artists & participants
A.K. Burns & Katherine Hubbard, Untitled (Shaving Performance 2010)
07 - 11 November
Untitled (shaving performance 2010) is a document of a privately held performance, in which Hubbard used a straight razor to remove the hair from the lower half of Burns’ body. The work looks at how desire, intimacy and fetish operate for queer woman through a re-staging of images found at the GLBT Historical Society in San Francisco of a gay mens fetish dungeon in the 1970’s. The act of shaving body hair, a fetish gesture reserved for men and normalized for woman, is activated here as a query of beauty standards and their relationship to libidinal engagement. The video cuts from original footage to a re-recording footage off a monitor, effectively displacing the notion of originality while dually acknowledging the act of mimicry.
Using video, installation, sculpture and collaboration A.K. Burns queries the space between materiality and language. With a focus on the body as a site of social and political negotiation, Burns seeks interruptions and indeterminacy within economies of gender, sexuality, labor, and ecology.
Currently at work on a cycle of five video-installations that take speculative fiction as a point of departure, the opening episode, 'A Smeary Spot' (2015) debuted at Participant Inc., NY, that was consecutivelyexhibited at Portland Institute for Contemporary Art, OR in 2016. As artist-in-residence at the New Museum’s Spring 2017 Research & Development Season, Burns debut the second video-installation, 'Living Room' (2017). And as of summer 2017 Burns is in development on a third video, commissioned by EMPAC at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, NY. Burns was a 2016-17 Radcliffe Fellow at Harvard University and a recipient of a 2015 Creative Capital Foundation Visual Arts Award. Her work can be found in several public collations including the Museum of Modern Art, NY and Los Angeles County Museum of Art, CA.
A frequent collaborator; Burns co-founded 'Working Artists in the Great Economy (W.A.G.E.)' in 2008 and remains an advocate for labor issues in the arts. Additionally she co-edited 'Randy,' an annual trans-feminist arts magazine from 2010-2013, and published a compendium in June 2016. In collaboration with A.L. Steiner, 'Community Action Center' (2010)—a video re-imagining pornographic cinema for women and non-binary bodies—screened at numerous venues internationally including the Tate Modern, London and The Museum of Modern Art. A.K. Burns also maintains an ongoing collaborative practice with partner Katherine Hubbard, producing performance installations, videos and sculptures that included the work shown here at Galerie Fons Welters as well as staging The Poetry Parade…, a series of live literary intervention at The Whitney Museum of American Art, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, and The Museum of Modern Art all in NY.
Katherine Hubbard uses photography, writing and performance to plumb photography’s continuing significance. Considering analog photography as a mimesis of the body, Hubbard asks how its procedures might be called upon to investigate social politics, history, and narrative. In her photographs the physical positioning of one’s body has an essential relationship to how one processes images, exploring this encounter as a time based experience. Hubbard’s writing practice forms the core of her performances, culling the malleability of vision to frame a politics of looking, bridging the imaginary with the familiar. Most recently, Hubbard has held solo exhibitions at The Kitchen, NY, Kate Werble gallery, NY and Company gallery, NY. In 2016 she was an artist in residence at The Chinati Foundation in Marfa, TX as well as The Baxter St. Camera club of New York. Her solo and collaborative performances have been presented at MoMA PS1, NY; Judd Foundation, NY; Participant Inc.,NY; c.off, Stockholm, Sweden; Whitney Museum of American Art, NY; Brooklyn Museum, NY and the Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY. Hubbard received her MFA in 2010 from the Milton Avery Graduate School of the Arts at Bard College and she currently lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. Additional projects and full CV can be found at katherinehubbard.com