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James Cohan Gallery

The Backwards Forward

  • Alison Elizabeth Taylor
  • 3fcc670e 8609 4872 8662 15d56f1690ac

Press for The Backwards Forward

Current Exhibitions at James Cohan Gallery


A Lotus in a Sea of Fire

  • Tuan Andrew Nguyen,
  • Opens: Feb. 28, 2020
  • Closes: May. 03, 2020
  • Reception:
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Volume

  • Federico Herrero,
  • Opens: Jan. 17, 2020
  • Closes: Feb. 23, 2020
  • Reception: Jan. 17, 2020
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

El manto negro / The black shroud

  • Teresa Margolles,
  • Opens: Jan. 10, 2020
  • Closes: Feb. 29, 2020
  • Reception: Jan. 10, 2020
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Twenty Years

  • Group show,
  • Opens: Nov. 01, 2019
  • Closes: Dec. 20, 2019
  • Reception:
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

James Cohan: Twenty Years

  • Group show,
  • Opens: Nov. 01, 2019
  • Closes: Dec. 20, 2019
  • Reception:
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Music is Not Sound

  • Nam June Paik,
  • Opens: Sep. 11, 2019
  • Closes: Oct. 20, 2019
  • Reception:
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Observations at Night

  • Josiah McElheny,
  • Opens: Sep. 06, 2019
  • Closes: Oct. 19, 2019
  • Reception: Sep. 06, 2019
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Scott Olson

  • Scott Olson,
  • Opens: Jun. 20, 2019
  • Closes: Jul. 26, 2019
  • Reception: Jun. 20, 2019
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

NOISELESS

  • Elias Sime,
  • Opens: Apr. 27, 2019
  • Closes: Jul. 12, 2019
  • Reception: Apr. 27, 2019
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Je bâtis a roches mon langage

  • Firelei Báez,
  • Opens: Apr. 20, 2019
  • Closes: Jun. 16, 2019
  • Reception: Apr. 30, 2019
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Cosmic Theater

  • Lee Mullican,
  • Opens: Mar. 07, 2019
  • Closes: Apr. 20, 2019
  • Reception: Mar. 07, 2019
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Passing through the gates of irresponsibility

  • Simon Evans,
  • Sarah Lannan,
  • Opens: Mar. 01, 2019
  • Closes: Apr. 14, 2019
  • Reception: Mar. 01, 2019
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Borders

  • Etel Adnan,
  • Edgardo Aragón,
  • Yael Bartana,
  • Jorge Méndez Blake,
  • Mounir Fatmi,
  • Susan Hefuna,
  • Federico Herrero,
  • Yun-Fei Ji,
  • Byron Kim,
  • Mernet Larsen,
  • Sol LeWitt,
  • Candice Lin,
  • Teresa Margolles,
  • Misheck Masamvu,
  • Jordan Nassar,
  • Katie Paterson,
  • The Propeller Group,
  • Matthew Ritchie,
  • Hiraki Sawa,
  • Dread Scott,
  • Yinka Shonibare CBE,
  • Elias Sime,
  • Mikhael Subotzky,
  • Alison Elizabeth Taylor
  • Fred Tomaselli,
  • Hank Willis Thomas,
  • XU ZHEN®,
  • Opens: Jan. 10, 2019
  • Closes: Feb. 23, 2019
  • Reception:
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Borders

  • Katie Paterson,
  • The Propeller Group,
  • Matthew Ritchie,
  • Hiraki Sawa,
  • Dread Scott,
  • Yinka Shonibare CBE,
  • Elias Sime,
  • Mikhael Subotzky,
  • Alison Elizabeth Taylor
  • Fred Tomaselli,
  • Hank Willis Thomas,
  • XU ZHEN®️,
  • Etel Adnan,
  • Edgardo Aragòn,
  • Yael Bartana,
  • Jorge Méndez Blake,
  • Mounir Fatmi,
  • Susan Hefuna,
  • Federico Herrero,
  • Yun-Fei Ji,
  • Byron Kim,
  • Mernet Larsen,
  • Sol LeWitt,
  • Candice Lin,
  • Teresa Margolles,
  • Misheck Masamvu,
  • Jordan Nassar,
  • Opens: Jan. 10, 2019
  • Closes: Feb. 23, 2019
  • Reception: Jan. 10, 2019
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Spencer Finch

  • Spencer Finch,
  • Opens: Nov. 02, 2018
  • Closes: Dec. 21, 2018
  • Reception: Nov. 02, 2018
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Open Alphabet

  • Federico Herrero,
  • Opens: Oct. 25, 2018
  • Closes: Dec. 21, 2018
  • Reception: Oct. 25, 2018
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

BEST LIFE

  • Grace Weaver,
  • Opens: Sep. 14, 2018
  • Closes: Oct. 28, 2018
  • Reception: Sep. 14, 2018
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Thought Presence

  • Kathy Butterly,
  • Opens: Sep. 06, 2018
  • Closes: Oct. 20, 2018
  • Reception: Sep. 06, 2018
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Grids

  • Michelle Grabner,
  • Elias Sime,
  • Federico Herrero,
  • Spencer Finch,
  • Josiah McElheny,
  • Simon Evans,
  • Scott Olson,
  • Beatriz Milhazes,
  • Yinka Shonibare MBE,
  • Sol LeWitt,
  • Trenton Doyle Hancock,
  • Fred Tomaselli,
  • Opens: Jun. 28, 2018
  • Closes: Jul. 27, 2018
  • Reception:
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Washing

  • Helene Appel,
  • Opens: Jun. 22, 2018
  • Closes: Jul. 27, 2018
  • Reception: Jun. 22, 2018
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Rumors, Ridicules and Retributions

  • Yun-Fei Ji,
  • Opens: Apr. 28, 2018
  • Closes: Jun. 17, 2018
  • Reception:
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Situation Room

  • Mernet Larsen,
  • Opens: Apr. 19, 2018
  • Closes: Jun. 16, 2018
  • Reception: Apr. 19, 2018
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

EXTENDED: Movement Field

  • XU ZHEN®️,
  • Opens: Mar. 03, 2018
  • Closes: Apr. 22, 2018
  • Reception: Mar. 03, 2018
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Moving Stillness

  • Bill Viola,
  • Opens: Feb. 22, 2018
  • Closes: Apr. 14, 2018
  • Reception: Feb. 22, 2018
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Clue to Utsushi

  • Tabaimo,
  • Opens: Jan. 13, 2018
  • Closes: Feb. 25, 2018
  • Reception:
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Sunday Paintings, 1/7/01 to 2/11/18

  • Byron Kim,
  • Opens: Jan. 05, 2018
  • Closes: Feb. 17, 2018
  • Reception: Jan. 05, 2018
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

The Backwards Forward

  • Alison Elizabeth Taylor
  • Opens: Nov. 09, 2017
  • Closes: Dec. 22, 2017
  • Reception: Nov. 09, 2017
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

The 1960's

  • Lee Mullican,
  • Opens: Oct. 19, 2017
  • Closes: Dec. 21, 2017
  • Reception: Oct. 19, 2017
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

August

  • Omer Fast,
  • Opens: Sep. 16, 2017
  • Closes: Oct. 29, 2017
  • Reception: Sep. 16, 2017
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

By Proxy

  • Francis Alÿs,
  • Alighiero Boetti,
  • John Cage,
  • Marcel Duchamp,
  • Wade Guyton,
  • Oliver Laric,
  • Lee Mingwei,
  • Sol LeWitt,
  • Yoko Ono,
  • Jon Rafman,
  • Mariah Robertson,
  • Xu Zhen,
  • Siebren Versteeg,
  • Opens: Nov. 20, 2014
  • Closes: Jan. 31, 2015
  • Reception:
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Current Events

  • Fred Tomaselli,
  • Opens: May. 01, 2014
  • Closes: Jun. 14, 2014
  • Reception: May. 01, 2014
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Frieze Art Fair - New York

  • Booth B13,
  • Opens: May. 09, 2014
  • Closes: May. 12, 2014
  • Reception:
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Michelle Grabner

  • Michelle Grabner,
  • Opens: Oct. 09, 2014
  • Closes: Nov. 08, 2014
  • Reception:
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Helene Appel

  • Helene Appel,
  • Opens: Sep. 04, 2014
  • Closes: Oct. 04, 2014
  • Reception:
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Pandemic Pentameter

  • Trenton Doyle Hancock,
  • Opens: Oct. 21, 2016
  • Closes: Nov. 27, 2016
  • Reception: Oct. 21, 2016
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

The Fifth Season

  • Group show,
  • Opens: Jun. 24, 2014
  • Closes: Aug. 08, 2014
  • Reception: Jun. 26, 2014
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Elias Sime

  • Elias Sime,
  • Opens: Sep. 10, 2015
  • Closes: Oct. 17, 2015
  • Reception: Sep. 10, 2015
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

The Living Need Light, The Dead Need Music

  • The Propeller Group,
  • Opens: Apr. 08, 2016
  • Closes: May. 15, 2016
  • Reception: Apr. 08, 2016
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

My business is circumference

  • Spencer Finch,
  • Opens: Oct. 14, 2016
  • Closes: Nov. 26, 2016
  • Reception: Oct. 14, 2016
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Nam June Paik

  • Nam June Paik,
  • Opens: Feb. 12, 2015
  • Closes: Mar. 14, 2015
  • Reception:
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

The Holy Land

  • Folkert de Jong,
  • Opens: Mar. 19, 2015
  • Closes: Apr. 25, 2015
  • Reception: Mar. 19, 2015
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Rage of the Ballet Gods

  • Yinka Shonibare MBE,
  • Opens: Apr. 30, 2015
  • Closes: Jun. 20, 2015
  • Reception: Apr. 30, 2015
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

All Watched Over, curated by Tina Kukielski

  • Group show,
  • Opens: Jun. 25, 2015
  • Closes: Aug. 07, 2015
  • Reception:
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Pop

  • Robert Smithson,
  • Opens: Nov. 20, 2015
  • Closes: Jan. 10, 2016
  • Reception:
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Marola

  • Beatriz Milhazes,
  • Opens: Oct. 22, 2015
  • Closes: Nov. 28, 2015
  • Reception: Oct. 22, 2015
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Omer Fast

  • Omer Fast,
  • Opens: Mar. 25, 2016
  • Closes: May. 07, 2016
  • Reception: Mar. 25, 2016
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Intimisms

  • Group show,
  • Opens: Jun. 23, 2016
  • Closes: Jul. 29, 2016
  • Reception:
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Soul Gym

  • Simon Evans™,
  • Opens: Jan. 27, 2017
  • Closes: Mar. 05, 2017
  • Reception:
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

A Line Can Go Anywhere

  • Group show,
  • Opens: Sep. 07, 2017
  • Closes: Oct. 14, 2017
  • Reception: Sep. 07, 2017
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Things People Do

  • Mernet Larsen,
  • Opens: Jan. 22, 2016
  • Closes: Feb. 21, 2016
  • Reception:
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Xu Zhen

  • Xu Zhen,
  • Opens: Sep. 08, 2016
  • Closes: Oct. 08, 2016
  • Reception: Sep. 08, 2016
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Lee Mullican

  • Lee Mullican,
  • Opens: May. 14, 2016
  • Closes: Jun. 18, 2016
  • Reception: May. 14, 2016
  • Hours: 5 - 7pm
  • Admission: free

A pot, a joke, a rhythm, a theory

  • Kirk Mangus,
  • Opens: May. 20, 2016
  • Closes: Jun. 26, 2016
  • Reception: May. 20, 2016
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Vanishing Points - Curated by Andrianna Campbell

  • Marina Adams,
  • Black Women Artists for Black Lives Matter,
  • Lucas Blalock,
  • Alex Dodge,
  • Carroll Dunham,
  • RJ Messineo,
  • Beatriz Milhazes,
  • Matt Mullican,
  • Adam Novak,
  • Toyin Ojih Odutola,
  • Laura Owens,
  • Trevor Paglen,
  • Hanna Sandin,
  • Robert Smithson,
  • Joseph Stabilito,
  • Ruth Vollmer,
  • Peixuan Wang,
  • Jack Whitten,
  • Opens: Mar. 23, 2017
  • Closes: Apr. 22, 2017
  • Reception:
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Certain Skins

  • Graham Anderson,
  • Sadie Benning,
  • Sara Greenberger Rafferty,
  • Byron Kim,
  • Opens: Jun. 29, 2016
  • Closes: Sep. 11, 2016
  • Reception:
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Prejudice at Home: A Parlour, a Library, and a Room

  • Yinka Shonibare MBE,
  • Opens: Feb. 17, 2017
  • Closes: Mar. 18, 2017
  • Reception: Feb. 17, 2017
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Michelle Grabner - EXTENDED

  • Michelle Grabner,
  • Opens: Dec. 08, 2016
  • Closes: Feb. 09, 2017
  • Reception: Dec. 08, 2016
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Mud Root Ochre Leaf Star

  • Byron Kim,
  • Opens: Dec. 09, 2016
  • Closes: Jan. 22, 2017
  • Reception: Dec. 09, 2016
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Scott Olson

  • Scott Olson,
  • Opens: Mar. 10, 2017
  • Closes: Apr. 23, 2017
  • Reception:
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Twisted & Hidden

  • Elias Sime,
  • Opens: Apr. 28, 2017
  • Closes: Jun. 17, 2017
  • Reception: Apr. 28, 2017
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Nerve Reserve

  • Amy Feldman,
  • Opens: Apr. 27, 2017
  • Closes: Jun. 04, 2017
  • Reception: Apr. 27, 2017
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Sculpture

  • Nahum Tevet,
  • Richard Long,
  • Alan Saret,
  • Opens: Jun. 09, 2017
  • Closes: Jul. 28, 2017
  • Reception: Jun. 09, 2017
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

Dream Machines

  • David Altmejd,
  • Omer Fast,
  • Trenton Doyle Hancock,
  • Mernet Larsen,
  • Lee Mullican,
  • Jon Rafman,
  • Tabaimo,
  • Fred Tomaselli,
  • Opens: Jun. 23, 2017
  • Closes: Jul. 28, 2017
  • Reception:
  • Hours: 6 - 8pm
  • Admission: free

When

Nov 09 - Dec 22, 2017

  • Reception: Nov 09, 6 - 8pm
  • Artist Talk: Nov 12, 2 - 3pm
  • Taylor will be in conversation at the Lower East Side gallery with Glenn Adamson, curator, author and senior scholar at Yale Center for British Art.

Where

James Cohan Gallery

  • 291 Grand Street, New York NY 10002 Map
  • 212.714.9500

About

The Backwards Forward is a show of new works by Brooklyn-based artist Alison Elizabeth Taylor at James Cohan, Lower East Side. In the artist’s fifth solo gallery show, Taylor’s new work reveals an evolution in media and technique that demonstrates her restless creativity and originality. Here, Taylor assembles small parts cut from diverse materials to create a disjointed whole. Well-known for her use of the technique of marquetry, recently, Taylor has been reinventing the form by adding paint and photographic imagery such as desert floors, rusting neon signs and rotting wood.

In these new works, Taylor examines the pursuit of pleasure in contemporary American public life, inspired by scenes in and around Taylor’s hometown of Las Vegas. The mania found in the maximalist casinos and bars of her hometown is contrasted with works that explore the desire to escape into the natural world. The subjects of these wall-based works range from casino architecture, portraits of people playing the slot machines, domestic interiors and wide open Western landscapes. Taylor builds narratives from life observed, from her drawings of people at play, her photographs of Las Vegas and aerial photography from the NASA website. Combining and recombining these sources is a process the artist refers to as “Frankensteining.”

Particularly interested in how artists from the past developed their subjects, Taylor’s research led her to look at paintings from before and between the World Wars. She examined how constructed or play-acted these tableaus were, and how personal or distant their subjects. Taylor refers to Thomas Eakins who painted from photographs of his students frolicking in the nude. Manet and Lautrec found their painting references during visits to the Folies-Bergére. Taylor also looked at painters Otto Dix, Christian Schad and George Grosz of Weimar Berlin between the World Wars, known as the Verists or Neue Sachlichkeit who rejected romantic idealism. Further, Taylor found parallels in contemporary life such as in the Las Vegas casinos that draw large numbers of people engaging in public pursuits of pleasure.

Themes that run throughout the works in The Backwards Forward were inspired by this research and including the pursuit of payout in Sam’s Town, and the hierarchy of server/dealer/entertainer/customer in The Cosmopolitan and The Desert Inn. Tammy’s Place depicts the creation of a social network during target practice at a shooting range. In Forgive Me, Mr. Eakins, Taylor borrows and combines several of Eakin’s 1890 photos to create a photo collage from which to draw.

In this new body of work, Taylor is a pragmatist and observer of public life. She depicts her subjects at play, in the contemporary equivalents of the pleasure palaces of yore, at home and on the range—with her sharp critical eye balanced by an insider’s understanding.


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