Thursday, September 15, 2016

A conversation with Bisi Silva and Ingrid Schaffner

Curators of the Carnegie International

Sunday 18 September, 2016, 7.30 pm, at Alice Yard

Please join us at an informal reception to meet curators Bisi Silva and Ingrid Schaffner, who also will speak about their respective work and the Carnegie International

Bisi Silva                                             Ingrid Schaffner

Bisi Silva (Lagos, Nigeria) is an independent curator and director/founder of the Centre for Contemporary Art, Lagos. She was Artistic Director of the 10th Bamako Encounters African Biennial of Photography (2015) in Mali, Co-Curator of the 2nd Thessaloniki Biennale of Contemporary Art in Greece (2009), and Co-Curator of the 7th Dak’Art: African Contemporary Art Biennial (2006). She is the curator of Asiko (2010-) the pan-African roaming alternative art school. She co-curated The Progress of Love, a transcontinental collaboration between the Menil Collection (Houston), the Pulitzer Foundation for the Arts (Missouri), and CCA Lagos (2012–13) and J.D. ‘Okhai Ojeikere: Moments of Beauty at the Kiasma Museum of Contemporary Art, Helsinki (2011). A frequent participant in international conferences and symposia, Silva has published in journals and art magazines including Artforum, Third Text, The Exhibitionist, and Art South Africa. She sits on the editorial/advisory boards of Art South Africa, N.Paradoxa: International Feminist Art Journal, and Contemporary And. She was a member of the international jury for the Pinchuk Art Centre’s Future Generation Art Prize (2014), as well as the 55th Venice Biennale (2013)

Ingrid Schaffner (Curator, Carnegie International, 57th edition, 2018) is an American curator, art critic, writer, and educator, specialising in art history. Prior to coming to Pittsburgh, she directed the exhibition programme as chief curator at the Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA) at the University of Pennsylvania. Her work often coalesces around themes of archiving and collecting, photography, feminism, and alternate modernisms — especially Surrealism. She is the author of more than twenty books and nearly two hundred articles, reviews, and features, ranging from Salvador Dalí’s Dream of Venus to The Essential Andy Warhol, from an essay on exhibition wall text to an art history of chocolate. Born in Pittsburgh, Schaffner grew up in Los Gatos, California. She attended Mount Holyoke College and attended the Whitney Museum of American Art’s Independent Study Programme, where she was a Helena Rubinstein Curatorial Fellow. She then received a master’s degree in art history at New York University’s Institute of Fine Arts. After organising shows for the Drawing Centre, Swiss Institute, Haus der Kunst (Munich), Hayward Gallery (London), Independent Curators International, White Columns, and elsewhere, Schaffner was invited by then-director Claudia Gould to reshape and oversee ICA’s curatorial department.

Monday, September 12, 2016

out of place

Alice Yard • points in between • Granderson Lab September 2016

Out of Place, a curatorial collaboration between Alice Yard co-director Christopher Cozier and artist in residence Blue Curry, seeks to ask the following questions by instigating a series of events around Port of Spain:

How can we shift the encounter of visual objects or actions to more public spaces?

How can we alter or widen the way we understand the visual by dissolving received traditional boundaries between the object or action, its maker, and the viewer — untangling the idea of authorship?

How can we stage and engage the artistic process as a record of a creative or investigative action, as an experiential event available to everyone, rather than as a commodity, exclusively?

For announcements of events in the Out of Place programme, likely to be made on short notice, check the Alice Yard website or Facebook page.

Out of Place is part of YEAR X, a yearlong series of events reflecting on Alice Yard’s past and the possibilities of our future, running from September 2016 to September 2017.

Friday, September 2, 2016

Join us for the opening of


September 2016 to September 2017
Alice Yard and Granderson Lab

X = symbol to mark a specific location
X = sign for multiplication
X = an unknown variable
X = 10

In September 2016, Alice Yard marks its tenth anniversary as a space for conversation and experiment. Beginning in a modest Woodbrook backyard, our activities have gradually expanded through creating a small gallery space, residency quarters for visiting artists and curators, a bandroom used by dozens of musicians for rehearsal, and the adjunct space Granderson Lab in Belmont, home to a number of artists and creative collaboratives.

We began ten years ago with questions and possibilities. Our evolution has been organic and open-ended. As we consider our actions and ideas of the past decade, our instinct is less to celebrate and more to affirm our spirit of investigation and exchange, our ethos of generosity and independence.

As we prepare to begin our second decade, on Sunday 11 September, 2016, Alice Yard will host an installation by artist in residence Blue Curry, alongside September 2006, a modest exhibition drawn from our archives and documenting the moment of Alice Yard’s beginning ten years ago. We will also share details of a curatorial collaboration between Blue Curry and Alice Yard co-director Christopher Cozier, which will unfold over the coming month: a series of site-specific, public-domain projects by various artists, exploring questions of authorship, decision-making, and the artwork as event or action rather than object exclusively.

These activities will also open YEAR X, a twelve-month programme of projects and events that reflect on the archive of our past and the prospects of our future. We invite our collaborators, interlocutors, and friends to join us in imagining what might be possible in “a backyard on a small island.”

All are invited.

Souvenir, by Blue Curry (hair combs, perspex plinths, billboard posters) for VITRINE, 2014

Thursday, September 1, 2016

“Artists, this space is available”

Photograph by Nadia Huggins

“We wanted to see what was the range of creative disciplines that could be accommodated simultaneously, which is pretty much the way negotiations were forged in a traditional yard context in urban Trinidad.”

Alice Yard co-director Sean Leonard, on the influence of family generosity and Carnival productivity on his practice, and our decade-long experiment in this small backyard in Woodbrook — interviewed by Stephen Stuemplfe and published in the September/October 2016 Caribbean Beat.

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Richard Williams: New Objects and Wall Collages

Thursday 11 August, 2016, from 7 pm, at Alice Yard

Installing Bloody Republic

The artist will present a sequence of actions/experiments for one night only. Trinidad-born artist Richard Williams is influenced by contemporary wall graphics, graffiti, and the public performances of the Fluxus Movement. His creative explorations can be traced to their genesis in the yard of his family home in east Trinidad, and can now be seen on the streets of Germany.

“I moved to Germany about ten years ago… I began my formal art practice when I finished at the John S Donaldson Technical Institute design programme. Although I may be far from home, switching off my feelings of concern is not an option for me. I always pay attention to how we treat our environment and communities… My latest works combine the worlds of past and present. I am revisiting my past and bringing it into my present experiments. Showing the reality of T&T’s 2016 social collapse is important to me — dealing with these problems is the start for finding a way to solve it.”

Invasive Species (detail)

Rattan vs Plastic 

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Asha Ganpat: New Works

Thursday 4 August, 2016, from 7 pm, at Alice Yard

During her week at Alice Yard, artist in residence Asha Ganpat has made two series of new works: Save Me Hanuman!, using found printed materials (an illustrated children’s book of Hindu stories and a book on local insects), and Hard Alchemy, using coins and gold leaf. On Thursday 4 August, she will present these along with an informal short talk on her recent and current projects. The works will remain installed until Saturday 6 August.

All are invited.

Sunday, July 31, 2016

Introducing Asha Ganpat

Artist in residence, July and August 2016

Asha Ganpat is a multimedia visual artist who was born in Trinidad and now lives and works in New Jersey, where she is an adjunct professor of sculpture at Montclair State University, is an independent curator, and co-founded Red Saw Gallery in Newark.

In late July and early August 2016, Ganpat is artist in residence at Alice Yard, where she plans to use locally sourced media for her work. In one piece, she will combine images from a Hindu story book and a published survey of insect life in Trinidad to play out a vengeance fantasy spurred by the many bites and stings and near-misses over the years. In another work, Ganpat will look at the imbalance of currency exchange and will seek valuation and revaluation through a playful consideration of alchemy.

Ganpat received a BFA from Mason Gross, Rutgers University, and an MFA from Montclair State University. She has shown her work at institutions such as the Brooklyn Museum of Art, the Insitituto di Cultura, Exit Art, the Noyes Museum, the Queens Museum, the Jersey City Museum, and the Nathan Cummings Foundation. Her work was cited as one of NYC’s top ten art installations of 2012 by Complex magazine. She is an alumnus of Aljira’s Emerge, Gaia’s Wonderwomen Program, the Annual New Jersey Book Art Symposium, and Chashama North residencies.

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Captured in the Grip of Listening?

Photographs of People with Radios in (Post-) Colonial Bamako
A talk and research exhibition by Antawan I. Byrd
Wednesday 27 July, 2016, 7 pm, at Alice Yard

Studio Photo Diallo, Untitled, 1962, Silver Gelatin Print, 5 x 7 in., Private Collection

Antawan I. Byrd is a PhD Candidate in Art History at Northwestern University, studying modern and contemporary art of Africa and the African Diaspora. During the months of July and August, 2016, he is researcher in residence at Alice Yard.

His dissertation, tentatively titled “Interferences: Sound, Technology, and the Politics of Listening in Afro-Atlantic Art”, examines how artists in Bamako, Port of Spain, and New York use sound technologies to engage profound moments of political change, beginning in the second half of the twentieth century.

On Wednesday 27 July, he will give an informal talk at Alice Yard, discussing his research on sound and photography in Bamako, and introducing his research interests and aims for Port of Spain. A selection of photographs collected during this research will be on display, continuing until Sunday 31 July.

All are invited.

Photo: Steeve Bauras

About Antawan I. Byrd:

Most recently, Byrd was an Associate Curator for Telling Time, the 10th Bamako Encounters Biennale of African Photography, 2015, and was a member of the editorial team for the 2012 Biennale Bénin Inventer Le Monde: L’artiste Citoyen. He was a curatorial assistant for J.D. ‘Okhai Ojeikere: Moments of Beauty at the Kiasma Museum of Contemporary Art, Helsinki, in 2011. From 2009-2011, Byrd worked at the Centre for Contemporary Art in Lagos as a curatorial assistant. His research has been supported by an Andrew Mellon CLIR fellowship, a Block Museum curatorial fellowship, a grant from Northwestern University’s Buffett Institute for Global Studies, and a Fulbright fellowship.