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Jun 13, 2014 at 7:30 pm

The Traffic of Illusions

With Jean-Christian Bourcart in conversation with artists Pawel Wojtasik and Nan Goldin.

The Most beautiful Day Of Life # 23

Using photography, writing and moving pictures, Jean-Christian Bourcart explores what constitutes an image: a significant surface that questions our relationship to ourselves, to society, to history, to reality. There is often an element of transgression in his work, as he invades personal and private spaces with his camera. From one project to the other, he is playing with layers of meanings to investigate how representation helps us understand the raw nature of the things without reason.

Through his carer, he collected unsold wedding pictures, photographed with a hidden camera in brothels, swinging and S&M cubs, photographed New Yorkers stuck in traffic jams, projected pictures of Iraqi victims on American houses, and documented the most dangerous city in the USA. He also directed two fiction feature movies and a dozen of videos and five books about his work have been published.

JC BourcartJean-Christian Bourcart grew up in France and has been living in New York since 1997. He has been the recipient of the Prix Niepce, the Prix Nadar, the prix Gilles Dusein, the World Press Award, and the Prix du Jeu de Paume. His work has been collected by the Museum of Modern Art, the Musée d’Art Moderne et Contemporain in Geneva, the Maison Européenne de la Photographie, and the Fonds National d’Art Contemporain. He is represented by Galerie VU’ in Paris and by Banks Gallery in Shanghai.



PAWEL-PHOTO-200dpi_01Brooklyn-based filmmaker and video artist Pawel Wojtasik (b. Lodz, Poland) lived in Tunisia before immigrating to the US. He received his MFA in painting from Yale in 1996. Subsequently, he spent two years living at Dai Bosatsu Zendo, a Buddhist monastery. Pawel creates poetic reflections on cultures and ecosystems in the form of short films and large-scale installations. His investigations into the overlooked corners of the environment have led him to pig farms, sewage treatment plants, wrecking yards and autopsy rooms. His film The Aquarium dealt with the destruction of the oceans; Below Sea Level (2009), with sound by Stephen Vitiello, was a 360° immersive installation on the theme of post-Katrina New Orleans, as was Next Atlantis (with music by Sebastian Currier, 2010). More recently, Single Stream (2013-14)a collaboration with Toby Lee and Ernst Kareltackled the problem of waste. Pawel’s work has been shown at venues such as PS1/MoMA, The Whitney Museum, The Museum of the Moving Image and The Reina Sofia Museum in Madrid, and festivals such as Berlinale, Ann Arbor and the New York Film Festival. His short film Pigs won the Grand Prize at the Hong Kong International Film Festival in 2011. Pawel is currently editing The End and the Means, a feature-length film documenting workers of Varanasi, India. Photo by Pat Mazzera.


Nan Goldin Nan Goldin began photographing at the age of 15 and at the age of 19 had her first exhibition of black and white photographs. She received a BFA from the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Tufts University, Boston, in 1977. In 1978 she moved to New York where she continued to document her “extended family”. These photographs became the subject of her slide shows and Goldin’s first book, “The Ballad of Sexual Dependency”. It was groundbreaking work, as she was the first woman to use photography to present the intimate details of her personal life as a public work of art, and inspired a new generation of artists. In 1985 her work was included in the Biennial of the Whitney Museum of American Art, and gained international renown. In 1991 she moved to Berlin, Germany on a DAAD grant and continued to live there until 1994. She has participated in many artistic collaborations, including the books “Vakat” (1993) with poet Joachim Sartorious, “Tokyo Love” with Japanese photographer Nobuyoshi Araki, and “A Double Life” with her old friend David Armstrong (both published in 1994). In 1993, her seminal work “The Other Side,” named after the Boston nightclub where she spent her early years, was published by Scalo. Three years later, in 1996, a major retrospective exhibition of her work, “I’ll be Your Mirror,” closeded at the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, and toured to museums in Europe. That same year the documentary “I’ll be Your Mirror” was awarded a Teddy Bear Award for Best Essay at the Berlin Film Festival. Goldin made the film in collaboration with Edmund Coulthard. In 1997 Goldin went back to Naples and was inspired to make new pictures dedicated to the memory of her friends Cookie Mueller, Daniele and Vittorio Scarpati, and thus in 1997 her book “Ten Years After” was published. In 2000 she moved to Paris and in 2001 a second retrospective, “Le Feu Follet,” was held at the Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris and it, too, toured internationally under the title “The Devil’s Playground” to institutions such as the Whitechapel Art Gallery, London, the Reina Sofia, Madrid, Fundação de Serralves, Porto, Castello di Rivoli, Turin and Ujazdowski Castle, Warsaw. Her film “Sisters Saints and Sibyls” at the Festival d’Automne in 2004 drew the largest attendance ever at the Chapelle Saint-Louis de la Salpêtrière. This piece, a combination of film and still images projected on three screens, is a story of three women trapped in a male hierarchy. It pays homage to her sister Barbara, whose rebellion and suicide have so deeply marked her life and work. In 2006, Goldin was awarded the prestigious “Commandeur des Arts et des Lettres” by the government of France in recognition for her significant contribution to the arts. In 2007, Goldin received the Hassleblad Foundation International Award in Photography, coinciding with the publication of a book, “The Beautiful Smile”, and an exhibition that traveled internationally. Also that year she was included in the group show “Airs de Paris” at Centre Pompidou. In 2009 Goldin was the guest curator at Recontres d’Arles festival for their 40th anniversary, she invited twelve photographers to participate in the exhibition, “Ça me touché”. Goldin’s most recent slide show “Scopophilia” was created especially for the Musée du Louvre and was exhibited at the end of 2010.

Currently she works and lives both in Paris and New York.

Rockaway Brewing Company owners Ethan and Marcus started as homebrewers in Far Rockaway and now brew their beer out of Long Island City, NY. The brewery specializes in handcrafted malt-forward ales which are all brewed onsite in what is the first beer brewery to closed in Queens since Prohibition.


Jun 13, 2014
7:30 pm – 9:30 pm

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