Erik Kessels & Jan Dibbets Featured in SFMOMA Exhibit

30 March 2019 — 4 August 2019
151 3rd Street, San Francisco, CA 94103, United States San Francisco Show on map | add to calendar
#photography

On view at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) from March 30 through August 4, 2019, ‘snap+share: transmitting photographs from mail art to social networks’ will explore the outward gesture of sharing pictures, instead of the more traditional, inward act of taking photographs, throughout the history of the medium. The show will examine our current social media environment as the latest iteration in a long lineage of using networks—first with postal systems and now the Internet—as a vehicle for art making, as well as affirming one’s place in the world. SFMOMA will be the first institution to look at this phenomenon in a historical context.

Contemporary projects on view will include videos and installations in which artists consider how we share images in the digital age. Erik Kessels’s 24HRS in Photos (2011) makes today’s mass transmission of images take up physical space in an immersive installation, where every photo uploaded to the Internet in a 24-hour period is printed out and placed in a single gallery.

Special Events

Artist Talk: Erik Kessels

Join Erik Kessels, whose immersive installation 24HRS in Photos is featured in the exhibition snap+share, for a discussion on his artistic, curatorial, and publishing practices. In his twenty-year career, Kessels has made inventive contributions to the field of found photography; in his practice, photography is a ready-made element to be sampled and re-contextualized. During this talk, introduced by Senior Curator of Photography Clément Chéroux, Kessels will reflect on working with appropriated images, the proliferation of images in contemporary society, and different ways of looking at the countless images we experience today.

To create the piece 24HRS in Photos, Kessels printed pictures uploaded to Flickr within a twenty-four-hour period to display in mountainous piles — making physical the intangible flood of images on the internet and the feeling of drowning in that mass. Find this installation at SFMOMA, currently on view on Floor 3 as part of the exhibition snap+share.

Thursday, May 30, 7 p.m.
Speaker: Erik Kessels

Phyllis Wattis Theater, San Fransico Museum Of Modern Art
151 Third Street, Floor 1
Free and open to the public. RSVP here.

About Erik Kessels

Erik Kessels, whose work is featured here in several large galleries, epitomizes the fluidity of the roles of curator and creator. Kessels has amassed an immense archive of vernacular snapshots and photo albums that he incorporates into his artistic practice. In Album Beauty (Rm 09) and in almost every picture (Rm 04) he curates from his holdings to suggest universal connections between found images, which, as a result, transcend their personal subject matter. Viewed through his lens, Kessels’s selections speak to the human experience and nod to the power, beauty, and materiality of these amateur pictures at a time when images are largely consumed online. In 24 Hrs in Photos (Rm 17) he comments directly on the photograph’s role in the digital world by printing every picture that had been uploaded over the course of one day to the photo-sharing website Flickr. Through this installation, the viewer can both visually and physically experience the overwhelming number of photographs shared online.