We walk the world two by two: Mary, 2015. Audio interview, 10:03 runtime
We walk the world two by two: Walter & Liz, 2015. Audio interview, 9:56 runtime
I am a conceptual artist who seeks to investigate the potential of the everyday as a catalyst for intimacy. I’m captivated by the common denominators of the human experience: the things that people do always. I highlight the seemingly normal as a means of questioning its stability. I am never far from the strange: not the bizarre, but the fascinating estrangement of everyday life. Originally trained as a theater director, I still embrace aspects of Brecht’s idea of alienation: the discomfort that arises from calling attention to structure through naming or pointing. That disconnect appears most clearly for me as a rupture between ourselves, and what we do without thinking. These usually unnoticed acts serve as my primary method of production and inquiry. Now I engage theater’s collaborative, multi-disciplinary form through various aspects of myself. Everything that I create – texts, situations, installations, performances – leads my participants through interconnected layers of considered engagement. In bringing these forms together, it is my desire to build a unified and multivalent world with a variety of entry points: each form serves both as translation and as layering, manifesting a density of inquiry while maintaining a flexibility for new voices and information to change the story. My hope is always that this continued questioning will encourage audiences, over time, to live differently – not in a grand sense, but simply and enduringly.
I have many influences, divided here into rough categories. For rigor, connection, and creep factor: Adrian Piper, Andrea Fraser, Vito Acconci. For use of language: Claudia Rankine, Lucy Lippard. For structure/exhibition format/archiving: Group Material. Additionally, as so much of my work draws from immediate experience of the world, I’m influenced by people I watch on the street, the group behaviors that manifest through internet culture, and signage in public places (even when meant for private eyes). Some elements of my projects always already exist, and it’s just a matter of finding them. I use familiar structures — bureaucracy, social rituals and games — to inspire participation and destabilize assumptions. I am full of questions that I answer through shared play. I believe in performance as participation, and installation as scrutiny. If I succeed, I will become the world’s most invisible performance artist: always present, but unseen. Without you, my work is nothing.
Recent projects have asked how what we do shapes who we are (The Bureau of Self-Recognition, 2011 – 2013), or how patterns and routines make a place what it is (The Department of Local Affairs, 2014). My current project, The Book of Everyday Instruction (2015 – 2017), is an eight-chapter project exploring one-on-one social interaction. The project investigates the particular states of flow, play, and conflict that we experience when interacting with only ourselves and one other. Conceptually, the project is the next step in my creation of performance work for no audience. The majority (if not the entirety) of The Book of Everyday Instruction’s performance aspects will be conducted in “private”: as shared pair activities between artist and participant. These private works will serve as the research platform for more public exhibition elements.
The odd-numbered chapters (1, 3, 5, and 7) are conducted as social practice projects, directly engaging with others; even-numbered chapters (2, 4, 6, and 8) are produced as studio projects.
My work sample contains images and audio files from the first five chapters of The Book of Everyday Instruction:
1.Chapter One: you+me together. An investigation of spending time with others, and how we know when we’re really together. Medium: photo and text diptychs, collected objects, instant photos. Premiered at SPACES (Cleveland, OH), May 2015.
2.Chapter Two: Things I’ve seen people do lately. An investigation of the pair-relationship inherent to voyeurism. Are we really a pair if only the voyeur knows that the relationship exists? Medium: video sculpture, monoprints, text-based works, and internet photo archive. Premiered at Salisbury University (Salisbury, MD), October 2015.
3.Chapter Three: We walk the world two by two. An investigation of making a place through shared partnership and labor over time. Medium: bronze-coated aluminum plaques, audio interviews. Permanent public installation in Greensboro, NC, installed November 2015.
4.Chapter Four: It’s amazing we don’t have more fights. An investigation of how we tell stories through the proximity and distance of two bodies in space. Medium: two publications, bathroom installation, workshops, and film (forthcoming). Premiered at the Museum of Modern Art, April 2016.
5.Chapter Five: Protect & Preserve. An investigation of the relationship between people and safe spaces. Will premiere at the Pulitzer Art Foundation (St. Louis, MO) in October 2016. Medium: postcard booklet and lecture-performance. Produced with support from the Rema Hort Mann Foundation’s 2016 Artist Community Engagement Grant.
Brooklyn College CUNY, Department of Interdisciplinary Studies, MFA in Performance & Interactive Media Arts.
Yale University, Department of Theatre Studies, BA cum laude with distinction in major.
SOLO EXHIBITIONS + PROJECTS
Book of Everyday Instruction, Chapter Three: We walk the world two by two. Elsewhere, Greensboro, NC. Curator: George Scheer.
Book of Everyday Instruction, Chapter Two: Things I’ve seen people do lately. Salisbury University, Salisbury, MD. Curator: Tara Gladden.
Book of Everyday Instruction, Chapter One: you + me together, SPACES, Cleveland, OH. Curator: Christina Vassallo.*
Mental Map, Special Project for BRIC Arts, Brooklyn, NY. Curators: Elizabeth Ferrer & Jennifer Gerow.
Urban Design Lab/The Department of Local Affairs (with Teal Gardner), Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts, Omaha, NE. Curator: Amanda McDonald-Crowley.
The Bureau of Self-Recognition, Momenta Art, Brooklyn, NY Curator: Eric Heist.*
Bank Vault, EIDIA House/Plato’s Cave, Brooklyn, NY. Curator: EIDIA.
Free Consultations, Panoply Performance Laboratory, Brooklyn, NY. Curator: Esther Neff.
Process Dinner Deluxe, SUPERFRONT, Brooklyn, NY. Curator: Mitch McEwen.
Tea Will Be Served, Agape Enterprise, Brooklyn, NY. Curator: Kikuko Tanaka.
Boardroom Bed & Breakfast, Brooklyn College MFA Thesis (with TJ Hospodar), New York, NY
The [Gallery] Walks, Robert Moses Walk Project, New York, NY. Curator: Blake Morris.
SELECTED GROUP EXHIBITIONS
Once More, With Feeling, Elizabeth Foundation for the Arts, New York, NY. Curator: Chelsea Haines.*
BRIC Biennial, BRIC (at Weeksville Heritage Center), Brooklyn, NY. Curators: Elizabeth Ferrer & Jennifer Gerow.*
Dispatches, Southeastern Center for Contemporary Art, Winston-Salem, NC. Curator: Cora Fisher.
House of Dust, James Gallery at CUNY Graduate Center, New York, NY. Curator: Katherine Carl.
A Certain Urge (Towards Turmoil), Elizabeth Foundation for the Arts, New York, NY. Curator: Blanca de la Torre.
Fung Wah Biennial, Flux Factory, Queens, NY. Curators: Will Owen and Sally Szwed.
Eyebeam in Objects, Upfor Gallery, Portland, OR. Curator: Roddy Schrock.
Bronx Biennial, Bronx Musuem of the Arts, Bronx, NY. Curators: Laura Napier & Hatuey Ramos-Fermin.*
Resource Room at Prelude 2014, James Gallery, CUNY Graduate Center, New York, NY. Curator: Katherine Carl.
Practice, Practicing, and the Perpetual Being of Performance, Museum School of Fine Arts, Boston, MA. Curators: Esther Neff and Helina Metafaria.
Call and Response, Antioch College, Yellow Springs, OH. Curator: Gabrielle Civil.
The Deconsumptionists, DEPE Space, Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit, Detroit, MI.
LUMEN Festival, Staten Island, NY. Curators: Esther Neff and David C. Terry.
Sneak Review: Ben Patterson, Schau Fenster, Berlin, Germany. Curator: Petra Stegmann.
Dear Diary: Update All, Neuberger Museum, Purchase, NY. Curator: Jacqueline Shilkoff.
Curate NYC: Online exhibits selected by Leslie Johnstone and Hitomi Iwasaki, New York, NY
NYC25, Westwood Gallery, New York, NY. Curator: Danny Simmons
Etiquette for Lucid Dreaming, Project for Empty Space @ Newark Penn Station, Newark, NJ. Curators: Jasmine Wahi & Menakshi Thurakode.
Ich/I, Kunstlerhaus Stuttgart, Stuttgart, Germany. Curator: Adnan Yildiz.
Untitled (As of Yet), Flux Factory, Queens, NY. Curators: Sally Szwed and Christina Vassallo.
SAME (difference)_sculpture in relation, Kunstkammer AZB, Zurich, Switzerland. Curators: Anne Koskiluoma and Tanja Trampe.
Taking Site, D21 Kunstraum/5533 art space, Leipzig Germany / Istanbul, Turkey. * Curators: Nancy Atakan, Filiz Avunduk, Volkan Aslan, Lena Brueggemann, Hannah Sieben.
Romer XVI, Akademie Schloss Solitude, Stuttgart, Germany. Curator: Marlene Perronet.
Anti-Auto Show, Contemporary Art Institute of Detroit, Detroit, MI. Curator: Spread Art.
The Culture Project’s Women Center Stage Festival, New York, NY. Curator: Manda Martin.
Crossed Boundaries, Glasshouse Projects, Brooklyn, NY. Curators: Lital Dotan and Eyal Perry.
Ephemeral Evidence, Exit Art, New York, NY. Curator: Andy Horwitz.
Itinerant, Queens Media Arts Development, Queens, NY. Curator: Hector Canonge.
iCan, IV Soldiers Gallery, Brooklyn, NY. Curator: Ivy Castellanos.
Festival of Ideas for the New City, The New Museum, New York, NY. Invited by Derek Denckla.
Detroit: A Brooklyn Case Study, SUPERFRONT LA/ Marygrove College, Los Angeles/Detroit, MI*
3rd Annual Bushwhack Festival, The Bushwick Starr, Brooklyn, NY. Curator: Noel Allain.
Urban Wilderness Action Center, Eyebeam Art + Technology Center, New York, NY. Curator: Amanda McDonald-Crowley.
Last Supper Art Festival, 3rd Ward, Brooklyn, NY. Curator: Coralina Meyer.
Moviehouse: Chat Roulette, 3rd Ward, Brooklyn, NY. Curator: Chris Henderson.
The Work Office, chashama, New York, NY. Curator: Katarina Jerinic and Naomi Miller.
SELECTED HONORS & AWARDS
Appointed as visiting Assistant Professor in the Art Department at Queens College, CUNY.
Recipient of Rema Hort Mann Foundation Artist Community Engagement grant.
Rema Hort Mann Foundation Grant Nominee.
Invited to host a Dinner Without An Agenda at the Queens Museum of Art, Queens, NY.
Public art commission for Elsewhere’s South Elm Projects, Greensboro, NC.
Selected for the Bronx Museum’s Artists in the Marketplace (AIM) 35.
Rema Hort Mann Foundation Grant Nominee.
Selected as one of four artist-curators for the 2014 Prelude Festival at the CUNY Graduate Center.
New work commission from LUMEN (Staten Island, NY).
Rema Hort Mann Foundation Grant Nominee.
New work commission from the Culture Project for Women Center Stage Festival 2012.
Nurture Art Benefit Honoree.
Rema Hort Mann Foundation Grant Nominee.
Recipient of Brooklyn College Graduate Travel Fellowship.
One of four graduate students selected to speak at Pizer Colloquium, Brooklyn College, CUNY.
Sole department recipient of Brooklyn College Graduate Tuition Waiver.
Recipient of Brooklyn College Library Art Award for video “Dancing Couple Over Time.”
New work commission from the Bushwick Starr’s 3rd annual Bushwhack Festival.
RESIDENCIES & FELLOWSHIPS
Triangle Arts Studio Residency, New York, NY
Recipient of inaugural Spillways Fellowship at Antenna, New Orleans, LA
Sandhills Institute Fellowship, Rushville, NE
Luminary Arts Residency, St. Louis, MO
Lower Manhattan Cultural Council Workspace Residency (2015 – 2016), New York, NY
Elsewhere South Elm Projects Residency and Commission, Greensboro, NC
SWAP Residency, SPACES, Cleveland, OH
Bemis Center residency and commission, Omaha, NE
Create Change Residency, the Laundromat Project, New York, NY
Fellowship in Utopian Practice, Culture Push, New York, NY
TAKING SITE residency at 5533 Art Space, Istanbul, Turkey
Visiting artist at Akademie Schloss Solitude, Stuttgart, Germany
Eyebeam Art + Technology Center Teaching Residency, New York, NY
The Artist as Culture Producer: Living and Sustaining a Creative Life, edited by Sharon Louden Intellect Books.
“The Book of Everyday Instruction, Chapter Five” (Artist Book), published by the Pulitzer Foundation, October 2016.
“The Role of the Question,” I Wish to Say: Activating Democracy One Voice at a Time (ed: Sheryl Oring), published by Intellect Press, September 2016.
“Experiments in Joy (Score)” Obsidian 41.1 and 41.2 (eds.: Gabrille Civil & Ebony Noelle Golden).
“This slideshow is here so we both know what to do,” Emergency Index, published by Ugly Duckling Presse.
Bureau of Self-Recognition (Artist Monograph), published by am i human Press, May 2013.
“What would you do with . . .? (A Conversation About Value),” Emergency Index, published by Ugly Duckling Presse.
“Partial holdings of the Bank of the Bureau of Self-Recognition,” Exit Strata (Print), December 2012.
“Tea Will Be Served,” Emergency Index, published by Ugly Duckling Presse.
“Not Ruined Enough,” Lab for Urban Futures: Detroit, published by SUPERFRONT.
“Notes from Architecture at Occupy Wall Street,” Broken English, published in conjunction with Performa 11, edited by Julieta Aranda and Carlos Motta, November 2011. (With Mitch McEwen.)
“7884 Collaboration Profile” (working title), YAF Connections, published by AIA Young Architects Forum, November 2011. (With Mitch McEwen.)
“Defining a City” City As Lab, edited by Adriana Young. Published by Parsons School of Design, 2011.“BARCAMP,” SCOPE New York International Contemporary Art Show, published by SCOPE Art.
“From Small Plates to Big Purpose: Investigating Cities Bite by Bite,” Detroit: A Brooklyn Case Study, published by SUPERFRONT.
“Is Brooklyn (Abu Dhabi) Over?” New City Reader, published in conjunction with the New Museum’s Last Newspaper exhibit.
Regular contributor on performance and social practice for Hyperallergic, November 2013 – present.
Regular contributor on real estate, arts and culture for Brooklyn Based, 2010.
“What are the things that make us a ‘we’?” Open Engagement Blog, March 2014.
“Heist at Staten Island’s LUMEN,” Culturebot, June 2013.
“Dead Email Office,” word servents, April 2013.
“The era of silent reading is over.”, word servents, January 2013.
“Doing the Always,” word servents, November 2012.
“Field Notes: Bureau of Self-Recognition,” Exit Strata (Blog), September 2012.
“Ephemeral Evidence Conversation: Chloë Bass and Andy Horwitz,” Culturebot, April 2012.
“South Elm Projects preserve a neighborhood in transition,” by Jeff Sikes, Yes Weekly, December 2015.
“Objectifying Our Digital Lives,” by E. Odin Cathcart, Hyperallergic, October 2015.
“Learning as a Form of Art: Artists and Educators Overlooking the Sculpture Garden,” by Leticia Gutierrez, MoMA Learning, August 2015.
“A conversation: Chloë Bass on Prelude 2014,” by Eleonora Castagna, Droste Effect, October 2014
“I drank wine, I saw art, but this was no opening,” by Karen Kedmey, Artsy, October 2014
“In conversation: Prelude 2014,” by Frank Hentschker, The Brooklyn Rail, September 2014
“A laboratory experience,” by Casey Logan, Omaha World-Herald, September 2014
“From Private Repository to Public Forum,” by Martha Schwendener, New York Times, February 2014.
“Studio Visit: Chloë Bass,” by Sophie Buonomo, BOMB Blog, July 2013
“Chloë Bass: Portfolio,” BOMB Blog, July 2013
“An Examination in the Process of Self-Recognizing,” by Willow Goldstein, Arts in Bushwick blog, June 2013
“Highlights of Bushwick Open Studios 2013,” by Chelsea Haines, BOMB Blog, June 2013
“AO On-Site: Bushwick Open Studios 2013,” by Hannah Palmer Egan, Art Observed, June 2013
“10 Must-Visit Studios, 10 Must-See Exhibitions, and More at Bushwick Open Studios 2013,” by Benjamin Sutton, Art Info, May 2013
“And They’re Off: Friday Night Openings at Bushwick Open Studios 2013,” by Hrag Vartanian, Hyperallergic, May 2013
“Entrevista de la Edicion: Chloe Bass,” by Oscar Oliver Didier, ENTORNO Magazine, Summer 2012
“Self Money in the Bank,” by Akeem Duncan, Quiet Lunch Blog, September 2012
“Chloë Bass Has Her Designs Set on ‘Self-Recognition,’” by Lanie Zipoy, Works by Women, March 2012
“Bushwick’s Best Performers Show Off During SITE Fest,” by Sam Goldman, Times Newsweekly, March
“Armory Arts Week, SITE Fest,” video profile by Grace Moon, Velvet Park Media, March 2011
“Chloë Bass: So Much Amazing Stuff!” by Katarina Hybenova, Bushwick Daily, March 2011
“Social Disrobing and Other Party Fare,” by Melena Ryzik, New York Times, June 2010
“SITE Unseen: Bushwick’s Performance Festival Returns,” by Aaron Short, February 2010
“Spare Times: Open Studios in Brooklyn,” by Melena Ryzik, New York Times, June 2009
“Escaping from the Art Market,” by Benjamin Sutton, L Magazine, May 2009
“Comfort Food,” by Katherine Sharpe, ReadyMade Magazine, February 2009
“A Day in the Life of Chloë Bass,” by Rachel Geizhals, CUNY Graduate School of Journalism Blog, November 2008
2017 – 2019 Visiting Assistant Professor, Studio for Interrelated Media, Massachusetts College of Art
2017 Visiting Artist, Bennett College
2016 Visiting Assistant Professor in Social Practice & Performance, Art Department, Queens College
2015 Mentor, Oklahoma Arts Writing & Curatorial Fellowship
2015 Visiting Artist: School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Antioch College; Moore College of Art & Design; University of North Carolina Greensboro.
2014 Resident Teaching Artist, Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts.
2013 Mentor, New York Arts Practicum.
2011 – 2012 Adjunct Lecturer in Performance and Social Practice, Brooklyn College>
2011 Resident Teaching Artist, Eyebeam Art + Technology Center