Las Reinas Final Performance by Jesus Benavente and Felipe Castelblanco
Image: Jesus Benavente and Felipe Castelblanco, Las Reinas, 2016. Courtesy the artists
For Las Reinas, Benavente and Castelblanco collaborate with two Mariachi bands, one in Queens and the other based in Bogotá, Colombia, to write a new song in real-time, via online video chat. Working across cultural, social, and economic borders, the collaborating bands and artists will reveal the pervasiveness of the Mariachi genre, a Mexican musical tradition that is steeped in poverty, pride, protest, and community, but has been widely adapted to the needs of a globalized tourist economy.
Open rehearsals and conversations will take place at the Queens Museum throughout the exhibition, culminating in this live performance by Benavente and Mariachi Real de Mexico (Queens), with Castelblanco and Bogotá-based band connecting via video conference. At the end of the collaboration, the new song, Las Reinas (The Queens), will be set into the informal oral distribution networks as a new Mariachi tradition, passed from band to band across North and South America, as a means of examining the phenomena of cultural (re)appropriation and (mis) translation.
Presented with Espacio Odeón, Bogotá.
Queens International 2016 Catalogue Launch
As the culmination of several open studio workshops and ongoing production in situ at the Queens Museum, please join us for the final launch of the Queens International 2016 web-to-print catalogue designed by Ayham Ghraowi with Martin Bek and Brandon Gamm.
Responding to the increasingly intertwined relationship of printed and digital media today, the biennial exhibition features a model of publishing and distribution that has developed into its maturity through post-opening contributions by the participating artists’ interaction among themselves and with external respondents. An evolving web platform generates this print-on-demand publication that has incorporated content authored over the course of the exhibition. The website—serving as a living hub for documentation, artist interviews, short-form writing, and commentary from wide-ranging respondents—will in turn comprise a publication that can either be printed onsite at the exhibition via a risograph, or accessed as a downloadable PDF. In line with the character of Queens International 2016, the risograph duplication process allows the publication to sit somewhere between a silkscreen print and a xerox copy, giving digitally formatted content a uniquely physical property.
Sam Vernon with Abby Dobson: When You’re Smiling…The Many Faces of the Mask
Having incorporated sound and instrumentation into her practice over the past two years, artist Sam Vernon collaborates with vocalist Abby Dobson on the occasion of the Queens International 2016. In response to Vernon’s installation Louis & Sam, currently on view in the Museum’s atrium, Dobson will interpret a selection of Louis Armstrong songs including “Nobody Knows the Trouble I’ve Seen,” “You’ll Never Walk Alone,” and “What A Wonderful World”. This audio collage runs parallel to Vernon’s visual work, which is inspired by the collage practice and improvisational genius of jazz legend, and Corona resident, Louis Armstrong. Inter-generational narratives, historical memory, and the collage-making of black experience inform both the visual work and performance.
Image: Sam Vernon, Louis & Sam, 2016. Courtesy the artist. Photo: Hai Zhang
Screening of A Frame Apart: Short Films Showcase followed by Q+A with filmmakers
As part of the accompanying programming for Queens International 2016, we created A Frame Apart to highlight recent short films made in or about Queens. There are over 118 nationalities and cultural groups living in Queens. Many are recent immigrants while others have been here for several generations. There are stories from around the world on its streets – some visible to the casual visitor, others unfolding more discreetly. Queens is both a muse and a battleground, simultaneously a node connecting world cities and a patchwork of insular neighborhoods. Access to digital filmmaking tools in everyday smartphones and the ability to share time-based media across multiple online platforms have given rise to numerous documentaries on the complex and fast-evolving cultural phenomena of this borough, as well as playful experimentations with forms and genres that come with the meeting of disparate cultures. With A Frame Apart the Queens Museum will showcase these singular visions, which are at once intimately local and inexorably intertwined with the tumultuous forces of global capital.
For more details on the program of six short films, please click here.
Film Still, Reclaimed Ground by Nate Dorr & Nathaniel Kensinger
Valerie Green/Dance Entropy presents Impermanent Landscape, a performance in the round inspired by the ideas of cubism, perspective, perception, and impermanence. Breaking the 4th wall and moving choreography outside of the traditional stage and audience formats, Impermanent Landscape features the geometry and architecture of overlapping bodies, creating it’s own personal landscape with original music by Martyn Axe.This event is presented on the occasion of the Queens International 2016. In the spirit of this biennial exhibition of artists living or working in Queens, the Museum presents an accompanying series of programs, workshops, and performances with local community and cultural organizations that will run alongside the exhibition’s own programming.
Image: Photo by Stephan Delas Heras
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