“Gaze is that obscure place, the blind spot, where the object looked upon returns the gaze.” — Slavoj Zizek
Please join us for a presentation and discussion with NYC-based artist Adia Millett and Toronto-based artist Kristiina Lahde.
Tuesday, May 22, 7:30pm, free
The Change You Want to See Gallery and Convergence Stage
84 Havemeyer St, Store Front, Brooklyn NY 11211
Recent presentations at The Change You Want to See have looked at “A Dirty Secret”, the world of trash. A world that, while hidden from sight, represents the defining factor fueling the capitalist drive to escape the old and replace it with the new.
The concept of “something hidden” that has latent power to propel a movement forward was again investigated with a presentation that looked into the world of dreams that advertisers sell to us in marketing campaigns, and re-imagined them as sites that could be inverted for the purpose of inspiring a new progressive politics.
The upcoming presentation continues this trajectory with a look at the works of Kristiina Lahde and Adia Millett. We will explore examples of the ways that both artists are able to make evident hidden openings within the illusive architectures that structure and define shared assumptions about the world, and reveal them as yet-to-be occupied empty places of power.
“I tend to illuminate subtle limitations and more overt exclusions.”
Adia Millett’s work invests everyday objects with an unsettling, undefined significance. Using installation, sculpture, and photography, she constructs and documents small, interior, domestic spaces that, even when utterly unrecognizable, nonetheless somehow play on the viewer’s memory. “I investigate our innate desire to define objects, people, and ideas that are, In fact, not present,” she says. “Each dollhouse functions as an imaginary home containing a myriad of objects, but no visible inhabitants. The dwellings, and the objects they contain, insinuate a large range of potential narratives into an otherwise straightforward voyeurism.”
She crafts large room size installations as well as miniature dollhouses from which a limited series of art photographs have developed. The concepts behind Millett’s sculptures are further elaborated through such materials as needlepoint and cross-stitch work. Her work is part of such collections as the Studio Museum in Harlem, The Norton Family Foundation and the SEI collection. Additionally, her work has been shown in London and throughout the United States.
Kristiina Lahde, is a Toronto-based artist and conservator who has spent most of her production time contemplating various systems of measurement or containment. A system of measurement is a system of control, a way that we can know the world. The question that Lahde poses pertaining to these systems, indeed as it relates to all of her produced collections, be they shirts, rulers, zeros or post-it notes, ultimately troubles the authority with which people entrust the actual systems to which her works refer.
The critical edge of Lahde’s work operates by way of implication. Her sensibility is much more subtle than outright satire, her use of irony more emergent than overt. Lahde has not only turned the lens back onto her own desires in terms of reflecting on the underlying levels of enjoyment in her work, she has made these methods of control, the very means of containment, the subject of her work. In effect, she has become the conservator that remarks on the underlying, often prescriptive, desires that actually mark her presence as an individual.
Ultimately, this is where Lahde locates her poetics; a subtle disturbance of that which we take for granted. In so doing her objects may help to make us mindful of the ways in which a collection directs our attention and channels our energies.
The Change You Want to See Gallery (aka No-Space)
May 22, 2007