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Extended through September 11, 2021

Social Works

Curated by Antwaun Sargent

June 24–September 11, 2021
555 West 24th Street, New York

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Installation video

Installation view Artwork © Carrie Mae Weems. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view

Artwork © Carrie Mae Weems. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view Artwork © Carrie Mae Weems. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view

Artwork © Carrie Mae Weems. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view Artwork, left to right: © Alexandria Smith, © Kenturah Davis, © Titus Kaphar. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view

Artwork, left to right: © Alexandria Smith, © Kenturah Davis, © Titus Kaphar. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view Artwork, left to right: © Christie Neptune, © Zalika Azim, © Allana Clarke. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view

Artwork, left to right: © Christie Neptune, © Zalika Azim, © Allana Clarke. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view Artwork, left to right: © Zalika Azim, © Allana Clarke, © Linda Goode Bryant, © Rick Lowe Studio. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view

Artwork, left to right: © Zalika Azim, © Allana Clarke, © Linda Goode Bryant, © Rick Lowe Studio. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view Artwork © Rick Lowe Studio. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view

Artwork © Rick Lowe Studio. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view Artwork © Rick Lowe Studio. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view

Artwork © Rick Lowe Studio. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view Artwork, left to right: © Rick Lowe Studio, © Allana Clarke. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view

Artwork, left to right: © Rick Lowe Studio, © Allana Clarke. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view Artwork © Lauren Halsey. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view

Artwork © Lauren Halsey. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view Artwork © Lauren Halsey. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view

Artwork © Lauren Halsey. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view with David Adjaye, Asaase (2021) Artwork © David Adjaye. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view with David Adjaye, Asaase (2021)

Artwork © David Adjaye. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view Artwork, left to right: © David Adjaye; © Lauren Halsey; © Theaster Gates. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view

Artwork, left to right: © David Adjaye; © Lauren Halsey; © Theaster Gates. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view Artwork, left and right: © Lauren Halsey; center: © Theaster Gates. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view

Artwork, left and right: © Lauren Halsey; center: © Theaster Gates. Photo: Rob McKeever

Works Exhibited

David Adjaye, Asaase, 2021 Rammed earth, overall dimensions variable© David Adjaye. Photo: Dror Baldinger

David Adjaye, Asaase, 2021

Rammed earth, overall dimensions variable
© David Adjaye. Photo: Dror Baldinger

Zalika Azim, Heard on higher grounds (the hunted have two primary tools for survival: imagination and hyperbole), 2021 Chromogenic print mounted on archival pigment print, 33 ⅜ × 50 inches (84.8 × 127 cm), edition of 3© Zalika Azim. Photo: Rob McKeever

Zalika Azim, Heard on higher grounds (the hunted have two primary tools for survival: imagination and hyperbole), 2021

Chromogenic print mounted on archival pigment print, 33 ⅜ × 50 inches (84.8 × 127 cm), edition of 3
© Zalika Azim. Photo: Rob McKeever

Allana Clarke, There Was Nothing Left For Us, 2021 Hair bonding glue, latex rubber, and carbon dye, 57 × 65 × 16 inches (144.8 × 165.1 × 40.6 cm)© Allana Clarke. Photo: Rob McKeever

Allana Clarke, There Was Nothing Left For Us, 2021

Hair bonding glue, latex rubber, and carbon dye, 57 × 65 × 16 inches (144.8 × 165.1 × 40.6 cm)
© Allana Clarke. Photo: Rob McKeever

Kenturah Davis, the bodily effect of a color (sam), 2021 Oil paint applied with rubber stamp letters and color pencil on debossed Igarashi Kozo paper, in artist’s frame, 40 × 30 inches (101.6 × 76.2 cm)© Kenturah Davis. Photo: Fredrik Nilsen Studio

Kenturah Davis, the bodily effect of a color (sam), 2021

Oil paint applied with rubber stamp letters and color pencil on debossed Igarashi Kozo paper, in artist’s frame, 40 × 30 inches (101.6 × 76.2 cm)
© Kenturah Davis. Photo: Fredrik Nilsen Studio

Theaster Gates, A Song for Frankie, 2017–21 5,000 records, DJ booth, and record player, overall dimensions variable© Theaster Gates. Photo: Rob McKeever

Theaster Gates, A Song for Frankie, 2017–21

5,000 records, DJ booth, and record player, overall dimensions variable
© Theaster Gates. Photo: Rob McKeever

Linda Goode Bryant, Are we really that different?, 2021 Mixed media, overall dimensions variable© Linda Goode Bryant and Elizabeth Diller

Linda Goode Bryant, Are we really that different?, 2021

Mixed media, overall dimensions variable
© Linda Goode Bryant and Elizabeth Diller

Linda Goode Bryant, Are we really that different?, 2021 Mixed media, overall dimensions variable© Linda Goode Bryant and Elizabeth Diller

Linda Goode Bryant, Are we really that different?, 2021

Mixed media, overall dimensions variable
© Linda Goode Bryant and Elizabeth Diller

Lauren Halsey, black history wall of respect (II), 2021 Vinyl, acrylic, and mirror on wood, 19 ⅞ × 96 ⅛ × 48 inches (50.5 × 244.2 × 122.2 cm)© Lauren Halsey. Photo: Rob McKeever

Lauren Halsey, black history wall of respect (II), 2021

Vinyl, acrylic, and mirror on wood, 19 ⅞ × 96 ⅛ × 48 inches (50.5 × 244.2 × 122.2 cm)
© Lauren Halsey. Photo: Rob McKeever

Titus Kaphar, A bitter trade, 2020 Oil on canvas, 60 × 48 inches (152.4 × 121.9 cm)© Titus Kaphar. Photo: Rob McKeever

Titus Kaphar, A bitter trade, 2020

Oil on canvas, 60 × 48 inches (152.4 × 121.9 cm)
© Titus Kaphar. Photo: Rob McKeever

Rick Lowe, Black Wall Street Journey #5, 2021 Acrylic and paper collage on canvas, 108 × 192 inches (274.3 × 487.7 cm)© Rick Lowe Studio. Photo: Thomas Dubrock

Rick Lowe, Black Wall Street Journey #5, 2021

Acrylic and paper collage on canvas, 108 × 192 inches (274.3 × 487.7 cm)
© Rick Lowe Studio. Photo: Thomas Dubrock

Christie Neptune, Untitled, 2021 Archival inkjet print, 18 × 24 inches (45.7 × 61 cm), edition of 5 + 2 AP© Christie Neptune

Christie Neptune, Untitled, 2021

Archival inkjet print, 18 × 24 inches (45.7 × 61 cm), edition of 5 + 2 AP
© Christie Neptune

Alexandria Smith, Iterations of a galaxy beyond the pedestal, 2021 Mixed media on wood assemblage, 60 × 48 inches (152.4 × 121.9 cm)© Alexandria Smith. Photo: Prudence Cuming Associates

Alexandria Smith, Iterations of a galaxy beyond the pedestal, 2021

Mixed media on wood assemblage, 60 × 48 inches (152.4 × 121.9 cm)
© Alexandria Smith. Photo: Prudence Cuming Associates

Carrie Mae Weems, The British Museum, 2006– Digital chromogenic print, image: 50 × 50 inches (127 × 127 cm), sheet: 71 ½ × 59 ½ inches (181.6 × 151.1 cm), edition of 5 + 2 AP© Carrie Mae Weems

Carrie Mae Weems, The British Museum, 2006–

Digital chromogenic print, image: 50 × 50 inches (127 × 127 cm), sheet: 71 ½ × 59 ½ inches (181.6 × 151.1 cm), edition of 5 + 2 AP
© Carrie Mae Weems

About

Gagosian is pleased to present Social Works, a group exhibition curated by Antwaun Sargent with participating artists David Adjaye, Zalika Azim, Allana Clarke, Kenturah Davis, Theaster Gates, Linda Goode Bryant, Lauren Halsey, Titus Kaphar, Rick Lowe, Christie Neptune, Alexandria Smith, and Carrie Mae Weems.

Social Works considers the relationship between space—personal, public, institutional, and psychic—and Black social practice. With a wide range of material and theoretical approaches, the work on view is united by a conscious engagement with today’s cultural moment, in which numerous social factors have converged to produce a heightened urgency for Black artists to utilize space as a community-building tool and a means of empowerment.

Known for his masterful use of light, shadow, and space, as well as his integration of diverse forms, David Adjaye approaches architecture as a way to promote inclusive accessibility and to reflect upon the human legacies embedded in the built past. Asaase (2021), his first large-scale autonomous sculpture, is a maze of nested earthen walls that climb to a conical vertex, referencing historic works of West African architecture such as the Tiébélé royal complex in Burkina Faso and the walled city of Agadez in Niger.

Theaster Gates’s installation is dedicated to the legendary DJ Frankie Knuckles, the “Godfather of House Music” whose pioneering sounds shaped the Black- and queer-led 1980s house music scene. A collaboration with the Rebuild Foundation—Gates’s Chicago-based nonprofit organization focused on art, cultural development, and neighborhood transformation—the work features a special display of over five thousand records from Knuckles’s personal archive, many of which will be digitized as they play in the gallery.

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Artists

David Adjaye
Zalika Azim
Allana Clarke
Kenturah Davis
Theaster Gates
Linda Goode Bryant
Lauren Halsey
Titus Kaphar
Rick Lowe
Christie Neptune
Alexandria Smith
Carrie Mae Weems

Press

Polskin Arts
Meagan Jones
meagan.jones@finnpartners.com
+1 212 593 6485

Julia Esposito
julia.esposito@finnpartners.com
+1 212 715 1643

Gagosian
pressny@gagosian.com

Manuel Mathieu, Siblings 2, 2021, mixed media, 70 × 62 inches (117.8 × 157.5 cm)

Social Works II: Manuel Mathieu | The Delusion of Power

Artist Manuel Mathieu reflects on Haiti, Francisco Goya, and conceptualizations of power, examining their roles in his practice.

Theaster Gates, A Song for Frankie, 2017–21, 5,000 records, DJ booth, and record player

Social Works: The Archives of Frankie Knuckles Organized by Theaster Gates

Theaster Gates, steward of the Frankie Knuckles record collection, is engaging with the late DJ and musician’s archive of records, ephemera, and personal effects. For the Quarterly’s “Social Works” supplement, guest edited by Antwaun Sargent, Gates presents a selection of Knuckles’s personal record collection. Chantala Kommanivanh, a Chicago-based artist, educator, and musician—and the records manager for Rebuild Foundation, Chicago—provides annotations, contextualizing these records’ importance and unique qualities. Ron Trent, a dear friend of Knuckles’s, speaks to the legacy evinced by these materials.

Rick Lowe, Black Wall Street Journey Manifesto #1, 2021, acrylic and paper collage on paper, 141 × 115 inches (358.1 × 292.1 cm).

Social Works: Rick Lowe and Walter Hood

Rick Lowe and Walter Hood speak about Black space, the built environment, and history as a footing for moving forward as part of “Social Works,” a supplement guest edited by Antwaun Sargent for the Summer 2021 issue of the Quarterly.

Rick Lowe, Black Wall Street Journey #5, 2021, Acrylic and paper collage on canvas, 108 × 192 inches (274.3 × 487.7 cm)© Rick Lowe Studio. Photo: Thomas Dubrock

Notes on Social Works

Antwaun Sargent presents a collection of thoughts and images, gathered from conversations with artists, curators, architects, and educators, as well as essays, social media, and the news, that inform the exhibition Social Works. The essay serves as an introduction to the corresponding supplement guest edited by Sargent for the Summer 2021 issue of the Quarterly.

Early preparatory drawing for the installation of Asaase, a sculpture by David Adjaye.

Social Works: Sir David Adjaye OBE

David Adjaye speaks with Antwaun Sargent about Asaase, a new sculpture included in the exhibition Social Works.

Installation view, Lauren Halsey, David Kordansky Gallery, Los Angeles, January 25–March 14, 2020. Artwork © Lauren Halsey. Photo: Jeff McLane, courtesy David Kordansky Gallery, Los Angeles

Social Works: Lauren Halsey and Mabel O. Wilson

Lauren Halsey and Mabel O. Wilson discuss Black space and community in the context of architecture, building, and gentrification, as part of “Social Works,” a supplement guest edited by Antwaun Sargent for the Summer 2021 issue of the Quarterly.

News

Installation view, Social Works: Curated by Antwaun Sargent, Gagosian, 555 West 24th Street, New York, June 24–September 11, 2021. Artwork, left to right: © Zalika Azim, © Allana Clarke, © Linda Goode Bryant, © Rick Lowe Studio. Photo: Rob McKeever

In Conversation

Antwaun Sargent
Paul D. Miller

Friday, August 6, 2021, 1pm EDT

Antwaun Sargent will speak with Paul D. Miller, editor-at-large of the Brooklyn Rail, about Social Works, an exhibition curated by Sargent currently on view at Gagosian, West 24th Street, New York. Social Works considers the relationship between space—personal, public, institutional, and psychic—and Black social practice. The conversation will end with a poetry reading. To join the online event, register at brooklynrail.org.

Installation view, Social Works: Curated by Antwaun Sargent, Gagosian, 555 West 24th Street, New York, June 24–September 11, 2021. Artwork, left to right: © Zalika Azim, © Allana Clarke, © Linda Goode Bryant, © Rick Lowe Studio. Photo: Rob McKeever

Left: David Adjaye. Photo: Alex Fradkin, courtesy Adjaye Associates. Middle: Thelma Golden. Photo: Julie Skarratt. Right: Rick Lowe. Photo: Brent Reaney

In Conversation

David Adjaye and Rick Lowe
Moderated by Thelma Golden

Wednesday, June 23, 2021, 2pm edt

Join Gagosian for a conversation between Sir David Adjaye and Rick Lowe, moderated by Thelma Golden, director and chief curator of the Studio Museum in Harlem, New York, on the occasion of Social Works at Gagosian, New York. Livestreaming from the exhibition in Chelsea in advance of the opening on June 24, the trio will explore Adjaye and Lowe’s shared interests in architecture, community building, and the relationship between space and the Black body. Featuring work by twelve artists, the exhibition includes Asaase (2021), Adjaye’s first large-scale autonomous sculpture, and Black Wall Street Journey (2020–), a new series of paintings by Lowe memorializing the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre in Oklahoma. To join the online event, register at eventbrite.com.

Left: David Adjaye. Photo: Alex Fradkin, courtesy Adjaye Associates. Middle: Thelma Golden. Photo: Julie Skarratt. Right: Rick Lowe. Photo: Brent Reaney