01/14/2017 - 03/12/2017
01/16/2017 - 01/20/2017
01/17/2017 - 01/19/2017
REDCAT: Opening Reception: Sat. January 14 6-9 pm
The cross-disciplinary work of Los Angeles-based, Philippine artist Miljohn Ruperto includes photography, cinema, performance and digital animation. His work refers to historical and anecdotal occurrences, and speculates on the nature of assumed facts and construction of truth. He creates illusory images and disconcerting effects that challenge the viewer’s perception.
Geomancies consists of a film, a series of photographic and video works, as well as a new performance piece. Ruperto works with the concepts of possession, opposition and metamorphosis as common themes and as a background for the exhibition´s narrative. The work investigates the constant battle waged by humans to control nature. Modifications of the landscape and the economic exploitation of nature are counteracted by its unexpected force and how it affects the course of history.
The centerpiece of the exhibition, Ordinal (SW/NE), 2017, is an experimental documentary created with filmmaker Rini Yun Keagy. The film traces the cultural and environmental influences of a soil-dwelling, pathogenic fungus, Coccidioides immitis, and its associated disease, valley fever, in California's Central Valley. Interweaving past, present and mythological time, the film draws upon historical and cultural references, including the plight of migrants during the Depression, the spread of the disease in recent years, contemporary theories of climate change, and the significance of the desert wind in ancient Assyria. In Ruperto and Keagy’s film, natural phenomena remain neutral, fleeing from any kind of judgment and avoiding binary oppositions of positive and negative, destruction and regeneration, life and death.
Driving South at Sunset. The Camera Faces East (2007) is a short video of a woman driving south on Interstate Highway 5 toward San Diego. She stares into the distance, intermittently singing a country song about heartache. The camera faces east, blocking the sunset. The rigid axis of the camera and the horizon with the North to South direction of the vehicle's movement is broken up by the woman's oblique focus, weaving in and out of song.
The exhibition also features Re-animating "Valley Turbulence" by Sam Chase (2016). For this piece, Ruperto animated the photograph taken by Chase, who was then an employee of Chevron, to create a loop. The video illustrates the massive dust storm that buried the south of the San Joaquin Valley and caused severe damage to the area. Meteorological phenomena, the video suggests, cannot be managed, controlled or captured by human technology.
In line with these film and photographic works, Ruperto presents a new performance, in which the empty space itself is an essential part of the atmospheric construction of the exhibition. Possession (2017) makes direct reference to the cult film Possession (1981) by Andrzej Żuławski, and the memorable scene of actress Isabel Adjani suffering a convulsive seizure in the subway station. In Ruperto’s piece, two actors re-enact Adjani’s performance in synchronous mirror symmetry. The actress’ hysterical scene is meticulously mapped out in an attempt to outline the perimeter of her subjectivity.
This exhibition is accompanied by a public program and regular performances in the gallery.
About the artist:
Miljohn Ruperto (b. 1971 Manila, the Philippines) received his M.F.A. from Yale University in 2002 and his B.A., Studio Art from University of California, Berkeley in 1999. Recent exhibitions featuring his work include: Nervous Systems, Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin; Afterwork, Para-Site, Hong Kong; The As-if Principle., Magazin4 Bregenzer Kunstverein, Austria; 2014 Whitney Biennial, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; Janus, Dunlop Art Gallery, Regina Public Library, Saskatchewan, Canada; Ulrik Heltoft and Miljohn Ruperto, Voynich Botanical Studies, Thomas Solomon Gallery, Los Angeles, CA; Made in L.A., The Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, CA; and Picture Industry (Goodbye to All That), organized by Walead Beshty, Regen Projects, Los Angeles, CA. Ruperto lives and works in Los Angeles, CA.
REDCAT: “Cooley High showed a slice of urban life rarely seen in 'blaxploitation' movies of the time.” – NPR
Co-presented with The Broad. ARRAY @ The Broad is created and curated by Ava DuVernay.
Friendship, first loves and fatality are navigated by four young men in Cooley High, written by Eric Monte and directed by Michael Schultz. Set in 1960s Chicago, this coming-of-age story provides a slice-of-life look at both the light and grit of black teen spirit. The film's 1975 release provided a shift away from blaxploitation cinema common during that time and features breakout performances from Glynn Turman, Lawrence Hilton-Jacobs, Garrett Morris, and Cynthia Davis. Curated by filmmaker Ava DuVernay (13TH, Selma).
A post-screening discussion with actor Glynn Turman, director Michael Schultz, and screenwriter Eric Monte will be moderated by Common. The screening of this classic film will serve as the springboard for a dynamic post-screening discussion with Cooley High actor Glynn Turman, director Michael Schultz, screenwriter Eric Monte,and rapper, actor, and film producer Common and about male identity and black images, and the representation of both in cinema and mainstream media.
ARRAY @ The Broad is an ongoing series featuring classic and contemporary films curated with an eye toward the intersection of art, history and cultural identity. With the cinematic image as the centerpiece, the series engages audiences through post-screening conversations with a spectrum of artists and scholars for an immersive exchange of ideas and insights beyond the screen that enliven many issues addressed by artists in the Broad collection. ARRAY, founded in 2010 by filmmaker Ava DuVernay, is an arts collective dedicated to the amplification of films by people of color and women filmmakers.