Taryn Simon - Portraits and Surrogates

Taryn Simon, Agreement for cooperation on China’s Beidou Navigation Satellite System in Pakistan. Aiwan-e-Sadr, Islamabad, Pakistan, May 22, 2013, 2015 © Taryn Simon.

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Opening reception:
Thursday, May 25, 6–8PM


My works continually mutate under different politics, economies, cultures and times … These disruptions and time’s passage are part of the work.
—Taryn Simon

Gagosian is pleased to present “Portraits and Surrogates,” Taryn Simon’s first exhibition in Hong Kong. Simon draws from three key bodies of recent work, as well as a video self-portrait made in collaboration with a Russian news program, to examine the reciprocity between portraits and their surrogates. The technical, physical, and aesthetic realization of Simon’s projects often reflects the control and authority that form the grist of her work.

Simon is a multidisciplinary conceptual artist whose work has been the subject of many museum exhibitions across the world since her prescient debut with The Innocents in 2002 at MoMA PS1, New York. In 2013, her ambitious taxonomic series A Living Man Declared Dead and Other Chapters I–XVIII (2008–11) was presented at the Ullens Center for Contemporary Art in Beijing.  Simon's research-driven approach has produced other such impactful series as An American Index of the Hidden and Unfamiliar (2007); Contraband (2010); and the web-based Image Atlas (2012); as well as The Picture Collection (2013); Birds of the West Indies (2013–14); Paperwork and the Will of Capital (2015); and Black Square (2006–), an ongoing project about the consequences of human inventions. For Simon, photography has always been a vehicle for larger conceptual ideas. Paired with text, her photographs reveal the structures behind controlling systems, from ancestry and borders to botany and diplomacy. Between text and image, a blur occurs and each is altered by the other, again and again, back and forth.

“Portraits and Surrogates” suggests the transformative power of the subject and its photograph; how even the most banal object becomes freighted with new significance when exposed to different cultural and political circumstances. Contraband (2010) is an archive of desire and control, comprising 1075 photographs taken at the U.S. Customs and Border Protection Federal Inspection Site and the U.S. Postal Service International Mail Facility at John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York. With performative intent, Simon lived a full working week at the airport without pause, photographing the flow of generic goods seized from passengers and express mail entering the United States from abroad—from fashion items and foodstuffs to exotic creatures and pirate videos.

A Living Man Declared Dead and Other Chapters I–XVIII documents bloodlines and their related stories, from albinos under threat of physical attack in Tanzania for their purported magical powers; to the abduction of South Koreans by North Korea; and the nineteenth-century European rabbit that became a modern Australian pest. Each “chapter” is the product of rigorous research, travel, and data collection, resulting in an index of identity, memory, and heredity.

In Paperwork and the Will of Capital, Simon considers the stagecraft of power via the accords, treaties, and decrees drafted to influence systems of governance and economics, from nuclear armament to banking conventions and diamond trading. In original archival images of the signings of these documents, powerful men flank flower arrangements; Simon recreated and photographed these arrangements, pairing them with expository texts that underscore not only the instability of fact but the fragility of history itself. Each arrangement, placed in front of striking bicolored backgrounds, occupies several layers of symbolism at once: they reference the Flemish Enlightenment idea of the “impossible bouquet;” they bear witness to the formalities of governance; and, displayed in sculptural concrete presses alongside the preserved botanical specimens, they attest to the inevitable effects of time.

Cutaways (2012) is both a portrait and a surrogate of the artist herself. At the close of a video interview on Russia Prime Time, Simon was asked to sit silently and stare at the newscasters for several minutes, informed that this was standard practice, and that the footage would be used in the editing process. Simon thus finds herself at the center and as the subject of the very systems of orchestrated authority that her own work examines.

Taryn Simon was born in 1975 in New York, where she currently lives and works. Collections include Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris; Tate Modern, London; Museum für Moderne Kunst, Frankfurt; Los Angeles County Museum of Art; Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; and Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York. Institutional exhibitions include “Taryn Simon: An American Index of the Hidden and Unfamiliar,” Whitney Museum of American Art, New York (2007, traveled to Museum für Moderne Kunst, Frankfurt; Foam Fotografiemuseum, Amsterdam; Institute of Modern Art, Australia; and Centre for Contemporary Photography, Melbourne, through 2010); “A Living Man Declared Dead and Other Chapters,” Tate Modern, London; Neue Nationalgalerie, Berlin (2011, traveled to Museum of Modern Art, New York; Geffen Contemporary at Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles; Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.; and Ullens Center for Contemporary Art, Beijing, through 2013); “Contraband,” Centre d’Art Contemporain, Geneva (2011); “A Polite Fiction,” Fondation Louis Vuitton, Paris (2014); “Rear Views, A Star-forming Nebula, and the Office of Foreign Propaganda,” Jeu de Paume, Paris (2015); 56th Biennale di Venezia (2015); “Taryn Simon: Action Research / The Stagecraft of Power,” Garage Museum of Contemporary Art, Moscow (2016); Galerie Rudolfinum, Prague (2016); “A Soldier is Taught to Bayonet the Enemy and Not Some Undefined Abstraction,” Albertinum, Dresden (2016); and “Taryn Simon: An American Index of the Hidden and Unfamiliar,” Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Copenhagen (2016–17).

Simon’s first large-scale performance installation, An Occupation of Loss (2016), co-commissioned by the Park Avenue Armory and Artangel, premiered in New York in 2016..

For further information please contact the gallery at [email protected] or at +852.2151.0555. All images are subject to copyright. Gallery approval must be granted prior to reproduction.

Please join the conversation with Gagosian on Twitter (@GagosianAsia), Facebook (@GagosianGallery), Google+ (@+Gagosian), Instagram (@GagosianGallery), Tumblr (@GagosianGallery), and Artsy (@Gagosian-Gallery) via the hashtags #TarynSimon  #PortraitsandSurrogates  #GagosianHongKong.

 



開幕酒會: 
5月25日晚間6時至8時


我的作品在不同政治、經濟、文化及時代中持續變異……這些紛擾和時間的流逝也是作品的一部分。
──泰倫‧西蒙

高古軒欣然呈獻「肖像與替代」展覽,為泰倫‧西蒙(Taryn Simon)在香港舉行的首場展覽。西蒙精選近期三個系列的重要作品,以及與俄羅斯新聞機構共同製作的自畫像影片,探討肖像與其替代品之間的相互關係。在西蒙藝術作品中採用的技術、實物及美學,往往反映其創作所探討的操控及權力議題。

西蒙是一位涉獵不同界別的觀念藝術家,2002年於紐約P.S.1當代藝術中心首次展出《無辜者》(The Innocents)後,其作品先後於全球各地的多間博物館展出。2013年,她於北京尤倫斯當代藝術中心展出意念創新的分類學系列《一個被宣告死亡的活人及其他章節一至十八》(A Living Man Declared Dead and Other Chapters I–XVIII,2008–11年)。西蒙亦按照以研究為主導的方式,創作其他極具感染力的作品,包括《美國之隱匿及陌生物索引》(An American Index of the Hidden and Unfamiliar,2007年)、《違禁品》(Contraband,2010年)、網絡作品《影像地圖集》(Image Atlas,2012年)、《圖片集》(The Picture Collection,2013年)、《西印度群島雀鳥》(Birds of the West Indies,2013–14年)、《文本及資本的意志》(2015年作),以及仍在持續創作過程中的《黑方塊》(Black Square,2006年至今),後者探究人類發明的成果。西蒙視攝影為盛載宏大槪念的工具,配以文字說明,能揭示操控制度背後的架構,包括世系、邊境、植物學及外交等。文字與圖像之間的界線模糊,兩者不斷互相影響。

「肖像與替代」展覽體現主題及其照片的變革力量,探討即使最普通的物品如何在不同文化及政治環境中被賦予全新的意義。《違禁品》(2010年)是一個關於欲望和控制的紀錄,由1,075張照片組成,分別於美國海關及邊境保衛局檢查站,以及紐約約翰甘迺迪國際機場的美國郵政署國際郵件中心拍攝。頗具行爲藝術色彩,西蒙連續在機場留守一周,不斷拍攝沒收自乘客及海外快遞郵件的東西,包括時裝、食品,以至奇珍異獸及盜版影碟等。

《一個被宣告死亡的活人及其他章節一至十八》紀錄家族及他們的故事,包括因被視為擁有神奇力量而被襲擊的坦桑尼亞白化病人、被北韓政府綁架的南韓人,以及成為現代澳洲害蟲的十九世紀歐洲兔子等。每一個「章節」均為深入研究、實地考察及資料整和的成果,組成身份、記憶及遺傳的索引。

在《文本及資本的意志》中,西蒙通過影響管治和經濟體系的協議、條約和法令,例如核武軍備、銀行協定及鑽石買賣等,探討權力的編排。在記錄簽署文件的原始影像中,掌權者身旁往往有花藝擺設,於是西蒙複製及拍攝這些擺設,再配合說明文字,既彰顯事實的不確定性,也揭示歷史本身的脆弱。擺放於奪目雙色背景前的花藝擺設同時具備多重象徵意義,它們一方面引證法蘭德斯啟蒙運動有關「不可能的花束」的理念,另一方也見證管治的章程,而展示在水泥壓花雕塑與植物標本旁邊,則體現無法避免的時間力量。

《剪接鏡頭》(Cutaways,2012年)既是這位藝術家的自畫像,也是她的替代品。她在接受《Russia Prime Time》錄影訪問時,工作人員要求她沉默地凝望新聞主播數分鐘,並指這是慣常的做法,這個鏡頭將於剪接時使用。這時,西蒙發現自己處於精心編排的權力系統中心,成為其作品探討的主題對象。

泰倫‧西蒙1975年生於紐約,現時亦於當地定居及從事創作。她的作品獲各地博物館收藏,包括巴黎龐畢度中心、倫敦泰特現代美術館、法蘭克福現代美術館、洛杉磯縣立博物館、紐約大都會藝術博物館及紐約所羅門古根漢美術館。她的作品也曾於多個博物館展出,包括紐約惠特尼美術館「Taryn Simon: An American Index of the Hidden and Unfamiliar」展覽(2007年,於2010年前巡展至法蘭克福現代美術館、阿姆斯特丹攝影博物館、澳洲現代藝術學院及墨爾本當代攝影中心)、倫敦泰特現代美術館和柏林新國家美術館「A Living Man Declared Dead and Other Chapters」展覽(2011年,於2013年前巡展至紐約現代美術館、洛杉磯當代美術館格芬當代分館、華盛頓科克倫美術館及北京尤倫斯當代藝術中心)、日內瓦當代美術館「Contraband」展覽(2011年)、巴黎路易威登基金會「A Polite Fiction」展覽(2014年)、巴黎國立網球場現代美術館「Rear Views, A Star-forming Nebula, and the Office of Foreign Propaganda」展覽(2015年)、第56屆威尼斯雙年展(2015年)、莫斯科車庫當代美術館「Taryn Simon: Action Research / The Stagecraft of Power」展覽(2016年)、布拉格魯道夫音樂廳藝廊(2016年)、德累斯頓阿爾伯提努美術館「A Soldier is Taught to Bayonet the Enemy and Not Some Undefined Abstraction」展覽(2016年),以及哥本哈根路易斯安那現代美術館「Taryn Simon: An American Index of the Hidden and Unfamiliar」展覽(2016–17年)。

西蒙的首個大型行為藝術裝置《長辭的輓歌》(An Occupation of Loss,2016年)由公園大道軍械庫及Artangel委託創作,2016年於紐約首次展出。

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Gagosian was established in 1980 by Larry Gagosian. | 高古軒由拉里•高古軒(Larry Gagosian)於1980年創立