Luhring Augustine is pleased to announce Drawing the Infinite, the gallery’s first solo exhibition by the Berlin-based artist Rosa Barba, opening in our Tribeca location on April 7th. The presentation, which brings together two of her recent film installations and a selection of her sculptural works from the past decade, highlights Barba’s continuous engagement with the representational function of images and language as they are channeled through cinematic apparatuses.
For Barba, cinema is a sovereign and speculative instrument that critically questions the singular properties of space and time, opening up the boundaries of traditional perception. Barba challenges linear modes of presenting and organizing knowledge by reshaping and representing imagery from scientific disciplines, such as astronomy and geology, as well as cultural archives, through shifts in gesture, genre, as well as the decontextualization of information and documents. The films, installations, and sculptures in this exhibition situate her work between experimental documentary and fictional narrative, and an oscillating logic is put forth, one that reflects how information is processed and transformed.
The first installation, Bending to Earth, 2015 is a deep investigation into inscriptions and transformations of society as manifested in the landscape. Several radioactive fields are circled by a hand-held camera in a helicopter, while a recorded voice-over that appears through several—often distorted—world radio stations describes the materials of these constructions, initiating a mediation of ordering systems and landscape archives. Also on view will be From Source to Poem, 2016, which draws on Barba's longtime investigation of the overlaps between architecture and landscape. The film features images from the largest media archive worldwide, the Library of Congress Packard Campus for Audio-Visual Conservation, located in Culpeper, VA, and an enormous solar power plant in California. It juxtaposes images from this media archive with a study of rhythm, and images of cultural production with those of industrial production. The films invite the viewer to ponder spaces in which history and cultural imagery are preserved in order to be passed on to future generations.
Barba has had recent solo exhibitions at Neue Nationalgalerie, Berlin; MIT List Visual Art Center, Cambridge, MA; and Pirelli HangarBiCocca, Milan. Her work is in the permanent collections of Museum of Modern Art, New York; Tate Modern, London; Philadelphia Museum of Art; Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia, Madrid; Jumex Collection, Mexico City; Louis Vuitton Collection, Paris; among many others. She is a recent winner of The Calder Prize, Calder Foundation, New York, and has had several international residencies. Two new books on Barba's work have recently been published: Rosa Barba: On the Anarchic Organization of Cinematic Spaces, 2021 by Hatje Cantz, and a limited edition boxed set of her Printed Cinema publications, just released with Dancing Foxes Press, Brooklyn.