Tag Archives: Aram Moshayedi


Daisy Hildyard in The Second Body: “Your body is infecting the world—you leak.” Shahryar Nashat once—not long ago—followed up with the question: “Where are the fluids?” The query remains unresolved; the leak has surged to a deluge. And we are drowning in it. The fluids, it seems, have been collected from carcasses drained of life, strung up on the disassembly line, packaged, contained, sealed, and ready for consumption. These are our surrogate selves suffocated in fat on a landscape of desolation and decay. This is an organic death: ethically sourced, carbon-neutral. Ed Smith: “I’m in no moo’d / said the cow.” (For Bruce Hainley.) There is a moment just before a body becomes flesh, before it becomes meat and bone, and then becomes simply matter. This is the threshold between life and death, when the body has been stripped of its faculties. An inert substance lacks the burden of memories. In a recent poem, Joyce Carol Oates writes: “The stroke / that wipes out / memory / is another word / for mercy.” We want to be nothing inside, we want to be merciful. Abstraction is just another word for dismemberment.

THEY COME TO TOUCH is the title of an exhibition by Shahryar Nashat. Taking place in a suite of vacated offices, the assembly of sculpture and video situates itself within the accretions of the building’s past life. Papier-mâché carcasses congregate and hang from the ceiling in concert with bags of urine and colorful rough-hewn cubes. The piss and “memory boxes” are accessories to the various accumulations, occupying the margins and corners throughout the multi-floor unit in which the exhibition takes place. A disembodied soundtrack floats in and out of earshot, animating the sculptures and finding interludes of synchronicity with a seventeen-second video that shows a figure falling to its knees, keeling over, and dying a digital death. The figure is trapped by this scenario—an endless sequence of three falling episodes, infinitely repeating in a simulated environment that takes its cues from the disused office where THEY COME TO TOUCH is situated. On occasion, the sound and image find their way to one another, and the figure falls in unison with a pulsating composition, which includes the exuberant rhythmic percussion of Maurice Ravel’s Bólero and a sorrowful lament by the cosmic superstar Dee D. Jackson. The ambient presence of sound permeates the exhibition and gives life to the sculptures just as easily as it maintains that they are wholly dead inside. — Aram Moshayedi

See link below for details.


Through May 2.

8762 Holloway Drive

West Hollywood.

Shahryar Nashat, They Come to Touch, 8762 Holloway Drive, April 8, 2021–May 2, 2021. Artwork images © Shahryar Nashat, courtesy of the artist.


In conjunction with Hauser & Wirth’s presentation of the work of Avery Singer at Frieze Los Angeles, the artist will join Hammer Museum curator Aram Moshayedi for a conversation “[exploring] Singer’s distinctive use of digital tools, including 3D modeling software, her deft engagement with established traditions of archival documentation, and her groundbreaking techniques that she uses to question the ways in which images and their distribution are increasingly informed by new media and technologies.”*


Saturday, February 15, at 4 pm.

Hauser & Wirth

901 East 3rd Street, downtown Los Angeles.

Avery Singer. Artwork images and artist photograph courtesy and © the artist and Hauser & Wirth.


For the opening weekend of PAUL McCARTHY—HEAD SPACE, DRAWINGS 1963–2019, the artist joins Hammer co-curators Aram Moshayedi and Connie Butler for a conversation about his practice.


Sunday, February 2, at 2 pm.

Hammer Museum

10899 Wilshire Boulevard, Los Angeles.

Paul McCarthy, Head Space, Drawings 1963–2019, Hammer Museum, February 2–May 10, 2020, from top: Wooden Structure Up Against the Wall, Pour a Bucket of Paint, 1972, graphite on paper; Cooking Show, 2001, charcoal, graphite, and oil stick on paper; Indian Mummy (detail), 1965, ink on newsprint, five parts; Void (Cube), 1978, marker and tape on newsprint; Dead H Crooked Leg Maze, 1979, ink and graphite on paper; Dopwhite, WS, 2009, oil stick, charcoal, and collage on paper; Self-Portrait, 1963, ink on paper. Images courtesy and © the artist, private collectors, and Hauser & Wirth.


Playwright Bernard-Marie Koltès (1948–1989)—a key figure in French postwar drama—believed that dramatic action is always transactional because, writes stage director and Koltès scholar Fabrice Conte, “characters can only interact within the context of a form of negotiation.”

The relationship between the Client and Dealer in Koltès’ play Dans la solitude des champs de coton was the impetus for Adam Linder‘s contemporary opera THE WANT—at Redcat this week in its premiere Los Angeles engagement.

THE WANT will be performed by Jess Gadani, Justin F. Kennedy, Jasmine Orpilla, and Roger Sala Reyner.

Ethan Braun wrote the music and the lighting design is by Shahryar Nashat. The Los Angeles production is co-presented by CAP UCLA.

Working on projects in which our roles interweave, we don’t start with Shahryar as the maker of sculptures or of moving images. Because he’s worked in those mediums, his way of thinking has a particular texture. And because I’ve worked in performing arts and with liveness and theater, my way of thinking has a specific texture.

What interests us is how these textures either complement or productively resist each other. It’s not about the formal outcome of these mediums being combined. And that’s where I would ontologically separate our way of working together from the notion of the “interdisciplinary.” We don’t care about disciplines meeting, but about our sensibilities crisscrossing.Adam Linder

The reason why Adam and I say we never collaborate and are not interested in doing so is that we don’t really make work together. When he comes to me asking if I would do the stage design for a piece he’s making, I’m happy to work within his concept and apply my skills to his vision. For an artist, it can be playful to have these limitations—in an applied arts versus visual arts kind of way. Adam becomes a bit like my client. — Shahryar Nashat


Thursday through Saturday, September 19, 20, and 21, at 8:30 pm.

Sunday, September 22, at 7 pm.


631 West 2nd Street, downtown Los Angeles.

Linder and Nashat quotes are from their 2018 Bomb interview by Aram Moshayedi.

Adam Linder, The Want, 2019. Images courtesy and © the artists, performers, and videographer.


Join Blaise AntinEleanor AntinJulien BismuthSteve KadoAram MoshayediMarjorie PerloffJerome Rothenberg, and Hamza Walker this week as they commemorate David Antin and his legacy two days before Antin’s Sky Poems are restaged above Los Angeles and La Jolla.


Thursday, September 27, at 7:30 pm.

Hammer Museum, 10899 Wilshire Boulevard, Westwood, Los Angeles.



Saturday, September 29, at 4 pm.

LACMA, 5905 Wilshire Boulevard, Los Angeles.



Saturday, September 29, at 10:30 am.

Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego, 700 Prospect Street, La Jolla.

(MCASD—La Jolla is closed for renovation, and the viewing takes place on the corner of Coast Boulevard and Cuvier Street.)

David Antin, Sky Poem, 1988, La Jolla. Image credit: Hammer Museum.