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MURRMUR

MURRMUR

 
Misread Unread Read Re-read Misread Unread Re-read (MURRMUR) is a year-long publishing program taking place at the ICA. MURRMUR is developed in conversation with participating artists and educators, committed to expanding how we think about exhibitions, what it means to read, publish, and distribute art, books, and ideas. The artists invited to MURRMUR are thinking about the environments and methods in which we publish and read — individually and collective — and how reading can be reimagined as situation or experience.

MURRMUR seeks to break down, massage, map, and circulate information through experiments, improvisations, and alternative curriculums led by various facilitators. The ICA becomes a situation for testing ideas and for building language collectively. Together we learn how to disrupt ideas of authorship and fixed forms of knowledge.

MURRMUR features a series of prototypes, projects, publications and presentations by artists, designers, writers, poets, publishers, including Rafael Domenech, Nicole Kilian, Riley Hooker this Fall, and others.

 

RAFAEL DOMENECH: THE MEDIUM IS THE MASSAGE

The Medium is the Massage is a new commission by the Cuban American artist Rafael Domenech for a year-long pavilion for self-publishing, collective reading, and programs at the ICA. With a nod to the eponymous book by Marshall McLuhan and graphic designer Quentin Fiore, this project considers the forms, standards, conventions and errors that are part of exhibition making. Interested in publishing as a methodology for making exhibitions, The Medium is the Massage is a publication that the public can inhabit as a book-in-space. In keeping with the artist’s philosophy on waste, optimization, and challenging mechanisms of value, at the end of the show the public will be invited to take what remains of the show home.

ABOUT THE ARTIST

Rafael Domenech (b. 1989, Havana) lives and works in New York. He attended the San Alejandro National Academy of Fine Arts, in Cuba, and earned his BFA from the World School of the Arts in Miami in 2015, and his MFA from Columbia University in 2019. In his work he uses databases, poetry, repurposed walls, narrative graffiti performances, light objects, recordings and found texts. He is interested in artist books, the afterlives of material, how we read, how things circulate, and how we produce art and exhibition. His work has been shown with major institutions including The Bass Museum, Miami Beach, Florida; SculptureCenter, Long Island City, New York, and Socrates Sculpture Park. His upcoming projects include a new outdoor pavilion commissioned as part of the inaugural projects for the 58th Carnegie International in Pittsburgh.

NICOLE KILLIAN: between a book and a soft place

Nicole Kilian explores the relationship between publishing, pedagogy and praxis. They are interested in repetition, looping, and the dissemination of content, with focus on the structures of the internet, shared online spaces and mobile messaging. And how these shape cultural identity from a queer perspective. Speaking from a place of art education Killian writes “What would a queering of design education look like? What would a pedagogical approach that emphasizes asking questions instead of problem solving consist of?” For this Fall, MURRMUR invites Killian to revisit mobile messaging in relation to reading and to thinking about exhibitions outside of the gallery space.

ABOUT THE ARTIST

Nicole Killian is a designer, artist, and educator based in Richmond, VA. Killian’s practice oscillates between digital and analog modes for testing publishing projects. Their work has been exhibited at Sediment in Richmond, CAVE in Detroit, Arcadia Missa in London, Present Works in Milwaukee, Little Berlin in Philadelphia, Embassy in Los Angeles, Sadie Halie Projects in Brooklyn, Nomade Gallery in Hangzhou, and Dreamlands: Immersive Cinema and Art at the Whitney Museum of American Art for Lorna Mills’ Ways of Something. Killian’s expanded approach to publishing considers objects as containers for language—language that gets activated when read, passed, held, and handled.

RILEY HOOKER: SIT(UATION)

Riley Hooker presents an idea for a reading environment titled SIT(UATION). Inspired by the mutable and collective nature of slime molds, Riley blurs the parameters for what constitutes a book form—something that can be everchanging and can cradle the human body. SIT(UATION) is both a publication and a site for reading. Hooker untethers reading as an intellectual pursuit to a physical and social experience, which invites a collective approach to the reading and learning process.

ABOUT THE ARTIST

Riley Hooker is an interdisciplinary artist based in New York. His work with artist collective House of LaDosha was featured in Trigger: Gender as a Tool and a Weapon at the New Museum in New York in 2018. The artist’s first solo show SPECIATION was at Knulp in Sydney in 2019 and was in a group exhibition Love Mussel curated by Water McBeer in 2020. In 2015, Hooker founded Façadomy, an intersectional publishing project focused on paradox and desire. Hooker’s work puts a distorted lens on reality by positioning elements of design, architecture, and popular culture in various states of transition, bringing forward the unstable subject and mutable nature of reality.


 

COLLABORATORS

[NAME] Publications

Founded in 2008, [NAME] Publications is a 501(c) organization dedicated to making books with an emphasis on histories and practices often marginalized in dominant art and design histories. The press facilitates the production of books by artists, designers, curators, and scholars with practices anchored in the Americas. It disseminates these titles and builds new audiences for them through exhibitions and public programs. [NAME] encourages diversity and experimentation in the field of art and design books.

In 2018 [NAME] Publications launched dispatches, a limited run online journal. Published in Spanish and English, the journal offers a variety of contributions that analyze emergent tendencies that cast their lot with anti-extractivist and climate struggles, alert us to cultural and territorial dispossession, highlight new forms of resistance and epistemological reconfigurations, and, in the process, offer a prism through which to read the complex configurations that define our contemporary moment.

The starting content of this would be a series of single-essay publications that would feature essays originally published as part of [NAME]’s bilingual Dispatches Journal project. Each book would contain one of these essays, and during the course of the exhibition we would continue to commission “new books.” This is an open platform, and the “mechanism” could be used to produce an array of different books made in collaboration with other partners as well.

 
 


 

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