Mikhael Subotzky / WYE

Mikhael Subotzky / WYE
02 March - 01 April 2017
Installation View

Mikhael Subotzky

WYE, Film Still 5 (1393), 2016 inkjet print on cotton rag paper Image size 22,5 x 30 cm, Paper Size 34,5 x 40cm

Mikhael Subotzky

Sticky-tape Transfer 25 - The Fault, Black Man..., 2016 Pigment inks, Micropore dressing tape and J-Lar tape on cotton paper 69 x 70,5 cm

Mikhael Subotzky

WYE Study 10 (1403), 2016 Graphite and J-Lar tape on paper 20,6 x 14 cm

Mikhael Subotzky

Sticky-tape Transfer 22 - South (or Africa-Political and Sea Routes), 2017 Pigment inks, correction tape and J-Lar tape on cotton paper 196,5 x 150 cm

Mikhael Subotzky

WYE, Film Still 1 , 2016 inkjet print on cotton rag paper Image size 22,5 x 30 cm, Paper Size 34,5 x 40cm

Mikhael Subotzky

Sticky-tape Transfer 26 - Lethbridge, Hermanus and Feio (with Hare), 2016 Pigment inks and J-Lar tape on cotton paper 59 x 50 cm

Mikhael Subotzky

WYE, Film Still 16 (1451), 2016 inkjet print on cotton rag paper Image size 22,5 x 30 cm, Paper Size 34,5 x 40cm

Mikhael Subotzky

WYE, Film Still 19 (1423), 2016 inkjet print on cotton rag paper Image size 22,5 x 30 cm, Paper Size 34,5 x 40cm

Mikhael Subotzky

WYE, Film Still 22 (1461), 2016 inkjet print on cotton rag paper Image size 22,5 x 30 cm, Paper Size 34,5 x 40cm

Mikhael Subotzky

WYE, Film Still 25 (1297), 2016 inkjet print on cotton rag paper Image size 22,5 x 30 cm, Paper Size 34,5 x 40cm

Mikhael Subotzky

WYE Study 21, 2016 Pigment inks and J-Lar tape on cotton paper 25,5 x 37,6 cm

Mikhael Subotzky

Sticky-tape Transfer 19 - #feesmustfall (or Protecting the Architecture of Reason), 2016 Spray paint, pigment inks and J-lar on cotton paper 201 x 257 cm

Mikhael Subotzky

WYE, Film Still 3 (1391), 2016 Inkjet print on cotton rag paper Image: 22.5 x 30 cm Work: 34.5 x 40 cm

Mikhael Subotzky

WYE, Film Still 30 (1416), 2016 inkjet print on cotton rag paper Image size 22,5 x 30 cm, Paper Size 34,5 x 40cm

Mikhael Subotzky

Sticky-tape Transfer 33 - Dear Gemma / Gentlemen of the Dowsing Guild (1560), 2017 Pigment inks and J-Lar tape on cotton paper 150 x 101,5 cm (x 3)

Mikhael Subotzky

Title: WYE Poster 2 (Feio) (1565), 2017 Digital poster 35.6 x 55.9 cm

Mikhael Subotzky

WYE, Film Still 2 (1417), 2016 inkjet print on cotton rag paper Image size 22,5 x 30 cm, Paper Size 34,5 x 40cm

Mikhael Subotzky

WYE, Film Still 9 (0928), 2016 inkjet print on cotton rag paper Image size 22,5 x 30 cm, Paper Size 34,5 x 40cm

Mikhael Subotzky

WYE, Film Still 11 (1443), 2016 inkjet print on cotton rag paper Image size 22,5 x 30 cm, Paper Size 34,5 x 40cm

Mikhael Subotzky

WYE Study 17 (0461), 2016 Pen and J-Lar tape on paper 14,2 x 20,6 cm

Mikhael Subotzky

WYE Study 8 (1401), 2016 Pen and J-Lar tape on paper 20,6 x 13,8 cm

Mikhael Subotzky

WYE, Film Still 15 (1083), 2016 inkjet print on cotton rag paper Image size 22,5 x 30 cm, Paper Size 34,5 x 40cm

Mikhael Subotzky

Sticky-tape Transfer 30, One and Three Hares, 2016 Pigment inks, oil stick and J-Lar tape on cotton paper 270 x 270 cm

Mikhael Subotzky

Title: WYE Poster 3 (Hare) (1566), 2017 Digital poster 35.6 x 55.9 cm

Mikhael Subotzky

WYE, Film Still 14 (0974), 2016 inkjet print on cotton rag paper Image size 22,5 x 30 cm, Paper Size 34,5 x 40cm

Mikhael Subotzky

WYE, Film Still 27 (1467), 2016 inkjet print on cotton rag paper Image size 22,5 x 30 cm, Paper Size 34,5 x 40cm

Mikhael Subotzky

Sticky-tape Transfer 35 - Hermanus (1554), 2017 Pigment inks and J-Lar tape on cotton paper 76 x 94 cm

Mikhael Subotzky

Sticky-tape Transfer 37 - Feio (or looking at Blue), 2017 Pigment inks and J-Lar tape on cotton paper 60 x 57 cm

Mikhael Subotzky

WYE Study 19, 2016 Pigment inks and J-Lar tape on cotton paper 33,5 x 25,5 cm, framed: 42.5cm x 32.5 cm

Mikhael Subotzky

Sticky-tape Transfer 27 - Anger (or No Public Thoroughfare after a gas explosion at the Port Elizabeth train station) (1533), 2016 Pigment inks and J-Lar tape on cotton paper 201 x 257 cm

Mikhael Subotzky

Sticky-tape Transfer 18 - Halcyon Days (or a Boeing 747, pride of the South African Airways), 2017 Pigment inks, fineliner and J-Lar tape on cotton paper Work: 117  x 129 cm Frame: 134 x 147 x 6 cm

Mikhael Subotzky

WYE, Film Still 6 (1394), 2016 inkjet print on cotton rag paper Image size 22,5 x 30 cm, Paper Size 34,5 x 40cm

Mikhael Subotzky

WYE, Film Still 7 (1395), 2016 inkjet print on cotton rag paper Image size 22,5 x 30 cm, Paper Size 34,5 x 40cm

Mikhael Subotzky

WYE, 2016 Three-channel video installation 48 minutes 30 seconds

Mikhael Subotzky

Sticky-tape Transfer 38 - Hermanus 2 (1562), 2017 Pigment inks and J-Lar tape on cotton paper 39 cm (H) x 33 cm (W)

Mikhael Subotzky

Sticky-tape Transfer 20 - R. Wye (or The British Isles - political) (0982), 2017 Pigment inks, correction tape and J-Lar tape on cotton paper

Mikhael Subotzky

WYE, Film Still 4 (1419), 2016 inkjet print on cotton rag paper Image size 22,5 x 30 cm, Paper Size 34,5 x 40cm

Mikhael Subotzky

WYE, Film Still 8 (1435), 2016 inkjet print on cotton rag paper Image size 22,5 x 30 cm, Paper Size 34,5 x 40cm

Mikhael Subotzky

WYE, Film Still 13 (0973), 2016 inkjet print on cotton rag paper Image size 22,5 x 30 cm, Paper Size 34,5 x 40cm

Mikhael Subotzky

WYE, Film Still 29 (1476), 2016 inkjet print on cotton rag paper Image size 22,5 x 30 cm, Paper Size 34,5 x 40cm

Mikhael Subotzky

Sticky-tape Transfer 34 - Lethbridge , 2017 Pigment inks and J-Lar tape on cotton paper 74 x 88 cm

Mikhael Subotzky

Sticky-tape Transfer 23 - Like Ostriches from the Other Side, 2016 Pigment inks, fineliner, Micropore dressing tape and J-Lar tape on cotton paper Front: 49 x 68 cm and Back: 36,6 x 51,7 cm. Framed: 65 x 95 cm

Mikhael Subotzky

WYE Study 7 (1400), 2016 Graphite and J-Lar tape on paper 20,6 x 14,1 cm

Mikhael Subotzky

Sticky-tape Transfer 32 - Script Sketch (or Detecting and Divining) (1541), 2017 Pigment inks and J-Lar tape on cotton paper 70 x 209 cm (x 2)

Mikhael Subotzky

WYE, Film Still 23 (1427), 2016 inkjet print on cotton rag paper Image size 22,5 x 30 cm, Paper Size 34,5 x 40cm

Mikhael Subotzky

WYE, Film Still 26 , 2016 inkjet print on cotton rag paper Image size 22,5 x 30 cm, Paper Size 34,5 x 40cm

Mikhael Subotzky

Sticky-tape Transfer 29 - Zeno's WYE, 2017 Pigment inks and J-Lar tape on cotton paper 240 x 174 cm

Mikhael Subotzky

WYE Poster Triptych (1563), 2017 Pigment inks, correction tape and J-Lar tape on cotton paper

Mikhael Subotzky

WYE Study 11 (1404), 2016 Pen and J-Lar tape on paper 20,6 x 14 cm

Mikhael Subotzky

Sticky-tape Transfer 21 - Unexplored (or Australia), 2017 Pigment inks, correction tape and J-Lar tape on cotton paper 170 x 176 cm

Mikhael Subotzky

WYE, Film Still 12 (0966), 2016 inkjet print on cotton rag paper Image size 22,5 x 30 cm, Paper Size 34,5 x 40cm

Mikhael Subotzky

Sticky-tape Transfer 36 - Hare, 2017 Pigment inks and J-Lar tape on cotton paper 70 x 86 cm

Mikhael Subotzky

WYE Study 20, 2016 Pigment inks and J-Lar tape on cotton paper 28,5 x 35,4 cm

Mikhael Subotzky

Sticky-tape Transfer 24 - Troglodyte (Immortal), 2016 Acrylic, pigment inks, fineliner and J-Lar tape on cotton paper 85 x 112 cm

Mikhael Subotzky

WYE, Film Still 17 (1460), 2016 inkjet print on cotton rag paper Image size 22,5 x 30 cm, Paper Size 34,5 x 40cm

Mikhael Subotzky

WYE, Film Still 20 (1424), 2016 inkjet print on cotton rag paper Image size 22,5 x 30 cm, Paper Size 34,5 x 40cm

Mikhael Subotzky

WYE, Film Still 28 (1468), 2016 inkjet print on cotton rag paper Image size 22,5 x 30 cm, Paper Size 34,5 x 40cm

Mikhael Subotzky

Sticky-tape Transfer 31 - Port Elizabeth Beach 1820 or 1970 (After Baines or Photographer Unknown) (1558), 2017 Pigment inks and J-Lar tape on cotton paper 140 x 178,5 (x 2)

Mikhael Subotzky

WYE Study 18, 2016 Pigment inks and J-Lar tape on cotton paper 23,5 x 17,7 cm

Mikhael Subotzky

WYE Poster 1 (Lethbridge) (1564), 2017 Digital poster 35.6 x 55.9 cm

No 3D loaded yet

Goodman Gallery Johannesburg

2 March – 1 April 2017

In WYE, an immersive three-screen film installation, Mikhael Subotzky treads the tumultuous terrain of the “white male psyche”.

When three fictional protagonists travel between England, South Africa and Australia, their projections onto these landscapes mirror colonial mindsets in the historicised past, the vexed present, and an imagined post-corporeal future.

According to Subotzky: “The white South African man carries the mark of the colonial explorer whose ‘superior’ relationship to ‘foreign’ lands sticks stubbornly to their projected and internalised positioning in the contemporary body politic.”

An unsettling and beautiful piece, WYE tackles white guilt with demanding complexity. While, on one screen, we inhabit the intrinsically arrogant mindset of a 19th-century British settler on his arrival to the Eastern Cape, on another we follow a 21st-century South African man who walks a Port Elizabeth beach seeking a ‘blank canvas’ free of crime and ‘politics’ before emigrating to Australia. on the third screen we enter the white male body itself, which has become ‘colonised’ in the name of a futuristic form of psycho-anthropology.

According to curator and writer Nina Miall: “At the heart of WYE is an artist attempting to convey the evolving political nuances of his own position in relation to his subject, and […] to ‘scratch at the surface’ of the vexed terrain of post-apartheid South Africa, to mine its […] historical scars, contemporary anxieties and future disaffinities.”

The title WYE alludes to the 19th-century Romantic idealisation of the River Wye – the spiritual home of the English picturesque at a time when European imperialists swept inland in Australia and Southern Africa. The title also invokes the ‘wye’ structure of the letter ‘Y’, which is used in engineering and railroad parlance (two of the building blocks of the British colonial project), and a shape that echoes the triangular narrative structure of the three interconnected films.

This exhibition marks _WYE_’s debut in South Africa, after it was commissioned and exhibited by the Sherman Contemporary Art Foundation (Sydney) in 2016. WYE was produced by Laurence Hamburger (goodcop) and filmed by the legendary German cinematographer Jörg Schmidt-Reitwein (Werner Herzog’s Nosferatu the Vampyre and Woyzeck).

As an artist working mainly in film and photography, as well as collage and drawing, Subotzky engages critically with contemporary politics of mis/representation. For this show, he flips the lens inwards to channel the colonial perspective, collapsing it from within rather than criticising it from the objective distance that often characterises historical documentary forms.

Further works exhibited contextualise WYE within the artist’s broader practice include his colloquially named Sticky Tape Transfers, which peel apart depictions of past and present South Africa to interrupt the surface of images and complicate their function.

“At the heart of my work is a fixation with revealing the gap between what is presented (and idealised) and what is hidden, coupled with a desire to pull apart and reassemble the schizophrenia of contemporary existence,” says Subotzky.

Mikhael Subotzky’s work was included in the Liverpool (2012) and Lubumbashi (2013) Biennials, and Pixel Interface, a multi-component video installation, was included in All The World’s Futures, curated by Okwui Enwezor at the 56th Venice Biennale.

Subotzky’s work is exhibited and collected widely in South Africa and abroad. A large installation of his work was recently acquired by the Centre Georges Pompidou (Paris) and he is represented in public collections worldwide, including the Museum of Modern Art (New York), the Solomon R. Guggenheim Collection (New York), The National Gallery of Art (Washington), the Tate collection (London), The South African National Gallery (Cape Town) and the Johannesburg Art Gallery.

Recent awards include the Deutsche Borse Photography Prize (with Patrick Waterhouse, 2015) as well as the Standard Bank Young Artist for Visual Art award (2012) and the Discovery Award at Rencontres de la Photographie Arles (2011).

Subotzky was born in 1981 in Cape Town, South Africa, and is currently based in Johannesburg.

Mikhael Subotzky

Mikhael Subotzky (b. 1981, Cape Town) is a Johannesburg based artist whose works in multiple mediums (including film installation, video, photography, collage and painting) attempt to engage critically with the instability of images and the politics of representation. Subotzky has exhibited in a series of important international exhibitions, including most recently Inheritance: Recent Video Art from Africa at the Fowler Museum (UCLA) in Los Angeles (2019) and Ex Africa in various venues in Brazil (2017-18). His award-winning Ponte City project (co-authored with Patrick Waterhouse) was presented at Art Basel Unlimited in 2018. The full exhibition and archive of this project has since been acquired by the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and will be the subject of a monographic exhibition there in the fall of 2020.

Subotzky’s work is collected widely by international institutions, including the Museum of Modern Art (New York), Solomon R Guggenheim Museum (New York), the National Gallery of Art (Washington), Tate (London), Centre Pompidou (Paris), and the South African National Gallery, among others.

Subotzky’s work was included in the Lubumbashi (2013) and Liverpool (2012) biennials. Pixel Interface, a multi-component video installation, was included in All The World’s Futures, curated by Okwui Enwezor at the 56th Venice Biennale (2015).