GUILD HALL: OFFSITE Guild Hall presents NOW HERE at the Amagansett U.S. Life-Saving Station
Guild Hall presents NOW HERE at the Amagansett U.S. Life-Saving Station
July 16th thru September 30th, 2022
Opening Reception: Sunday, July 17, 4-6PM
Interior: Friday – Sunday, 12-5PM, by appointment
Exterior: Any time
Note: Face masks are required indoors for visitors over the age of 2.
Amagansett U.S. Life-Saving Station, 160 Atlantic Avenue, Amagansett
The No W here Collective, made up of Alice Hope, Toni Ross, and Bastienne Schmidt, will present the off-site exhibition entitled Now Here, Curated by Christina Mossaides Strassfield. The project will primarily respond to the Life Saving Station’s faking box (a box in which a long rope is faked; used in the life-saving service for a line attached to a shot), seen as the emblematic artifact in the Station’s collection that emanates their mission — to save lives. The faking box, in itself, embodies a formal aesthetic that relates to the Collective’s original artifact and inspiration, the Metropolitan Museum’s Marshallese Navigation Chart.
The collective will show works in the south facing crew quarter’s room on the second floor, the Station’s western facing backyard, and the southeast corner of the wrap around porch, as well as other areas on the site. In the crew’s quarters, the artists will do responsive installations to the room itself and the faking box. The outdoor installations will also be responsive to the site, the faking box, and will include implicit references to the Navigation Chart, from the artists’ non-literal creative perspectives.
Collective member Alice Hope states “The Life Saving Station’s faking box is formally beautiful, and poetically and conceptually inspiring. I think of it as emblematic to the life saving station itself; it’s the organizing principle to a lifeline. For the last few years I’ve been stringing can tabs to make a continuous line that resembles rope. Sometimes the line accumulates in tangled piles and often I organize it into spiral forms. The faking box will inspire a new organization — a new form of my continuous can tab line.”
The exhibition will be accompanied by educational talks and panels with the artists and as well as family workshops to supplement the site-specific installation experience.
About the Amagansett U.S. Life-Saving Station
The Amagansett Station was constructed on Atlantic Avenue in 1902, one of a network of thirty life-saving stations on the South Shore of Long Island. Through each night and in bad weather the crew at these stations kept watch from the lookout tower and by patrolling the beach. Discovering a ship in distress, the life-savers would perform a rescue by launching their surfboat or by firing a line to the ship and taking people off with a breeches buoy. From 1902 to 1937 the crew of the Amagansett Life-Saving Station, most of whom were experienced local fishermen and shore whalers, kept watch over this beach and rescued sailors and passengers from a number of shipwrecks.
The Life-Saving Service and the Lighthouse Service were the two federal programs intended to increase the safety of coastal navigation. These two services were later joined in the U.S. Coast Guard. The Amagansett Life-Saving Station complements the Montauk Point Lighthouse in recalling that era of our maritime history when ships sailing the ocean provided the principal means of transporting goods and people in coastal America.
Alice Hope works with materials that have cultural references. She intends her materials to be both the object and the subject of her work, while she also aspires to transform the materials to a-materiality, into experience.
For the last seven years she has been immersed in using the used can tab about which she states:
The used can tab can be looked at from a multiplicity of perspectives - that its proportion is in the Golden Mean like the Parthenon; that it’s a tool - a lever; that it’s trash; that it’s an icon; that it’s an anti-phallus with its equal negative and positive space; that as a floor plan it emulates Renaissance cathedrals with its apse and nave; its ergonomics; its timed obsolescence; its demographically democratic use -, but in my work I focus on the used tab as a relic of consumption and as a token for redemption.
She has created numerous site specific public and residential installations. Some highlights include Camp Hero State Park in Montauk, New York for the Parrish Art museum, Pier 92 Lobby for the Armory Show, WNYC’s Greene Space lobby, Queens Museum, US Embassy’s lobby in Mozambique for Art in Embassies, the National Museum for Women in the Arts, and Guild Hall. She shows with Tripoli Gallery in Wainscott, New York and Ricco Maresca in NYC.
Toni Ross is a multi-disciplinary artist using time-honored material and site-responsive installation to explore themes of political and social distress. Born and raised in New York City, Toni attended Wesleyan University where she studied ceramics and fine art, graduating with a BA in Film Studies. Her practice embraces fiber, installation, sculpture, and works on paper. Toni has participated in artist residencies as a Yaddo Fellow and at The Watermill Center. Recent works include Finding Beauty in a Dark Place (2021) at The Watermill Center in Watermill, NY; In Light Of at The Leiber Collection in Springs, NY; Today Cannot Be Tomorrow (2020) at C.A.R.E. Ltd, When (2020) for Drive By Art, and Sanctuary Entwined (2017-18) at Longhouse Reserve in East Hampton; and Found Lines (2018) at the Berkshire Botanical Garden in Stockbridge, MA. Toni is also a member of the artist collective No W here, whose debut exhibition took place in 2021 at Ricco/Maresca Gallery in New York, NY. Toni Ross lives and works in Manhattan and Wainscott, NY.
Bastienne Schmidt is a multi disciplinary artist working with photography, painting and large-scale drawings. She was born in Germany, raised in Greece and Italy and has lived in NewYork for the past 30 years. Her art work is included in the collection of the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the International Center of Photography, the Brooklyn Museum, theVictoria and Albert Museum in London and the Bibliothèque Nationale in Paris among others. Her work has been shown nationally and internationally in over 100 exhibitions among them the International Center of Photography in New York, the Brooklyn Museum, the New Museum, the Museum fuer Kunst und Gewerbe in Hamburg among many others.
She has published seven monographs, among them Vivir la Muerte, American Dreams, Shadowhome, Home Stills, Topography of Quiet,Typology of Women and Grids andThreads.She was theArtist in Residence at the
Parrish Art Museum in 2017. In 2018 she was awarded a residency at the Watermill Center. In 2019 she was chosen to be part of the Parrish Art Museum exhibition ‘Artists Choose Artists’.
She is the recipient of the Kodak Book Award, the Best German Poto Book Award and the German Photo Prize. She is also a winner of the World Press Photo Award and she received a grant from the Soros Foundation for her documentary work.
Photography and art fall for Schmidt into the realm of archeology, exploring layers of history and meaning, and reassigning value to them.
Schmidt was born in Munich, Germany and moved at the age of 9 with her family to Greece. She spent her childhood surrounded by her father’s archeological work, which instilled in her a desire to organize, map, and attempt to understand systems through her artwork.
She is interested in the documentation and creation of artifacts that carry the patina of memory, history, and time as organizing principles. Schmidt’s process relates often to the use of humble materials, such as muslin fabric, strings and thin transparent paper, that is subsequently painted and drawn upon. Paper offers an intuitive process, which allows for overlapping and organic coming together of spaces. Geometric forms such as circles, triangles and square play a role in her work, such as the use of typologies as an artistic tool.