The Black Hole in Los Alamos, NM, 2009. Photo by Jeff Keyzer
Black Hole/Atomic City (State of Decay)
August 2 – 30, 2019
OPENING RECEPTION: August 2, 6-9pm
Black Hole/Atomic City (State of Decay) is an exhibition dedicated to alternative stories related to “the nuclear business” in New Mexico since the dawn of the Anthropocene/Trinity test near Tularosa in July 1945. The combined burden of nuclear byproducts and waste that decays over tens of thousands of years weighs heavily on New Mexico, a “national sacrifice zone.” The show will be on view until August 30.
Impacts that largely affect Indigenous and rural communities from nuclear weapons and their production in New Mexico and around the world, are not featured in the celebratory story of the Atomic Age promoted by Los Alamos, set for the commemoration in 2020 of the 75th Anniversary of the Trinity Test and the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the first and only cities to be destroyed with atomic weapons.
What is the impact of the theft and decimation of sacred lands? How have involuntary radiation exposures from atomic explosions and contamination from mining and milling of uranium affected generations? What are the ongoing threats from transportation and storage of radioactive waste?
This will be one of numerous efforts to highlight alternative views of our nuclear world during the lead up to the Anniversary of the Nuclear Age. The Black Hole, a Los Alamos business known world-wide for recycling equipment and materials from the Los Alamos Scientific/National Laboratory, was owned by anti-nuclear activist Edward Grothus, who died in 2009. Artist and activist Barbara Grothus is the lead organizer of the project.
Artists include: Josh Atlas, Brandi Beckett, Mitch Berg, Anna Bush Crews, Sabrina Gaskill, Barbara Grothus, Sheri Inez deLopaz Kotowski, Sto Len, Melanie Mills, Santiago Perez, Thomas Powell, Rachele Riley, Yasuyo Tanaka, Jessi Walsh, Nora Wendl
This exhibition was made possible in part by the Fulcrum Fund. The Fulcrum Fund is an annual grant program, created and administered by 516 ARTS as a partner in the Regional Regranting Program of The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts.
April 12th – 26th, 2019
Opening: Friday, April 12th, 6-9 pm
Closing: Friday, April 26th, 6-9 pm
Ananke, the Necessity, was considered one of the forces dominating nature and human fate in ancient Greece; even the gods were subjects to her; a mechanical force of chained events, reactions, given possibilities. In this exhibition, Viola Arduini explores and suggests a renewed understanding of the power of such force, while suggesting the necessity for change. Ananke is the mechanical, blind destruction humans are causing on the planet, yet Ananke is the need of a reaction.
Arduini’s creative practice investigates relationships formed by humans, animals, and technology, engaging in issues of biodiversity loss, promoting new forms of dialogue about coexistence.The impact of human activity on the planet is so enormous, cohabitation with other species seems impossible. Mixing languages and practices from both art and science, Ananke offers a space for questioning and promoting change regarding the current ecological crisis.
Arduini’s work narrates – through embodied aesthetic experience for the audience– stories that are just small enough to be felt and thought; yet are complex and open for generating new connections, feelings, and ideas. Embodiment becomes a tool through which stories and ideas are activated, a space for generating different views of extinction and cohabitation; ideas of kinship, interspecies relationships and human presence become the ground for seed
ing different awareness and possibilities for new archetypes.
Exceptional Visual Artist Scholar
Ananke by Viola Arduini is a University of New Mexico MFA thesis exhibition that is part of Sanitary Tortilla Factory’s 2019 Exceptional Visual Artist Scholar (EVAS) series. The Exceptional Visual Artist Scholar series offers professional space for the culminating exhibition that defines the student’s launch into their profession as an artist. The series hopes to underscore exceptional artists attending regional institutions while highlighting Albuquerque’s historic connection to contemporary art practice.
Used to Know Me Now
Teena Lee Ryan
Opening: Friday, March 22, 5-8pm
Closing: Friday, April 5, 5-8pm
My maternal family is from Appalachia. I am the third generation to be named after Confederate general Robert E. Lee. Not only was the double ‘e’ in my first name inspired by the general, but my middle name as well. Changing my name would be a meaningless gesture, rather I demolish, rewrite and reimagine my personal narrative, in the hope I can construct my own legends. I explore ritual, creation, destruction, fiction, the fallibility of memory and the transformation of identity. Through my work, I believe it is possible to originate and uphold my own story.
Ritual, creation, destruction, and transformation are utilized to uncover my present self. I use these tools to conceive and fabricate my own story. A story that will exist as my legend, in the way I deem honest. What these works all share is an exploration of the embodiment of knowledge and experience. Most of the work is a ritualistic exploration of the ways that embodiment, which physicality weighs on the soul, is digested and lost, is ripped asunder, is a skeleton that harms as much as it helps. I make artifacts as ritual offerings to reclaim myself.
Exceptional Visual Artist Scholar
Used to Know Me Now by Teena Lee Ryan is a UNM MFA Photo thesis exhibition and the first of two exhibitions in 2019 that is part of Sanitary Tortilla Factory’s Exceptional Visual Artist Scholar (EVAS) series. The Exceptional Visual Artist Scholar series offers professional space for the culminating exhibition that defines the student’s launch into their profession as an artist. The series hopes to underscore exceptional artists attending regional institutions while highlighting Albuquerque’s historic connection to contemporary art practice.
Nora Wendl, Guard Everything Appropriately and All Will Be Well
Performative legal document redaction & film screening
On view: March 11 – 15, 2019, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
In 2014, I was given access to the transcript of the trial van der Rohe vs. Farnsworth, in which architect Mies van der Rohe and the client that commissioned him to build a glass house in Illinois, Dr. Edith Farnsworth, sued one another. The architect alleged that she still owed him some of the cost of constructing the house, and she responded by alleging that he had misrepresented the cost of the house to her, and was practicing fraudulently—they both sought financial remuneration from the other, and much is revealed about their personal and working relationship in this document.
The transcript, a hefty 4,000 pages, is guarded by the estate of Mies van der Rohe, who are concerned with preserving the architect’s legacy—indeed, his grandson describes it as a “grave concern.” My negotiation of access to this document as a writer, artist and historian meant that I was bounded by the requirement that I not make the information available to others, under threat of legal action. “Guard everything appropriately, and all will be well,” and “I know you’ll conduct yourself professionally” were final instructions from the estate—both vague, and threatening.
From March 11 to March 15, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., I will clock in at the Sanitary Tortilla Factory exhibition space to redact this 4,000-page document in public. Working within the confines of typical American working hours, I will not be able to address visitors: I must continue to redact with a deadline of Friday, March 15th, 5:00 p.m. Visitors who arrive during Redaction Hours are invited to take any available seat in the gallery. This performance is meant to reveal what it means, in physical terms, to read and redact such a large document, to work at preventing it from entering into the flow of documents that make up history.
Also on view in the exhibition space during Redaction Hours and at the reception is a two-channel film made during a recent residency at Santa Fe Art Institute in which I worked with filmmaker Melinda Frame to prepare for this durational performance at Sanitary Tortilla Factory.
207 by Darby Photos
Nov. 9th, 2018 – Jan. 4, 2019
Closing Reception: Jan. 4, 2019 5-8pm
In 207, Darby Photos’ depicts schools that have been the sites of mass shootings. The quilts these schools are depicted in represent safe spaces that have become scenes of horror and destruction. Buildings such as Sandy Hook, Columbine, Virginia Tech and Marjory Stoneman Douglas, as well as lesser, discussed schools like Red Lake High School in Michigan and West Nickel Mines school in Pennsylvania became physical manifestations of our society’s willingness to sacrifice our children to gun culture. The quilts confront the audience with the new banality of mass murder.