THE UNTITLED SPACE 45 Lispenard Street Unit 1W
New York, NY 10013
The Untitled Space is pleased to present “IRL: Investigating Reality” a group exhibition of contemporary artists exploring what “IRL” means to them in today’s digital world. Curated by gallery director Indira Cesarine, “IRL: Investigating Reality” will open on June 6th, and run through June 21st, 2019. The group show examines themes of “real life” and “reality” versus fictional, internet or idealized worlds through a wide array of mediums including painting, drawing, sculpture, photography, mixed media, installation, video art, and textiles. Each artist reveals their own personal vision of “reality” with works in the show juxtaposing the mundanities of everyday life, addressing themes of “authenticity” versus edited, retouched or fictitious realities, nature versus cyber constructed content, as well as exploring the intersection of digital and physical worlds.
CURATORIAL STATEMENT by Indira Cesarine “We live in a culture so immersed in social media, it is often impossible to distinguish reality from the edited, retouched, fantasy lives led online. As we become more dependent on the digital world, we equally crave authenticity and the truth. “IRL” which is an abbreviation of the term “in real life” is a phrase that emerged in the early days of the internet when people saw a need to distinguish things that were presented online versus the realities of offline or the “real world”. The expression “irl” has become increasingly relevant as apps and edited realities created for likes shift the paradigm towards unrealistic and often unobtainable virtual worlds that defy reality with perfect holidays, perfect bodies, cyber romances, and artificial followers. I felt it was time to get back to “IRL” and invited an international selection of emerging and established contemporary artists of all genders and generations to “investigate reality.” The exhibit explores this narrative with works that are often very intimate, works charged with self-interrogation, vignettes of reality, explorations of realism, revelations of private lives, as well as works full of satire and humor that address the intersection of the digital and physical worlds. What does “IRL” or “in real life” mean to you? As we become more connected are we becoming more disconnected? As our computer monitors and smartphones take over our lives, we find ourselves longing for nature, for tangible connections, and genuine experiences. This exhibit asks the viewer to explore their own reality, navigate through fact and fantasy, take a deeper look at the effects of technology on contemporary culture, as well as reflect on what “authenticity” means to them.“ – Curator Indira Cesarine
For the exhibition, artist Indira Cesarine created several new series, including her photography series “Escape in New York” and “Annie, Brooklyn” as well as her “IRL” neon in turquoise blue.
“I was also personally inspired to create work specifically for the exhibit. In a series of photographs titled, “Escape in New York” I captured the story of a girl who hits the streets of New York naked in a desperate attempt to reconnect with herself and feel alive. It was very liberating for me to do this shoot as nudity is so taboo in America. It was great to see the model totally let herself go and run through the streets of city naked and free… It was a rather cathartic feeling as an artist to run with this narrative and let go of all the social constraints and expectations that are thrown on us to be or act a certain way. I also went out to Brooklyn to shoot a portrait series of a girl named Annie, who agreed to be photographed doing what she would normally do alone – which including lounging around nude, texting and cooking while on her phone… there is an uninhibited rawness to the images which are completely unretouched. She is very natural in her own skin, which is exactly what I wanted to portray.” (excerpt from interview in DAZED Magazine)
Aela Labbe, Alexandra Rubinstein, Alison Jackson, Alison Stinely, Anne Barlinckhoff, Annika Connor, Becky Flanders, Buket Savci, Camilla Marie Dahl, Cara Lien, Chelsie Kirkey, Colin Radcliffe, Daniela Kovacic, Danielle Lessnau, Dara Vandor, Dolly Faibyshev, Elisa Garcia de la Huerta, Erin Victoria Axtell, Fahren Feingold, Giulia Livi, Grace Graupe Pillard, Gray Swartzel, Indira Cesarine, Jave Yoshimoto, Jeanette Hayes, Jennifer Dwyer, Jessica Frances Grégoire Lancaster, Karen Bystedt, Karen Mainenti, Kat Toronto aka Miss Meatface, Katie Commodore, Katy Itter, Leah Schrager, Linda Friedman Schmidt, Logan White, Mairi-Luise Tabbakh, Mary Henderson, Mary Tooley Parker, Michael Liani, Nichole Washington, Reisha Perlmutter, Robin Tewes, Sydney Kleinrock, Tara Lewis, Tracy Kerdman.
Press for “IRL: INVESTIGATING REALITY” group show include Dazed, Widewalls, Quiet Lunch, Glare Magazine, WSI, Tartarus Mag, Bedford & Bowery, The Untitled Magazine, Art In New York, Mutual Art, Blush Magazine, Fashion Maniac, A Shaded View of Fashion among many others.
Read the full exclusive interview about the exhibition with Indira Cesarine in DAZED