HATE IN AMERICA by Syd Krochmalny
Opening Reception: Thursday, September 13th, 2018 - 6-9pm
On view: September 13th - October 21st, 2018
Curator Alexandra Goldman presents, “Hate in America,” an exhibition comprising selections from three series of works by artist Syd Krochmalny. Watercolor paintings and lipstick drawings, plastic and resin sculptures, and the first ever U.S. iteration of the critically acclaimed installation, Diarios del Odio (Buenos Aires, 2014-17) will be on view at Senaspace in New York from September 13 – October 21, 2018. The exhibition will be accompanied by an academic text authored by Jose Falconi, Professor of The History of Art and Architecture, Brandeis University.
The watercolor paintings and lipstick drawings on view in Hate in America originate from the project by Krochmalny in collaboration with critic Claudio Iglesias titled, No More Victoria Secret, 2017. Images found via Internet searches were painted and accompanied by quotes from Steve Bannon written in lipstick, to generate a series of diptychs.
In dialogue with these wall pieces are Krochmalny’s 3D printed plastic and resin busts that reference recognizable artists and shine brilliantly like fake commercial luxury products. Their teasing and melancholy faces produce an equally empathetic human quality that draws us closer. Emphasizing materiality, Krochmalny isolates 3D technology, versus the hand, as a way to conjure imagery through layers of memory and present illusions of being. On this project, Artist Roberto Jacoby notes that “the collapsed constructions of post-capitalism, the threats of global destruction, the fantasies about the efficacy of art and the unrecognizable landscapes, appear here, in fragments, in the art of the icons of the century: the Italian, Amedeo Modigliani, the Argentine, Lino Enea Spilimbergo, and in the Americans, like Paul McCarthy, Matthew Barney, and Briuce Nauman.” The figures of the past return and speak to us.
The most anticipated project on view in Hate in America is the first ever U.S. iteration of Krochmalny’s 2014-2017 project together with artist Roberto Jacoby, Diarios del Odio (Journals of Hate). The original Diarios del Odio project is based on reader’s comments in electronic versions of major newspapers in Argentina, where they are enabled to express their views without boundaries. Some of the phrases they wrote are then written on the walls of the exhibition space. In New York, Krochmalny will work specifically with the hate displayed in the comments sections of Fox News and Breitbart News.
The chosen fragments specifically track those discursive cores where the dehumanization of whole sectors of society occur. The construction of the other as an object of extreme hatred seeks to define certain people as a social surplus. “Shit,” “trash,” and “waste,” are some of the metaphors that turn the “other” into “excrement” that the social body must expel. These types of societal views also appear when medical terms such as “cancer,” “infection,” or “gangrene,” that must be removed, are used.
However, all haters need an object as long as their identity is defined in relation to the hated. Thus, in the instance of the original Diarios del Odio, we see that the commentators perceive themselves as “Argentinian” by referring the "bolita," the "piragua," the "perucho," -- derogatory categories that describe immigrants from nearby countries. They perceive themselves as belonging to the white race by denigrating colored people; they feel more masculine when they humiliate women; they entitle themselves as educated by stigmatizing the uninstructed. They make themselves feel middle class in relation to the degraded poor. No matter how poor you are, it is always possible to imagine someone poorer.
These observations do not say anything new. You may even think that the comments that we selected in the newspapers are just anonymous rants. Nevertheless, it should not be forgotten that many main massacres in history were preceded by dehumanizing discourses, public narratives which went unheeded at the time.
For this U.S. iteration of Diarios del Odio (Journals of Hate) at Senaspace, Krochmalny recreates this installation in the context of Trump’s America. Phrases such as “Obama Bin Laden,” “Leftist Scum, please keep whining about race and gender,” and “Black women are dehumanizing themselves,” confront viewers in the exhibition space and command reflection.
About Syd Krochmalny
Syd Krochmalny is an artist and writer interested in the experimental art tradition that focuses on the relationship between sexuality, philosophy and civic engagement. His contribution to the global culture lies in the deep and original combination of Contemporary Art, Literature and Academic Achievements. His complete body of work contains the articulation of experimental art procedures for the production of knowledge. He is a key artist and contributor at the Center for Artistic Research (CIA) in Buenos Aires. P.h.D in Social Sciences, MA in Communication and Culture and BA in Sociology at University of Buenos Aires. He was awarded a postdoctoral fellowship by the Argentinian Research Council CONICET at the Institute of the Theory and History of Art Julio Payró in the Faculty of Philosophy and Arts at the University of Buenos Aires, and also a professor and researcher at Gino Germani Institute, at the Faculty of Social Sciences. His recent exhibitions include Arte Bebo, Gallery 50, New Jersey; Assemblage #10, Julio Artist-run Space, Paris; Useless Landscapes, Gallery 50, New Jersey; Guiñadas Gráciles: Looking Out for the Queer in Latin American Video Art, organized by the David Rockefeller Center for Latin American Studies at Harvard (October 23, 2017 to April 10, 2018) and curated by Joaquin Terrones, Preceptor in Expository Writing at the Harvard College Writing Program and Lecturer in Literature and Women's and Gender Studies at MIT; VIA VIVA, Los Angeles, Curated by Alina Perkins, September 2017; Journals of Hate, installation, Universidad General Sarmiento, 2017, El Gran Vidrio, Córdoba, 2017, Parque de la Memoria, Buenos Aires (2016), Argentina and Centro de Experimentación Contemporánea, Rosario, Argentina, 2016; Blanchot in Buenos Aires (or The Writing to Come), Biblioteca Nacional de Buenos Aires, Argentina, 2015; The Naked Soul at Old Calton Cemetery, Edinburgh, Scotland, 2013; and The Origin of the World, ISA, Yokohama, Japan, 2014; Politics of Friendship and Confrontation, MoRUS, Museum of Reclaimed Urban Space, curated by Alexandra Goldman, NYC, United States, 2014; and The Origin of the World at the University of Stirling, United Kingdom, 2013; El Sur no va a Estar Arriba, va a Ser Todo Sur, Oslo University, Oslo, Norway, 2011; among others. Journals of Hate (Theatrical performance) by Roberto Jacoby and Silvio Lang performed in Universidad General Sarmiento, Centro Cultural Paco Urando, Universidad de Buenos Aires, Sala Caras y Caretas, Centro Cultural Haroldo Conti, during 2017. Krochmalny was a visiting scholar at Columbia University, NYC, United States in the Department of Latin American and Iberian Studies (2014). He is a professor in both the Master and Ph.D. programs in Argentina and Latin America. He edits CIA Magazine and Jennifer. His book Journals of Hate in collaboration with Roberto Jacoby was published by n direcciones, Weak by Pánico el Pánico, and edited and introduced in collaboration with Marina Mariasch, Dreams by Gino Germani in Idilio Magazine with photomontages by Grete Stern, Caja Negra, 2017.
About Alexandra Goldman
Curator Alexandra Goldman is the Founder and Editor of art blog, Artifactoid and Assistant Director of Olsen Gruin, an international contemporary art gallery located on NYC’s Lower East Side. She held previous positions as Assistant Director of Klein Sun Gallery in Chelsea and Director of Y Gallery on the Lower East Side, where she was involved with curation and programming of monthly exhibitions. Goldman writes for Whitehot Magazine, Arte Fuse, Vice-Versa, and Jennifer, and is currently working on several curatorial projects. She received her bachelor’s degree from NYU in Media, Culture, and Communications. Follow her on Instagram @artifactoid.