Rachel Libeskind & Carmen Winant: sensation—sensitivity—creativity—productivity—communication

June 2 - July 28, 2019

Opening Reception
June 2, 2019
6:00 - 8:00pm

Rachel Libeskind , Physogs Game reference image (detail),  2019

Rachel Libeskind, Physogs Game reference image (detail), 2019

Carmen Winant,  Target Practice (detail) , 2019

Carmen Winant, Target Practice (detail), 2019

signs and symbols is pleased to present sensation—sensitivity—creativity—productivity—communication, an exhibition of new works by Rachel Libeskind and Carmen Winant. A two-person show between artists who have long been in conversation, the works presented expand on their shared practice of collage as a vehicle of social disturbance. Libeskind and Winant, who practice feminism and motherhood, both explore the manner in which the body itself comes apart, is force to manipulation, and can come to re-define its center.

Libeskind’s new body of work consists of a series of collages shaped as rocks, adopting a sculptural nature in both material and form. Applying a new technique - using fabric hardener on ultra-light Japanese paper – Libeskind deals in appropriated images from a 1940s British board game that calls on its players to arrange the facial expressions of expressionless, ahistorical white faces. Across this work those reconstructed faces register as grotesque re-formations. Close by, Libeskind’s hyper-colorful, shrunken rocks pervert relative scale and comfortability, shrinking the monumental to the near-miniature. As with the collages, they trouble expectations of (social and material) flatness and weight.

For this series of three kindred collages, Winant has culled found images of women undergoing embodied treatment (dance therapy; movement therapy; talk therapy; contact therapy; scream therapy). In these works, Winant tests the very potential of process itself: is it possible to demonstrate healing pictorially? Can we trace reparative impact through language? Can the act of making itself repair a body? Unlike past works, which have existed purely as and through pictorial narratives, she has massaged text – another form of unfastening and reiteration — into the process. The handwriting that runs throughout the collages is, importantly, her own; touch is everywhere.

On Thursday, July 18 from 4 to 5pm, there will be an artist talk with Libeskind and Winant moderated by Kathy Battista.

rachel libeskind (b. 1989, Milan) is a Brooklyn-based artist, born in Milan and raised in Berlin, Germany. She holds a B.A. with honors from Harvard University. Libeskind has shown her work in exhibitions in Paris, London, Milan, Rome, Warsaw, Vilnius, Miami and New York among other cities internationally. She is a multi-disciplinary artist, often merging her installations and performances with her studio practice. Libeskind’s work is characterized by a unique combination of historicist appropriation and improvisational arranging. Her work deals with issues of identity, the transmutations of past histories and the collection and curation of images and objects.

carmen winant (b. 1983, San Francisco) is an artist and writer based in Columbus, OH; her work utilizes installation and collage strategies to examine feminist modes of survival and revolt. Winant's recent projects have been shown at the Museum of Modern Art, Sculpture Center, The Columbus Museum of Art, The Wexner Center of the Arts, and through CONTACT Photography festival, which is currently showing twenty-six of her billboards across Canada. Winant's artist books — My Life as a Man and My Birth — were published by Horses Think Press, SPBH Editions, and ITI press. Her forthcoming book, Notes on Fundamental Joy; seeking the elimination of oppression through the social and political transformation of the patriarchy that otherwise threatens to bury us, will be published by Printed Matter Inc. Winant is a 2019 Guggenheim Fellow in photography.