Art=Text=Art Private Languages/Public Systems offers a historical explanation for the re-emergence of text in American drawing during the post-war period, particularly among homosexual artists, and the assimilation of these tactics by subsequent generations in a variety of social and historical contexts. Arguing for the mobilization of text as a mode of subtle resistance in the 1950s, the exhibit explores the use of words to catalyze viewers’ self-awareness as makers of meaning. In concrete and visual poetry we see a literary analog, as these poets explored the relationship of text and image through language. In response to the turbulent social conditions of the 1960s, what was born out of the particular social historical conditions of the Cold War was picked up by artists of the succeeding generation and diffused both to explore, and challenge systems that organize how we understand the world. Simultaneously, artists at the margins began to address the relationship between individuals and the collective, grounding the systematizations of Minimalism and Conceptual art in the immediacy of life as lived. In the decades that followed, artists maintained an investment in the complicated political relationship between the individual and the community, speaking to questions of veiled ideological interestedness or institutional inequity.
Art=Text=Art: Private Language Public Systems
UB Anderson Gallery
One Martha Jackson Place
Buffalo, NY 14214
September 20th, 2014 through January 11th, 2014