“WELCOME TO THE DREGS OF THE YEAR, when all we want—or need, given the chaos of 2018—is something socially nourishing. And no, I’m not talking about Art Basel Miami Beach.
On Saturday December 8, an afternoon of overlapping talks, workshops, film screenings, and performances was brought together under the banner of “Access and Agency” at the Queens Museum in conjunction with “Queens International 2018,” the eighth edition of the truly local group show that spotlights a set of artists working in the most royal borough. This year, a lively intergenerational dialogue on abstraction, chance operations, and found objects emerges among luminaries such as Milford Graves, Jack Whitten, Liz Phillips, and newcomers such as KT Pe Benito, Emilio Martinez Poppe, and Ani Liu, while a new partnership with the Queens Library, entailing installations in select branches and programming, gives the exhibition more breathing room. Hence its title: “Volumes,” a nod to publications and capabilities.
The programming on Saturday began with a “Censorpedia edit-a-thon,” presented by Christina Freeman as part of her UltraViolet Archive, 2018, an installation that gathers partially censored and banned works. In the museum’s theater, Freeman also screened two films from the archive by Oscar Micheaux. Simultaneously, there were conversations about cultural erasure, including Aruna D’Souza speaking with QI 2018 artist Janet Henry and Linda Goode Bryant. And did I mention that Eileen Myles, Tracie Morris, and Thurston Moore, among others, were giving readings of their works? [. . .]”
“Perhaps the most seductive (if not politically salient) works on offer involve two participatory projects. Christina Freeman’s UltraViolet Archive is one of them. The interactive installation features a library bookshelf of “Challenged, Banned, and Obliterated” books (some familiar and others unexpected); a round table with chairs; and a single computer for curious visitors looking to explore the digital archive. Emilio Martinez Poppe’s End Credits for the Places That Make Us, meanwhile, includes a monitor, keyboard, and mouse. Found on the second floor, with two additional sets elsewhere on the ground level, the screen asks visitors to reflect on and engage with notions of placemaking, community, and belonging with preloaded prompts.”
Join us at Terraza 7 in Jackson Heights for an evening reception celebrating the launch of the Queens International 2018: Volumes catalogue and closing out the opening day of Queens Library branch installations with a reception and music performances.