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Cally Spooner transforms New Museum's Lobby Gallery through her site-specific installation
Cally Spooner, On False Tears and Outsourcing, 2015 (documentation of live performance at Vleeshal Markt). Courtesy gb agency, Paris, and Vleeshal, Middelburg, the Netherlands. Photo: Anda van Riet.


NEW YORK, NY.- “Cally Spooner: On False Tears and Outsourcing” marks the first solo museum presentation in the United States of the work of Cally Spooner (b. 1983, Ascot, UK). The artist has produced a new site-specific installation for the New Museum’s Lobby Gallery. “On False Tears and Outsourcing” comprises a series of architectural additions to the gallery space and the presence of a group of dancers who respond to conflicting choreographic instructions: to stay intimately bound together while remaining fiercely separate. The exhibition is on view from April 27 to June 19, 2016.

“On False Tears and Outsourcing” is part of Spooner’s long-term project of the same name, which was initiated at Vleeshal Markt, Middelburg, the Netherlands, in 2015. Considering the production of affect, the contradictions faced by hired bodies, and the dynamics of using or being used as a human resource, the project stages situations in which a heightened demand for communication drives the outsourcing of personal investment to ready-made gestures and protocols.

Trained by rugby players and a movie director, and following the logic of a “stand-up scrum”—a daily meeting often used in collaborative, responsive practices such as software development— the dancers have learned a set of techniques taken from contact sports, management strategies, and on-screen romance. Through attempts to seduce, defend, and self-organize, the group has devised a sequence of movements in response to simple tasks set by Spooner. Their efforts to complete these tasks generate a tension in the gallery as the group’s actions oscillate between obstruction and collaboration, competition and unity. The long glass wall that separates the Lobby Gallery from the New Museum Lobby is a central feature of the installation. Using the gallery’s condition of high visibility, Spooner considers the characteristics of corporate and museum architectures by amplifying and exaggerating certain qualities in the space through the use of soft acoustic panels, daylight bulbs, and background noise. Through this intersection of bodies and architectures of management, Spooner examines how power presents itself when it comes into contact with the human body.

The exhibition is curated by Helga Christoffersen, Assistant Curator. It is accompanied by a fully illustrated publication that includes an interview with the artist conducted by documenta 14 curator Hendrik Folkerts, a new essay on Spooner’s practice by Christoffersen, and a contribution by artist Dan Graham.

Cally Spooner was born in Ascot, UK, in 1983 and lives and works in London. Her recent solo exhibitions include “And You Were Wonderful, On Stage” at Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam (2016); “On False Tears and Outsourcing” at Vleeshal Markt, Middelburg, the Netherlands (2015); and “THE ANTI-CLIMAX CLIMAX” at Bielefelder Kunstverein, Bielefeld, Germany (2015). Her recent live productions have been presented at Tate Modern, London (2014); Tate Britain, London (2014); the High Line, New York (2014); Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam (2013); and Performa 13, New York (2013). Spooner’s work has been included in group exhibitions at the Aspen Art Museum (2015); REDCAT, Los Angeles (2015); Frieze Projects, London (2015); Kunstverein Mnchen (2014); Frieze Projects, New York (2014); KW Institute for Contemporary Art, Berlin (2013); Jeu de Paume, Paris (2013); and the Serpentine Gallery, London (2012). She is a 2013 recipient of the Paul Hamlyn Foundation Award and the author of the novel Collapsing in Parts, published by Mousse in 2013.






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Cally Spooner transforms New Museum's Lobby Gallery through her site-specific installation

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