After 20 months closed, Ten Nineteen, an art space in New Orleans’s Lower Garden District, re-opens with Nancy Rexroth: IOWA, an exhibition featuring rare images from the photographer’s pioneering series from the 1970s.
From 1970 to 1976, Nancy Rexroth created a series of images that evoke her emotions and memories of her childhood in the Midwest. At a moment when photographic precision was held high, Rexroth opted for a $1.50 toy camera (the “Diana”) that had irregular exposures, bent perspectives, and faulty focus. She further manipulated her images by deliberately blurring or overlaying them, abandoning form in the name of feeling, description for evocation. The result was a haunting, dream-like aesthetic that vibrated with joy, sadness, and longing. As Rexroth explains, the Diana offered “a pathway from the highly technical to the more internally sensitive.”
In 1977, with a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts, Rexroth self-published the series in a book titled IOWA — slightly confusing as the images were captured in Ohio. Yet as Rexroth explains, she wanted to demonstrate that “a photograph doesn’t have to be about the subject at hand. It can be about intangibles, about emotions.” These were about her memories and dreams of childhood summers spent in Iowa. The approach and aesthetic mesmerized the photographic community, and soon after the book’s publication, institutions like Aperture, International Center for Photography, and the Smithsonian American Art Museum highlighted works from IOWA in their contemporary photography exhibitions and publications.
“The IOWA series left an indelible mark on the history of photography,” explains Ten Nineteen’s Elizabeth Monaghan, who organized the show. “It showed us that photography can do more than document a moment in time; it can reflect a very personal interiority. It’s about the artist’s vision, not the tool in her hand. And more than four decades later, these images still have the effect of something urgently new.”
The exhibition is on view now through January 30, 2022, at Ten Nineteen, located at 1019 Erato Street in New Orleans, Louisiana.
For more information, visit ten-nineteen.org.
Michelangelo’s Signature and the Myth of Genius
Michelangelo served as a stellar example for future artists who sought status and economic independence.
Uncovering the Photographer Behind Arshile Gorky’s Most Famous Painting
As we pursue photographer Hovhannes Avedaghayan a fascinating picture begins to emerge of him and the world of which he was part.
The Public Theater Explores the Hurricane Katrina Diaspora in shadow/land
Written by Erika Dickerson-Despenza and directed by Candis C. Jones, this lyrical meditation on legacy, erotic fugitivity, and self-determination is on view in NYC.
The Myth of Agency Around Artists’ Signatures
In an art world built on shifting sands, artists’ signatures become symbols of agency for some, and relics of the past for others.
The Women Artists Commemorated on an NYC Sidewalk
The signatures of Rosa Bonheur, Mary Cassatt, and six other historical women artists are engraved on a small stretch of sidewalk on Manhattan’s Upper East Side.
The Rubin Museum Presents Death Is Not the End
Tibetan Buddhist and Christian works of art made across 12 centuries explore death, the afterlife, and the desire to continue to exist. On view in NYC.
Met Museum Repatriates 15 Objects to India
The sculptures were all at one point sold by the disgraced art dealer Subhash Kapoor.
Pussy Riot’s Nadya Tolokonnikova Placed on Russian “Wanted” List
Tolokonnikova has long been a thorn in the side of Vladimir Putin’s regime.
When I Am Empty Please Dispose of Me Properly
Ayanna Dozier, Ilana Harris-Babou, Meena Hasan, Lucia Hierro, Catherine Opie, Chuck Ramirez, and Pacifico Silano explore the myths of the American Dream at Brooklyn’s BRIC House.
Vivan Sundaram, Veteran Indian Contemporary Artist, Dies at 79
Sundaram is celebrated for his multidisciplinary studio practice steeped in activism and political consciousness.
What’s Iconoclastic About a Blackface Madonna?
Artist Tony Rave’s work comes to remind us that piety is not strictly White.
Pratt’s 2023 Fine Arts MFA Thesis Exhibition Is On View in Brooklyn
The two-part exhibition features the work of 41 graduating artists across disciplines, including painting, sculpture, printmaking, and integrated practices.
The Most Stirring Press Photographs of 2022
Photographs captured war-torn Ukraine, the Taliban’s takeover of Afghanistan, and an Iranian woman defying the mandatory hijab law.
NY Governor’s Proposed Budget Slashes Pandemic-Era Arts Funds
The cuts to the New York State Council on the Arts budget are attributed to the expiration of pandemic relief programs, but advocates say arts organizations need more support.