Tag Archives: Ficus Interfaith

Dangerous Together

19222968_1679675195379899_6273899256783872462_oDANGEROUS TOGETHER, co-curated by Prairie and Micah Schippa, presents:

BB5000
Dorota Gaweda & Egle Kulbokaite
Ficus Interfaith R+ P
Institute of Queer Ecology
KERNEL
Loney Abrams + Johnny Stannish
Sorbus

Opening June 23rd from 7-10pm. Show runs June 23rd – July 30th 2017.

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Micah Schippa:

Here let me send you what I have

Guillaume says “the critical potential of collaboration has to be problematized in relation with the question of authorship, as the latter holds a prominent place in modern academic self-image and systems of valorization. Thus, authorship is central to understanding how collaboration can provide a critical pathway to the production of knowledge. To be successful, collaboration needs to steer participants away from an intellectual state of idleness, where the effects of one’s social, historical, institutional, ideological, gendered and cultural situatedness are ‘in an unthought stage’ (Bourdieu 1994: 217). To this purpose, collaboration can offer a networked and dynamic collaborative environment within and through which ideas are critically fostered and engaged with, but also an epistemic frame where the notion of individual(ist) production is not necessarily celebrated as a competitive feature of contemporary academia, but re-situated in the dialogical dynamics of knowledge production, management and valorization.”

Prairie:

I like that

Did you see what I posted in the doc?

More-so related to ecology than collaboration, this excerpt from the introduction to Jason W. Moore’s “Capitalism in the Web of Life” offers a nice, brief analysis of how early human life developed symbiotically with the environment:

“When geographers say space, may we not also say nature? All social relations are spatial relations, relations within the web if life. Socio-spatial relations develop through nature. All species “build” environments – they are “ecosystem engineers.” But some engineers are more powerful than others. Humans have been especially powerful. This is not simply because of thought and language – which are of course central – but also because hominid evolution favored distinctive extroversions: a smaller digestive system and the use of fire as an external stomach; a narrower birth canal and community as external womb; less hair and the production of clothes as external fur. That list could be extended. The point is to highlight the ways in which evolutionary processes were powerfully co-produced: humanity is a species-environment relation.”

Can we think of a way in which to address both the collaboration happening between members of these artist collectives and the material/natural “collaboration” these groups are engaged with?

Micah Schippa:

Omg i looooooove this

It breaks the naturalized, solipsistic idea of capitalist development. Like, competition as a species-eat-species, top down effect is a matter of the way we perceive time at a small scale. We are engineers in a world of engineers, a world which itself is an engineer. But not so technically; more ambiently.

I like the way these two texts of ours breathe back and forth.

Omg wait should we just use this for the press release?

Prairie:

Yeah love that.

Haha, are these two texts dangerous together??! 😀

 

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Progress Beyond Reason

­­MX Gallery
169 Canal St, 5th floor

“Progress Beyond Reason”

Thomas Laprade/Aaron Lehman
Ficus Interfaith

 

We’ve always made sure to tell and retell the story of darkness and light.  And just as our ancestors danced to the songs of their ancestors, they always remembered to teach the steps to their young.  Juking became jerking and Egyptian hieroglyphs found their way into gay ballroom dances uptown.  The things the dead made and left behind were poignant too, especially when we could run fingers along the cracks that bore witness to their stories– as if we needed proof that time passed before we became lucky enough to sit up and watch it tick.

These rituals of making, sharing, and conserving guarantee that beliefs and values endure from one generation to the next.  Ritual, above all, functions to preserve social memory by connecting an individual to a shared, cultural history.  Dapping it up in the local fashion feels especially good when it’s as physical (with your arms around another body) as it is transcendentally shared. Ritual becomes the performance of history and our performance of ritual is the medium by which history thrusts forward and gives life meaning.

In pre-modern society this meaning of life was given at the beginning, and this meaning was immanent in all the ordinary customs and practices of daily life.  The beat of the drum told the feet exactly how they should move- and that alone was worth reproducing to keep the world going around.  In modern society, however, meaning is not given at the beginning of life– meaning is to be sought, discovered, acquired, and often discarded and re-rediscovered.  Suddenly it was no longer enough to make the world go around but necessary that it also move forward.

So the idea of progress and the need for perpetual improvement became held in the highest regard in the new world. A society, a life, or an action that did not show progress came to seem meaningless, and, in turn, ritual stood on the other side of a Great Divide.  It became tantamount to a blind faith in the past.  Ritual, as opposed to reason, became barbarism and idolatry that could only impede the path to a bright and rational future.

Some, equipped with instruments for measuring and fine-tuning, went about banishing the sprites and gargoyles that lived in the dark corners of the imagination.  They replaced them with methods of categorization and confinement, and even applied these ideas to people.  They claimed ornament was the mark of the savage and renovated temples to humiliate monks with simple reason and logic.  Others, erecting towers of mullioned glass and rectangular greys, said ritual was the insidious tool of authority used to stratify and take advantage of the aspirational poor. Ritual became our bogeyman, no longer a boon but a blight on progress.

Progress was to be social, scientific, liberal, constant, faster, constant, better, constant… until we found ourselves moving again to the beat of that ancient drum.  These activities, held to the metric of seemingly quantifiable progress and perpetual improvement became the new customs and practices of every day life–the modern ritual.

Yet all those cancerous qualities we feared about ritual– the blind faith and idolatry– were only in remission.  Aided by technology, these symbols of progress reproduced and hurdled through our psyches so fast that they became empty shells of what they once stood for. A dangerously ritualistic faith in progress emerged; the idea of a better future hijacked by eco-conscious marketing ploys, protestors at rallies in search of social currency, aerodynamic razors with embossed speed stripes for hairless bodies.  Futurism in this sense became reduced to a hyperbole of a wasteful and indulgent present; one that carrot-sticks us into the future while leaving us too tranquilized to really feel, think, or act in the moment.

We see this trickery most clearly in the technologies and materials that literally form the foundation of our culture. Perhaps the enabling feature of the Roman Empire’s sprawl was their use of concrete— they were the envy of the western world for the speed of their megalithic construction. Domes, aqueducts, and arches were poured rather than painstakingly pieced together. The imperfect predecessor of this technology was clay and the inheritors of its successes were plastics, rubber, terrazzo, and today the infinitely variable rendered image. What each of these technologies enable and share is their plasticity and offer of unlimited new forms. A poured concrete façade of a neoclassical building does not rely on wooden beams, columns of fluted reeds, and pegs that tie columns to architrave, and yet all those features are visible because they were the original construction techniques of Greek temples. While plastic materials like concrete offer vast potential for new forms, we continue to imbue them with the symbols of the past. We see in these technologies a preservation of image, appearance, and ritual while materiality drops away. This culminates in the rendered image, an image literally without matter. We live in homes with hollow Ikea furniture.

The fact of how we preserve our past when given so much technological potential for newness suggests that we can’t escape our history, but maybe there is potential within it for liberation.  If ritual is the practice of history then it must be a history for life. Not an idea of history that is only a scientific recording of facts, or limited by nostalgia and a blind recreation of past styles, but a practice that empowers an imagination aimed at the horizon. Today it’s possible to hear the ancient drum and, rather than be captive to it, have the ability to decide how the feet should move.

“Progress Beyond Reason”, featuring Thomas Laprade/Aaron Lehman and Ficus Interfaith, will run through July 4. Gallery hours are by appointment. To make an appointment please contact 773-490-0191 or 203-321-3701, or email info@mxgallery@gmail.com

 

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Jimmy’s Ridgewood

Ficus Interfaith Research & Properties

Jimmy’s Ridgewood

55-19 Metropolitan Ave, Ridgewood, NY 11385

May 6, 2017- June 2, 2017
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The cultivation and breeding of animals, plants and fungi for food, fiber, fuel, medicine and other products can be used to sustain and enhance human life.  Agriculture was a key development in the rise of sedentary human civilization, whereby farming of domesticated species created food surpluses that nurtured the development of society.

Modern agronomy, plant breeding and agrochemicals such as pesticides and fertilizers have sharply increased yields from cultivation, but have also caused widespread ecological damage with negative human health effects. Selective breeding and modern practices in animal husbandry have similarly increased the output of meat, but have raised concerns about animal welfare and the health effects of the antibiotics, growth hormones, and other chemicals commonly used in industrial meat production. Genetically modified organisms are an increasing component of agriculture, debilitating the potential of pandemic starvation, although they are banned in several countries and their long term impact is unknown. Agricultural food production and water management are global issues that require teamwork and innovative thinking. Significant degradation of land and water resources, including the depletion of aquifers, has been observed in recent decades. The effects of climate change on agriculture and of agriculture on climate change are connected yet still not fully understood.
The major agricultural products can be broadly grouped into foods, fibers, fuels, and structural materials. Specific foods include cereals (grains), vegetables, fruits, oils, meats and spices. Fibers include cotton, wool, hemp, silk and flax. Structural materials include lumber and bamboo. Other useful materials are also produced by plants, such as resins, dyes, drugs, perfumes, biofuels and ornamental products such as cut flowers.

Bruce Martin Gallery

November 18 – December 9, 2016
Opening reception Friday, November 18, 5–8pm

Bruce Martin Gallery is pleased to present Ficus Interfaith Research & Properties. There will be an opening reception on Friday, November 18th, 5-8pm and the exhibition will be on view through December 9th by appointment only.

What’s beautiful about the stories we tell each other is the agency we have to pick up, recreate, bend and build new stories. It is our weapon against history- that denser, less malleable narrative that feels out of our control. For as science is to truth, history holds no candle to what we make of it.

Ficus Interfaith presents three sculptures for their exhibition at Bruce Martin Gallery. A light-box, a door and a blocked window conspire to reflect on the mythologized events before us.

Ficus Interfaith Research & Properties is organized by Ryan Bush (b. 1990 Denver, CO) and Raphael Cohen (b. 1989 New York, NY) and based in New York City.

Puppet Show

http://15orient.com/puppet-show/

 

Dear Friend,

It’s with great excitement that we extend this invitation to participate in the first-ever 15 Orient Puppet Show to be held at 15 Orient Avenue, Brooklyn, NY on the evening of the 29th of October in anticipation of Halloween. Embracing the entirety of the house and yard (which will themselves be dressed for the occasion), the show will feature a troupe of puppets of all sizes and types– from the common finger-puppet to the carnival (body) puppet, the table-top puppet, the marote, the tickle bug and the marionette—and will no doubt extend to include those cousin to puppets, namely, poppets, that is, mommets or pippies (an exemplar of which is the Scandinavian “Kitchen Witch”). You may choose to perform your puppet, bringing it for a time to the center stage or marking-off some space of the house you find fit, or you may decide to simply situate it in relation to (or isolation from) the others. In the case that your puppet doesn’t directly dictate your attire, we suggest that you nonetheless dress for the occasion.

As time is already running short, we would also ask that you RSVP as soon as possible and inform us in advance of any special arrangements your puppet/performance might require.

Sincerely Yours,

15 Orient
___________________________

Paul Gondry, Adrian De Mones, Shelby Jackson, Jordan Barse, Veit Laurent Kurz, Rochelle Goldberg, Robert Grand, Emma Hazen, Denis Witkin, George Rippon, Daniela Czenstochowski, Alexandra Metcalf, Anna Pierce, Jacky Connolly, Dean Goldman, Emily Shubert, Ficus Interfaith, Tatum Boley, Martine Fougeron, Nicholas De Mones, Betty Roytburd, Alex Zandi, Zach Marshall, Rafael Foster
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Ferrocement Puppet, 2016

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dccon 1: narrabantur

http://www.contemporaryartdaily.com/2016/09/dccon1-narrabantur-at-u-s-blues/

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Images courtesy of U.S. Blues, New York

Press Release:

The experience of life teaches nothing, just as history teaches nothing. True experience comes from restricting our contract with reality while increasing our analysis of that contract. In this way our sensibility becomes broader and deeper, because everything is in us — all we need to do is look for it and know how to look.

-Fernando Pessoa, The Book of Disquiet

U.S. Blues is pleased to present dccon1: narrabantur, an exhibition organized by William Dintenfass. The exhibition features work by Betty Bailey, Philip Evergood, Ficus Interfaith R+P, Jacob Lawrence, Daido Moriyama, Annabelle Speer, and S. Clay Wilson.

 

Some notes from the exhibition’s organizer:

…Betty Bailey has three watercolor/pencil drawings on paper in the show. Two drawings depict nude humans in motion and in the art studio, while the other is the inside of a Marijuana Manor…I’ve also known Betty beyond memory. I fired my first potato canon at her house…

…Philip Evergood has one painting in the show. Country Still Life, 1956, is oil on board. The image is a country still life…I grew up around the work of Jacob Lawrence and Philip Evergood. I never really thought anything of it until I had enough time to engage with it on my own terms. It wasn’t a moment for me, but a long process…

…Ficus Interfaith has five sculptural objects in the show: a terrazzo interpretation of Nebuchadnezzar’s dream with a poem inlayed into the work in brass, two ferrocement planters and two ferrocement chairs. Ficus left the curation of inhabiting plants up to me. I’ve chosen one plant from my backyard and one set of plants from my worksite, Fort Tilden, where I am currently doing conservation work…I saw Ficus’ work in a show a couple years ago. It was in an old house upstate. They replaced a stone in a chimney with a patterned concrete stone they made. We were originally going to make a wall for this show but they decided on the terrazzo instead…

…Jacob Lawrence has one lithograph in the show. Two Rebels, 1963, was published by Terry Dintenfass Gallery, printed by George C. Miller & Son, New York. This image derives from the painting The Rebels, also 1963, which depicts two men being carried by four policemen. Throughout the 1960s, Lawrence continually worked with images pertaining to the struggle for civil rights in the United States…I particularly like Lawrence’s interpretation of space in this piece…the first time I showed his work to a gallerist, they thought he was white…

…Daido Moriyama has one photograph in the show. Three Views of Japan No. 3 – Mutsu Matsushima, 1974 is part of the artist’s larger effort photographing post-WWII Japan…I’d never seen anything like Daido Moriyama, never seen anybody push and pull black and white photography in such a manner, embracing grain and disregarding the conventions of dodging and burning…

…Annabelle Speer has three abstract paintings in the show. They focus on explorations of the materiality of paint through visual references to the landscape, weather patterns and atmospheric conditions…I saw a painting of hers in a group show. It was a beautiful painting with blue dots. I liked it so I told her. She told me it was hung upside down…

…S. Clay Wilson has one print in the show. Rotting Zombie Harpies Dispatch a Vampire is published by U.S. Blues, printed by me at Renaissance Press, New Hampshire. Drawn in 1985, Rotting Zombies Dispatch a Vampire, is printed in photogravure with an edition of 45 with 5 AP. Any proceeds will be donated to the special needs trust for S. Clay Wilson…I met (S. Clay) Wilson before I can remember. He dated my aunt. My last memory of him was at my family’s Thanksgiving where he and his friend got very drunk and tormented me and the other children. Pretty soon after he and my aunt broke up…

As I get older, I find it harder to remember, to stay present in account for the events and experiences of my life. Events lose their chronology, old friends lose their faces, affectations get wiped over, smoothed out to a flat past, never quite lived in the moment. When we asked him about the show, William told us that he wanted to “elucidate the accuracy of representation provided by abstraction within spectrums of narratives.” Admittedly, I don’t know what Will meant by this. I do, however, understand the relationships that move through him to always leave a trace, one that his perversity is always looking to engage and renegotiate. I accept his relationship to narrative as a binary condition onto which he attempts to use himself to confrontationally nurture. He stands in the middle of his own experiences, in an effort to interrupt his own way and bring others along with him. Much of the work in the show was made several years- in some cases several decades- prior to the occasion of the exhibition, and would have otherwise
been left to dust. The expense of labor and time at which these pieces were found and revived was difficult and elaborate. The works have come at the behest of many phone calls, emails, studio visits with artists long buried in basements and personal relationships to careers, ideologies, contextualizations past. This process of persistent negotiation and enthusiasm prolongs and interrupts the objectivity of these previous discourses, and in turn a deeper intimacy emerges through the perversions of his detours. It keeps both Will and the artists surrounding him engaged in a contract of passage. The selections in the show are both complicit in, and exemplary of, this method of prolonged engagement; dog-eared perversions of a lived biography providing traction against the forgetting brought by the smoothness of time. Like footprints in the snow that is already the memory of water, their peripheral histories signal to a common origin as an involuntary rescue of clarity.

-C.S.D

 

Wysteriasway

proxy_ficusinterfaith_jun16_003“Wysteriasway”
Ficus Interfaith Research & Properties
Sunday, June 19, 6-9pm
Proxy, 149 Canal St
10002, NY

a knife, a summer, and a fruit to the church of the hotel
the regiment was over and the boys were a bucket of coffee and a boat near the fence
and in the morning when he had to stop his watch in the sun
when he began to fall asleep and stand there in the back yard
a celebration, a winter, and a easter horse
which was present when the light rose through the shed

 

Ficus Interfaith is Raphael Cohen and Ryan Bush.

click images

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One is Silver the Other’s Gold

 

 

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Ficus Interfaith & Elizabeth Englander

10-01 44 Rd Long Island City, NY