I’m currently spending part of August and September in Peterborough, New Hampshire at the MacDowell Colony! I’m working on my upcoming artist’s book, Pavements, Potholes & Repairs, to be released by MAB Books in September and new paper weavings of the road.
In early August, I spent 2 weeks in residence at the Studios at MASS MoCA working in a lovely studio on the MASS MoCA campus and meeting with artists from around the country to talk about teaching and making art!
In this exhibition by Kim Beck, her new work is the result of looking at and recording the everyday landscape as seen on daily walks with her dog. This experience is recorded through rubbings, photographs and prints, using rocks, ink, mud and rain. Rubbings of the road are printed and layered into thousands of Risograph prints, each one unique. Photographs of the road are woven together to create a new topography. Bricks from a demolished structure leave traces on paper, built up from rain and mud. A found rock is used to make prints, the rock itself becoming as salient, like a Japanese suiseki rock to be appreciated for its aesthetic value. While works on paper are tenuous and fragile, the rock is solid. The black ink on its surface another trace of an implied invisible action. Collectively this work is a meditation on roads, walking and the intersection of humans and nature in the landscape.
July 11-September 21st at Milton Art Bank
Group Exhibition | Don’t Touch My Circles Featuring work by Kim Beck, Kevin Cooley, Nicki Green, Bill Jacobson, Jana Sophia Nolle, Stephanie Syjuco, and Marie Watt // Plus, a special viewing room presentation of The Truth Be Told by LigoranoReese
June 29 – August 31, 2019
Opening reception: Saturday, June 29, 2019 from 2 – 4pm; artist talks at 3pm
San Francisco, CA: Catharine Clark Gallery opens Summer 2019 with Don’t Touch My Circles, a group exhibition of work across media by Kim Beck, Kevin Cooley, Nicki Green, Bill Jacobson, Jana Sophia Nolle, Stephanie Syjuco, and Marie Watt. The exhibition’s title references a quote attributed to Greek mathematician and astronomer Archimedes (287 – 212 BCE) who, upon confrontation with a Roman soldier during the conquest of Syracuse, pointed to geometric figures drawn in the sand and entreated Noli turbare circulos meos (“Do not disturb my circles”) before he was stabbed to death. While the authenticity of the quote is uncertain, the metaphors it invokes are especially salient in our political moment, as we consider how artists and creative practitioners stand up for their beliefs and ideas through their practice. In that vein, the works on view explore how familiar forms and motifs from art history – such as landscape and abstraction – can be invested with, and activated through, deep commitment to critique and political action.
2nd International Printmaking Triennial, contemporary print exhibition, including artists Gary Hill, Kiki Smith, David Lynch and more
This week I’ll be in Houston! On November 6th, I will be a visiting artist and speaker at the University of Houston School of Art. Later in the week, on November 8th, I’ll be speaking and have project called “Field Recordings” at the Emergency Room Gallery at Rice University's Department of Visual and Dramatic Arts.
SEPTEMBER 7-DECEMBER 31, 2017
UB ART GALLERY THRU DEC. 16 AND UB ANDERSON GALLERY THRU DEC. 31, 2017
OPENING RECEPTION: UB ART GALLERY, CFA, SEPTEMBER 7, 5-8PM • UB ANDERSON GALLERY, SEPTEMBER 9, 11AM-2PM
UB Art Gallery: September 7-December 16, 2017
UB Anderson Gallery: September 7-December 31, 2017
Wanderlust: Actions, Traces, Journeys 1967-2017 is a 50-year survey exhibition that considers the themes of action and exploration outside of the studio and how artists engage this theme in various ways, including walking, cartography, land use, endurance, and the consideration of public space. This exhibition highlights a variety of art practices, dating from the late 1960s and continuing through present day. Artists include Vito Acconci, Bas Jan Ader, Nevin Aladağ, Francis Alÿs, Janine Antoni, John Baldessari, Kim Beck, Roberley Bell, Blue Republic, Sophie Calle, Rosemarie Castoro, Cardiff/Miller, Millie Chen, Zoe Crosher, Fallen Fruit, David Hammons, Mona Hatoum, Nancy Holt, Kenneth Josephson, Allan Kaprow, William Lamson, Richard Long, Marie Lorenz, Mary Mattingly, Anthony McCall, Ana Mendieta, Teresa Murak, Wangechi Mutu, Efrat Natan, OHO, Gabriel Orozco, Carmen Papalia, John Pfahl, Michelangelo Pistoletto, Pope.L, Teri Rueb, Michael x. Ryan, Todd Shalom, Greg Stimac, Mary Ellen Strom, and Guido van der Werve. The exhibition will be on view at the UB Art Galleries from September 7-December 31, 2017 and travel to the Des Moines Art Center in February 2018. The catalogue, published by MIT Press, includes essays by Jane McFadden, Lori Waxman and Rachel Adams
For the first time, this exhibition brings together regional, national and international artists that focus on actions in and with the landscape through various practices. No longer separately relegated to “walking” art or “land” art, but including action-based processes, Wanderlust allows viewers to experience 50 years of artistic practices that are intertwined while highlighting diverse approaches to contemporary art. By experiencing the gallery exhibitions and participating in public programs, viewers will gain an understanding of working outside the box. Artwork in the exhibition ranges in medium from drawing, photography, sculpture, installations, film, and video to performance and social practice taking place in both urban and rural landscapes. Taking its name from Rebecca Solnit’s book Wanderlust: A History of Walking, the exhibition will include works that are narrative, political, performative, and conceptual examples of contemporary art. Represented works vary in process—some artists work as solitary figures implanting themselves physically on the landscape while others form actions and create movements in a collaborative manner or in public. The exhibition will not be installed chronologically; historic artworks will be juxtaposed with recent and commissioned artworks that relate to each other through influence from previous decades and artistic intention.
Beginning with significant historical works from artists such as Richard Long, who was one of the first artists to make walking his art form, to Ana Mendieta, who carved and shaped her own figure into the earth and documented these private sculptural performances, to Michelangelo Pistoletto’s performance, Walking Sculpture, in which he and a group of people walked a large newspaper ball down the streets of Turin, the exhibition will include works from all decades since the 60s and commission artists to create new work for 2017. Commissions of new work will include: a single-channel video piece by William Lamson, who will explore a double mirror video project filmed on a boat; artist Carmen Papalia will lead his Blind Field Shuttle walk; Todd Shalom will lead an artist walk through the west side of Buffalo; and The Grass is Always Greener—a collaboration with art collective Fallen Fruit to bring fruit trees back to Buffalo’s Fruit Belt neighborhood as part of their Endless Orchard project.
During the exhibition, public programs and workshops will be scheduled to take place outside of the gallery walls, allowing visitors to experience their own form of wanderlust. A schedule of public programs will be posted closer to the opening of the exhibition.
Wanderlust: Actions, Traces, and Journeys 1967-2017 is organized by the University at Buffalo Art Galleries, Buffalo, New York and curated by Rachel Adams, UB Art Galleries Senior Curator. This project is supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts. Generous support for the exhibition and catalogue has also been provided by the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts. Additional support comes from Charles Balbach and the Techne Institute for Arts and Emerging Technologies at the University at Buffalo.
Buffalo, NY—The UB Art Galleries is pleased to present artist Kim Beck’s skywriting event There Here on August 20 from 4-5PM! In There Here, a skywriter will draw arrows in the sky pointing to the US/Canadian border located over the Niagara River in Buffalo, New York. Commissioned as part of the exhibition Wanderlust: Actions, Traces, Journeys 1967-2017, the arrows will be photographed and then appear on several billboards dotted throughout the city, fixing the directional language onto signs. A series of photographs will also be on view in the exhibition at the UB Anderson Gallery. Wanderlust: Actions, Traces, Journeys 1967-2017 is on view September 7th through December 31, 2017.
Art historian Toby Lawrence writes, "Arrows are by definition directional. The series of skywritten arrows in Kim Beck’s work, There Here, is layered in significance and points of reference. Earlier iterations of Beck’s The Sky Is the Limit project reflect billboard and advertising language as well as highway exit signs, exploring the potential of signage to move bodies through space and the implications of this gesture. In Buffalo, the gesture is more direct. Sited within the city’s rich history and its position as a border town, the arrows rendered in the sky by a skywriting airplane draw attention to the physical and psychological space held by the border and relationships between the United States and Canada. Within, the arrows signify guidance and also allude to the history of Buffalo as the traditional lands of the Seneca people, as a migratory and economic gateway, and as a site of resistance and revolution through significant markers of history, such as the War of 1812 and the Underground Railroad that provided access to freedom for Black slaves into Canada."
Participate! Viewers of the skywriting can take photographs of the arrows and upload them to social media with the tag #ubskywriting and #ubwanderlust. Please send high resolution images to the artist at kimbeck (at) idealcities (dot) com. She may choose one of these images to use on a billboard! To see the arrows and participate, viewers can situate themselves between Canalside and the Peace Bridge or most anywhere else in the greater Buffalo area.
Into the Weeds, August 13 - October 15, 2017
Opens June 29 through August 12, 2017
Curated by Haley Finnegan
The Woskob Family Gallery is pleased to announce Home Economics, a collection of two- and three-dimensional work by ten artists engaging with various understandings of home, what it means to belong, and the intricacies of domestic relationships. Ranging from the deeply personal to the overtly political, the works in Home Economics engage with issues including debates over immigration, changing notions about gender and family roles, and the growth of militant nationalism. Through paintings of intimate interiors, cheeky reinterpretations of domestic artifacts, and various representations of houses, “home” becomes a site for nostalgia, pride, and even anxiety. The included artists are Natalie Baxter, Kim Beck, Laurent Chéhère, David Cuatlacuatl, Rachel Farbiarz, Adia Millett, Danielle Mužina, Nick Naber, Hillel O’Leary, and Polly Shindler.
I wish I knew what to say
Kim Beck: Solo Show at Project Space, Montalvo Arts Center
Friday, April 7, 2017 - Thursday, June 8, 2017
Kim Beck is a Fellow at the Lucas Artist Program (LAP) at Montalvo Arts Center. The works on view in this exhibition were created by the artist during a three month residency at the LAP this spring. Kim Beck’s new animations and works on paper are based on experiences of external and internal landscapes, the limits of representation and language, and the process of drawing as a metaphor for change.
Several of the works on paper are based on found photographs of a California landscape. The repetition of the photographic image in her drawings invites the viewer to reconsider our traditional understanding of photography as a reproducible medium and drawing, conversely, as a unique and singular mode of art making. The anonymity of the original photographer and site together also convey a sense of the mystery of place. Another set of works on paper are based on the artist’s hikes through the woods and mountains, pair text with color swatches based on the artist’s walks around Montalvo’s grounds. Annotated like informal diary entries, these works capture the experience of walking through a particular place at a particular time, like a mental and experiential snapshot.
These works are followed bya larger series of graphite drawings and animations. Beck made these stop-frame animations by drawing and erasing, photographing them each step of the way. Like palimpsests revealing traces of the previous gestures, the drawings are as much the residue of Beck’s animations as their starting point. As Beck says of the work:
“These animations reflect the experience of being alive – the cycle of gestures, choices and actions countered by loss and change. The phrases written on some of the drawings, such as “I wish I knew what to say” and “There are no words” are a response to feeling at a loss for language: this last year my mother died, and then on top of that unspeakable experience, the country catastrophically lost the election. These losses have made language almost impossible. These drawings are on the edge of where written language and gesture meet, where a scribble might become a written word. As Samuel Beckett writes in his play The Unnamable: “You must go on. / I can't go on. / I'll go on.”
Kim Beck grew up outside of Denver, Colorado and now lives in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania where she teaches art at Carnegie Mellon University. Her drawings, prints and installations have been shown at the Walker Art Center, the Carnegie Museum of Art, Socrates Sculpture Park, the Warhol Museum, the Indianapolis Museum of Art, the Minneapolis Museum of Art, the Philbrook Museum of Art and along the High Line in New York City, among other venues.
"When it comes to the work of Kim Beck, expect to be fully enveloped by the environments she creates, through the power of her imagery and the very real spaces she forms. Worlds are drawn, sculpted, printed, installed, and even scattered outdoors. This artist utilizes a variety of mediums to allow herself and viewers to encounter our seemingly mundane surroundings with a fresh perspective."
Volume 6, 2016, I-70 Sign Show / by Anne Thompson, Pages 273-279 | Published: 09 Nov 2016
EXCERPT from Curator's Statement:
"Drivers crossing America on Interstate 70 find that the scenery shifts in Missouri. Billboards dominate the landscape. Most signs advertise travel amenities — food, motels and fuel. Many are blank. Others seem to conduct a heated, if inadvertent, culture-war debate: “red” versus “blue,” Christian values versus pleasure and vice. Warnings that hell is real, abortions stop beating hearts, and gambling destroys the family battle ads for porn venues and casinos. My goal in launching the “I-70 Sign Show” was to infiltrate this polarized terrain with artworks that function as playful commentary. I invite artists whose projects engage language, signage or pop culture in ways that could reflect themes prevalent along the 250 miles between St. Louis and Kansas City — religion, sex, gender, guns, labor, athletics, leisure and commerce. The project started in April 2014 with Kay Rosen and continued with Mel Bochner, Mickalene Thomas, Kim Beck, Ken Lum, Karl Haendel, Ryan McGinness, Marilyn Minter, Jeff Gibson, Eric Oglander and Ed Ruscha. The “Sign Show” does not explicitly label its billboards as artworks. By inserting something perplexing into a numbing message barrage, the project invites a vehicle based audience to reconsider a banal scene with curiosity."
In this new installation titled: Barrier, bright orange safety fencing is wrapped around the laundry line, suggesting security and construction activities in the usual place of laundry. Here however the fencing is no longer functional. Instead this subtly transformed readymade material seems to have floated up off the street, allowing us to consider it as either a fence dividing space or as a layered abstraction. Overlapping grids of orange and silver morph into a painting of sorts forming a disorienting moiré pattern. Over the course of the installation, the weather will rip and tear at the grid, gradually changing piece and further pointing to it’s failure as a fence.
Signs & Signifiers
Opens October 7, 2016
Mid America Print Council
SECOND NATURE, July 19 - September 11, 2016
Kim Beck, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Diane Cionni, Spring Boat Springs, Colorado
Todd Hebert, Grand Forks
Fleming Jeffries, Doho, Qatar
Madeline Irvine, Austin, Texas
Julie Mehretu, New York, New York
Yoonmi Nam, Lawrence, Kansas
Serena Perrone, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Lamar Peterson, Minneapolis, Minnesota
Jennifer Williams Terpstra, La Crosse, Wisconsin
An exhibition of Nancy Friese’s former students at the Rhode Island School of Design and Anderson Ranch Arts Center will open in conjunction with Nancy Friese’s solo show: Encircling Trees and Radiant Skies.
Lives of the Most Excellent Artists, Curators, Architects, Critics and more, like Vasari's book updated. The Art World Demystified, Hosted by Brainard Carey
Last week I spoke with Brainard Carey for about 20 minutes. He interviews all sorts of artists, curators, critics, designers, filmmakers, etc. I'd been enjoying listening to them, and then I got to have one.
This was live in 2015! Finally posting it!
With Mixed Greens at Pulse Art Fair, Miami 2015!