Labor Day Lectures 2012

Labor Day Lectures 2012
The Center for Experimental Lectures presents Math Bass and Travis Boyer
With a performance by Ashley May

Sunday, September 2, 2012

The Shandaken Project

300 Route 42, Shandaken, NY

We hope you can join us for a Labor Day program by the Center for Experimental Lectures.

First Ashley May (in residence 2012) will demonstrate the production of charcoal using early American techniques from within her site-specific sculpture The Razing of Fuhr's Plateau. May's sculpture recreates the original boundaries of an inn that was located on the Shandaken Project grounds until the 1960s, when it burned to the ground under mysterious circumstances. She will relate parts of the house's actual narrative, which includes German expatriates, local conspiracies, and a sudden death. Charcoal is an important element in iron-smelting and wood acid distillation, two significant but bygone Catskills industries that felled hardwood forests and denuded mountainsides. This portion of the evening is presented by The Shandaken Project.

Then the Center for Experimental Lectures presents New York–based artist Travis Boyer, giving a slide lecture that connects Russian painting and Tex-Mex cocktail culture entitled Any Three Ingredients Makes a Margarita, Or, Margaritas, Avant-garde for the Proletariat. Boyer will discuss the work of Russian avant-garde painter Alexander Deineka’s figurative paintings, which portray an image of sensuality and body liberation that eroticizes the work and leisure activities of a new proletariat class. Parallel to the creation of Socialist Realist paintings in Russia is the emergence of certain post-war leisure aesthetics and culture production in the US and Mexico. Specifically, Boyer is interested in the invention of the margarita. Along with Bermuda shorts, Acapulco chairs, and jacquard-loomed beach towels; the margarita is a mystical and sexually available art object expressing a tropical bohemian ethos that has retained popular appeal. Through a process of historical compression and productive misreading, Boyer proposes a unique lens on the evolution of the margarita as an example of polymorphous socio-kinetic sculpture with populist appeal.

Lastly, Math Bass will give a lecture titled Who Say You Have To Be a Dead Dog. It is currently in development during her residency at The Shandaken Project, and will likely take a wandering narrative form that lands on loss; direction; alchemy; in-between spaces; psychic, sonic, liminal territories; dead dogs; recognition; magical thinking; and/or seeing the future.

Grills will be at the ready after the program—bring something to BBQ, and if you're really special, something to share with everyone else. We will have beers and bottled water available at paupers' prices.