Artists on Boxing at The Church - 27 East

Arts & Living

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Artists on Boxing at The Church

icon 5 Photos
Robert Mapplethorpe,

Robert Mapplethorpe, "Dennis Speight," 1983. Silver gelatin print, 20" x 16." © ROBERT MAPPLETHORPE, 1983. COURTESY THE ROBERT MAPPLETHORPE FOUNDATION AND GLADSTONE GALLERY

Martin Kippenberger “Ohne Titel” (“Untitled” from the series Hand Painted Pictures), 1992, oil on canvas, 70 7/8” x 59 1/6.” © ESTATE MARTIN KIPPENBERGER, GALERIE GISELA CAPITAIN, COLOGNE AND SKARSTEDT, NEW YORK

Martin Kippenberger “Ohne Titel” (“Untitled” from the series Hand Painted Pictures), 1992, oil on canvas, 70 7/8” x 59 1/6.” © ESTATE MARTIN KIPPENBERGER, GALERIE GISELA CAPITAIN, COLOGNE AND SKARSTEDT, NEW YORK

Carrie Mae Weems,

Carrie Mae Weems, "White Patty You Don't Shine," 1987-88. Gelatin silver print, 20" x 16." © CARRIE MAE WEEMS/COURTESY THE ARTIST AND JACK SHAINMAN GALLERY, NEW YORK

David Seltzer, “God (Nocturnal),” 1997-2008. Archival pigment print, 40” x 30.” © DAVID SELTZER, 1997-2008. COURTESY THE ARTIST

David Seltzer, “God (Nocturnal),” 1997-2008. Archival pigment print, 40” x 30.” © DAVID SELTZER, 1997-2008. COURTESY THE ARTIST

Jeffrey Gibson, “WAR IS NOT THE ANSWER FEEL SOEMTHING REAL,” 2020. Repurposed punching bag, acrylic felt, glass beads, artificial sinew, 57” x 15” x 15.” © JEFFREY GIBSON, COURTESY THE ARTIST AND COLLECTION OF BECKY GOCHMAN

Jeffrey Gibson, “WAR IS NOT THE ANSWER FEEL SOEMTHING REAL,” 2020. Repurposed punching bag, acrylic felt, glass beads, artificial sinew, 57” x 15” x 15.” © JEFFREY GIBSON, COURTESY THE ARTIST AND COLLECTION OF BECKY GOCHMAN

authorStaff Writer on Jun 4, 2023

This summer, The Church in Sag Harbor and The FLAG Art Foundation in New York City are collaborating on an exhibition in both of their venues. “Strike Fast, Dance Lightly: Artists on Boxing” explores boxing as both theme and metaphor, evoking complex and multifaceted cultural meanings.

The Church opens its exhibition on Saturday, June 24, with a reception from 6 to 7:30 p.m. The exhibition will remain on view through September 4. The show at the Flag Art Foundation in Manhattan opens Friday, June 16, with a reception from 6 to 8 p.m. and runs through August 11.

Developed in tandem and curated independently, the two exhibitions feature over 100 works, including historical and contemporary pieces as well as newly commissioned work for the shows.

“Strike Fast, Dance Lightly: Artists on Boxing” at The Church is co-curated by co-founder Eric Fischl and chief curator Sara Cochran. The exhibition underscores boxing’s expansive place in human life and the varied ways it is perceived by a diverse array of artists. It is shorthand for the existential question “what is worth fighting for?” and themes of struggle, defiance, victory, martyrdom, and brutality. Contemporary work particularly questions its traditional symbolism of masculinity by challenging male domination of the sport, and brings up issues of race, poverty, and violence.

“This show is a sermon about the belief and value we put on the struggle to be, to live, to understand, to love, to try and to never give up,” said Fischl, reflecting on the exhibition.” I believe everyone walking through our door holds these values to be true and will recognize and appreciate all the creative ways artists have found to deal with the monumentality of meaningful living.”

“Strike Fast, Dance Lightly: Artists on Boxing” highlights iconic and compelling works that hold up a mirror to us, showing versions of ourselves that both inspire and challenge us. As Sara Cochran said, “The boxer is a figure caught alone in the crosshairs of choice and fate in a moment that can change everything. Perhaps this is why the boxer is a poignant metaphor for our turbulent and uncertain times.”

Extensive public programming will accompany the exhibitions. In addition to the programs at The Church, the Sag Harbor Cinema is curating a series of boxing-related films in conjunction with the exhibition.

Artists to be featured in the exhibition at The Church include: Derrick Adams, Zoë Buckman, Jim Campbell, Cassils, Carroll Dunham, Fab 5 Freddy, Jules Feiffer, Eric Fischl, Barry Flanagan, Jeffrey Gibson, Ralph Gibson, Michael Halsband, Lyle Ashton Harris, Lonnie Holley, Judith Hudson, Rashid Johnson, Howard Kanowitz, Martin Kippenberger, Ansel Krut, Stephen Laub, Glenn Ligon, An Te Liu, Robert Mapplethorpe, Delilah Montoya, LeRoy Neiman, Ed Paschke, David Rathman, Deborah Roberts, Ellington Robinson, Carlos Rolón, Rozeal, Alison Saar, David Seltzer, Gary Simmons, Charles Waller, Carrie Mae Weems, Darius Yektai, Joe Zucker and many others.

The FLAG Foundation’s presentation will run from June 16 to August 11. Intended to be viewed in dialogue, The Church encourages its visitors to see both shows. Artists at FLAG will include George Bellows and Eadweard Muybridge, along with contemporary artworks by John Ahearn, Andrea Bowers, Rosalyn Drexler, Curran Hattelberg, Rashid Johnson, Vincent Valdez, Yvonne Wells and many more. FLAG is located in the Chelsea Arts Tower, 545 West 25th Street, 9th Floor. For more information, visit flagfoundation.org

The Church is at 48 Madison Street, Sag Harbor. For more information visit thechurchsagharbor.org.

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