AD Projects is pleased to present Lauren Silberman’s The Recent History as the second installment in the rotating series, Reliquary, at 200 Avenue A. Reliquary transforms the vacant Avenue A storefront into a display venue for contemporary artifacts.
In The Recent History, Silberman explores the communities, places and circumstances around which urban social connection and disconnection take place, focusing on raucous parties and their aftermath and crowded downtown bars and isolation. She seeks out the after and the in-between, finding beauty in disorder and in everyday objects. Silberman uses photography and installation to confront and understand situations in her own life, to connect with other people, and to invite viewers to consider the tension between isolation and connection in their own experience.
Three photographs of abandoned party spaces line the walls of 200 Avenue A, inviting viewers gaze into the disorder of a party that is over. Silberman revels in the lushness of what is left behind in these makeshift spaces, and the little mysteries that they reveal. The photograph Untitled (After the Party: Rubulad), for example, elicits a sense of subtle tension between happiness and sadness: an elaborately decorated DJ booth, crushed empty cups strewn about the floor, and large, silent, black speakers appear as traces of a celebration, with no actual revelers to be seen. Dance, Dance, Isolation invites viewers to experience a more palpable tension. The silent image of an obsolete boombox for cassette tapes paired with a real boombox playing music from an iPod separates the viewer from the immediate world and places him or her in a new one, in between the past and present, and speaks to memory, personal history, and déjà vu. In the mirror installation, Déjà vu, Silberman further explores her interest in memory and the self, placing two mirrors next to one another in the storefront windows of 200 Avenue A, one etched with the word, “déjà,” the other with, “vu.” The mirrors invite viewers to experience the disorienting multiplicity of a doubly reflected image, within the backdrop of the East Village streets. Déjà vu holds particular significance for the artist, as it is the first neighborhood she moved to in New York. The mirrors’ reflection of the changing streets elicits feelings of familiarity, but with notable differences–the reflection reminds her of places that not longer exist or venues that are now closed.
Lauren Silberman lives and works in New York City. She received her MFA from the International Center of Photography-Bard Program in Advanced Photographic Studies and her BA in Art History from Barnard College. She is currently a faculty member at the International Center of Photography. Lauren was an artist-in-residence in the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council’s Workspace program during the 2008-2009 year and was a Visiting Scholar at NYU’s Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development. She has performed at Location One, Deitch Projects and 3rd Ward, as well as the several underground events and venues that have provided inspiration for her work. In 2007 she was featured in PDN’s photo annual as emerging talent.
The Recent History will be on view at 200 Avenue A on Sunday, May 22 from 12-6pm and Monday, May 23 to Thursday, May 26 from 7-9:30pm. Please join us at a reception for the artist on Wednesday, May 25 at 8pm.