united states
Artist's Projects

July 15, 2012, to February 24, 2013

united states is a semester of solo exhibitions and artist's projects that approach both the nature of the United States as a country and "united states" as the notion of uniting separate forms, entities, or conditions of being. Timed to coincide with the 2012 American election season, united states is presented at a time when political and social divisions in this country are readily apparent, and polarization on many major issues is at an historical high. The United States is the oldest surviving federation and one of the most ethnically diverse and multicultural nations on earth; the idea of reconciling multiple points of view and belief systems is intrinsic to the notion of what it means to be American. The word "state" also connotes a condition of mind or temperament, and the present state in which we find ourselves is clearly one of uncertainty and unease, as reflected in much of the work included in this series of exhibitions.

Subjects that are touched upon, among others, include history (and forgetfulness), unifying texts and phrases, war, political division, race, identity, the economy, immigration, competition vs. cooperation, mythology, the social contract, and consumerism. No selection of works of art can adequately summarize the complexity of the meanings inherent in the concept of "united states," however the goal has not been to provide closure, but rather to echo the belief that disparate entities united to form a whole are hopefully greater (and more profound) than the simple sum of parts.

united states includes solo exhibitions by Pedro Barbeito, Jonathan Brand, Brody Condon, Brad Kahlhamer, Brian Knep, Erik Parker, and Hank Willis Thomas, as well as singular projects by Jane Benson, Alison Crocetta, Celeste Fichter, Erika Harrsch, Nina Katchadourian, Matthew Northridge, Risa Puno, John Stoney, Sui Jianguo, Frances Trombly, Rosemary Williams, and Jenny Yurshansky.

united states has been organized by Alyson Baker, executive director, Richard Klein, exhibitions director, and Mónica Ramírez-Montagut, curator, with the assistance of Tracy Moore, education director, and Kelly Taxter, curatorial consultant.

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united states

Jane Benson, The Splits: Red/Blue, 2012
Courtesy of the artist

1/2 + 1/2 = 3, written by Alex Waterman, is a duet for one instrument that has been bisected, with each half then played simultaneously by two musicians in different locations utilizing video simulcasting technology. Benson's bisected cello was played by Loren Dempster in absentia in Virginia, a "Red State," and by Waterman live at The Aldrich in Connecticut, a "Blue State."



united states

Alison Crocetta, Bear in Mind (The Bill of Rights), 2006
Production photo: Bradley Olson, ©Alison Crocetta
Courtesy of the artist



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Celeste Fichter, Pledged (video still), 2012
Courtesy of the artist



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Erika Harrsch, United States of North America—Passport, 2009–10
Courtesy of the artist and Artgate Gallery, New York



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Nina Katchadourian, Monument to the Unelected (detail), 2008
Installation photo: Scottsdale, AZ, 2009
Courtesy of the artist and Catharine Clark Gallery, San Francisco



united states

Matthew Northridge, Mississippi (detail; installation view of related work at KANSAS gallery), 2011-12
Courtesy of the artist and KANSAS, New York



united states

Risa Puno, Good Faith and Fair Dealing, 2012
Courtesy of the artist



united states

John Stoney, You Can't Go Home Again, 2005
(Scale model of the American side of Niagara Falls with Moby-Dick)
Courtesy of the artist



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Sui Jianguo, MADEINCHINA, 2011
Courtesy of the collection of Greg Smith, Short Hills, NJ



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Frances Trombly, American Flag (detail), 2012
Courtesy of the artist



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Rosemary Williams, Supermarket (detail), 2008
Courtesy of the artist



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Jenny Yurshansky, Projection (I Have a Dream) (detail), 2008
Courtesy of the artist

Top of page: Sui Jianguo, MADEINCHINA, 2011
Courtesy of the collection of Greg Smith, Short Hills, NJ