Spertus Institute, Chicago. www.ellenrothenberg.com