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Foreclosed:
Between Crisis and Possibility

May 20–June 11, 2011
The Kitchen, 512 W 19th Street

Kamal Aljafari, still from Port of Memory, 2009. 16mm film, color, sound; 63 min. Collection of the artist; courtesy the artist
Kamal Aljafari, still from Port of Memory, 2009. 16mm film, color, sound; 63 min. Collection of the artist; courtesy the artist
Yto Barrada, still from The Smuggler Tangier, 2006. Video, color, silent; 11 min. Courtesy Galerie Sfeir-Semler, Hamburg and Beirut, and Galerie Polaris, Paris
Yto Barrada, still from The Smuggler Tangier, 2006. Video, color, silent; 11 min. Courtesy Galerie Sfeir-Semler, Hamburg and Beirut, and Galerie Polaris, Paris
Harun Farocki, still from In Comparison, 2007. 16mm film, color, sound; 61 min. Collection of the artist; courtesy the artist, Berlin
Harun Farocki, still from In Comparison, 2007. 16mm film, color, sound; 61 min. Collection of the artist; courtesy the artist, Berlin
Allan Sekula, Chapter 6: True Cross “Waterfront vendors living in containers,” Veracruz (1994) from Fish Story (1988–1995). Courtesy the artist and Christopher Grimes Gallery, Santa Monica, California
Allan Sekula, Chapter 6: True Cross “Waterfront vendors living in containers,” Veracruz (1994) from Fish Story (1988–1995). Courtesy the artist and Christopher Grimes Gallery, Santa Monica, California
Tania Bruguera, street view of Immigrant Movement International headquarters, Queens, New York, 2011. A project initiated by Tania Bruguera and presented by CreativeTime and the Queens Museum of Art; courtesy Studio Bruguera
Tania Bruguera, street view of Immigrant Movement International headquarters, Queens, New York, 2011. A project initiated by Tania Bruguera and presented by CreativeTime and the Queens Museum of Art; courtesy Studio Bruguera
David Shrigley, It’s All Going Very. . ., 2010. © David Shrigley; courtesy Anton Kern Gallery, New York
David Shrigley, It’s All Going Very. . ., 2010. © David Shrigley; courtesy Anton Kern Gallery, New York
Claude Closky, Untitled (NASDAQ), 2003 (Installation view, Mudam, Luxembourg). Wallpaper, silkscreen printing, dimensions variable. Photograph © Joséphine de Bère; courtesy Galerie Laurent Godin, Paris
Claude Closky, Untitled (NASDAQ), 2003 (Installation view, Mudam, Luxembourg). Wallpaper, silkscreen printing, dimensions variable. Photograph © Joséphine de Bère; courtesy Galerie Laurent Godin, Paris

The term foreclosure today is associated with the collapse of the subprime mortgage market. Caught in a cycle of crisis provoked by this collapse, the instinctive reaction is to search for solutions within the very institutional logic that produced the problem.

Foreclosed: Between Crisis and Possibility examines these responses by beginning with a reexamination of the term itself and locating this investigation within a global context. While foreclosure may refer to an eviction from a home, it also refers to a rejection of particular experiences, memories, and narratives. Within psychoanalysis, foreclosure evokes processes of exclusion and a shutting down of recognition. This exhibition is situated in the nexus between these two meanings. Cutting across the spatial and the psychic, it explores artistic practices and discursive strategies that investigate the multifold ways in which everyday experiences of displacement, threat, repression, and loss are embedded within specific social, cultural, and economic contexts. Through diverse techniques, the artists in this exhibition engage this politically paralyzing rhetoric of crisis by positing and negotiating alternative possibilities.

The exhibition employs a multilayered curatorial approach integrating the gallery space with a series of public platforms. These discussions, performances, and film screenings interrogate different interpretations of the term foreclosure, from the systemic to the subjective. Together, these platforms propose a critical reevaluation of the complex field that the term foreclosure demands. Participants include Benjamin Buchloh, Harriet Fraad, Ingrid Gould Ellen, David Harvey, Peter Marcuse, Damon Rich, Maggie Russell-Ciardi, and Radhika Subramaniam.

The exhibition features works by Kamal Aljafari, Yto Barrada, Tania Bruguera, Claude Closky, Harun Farocki, Allan Sekula, and David Shrigley.

Curated by Jennifer Burris, Sofía Olascoaga, Sadia Shirazi, and Gaia Tedone,
Helena Rubinstein
Curatorial Fellows of the Whitney Independent Study Program, 2010–2011

Please Note

Foreclosed: Between Crisis and Possibility takes place at The Kitchen (not the Whitney Museum of American Art) and its hours are: Tuesday–Friday, 12–6 pm; Saturday, 11–6 pm. All events held in conjunction with Foreclosed will take place at The Kitchen and The Cooper Union. For more information about the specific hours and location for each event, please consult the calendar.

This exhibition is free and open to the public.

Installation view of ISP Curatorial students’ exhibition Suburban Home Life at the Whitney Museum’s Downtown Branch on Maiden Lane, 1989

The ISP provides a setting within which students pursuing art practice, curatorial work, art historical scholarship, and critical writing engage in ongoing discussions and debates that examine the historical, social, and intellectual conditions of artistic production.

Learn more

Support for the Independent Study Program is provided by Margaret Morgan and Wesley Phoa, The Capital Group Charitable Foundation, The New York Community Trust, and the Whitney Contemporaries through their annual Art Party benefit.

Endowment support is provided by Joanne Leonhardt Cassullo, the Dorothea L. Leonhardt Fund of the Communities Foundation of Texas, the Dorothea L. Leonhardt Foundation, and the Helena Rubinstein Foundation.