Ellen Gallagher and Adrienne Edwards

4 March 2018

Roski Talks at The Broad

A conversation with artist Ellen Gallagher and curator Adrienne Edwards as part of the Roski Talks series. The pair discuss Gallagher’s practice referencing her work in the context of the Broad collection, and her participation in Edwards’ recent 'Blackness in Abstraction' exhibition, among other topics.

About Ellen Gallagher Ellen Gallagher brings together non-representational formal concerns and charged figuration in paintings, drawings, collages, and films that reveal themselves slowly, first as intricate abstractions, then later as unnerving stories. The tension sustained between minimalist abstraction and image-based narratives deriving from her use of found materials gives rise to a dynamic that posits the historical constructions of the “New Negro”—a central development of the Harlem Renaissance—with concurrent developments in modernist abstraction. In doing so, she points to the artificiality of the perceived schism between figuration and abstraction in art. Ellen Gallagher was born in 1965 in Providence, Rhode Island. She attended Oberlin College, Ohio (1982–84); Studio 70, Fort Thomas, Kentucky (1989); School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Massachusetts (1992); and Skowhegan School of Art, Maine (1993). Recent solo exhibitions include “AxME,” Tate Modern, London (2013, traveled to Sara Hildén Art Museum, Finland; and Haus der Kunst, Munich, through 2014); “Don’t Axe Me,” New Museum, New York (2013); “Ice or Salt,” SCAD Museum of Art, Savannah (2013); and “AxME,” Haus der Kunst, Munich (2014). Gallagher participated in the Biennale di Venezia in 2003 and 2015, and was awarded the American Academy Award in Art in 2000. About Adrienne Edwards Adrienne Edwards is Curator at Performa, Curator at Large, Visual Arts at the Walker Art Center, and a PhD candidate in performance studies at New York University. Since 2010, she has spearheaded Performa’s year-round programming, contributed to the Performa biennial, and led its collaborations with The Museum of Modern Art, New York and The Studio Museum in Harlem. Her curatorial work focuses on artists of the African Diaspora and the Global South, including the Blackness in Abstraction exhibition and catalogue for Pace Gallery. She is a contributor to ApertureArt in America, Artforum.com, Spike Art Quarterly, and Parkett, and has given talks and presentations at the Bienal de São Paulo, Johann Jacobs Museum, Brooklyn Museum of Art, Museum of Modern Art New York, Para Site International Conference Hong Kong, The Studio Museum in Harlem, Whitechapel Gallery, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York University, Stanford and Northwestern University. Roski Talks series is organized by The Broad in partnership with USC’s Roski School of Art and Design. Roski Talks is a lecture series featuring in-depth public presentations by prominent artists, designers, writers, scholars and curators. These talks give Roski graduate students the opportunity to meet one-on-one with the speaker after the event to present their own work and learn from the speaker’s professional expertise.