Perverted By Theater (Prelude ’08 Through The Lookingglass)

Perverted by Theater

curated by Franklin Evans and Paul David Young

October 22 – December 6, 2008

Opening reception:

Wednesday, October 22, 6-8 pm

at Apexart

With works by Laylah Ali, Mel Bochner, Luis Camnitzer, Kabir Carter, Ele d’Artagnan, William Daniels, David Dupuis, Igor Eskinja, Jackie Gendel, Trajal Harrell, Elana Herzog, David Humphrey, Ross Knight, Virgil Marti, Ryan McGinley, Martin McMurray, Jim Nutt, Ann Pibal, Shahzia Sikander, Jack Smith, Mickalene Thomas, and Alexi Worth

 Performance: John Jesurun

In his 1967 essay ‘Art and Objecthood,’ art critic Michael Fried’s central thesis was ‘theater’s profound hostility to the arts’: ‘theater and theatricality are at war today, not simply with modernist painting (or modernist painting and sculpture) but with art as such.’ Art was being ‘corrupted or perverted by theater.’ Though Fried’s criticism has become a part of art history, the fear of and antagonism toward ‘theater’ persist in today’s curatorial orthodoxy. Polymorphously perverse and cognizant of the critique of Fried by postmodern theory and contemporary art discourse, Perverted by Theater inverts Fried’s hypothesis, purposely selecting art for its theatricality and installing it in an environment molded by theater, invoking the temporal dimension, the subject/object relation, the audience, the presence of the actor, the event of attending the theater, character, plot structure, the use of text in performance, and mimesis in order to reexamine the triangulation of visual art, performance, and theater.

Full details here.

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