Tag Archives: Nick Mauss

NICK MAUSS — TRANSMISSIONS CATALOG

I came upon the word transmissions while thinking about how the ethereal, corporeal, and technical dimensions of ballet resonate in the artworks and souvenirs it produces. Transmissions are subject to interference and interruption. Ballets are conveyed to us through mediations, anecdotes, and bodies. And often when I’m watching ballet in its contemporary manifestations, I wonder how these transmissions have occurred.

I started looking into the history of ballet in the twentieth century… Through a web of genealogies, I eventually arrived at the flamboyant intersection of ballet and art in New York, beginning in the 1930s. There the avant-garde experiments of the previous decades in Europe incited a particularly intense cross-contamination, an overt articulation of homosexual erotics long before the emergence of a public language around queerness. Looking at modern American art of this period through the prism of ballet reveals a tangle of interrelationships, collaborations, derivations, and hybrid aesthetic programs that still feel surprisingly contemporary. Nick Mauss*

Two years after the close of TRANSMISSIONSNick Mauss’ multimedia installation at the Whitney Museum of American Art—the museum and Dancing Foxes Press have published an exhibition catalog that beautifully extends the show, combining performance and exhibition images from the Whitney with an extensive selection of new illustrative and textual documentation.

Essays by Mauss, Joshua Lubin-Levy, and exhibition organizers Scott Rothkopf, Elisabeth Sussman, and Allie Tepper—as well as a conversation between Mauss and the dancers who performed during the run of the show—round out this essential volume, a complement to and in dialog with recent catalogs by Jarrett Earnest (The Young and Evil—Queer Modernism in New York 1930–1955) and Samantha Friedman and Jodi Hauptman (Lincoln Kirstein’s Modern).

I drew multiple webs of interrelationships, elective affinities, and echo waves of influence, focusing as much on the social, professional, sexual, and collaborative points of contact as on transhistorical resonances that were in some cases perhaps fantasy—eschewing standard mappings of modern art… [embracing] anachrony and distortion over apparent objectivity…

My decision to insist on ballet as the fulcrum in TRANSMISSIONS was also a response to the ubiquity of postmodern dance derivations within the contemporary museum environment and the reductive version of modernity that these prequalified dance idioms signify and cement. Contemporaneity is reduced to a “look” of modernity. Modernist ballets make for engaging historical documents precisely because their own relationship to history is a kind of suspension of disbelief; they are intrinsically modernist, even if they don’t “signal” modernity to contemporary eyes.— Nick Mauss*

The world of the spectator, the receiver, was a primary lens through which I constructed TRANSMISSIONS, and the flux of the exhibition’s daily audience over the course of two months took on a central role within it. This book is similarly directed at the wholly different—private, rather than social—negotiations of the reader. — Nick Mauss*

NICK MAUSS, TRANSMISSIONS (Brooklyn: Dancing Foxes Press; New York: Whitney Museum of American Art, 2020).

See Benedict Nguyen on performing in Transmissions.

Listen to Fran Lebowitz and Nick Mauss in conversation on the occasion of Transmissions at the Whitney, 2018.

*Nick Mauss text—from the catalog essay “Gesturing Personae” and TRANSMISSIONS jacket copy—courtesy and © the artist.

Nick Mauss, Transmissions, Whitney Museum of American Art, March 16, 2018–May 14, 2018; exhibition catalog, Whitney and Dancing Foxes Press, 2020, from top: installation view, Whitney, 2018, photograph by Ron Amstutz; Carl Van Vechten, Janet Collins in New Orleans Carnival, 1949, Jerome Robbins Dance Division, New York Public Library for the Performing Arts; George Platt Lynes, Tex Smutney, 1941, Kinsey Institute, Indiana University , Estate of George Platt Lynes; Transmissions performance photograph of Quenton Stuckey, March 13, 2018, by Paula Court, with Gaston Lachaise, Man Walking (Portrait of Lincoln Kirstein), 1933, at left; Dorothea Tanning, cover of Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo’s 1945–1946 program, Artists Rights Society, New York / ADAGP, Paris; installation view, Whitney, 2018, images on scrim, Lynes, Ralph McWilliams (dancer), 1952, Lynes, Tex Smutney, Carl Van Vechten slideshow on rear wall, dancers Brandon Collwes, Quenton Stuckey, and Kristina Bermudez, photograph by Amstutz; dancers Arthur Mitchell and Diana Adams, and (seated) George Balanchine and Igor Stravinsky during rehearsals for Agon, 1957, choreographed by Balanchine for New York City Ballet, photograph by Martha Swope, Jerome Robbins Dance Division; Bermudez (left), Burr Johnson, Nick Mauss, and Fran Lebowitz, May 9, 2018, at the Whitney, photograph by Court; Pavel Tchelitchew, Portrait of Lincoln Kirstein, 1937, oil on canvas, collection of the School of American Ballet, courtesy Jerry L. Thompson; Louise Lawler, Marie + 90, 2010–2012, silver dye bleach print on aluminum, Whitney, courtesy and © the artist and Metro Pictures; (Mauss printed Lawler’s image of Marie, Edgar DegasLittle Dancer Aged Fourteen, circa 1880, on the Transmissions dancers’ white leotards); Lynes photograph of Jean Cocteau, Bachelor magazine, April 1937; Transmissions performance photograph by Paula Court; Paul Cadmus, Reflection, 1944, egg tempera on composition board, Yale University Art Gallery, bequest of Donald Windham in memory of Sandy M. Campbell, courtesy and © 2019 Estate of Paul Cadmus, ARS, New York; Cecil Beaton, photograph of poet Charles Henri Ford in a costume designed by Salvador Dali, silver gelatin print, collection of Beth Rudin DeWoody; artworks by Pavel Tchelitchew, John Storrs, Elie Nadelman, Gustav Natorp, and Sturtevant, and photographs by Ilse Bing, arranged in front of Mauss’, Images in Mind, 2018, installation view, Whitney, 2018, photograph by Amstutz; Mauss’ re-creation of costume designed by Paul Cadmus for the 1937 ballet Filling Station (choreographed by Lew Christensen), fabricated by Andrea Solstad, 2018, and Nadelman, Dancing Figure, circa 1916–1918, installation view, Whitney, 2018, photograph by Amstutz; Man Ray, New York, 1917 / 1966, nickel-plated and painted bronze, Whitney;, courtesy and © Man Ray 2015 Trust, ARS, New York / ADAGP, Paris; Mauss and Lebowitz in conversation at the Whitney, 2018, photography courtesy and © Izzy Dow; Murals by Jared French exhibition brochure, Julien Levy Gallery, 1939; Transmissions performance photograph of Anna Thérèse Witenberg, March 13, 2018, by Court; Dorothea Tanning, Aux environs de Paris (Paris and Vicinity), 1962, oil on linen, Whitney Museum of American Art, gift of the Alexander Iolas Gallery; Maya Deren, The Very Eye of Night (1958, still), 16mm film, Anthology Film Archives, New York.

NICK MAUSS — TREATISE ON THE VEIL

For his Museum Ludwig performance work TREATISE ON THE VEIL—part of the museum’s exhihibition TRANSCORPOREALITIESNick Mauss “draws out re­s­o­nances be­tween dis­parate works from the mu­se­um’s col­lec­tion, such as Jasper Johns’ 15′ En­tr’acte (1961) en­coun­ter­ing a paint­ing of lin­ger­ing per­form­ers by Erich Heck­el (1928). In Mauss’ con­fig­u­ra­tion, th­ese works dia­log with a pro­ject­ed pho­to archive by Carl Van Vecht­en and a new chore­og­ra­phy de­vel­oped with stu­dents from the Uni­ver­si­ty for Mu­sic and Dance Cologne.”*

NICK MAUSS—TREATISE ON THE VEIL*

Saturday and Sunday, November 23 and 24.

Tuesday and Wednesday, November 26 and 27.

Performances from 2 pm to 6 pm.

TRANSCORPOREALITIES

Through January 19.

Museum Ludwig

Hein­rich-Böll-Platz, Cologne.

From top: Nick Mauss, Treatise on the Veil, 2019, Museum Ludwig, Cologne, Transcorporealities, installation view, from top: photograph by Nathan Ishar; slide by Carl Van Vechten; Jasper Johns, 15′ Entr’acte, 1961; Treatise on the Veil installation view, photograph by Annika Schönfeldt, RheinischesBildarchiv, Cologne, edited by Mauss. Images courtesy and © the artists, the artist’s estates, the photographers, and Museum Ludwig.

TRAJAL HARRELL — TRANSCORPOREALITIES

The Museum Ludwig ex­hi­bi­tion TRANSCORPOREALITIES “re­flects on the mu­se­um as a perme­able body in which vari­ous bi­o­log­i­cal, so­cial, tech­no­log­i­cal, po­lit­i­cal, and eco­nom­ic sys­tems flow in­to each other. Like all hu­man and non­hu­man en­ti­ties, it en­gages in per­pe­t­u­al metabolic pro­cess­es with its en­vi­ron­ment.”

On opening night—as well as Saturday and Sunday, November 30 and December 1—Trajal Harrell will perform a new work Dancer of the Year.

TRANSCORPOREALITIES participating artists also include Jesse Dar­ling, Fla­ka Hal­i­ti, Paul Ma­heke, Nick Mauss, Park McArthur, Os­car Muril­lo, and Son­dra Per­ry.

TRANSCORPOREALITIES*

Opening night:

TRAJAL HARRELL—DANCER OF THE YEAR

Friday, September 20, at 8:30 pm.

Exhibition open through January 19.

Museum Ludwig

Hein­rich-Böll-Platz, Cologne.

From top: Trajal Harrell, Dancer of the Year, 2019, Kunstenfestivaldesarts, Centre Pompidou, Brussels, © Trajal Harrell, photograph by Orpheas Emirzas; Oscar Murillo, Human Resources, 2016 (detail), installation view, Carlos/Ishikawa, London, courtesy and © Oscar Murillo and Carlos/Ishikawa; Jesse Darling, Virgin Variations (working title, detail), 2019, courtesy and © Jesse Darling; Paul Maheke, Seeking after the fully grown dancer *deep within*, 2016–19, courtesy and © Paul Maheke and VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2019, photograph by Henry Chan; Sondra Perry, Ecologue for [in]HABITABILITY, 2017–2019, installation view, Future Generation Art Prize, Venice, courtesy and © Sondra Perry, the Victor Pinchuk Foundation, and Bridget Donahue, New York; Flaka Haliti, What are they thinking that we thinking that they thinking we going to do next? #1, 2019 (draft), courtesy and © Flaka Haliti; Park McArthur, Polyurethane Foam, 2016, courtesy and © Park McArthur and Essex Street, New York and Lars Friedrich, Berlin. Below: Trajal Harrell. Images courtesy and © the artists, photographers, and institutions.

THE YOUNG AND EVIL

Dinner with Paul Cadmus in the Village. He showed me a hundred drawings or more; the nakedest and least disinterested are the best, particularly those of Jared French. Until lately they have shared this apartment, an oddly un-American interior; good shabby antiques; a quantity of books and music, charming evidence of self-education. Late in the evening a youth named Lloyd Goff, who was Paul’s assistant, wandered in, at his ease, sleepy, perhaps tipsy. Soon he threw himself on the couch and fell asleep… Paul and I talked and talked, reminiscence and theory, in that particular mood of ours, or of his: smiling relaxation, solemn boyish idealism, who knows what else…

Goff then woke up and undertook to say goodnight, but the next thing I knew, there he lay again, sprawled face down on another couch, his clothes all drawn on the bias and tight upon his very fine little back and buttocks. At last I gave up whatever impulse it was that had kept me so late. Paul fondly accompanied me to the subway. Perhaps, he said, he would make a drawing or two before he went to bed; our talk had been so stimulating, and a sleeping model suits him…Glenway Westcott, 1937*

Falling between last year’s Nick Mauss: Transmissions at the Whitney and next month’s Lincoln Kirstein’s Modern at MOMA, THE YOUNG AND EVIL—curated by Jarrett Earnest at David Zwirner—looks at the between-the-wars Neorealist-Romantic circles around the artists Jared French, his lover Paul Cadmus, his wife Margaret Hoening French (collectively known as PaJaMa), Cadmus’ sister Fidelma—who was married to Kirstein—Bernard Perlin, Pavel Tchelitchew, George Tooker, and Jensen Yow.

Taking its title from the 1933 collaborative novel by art critic Parker Tyler and poet Charles Henri Ford (Tchelitchew’s lover), the exhbition features never-before-exhibited photographs—many from the Kinsey Institute—rarely seen major paintings, sculptures, drawings, and ephemera of this American Bloomsbury, which included Katherine Anne Porter and the ménage à trois of writer Glenway Westcott, publisher Monroe Wheeler, and George Platt Lynes, who photographed (and often modeled for) them all.

THE YOUNG AND EVIL exhibition catalogue will be published later this year by David Zwirner Books, featuring new scholarship by Ann Reynolds and Kenneth E. Silver.

THE YOUNG AND EVIL

Through April 13.

David Zwirner

533 West 19th Street, New York City.

*Continual Lessons: The Journals of Glenway Westcott, 1937–1955, edited by Robert Phelps with Jerry Rosco (New York: Farrar, Straus, Giroux, 1990), 8–9.

Also see: By With To & From: A Lincoln Kirstein Reader, edited by Nicholas Jenkins (New York: Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 1991).

From top: Paul Cadmus, Stone Blossom: A Conversation Piece, 1939–1940, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Juliana Cheyney Edwards Collection and Seth K. Sweetser Fund, © 2019 Estate of Paul Cadmus / Artists Rights Society (ARS), NY; Paul Cadmus, Monroe Wheeler, 1938, © 2019 Estate of Paul Cadmus / Artists Rights Society (ARS), NY; Jared French, Murder, 1942, courtesy the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia, John D. Phillips Fund; Fidelma Cadmus Kirstein, Two Women, circa 1930–1939; Pavel Tchelitchew, Portrait, 1935; Pavel Tchelitchew, The Lion Boy, 1936–1937, private collection, New Jersey; Pavel Tchelitchew, George Platt Lynes, circa 1937–1942; Paul Cadmus, Shore Leave, 1933, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, gift of Malcolm S. Forbes, © 2019 Estate of Paul Cadmus / Artists Rights Society (ARS), NY.

MALIK GAINES’ ERLKÖNIG

Marking the opening night of JOURNEYS WITH THE INITIATED, Nick Mauss, Pati Hertling, Ulrike Müller, and Ethan Philbrick will join Malik Gaines for a performance of Gaines’ ERLKÖNIG .

JOURNEYS WITH THE INITIATED—curated by Yesomi Umolu and Katja Rivera, with the participation of Evan Ifekoya, Grada Kilomba, Tiona Nekkia McClodden, and Virginia de Medeiros—is the New York section of the ongoing project Hubert Fichte—Love and Ethnology, and investigates Fichte’s book The Black City—Glosses through a series of texts, videos, photographs, sculpture, sound, and performance at Participant Inc and e-flux.

ERLKÖNIG

Sunday, December 2, at 6:30 pm.

e-flux, 311 East Broadway (at Grand Street), New York City.

 

TIONA NEKKIA MCCLODDEN and VIRGINIA DE MEDEIROS—

JOURNEYS WITH THE INITIATED

December 2, 2018 through January 13, 2019.

Participant Inc, 253 East Houston Street, #1, New York City.

e-flux, 311 East Broadway (at Grand Street), New York City.

See “Questions of Representation: Malik Gaines in conversation with Barlo Perry,” PARIS LA 16 (2018), 178–181.

Top: Tiona Nekkia McCloddenan offering six years a conjecture, 2018. Digital C-prints, two-channel video with sound, audio. Courtesy the artist.

Above image credit: Sternberg Press.

Below: Hubert Fichte with Dan-Maske, 1979. Photograph by Leonore Mau, Fichte’s partner.