Works by School of Art faculty Sharon Lockhart are presented in her latest exhibition at the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao in Spain and also through an educational partnership at the Museum of Modern Art in Warsaw in Poland.
At the Guggenheim Bilbao, the exhibition Sharon Lockhart. Notation Rotation (curated by Manuel Cirauqui) is on view now until Feb. 27, 2022. More about the exhibition from the museum’s official website:
Engaging a multiplicity of media, the works of Sharon Lockhart (b. 1964, Norwood, USA) pay particular attention to human activity and its modes of organization, be it social or solitary. Ranging from labor to sport, and from child’s play to choreography, Lockhart’s films specifically confront the complexity and poetic depth of seemingly simple movements. Tight and disarming, her works are exercises in observation that ultimately blur the lines between body and camera, staged representation and audience vantage point. As documenting and performing appear as one, the world’s existence turns tensely palpable in the very fact of its being documented. As the stillness of the lens emphasizes the modern aspiration to technical objectivity, situations are presented as though they were recording themselves.
Among the works in the exhibition is a single-channel video installation Four Exercises in Eshkol-Wachman Movement Notation (2011). Lockhart credits Israeli choreographer Noa Eshkol with “further[ing] her formal exploration of human motion” and expanding her collaborative practice. In 1958, Eshkol and architect Avraham Wachman devised a notation system known as EWMN (Eshkol-Wachman movement notation), which claims to effectively register the full range of a body’s potential motions. Lockhart’s installation features Eshkol’s Chamber Dance Group member Ruti Sela performing “calculated movements among four identical grey volumes” in order to “reference the space that the dancer’s body occupies as she moves through each exercise.”
Also in the exhibition is a photo series titled Models of Orbits in the System of Reference, Eshkol-Wachman Movement Notation System (2011), depicting the spherical models Eshkol and Wachman used to illustrate the possible movements of the human body’s various limbs and joints.
Lockhart has also collaborated with the Museum of Modern Art in Warsaw for its new periodic program “Primary Forms,” carried out in cooperation with the Roman Czernecki Educational Foundation. Lockhart is among this year’s 11 participating artists, each of whom created boxes filled with educational exercises, tools, and instructional materials to be used by primary schoolers from grades four to eight.
Her work, Spreading News (2021), arrives in a sack filled with alphabet stencils, a stencil frame, and white fabric sashes. Students are instructed to look at the daily newspaper as one might observe a painting, and select a single word that captures their attention. Students will then use the stencils to write the word on the white sash, and wear them while discussing with their group about what to do next. Questions arising from the exercise may range from Have you or your colleagues recently invented a new word that you use? to Can one word be more beautiful than another? fda
Lockhart is a Los Angeles-based artist known for “highly conceptual yet effortlessly elegant work[s]” that take shape in installation, photography, and film. Her art has been exhibited internationally in numerous solo and group shows. Lockhart is the 2019 recipient of the Grand Prix d’Honneur at the Marseille International Film Festival, and represented Poland at the 57th Venice Biennale. She currently serves as the co-director of the Program in Photography and Media in the CalArts School of Art.