Burning Small Fires
January 28—March 5, 2016
“We still do not know how much less ‘nothing’ can be.”
Lucy Lippard and John Chandler, The Dematerialization of Art, Art International, February 1968
Franklin Parrasch Gallery is pleased to announce Burning Small Fires, a group exhibition of works by Rita Ackermann, Peter Alexander, Frank Gohlke, Joe Goode, and Daniel Turner viewed in the context of Bruce Nauman’s artist publication Burning Small Fires.
In 1968, Nauman set fire to a copy of Various Small Fires and Milk (the Ed Ruscha artist book illustrating a variety of household objects and flames), burning each page and photographing the process. He then used those images to create Burning Small Fires, an unwieldy, two-sided, folded, unnumbered edition. Nauman fully engaged the larger discussion of dematerialization and subsequent regeneration when he destroyed Ruscha’s book, documented that subversive act, and then incorporated those images within his self-published work. The ephemeral nature of art and its vulnerable physicality became a metaphor for the struggle between the survival of material and the survival of ideas.
Fire and regenerative responses are the focus of works by each of the artists in this show. In addition to Nauman’s Burning Small Fires, works on view include examples from significant series by Rita Ackermann (Fire by Days), Peter Alexander (Los Angeles Riots), Frank Gohlke (Mount St. Helens), Joe Goode (Forest Fire), and Daniel Turner (Burning an Entire Body of Work) all of which consider this cycle both as destructive force and as a catalyst of creation.
Burning Small Fires will be on view at Franklin Parrasch Gallery from January 28—March 5, 2016. For further information, please contact the gallery during business hours, Tues-Sat 10a-6p, at 212-246-5360, or at firstname.lastname@example.org.