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Less Than One — Walker Galleries

Less Than One

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Less Than One
  • April 7 – December 31, 2016
  • Galleries 1, 2, 3, and the Perlman Gallery
  • Curated by Fionn Meade with Victoria Sung
Less Than One is an international, multigenerational group show offering in-depth presentations of work from the 1960s to the present by 16 artists central to the Walker’s collection. Included alongside such signature artworks as Sigmar Polke’s Mrs. Autumn and Her Two Daughters (1991) are major acquisitions on view here for the first time, including Ericka Beckman’s You The Better, Film Installation

View of the exhibition Less Than One, 2016; Jasper Johns, Flags, 1965

View of the exhibition Less Than One, 2016; (left to right): James Richards, Radio at Night, 2015; Jasper Johns, Flags, 1965

View of the exhibition Less Than One, 2016; James Richards, Radio at Night, 2015

View of the exhibition Less Than One, 2016; Pope.L, Selections from the Skin Set series, 2001-2012

View of the exhibition Less Than One, 2016; (left to right): Adrian Piper, The Mythic Being, 1973; Jasper Johns, Flags I, 1973

View of the exhibition Less Than One, 2016; (left to right): Jasper Johns, Flag, 1969; James Richards, Rosebud, 2013; Jasper Johns, 0 through 9, 1970

View of the exhibition Less Than One, 2016; Jasper Johns, Color Numeral Series, 1969; (foreground): Kara Walker, Sphinx, 2015

View of the exhibition Less Than One, 2016; Jasper Johns, Color Numeral Series, 1969

View of the exhibition Less Than One, 2016; Jasper Johns, Color Numeral Series, 1969; (foreground): Kara Walker, Sphinx, 2015

View of the exhibition Less Than One, 2016; Charline von Heyl, Folk Tales, 2014

View of the exhibition Less Than One, 2016; (left to right): Charline von Heyl, Children’s Encyclopedia, 2014; Charline von Heyl, Bois-Tu De La Bier?, 2012

View of the exhibition Less Than One, 2016; Joan Jonas, Glass Puzzle, 1973

View of the exhibition Less Than One, 2016; Trisha Donnelly, Untitled, 2014

View of the exhibition Less Than One, 2016; (left to right): Trisha Donnelly, Bend Sinister, 2004; Trisha Donnelly, Untitled, 2014

View of the exhibition Less Than One, 2016; Paul Chan, Score for 7th Light, 2007

View of the exhibition Less Than One, 2016; Paul Chan, Sade for Sade’s sake, 2009

View of the exhibition Less Than One, 2016; Paul Chan, Sade for Sade’s sake, 2009

View of the exhibition Less Than One, 2016; Galleries Two and Three

View of the exhibition Less Than One, 2016; Pope.L, Hither and Yon, 2015

View of the exhibition Less Than One, 2016; Renee Green, Bequest, 1991

View of the exhibition Less Than One, 2016; Renée Green, Bequest, 1991

View of the exhibition Less Than One, 2016; Meredith Monk, 16 Millimeter Earrings, 1966/1998

View of the exhibition Less Than One, 2016; (left to right): Trisha Donnelly, Untitled, 2014; Trisha Donnelly, Untitled, 2008; Trisha Donnelly, Untitled, 2004-2007

View of the exhibition Less Than One, 2016; Trisha Donnelly, Untitled, 2014

View of the exhibition Less Than One, 2016; Kara Walker, Endless Conundrum, An African Anonymous Adventuress, 2001

View of the exhibition Less Than One, 2016; (left to right) Kara Walker, Endless Conundrum, An African Anonymous Adventuress, 2001; Trisha Donnelly, Untitled, 2014

View of the exhibition Less Than One, 2016; (background): Lutz Bacher, The Lee Harvey Oswald Interview, 1976; (right) Sigmar Polke, Apparat, mit dem eine Kartoffel eine andere umkreisen kann, 1969

View of the exhibition Less Than One, 2016; Sigmar Polke, Frau Herbst und ihre zwei Tochter, 1991

View of the exhibition Less Than One, 2016; (left to right): Dieter Roth, FC, 1958-1965; Dieter Roth, AC, 1958-1964; (foreground): Sigmar Polke, Day by Day … They Take Some Brain Away, 1975

View of the exhibition Less Than One, 2016; Dieter Roth, Tonbild, 1975-1988

View of the exhibition Less Than One, 2016; Ericka Beckman, You The Better, Film Installation, 1983/2015

View of the exhibition Less Than One, 2016; Ericka Beckman, You The Better, Film Installation, 1983/2015

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Less Than One is an international, multigenerational group show offering in-depth presentations of work from the 1960s to the present by 16 artists central to the Walker’s collection. Included alongside such signature artworks as Sigmar Polke’s Mrs. Autumn and Her Two Daughters (1991) are major acquisitions on view here for the first time, including Ericka Beckman’s You The Better, Film Installation (1983/2015), Adrian Piper’s The Mythic Being: Sol’s Drawing #1–5 (1974), and Renée Green’s Bequest (1991), among other featured pieces.

The exhibition surveys a range of approaches—from painting and sculpture to drawing, installation, moving image, performance, and photography—sequencing compelling groupings of works by each artist that underscore the often provocative, historically charged, and risk-taking nature of the Walker’s multidisciplinary holdings. Less Than One includes pieces by Lutz Bacher, Ericka Beckman, Trisha Brown, Paul Chan, Trisha Donnelly, Renée Green, Charline von Heyl, Jasper Johns, Joan Jonas, Meredith Monk, Adrian Piper, Sigmar Polke, Pope.L, James Richards, Dieter Roth, and Kara Walker.

The show’s title is drawn from an essay by Russian émigré Joseph Brodsky, whose 1986 collection Less Than One would help him win the Nobel Prize for Literature the following year. His text, which offers a poetic meditation on the nature of human existence and artistic expression, suggests that a person—defined in political and aesthetic terms—is always “less than one.” We can never be a discrete whole at any moment in time, he argues, as we are inextricably tied to past and future selves. This drives the writer and artist to attempt to meet reality through words, images, and an uneasy embrace of artistic personae.

Curator: Fionn Meade with Victoria Sung

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