Kestner Gesellschaft

Rachel Harrison

07 Jun - 04 Aug 2013

Rachel Harrison, All in The Family (2012)
Mixed media
Courtesy Rachel Harrison and Greene Naftali, New York
Rachel Harrison, Incidents of Travel in Yucatan (2011)
Mixed media, 348 x 1023 x 152 cm
Courtesy the artist and Greene Naftali, New York
Rachel Harrison, Winner Takes All (2011)
Mixed media, Variable size
Courtesy the artist and Greene Naftali, New York
Fake Titel
07 June – 04 August 2013

The kestnergesellschaft is delighted to present a solo exhibition of the New York artist Rachel Harrison (*1966 in New York). Considered one of the most influential sculptors of her generation, Harrison simultaneously undermines and reaffirms multiple layers of sculptural histories, employing slapstick humor and a sense of tragicomedy.

The exhibition at the kestnergesellschaft presents a selection from three distinct bodies of work. This includes sculptures and drawings from Harrison’s solo exhibition »The Help« at Greene Naftali Gallery, 2012, the architecturally-scaled installation »Incidents of Travel in Yucatan« (Le Consortium, 2011) and the suite of photographs titled »Sunset Series«, started in 2000 and completed in 2012.

The title »The Help« comes from the photograph taken by the artist of the maintenance door to Duchamp’s laborious final work »Étant Donnés«. The sculptures and drawings from »The Help« examine the entagled roles of the Artist, the Muse, and The Help. Harrison combines found objects, often of a banal or domestic nature, with abstract forms. Shifting the focus between Duchamp’s influential readymades and his handcrafted objects, Harrison challenges the balance of these paradigms.

Harrison’s »Incidents of Travel in Yucatan«, a mixed-media installation including a wall of pedestals, autonomous sculptures, and video, raises a number of anthropological and political questions. Aside from references to the work of Marcel Broodthaers, as well as Mesoamerican ballcourts, the expansive installation also reflects on larger issues of cultural identity and ownership. The »Sunset Series«, presented in its entirety for the first time, comprises thirty-one photographs of a single source image, a photograph of a sunset. In each photograph in the series, shot on 35mm film, the artist physically manipulates the found snapshot to create a new image.

Rachel Harrison has had solo exhibitions at the Whitechapel Gallery in London (2010), the Portikus in Frankfurt (2009), Center for Curatorial Studies, Hessel Museum, Bard College (2009), the Migros Museum für Gegenwartskunst in Zurich (2007) and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (2004). She also participated in the Venice Biennale in 2009 and 2003, the Whitney Biennial in 2008 and 2002, and the Berlin Biennial in 2006. She was awarded the Calder Prize in 2011. Her works are in the collections of MoMA, Museum Ludwig Köln, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Guggenheim Museum, and the Stedelijk Museum, among others.

The exhibition at the kestnergesellschaft is a cooperation with the S.M.A.K. in Gent (Belgium), where the exhibition will be shown subsequently

Tags: Marcel Broodthaers, Rachel Harrison