Past Event

Non-Happening after Ad Reinhardt by Pierre Leguillon

April 3, 2023
6:00 PM - 7:30 PM
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Buell Hall, 515 W 116th St, New York, NY 10027

French artist Pierre Leguillon will recreate a major art event: the Non-Happening performance lectures of New York abstract painter Ad Reinhardt (1913-1967), using 750 original slides.

At Columbia University Reinhardt studied art history and aesthetics with Meyer Schapiro (1931–1935). Reinhardt is best known for his black monochromes, or ‘ultimate paintings’, to which he devoted himself during the 1960s. Also well-known are the satirical comic strips and illustrations he made for Art News magazine and the leftwing newspaper PM. However, the artist’s archive of 10,000 photographic slides, held at the Ad Reinhardt Foundation, has been rarely shown. By framing his shots so as to reveal hidden or overlooked aspects of cultural artifacts, Reinhardt also offered a global reading of the history of art, anticipating today’s image search engines. If the taxonomy set up by Ad Reinhardt inherits the structuralist thought of the post-World War II period, it prefigures an economy of images similar to the one governed today by algorithms, but also a globalized circulation of art associated with mass tourism. Pierre Leguillon will be introduced by Maria Stavrinaki, Professor of Contemporary Art at Paris 1 Panthéon Sorbonne.

Pierre Leguillon (born 1969) is a French artist living in Brussels, Belgium. He began his career as an editor and art critic. For about fifteen years, he has favored the form of the slideshow. He works essentially on the production and reproduction of images, of which he has an important collection, today gathered in his Museum of Mistakes, based in Brussels (“The Museum of Mistakes”, Edition Patrick Frey, Zurich, 2020). His work has been exhibited extensively. He teaches at HEAD–Geneva.

Maria Stavrinaki teaches theory and history of contemporary art at the University of Paris I Panthéon-Sorbonne. She is currently the Alliance Visiting Professor in the Department of Art History and Archaeology at Columbia University. She is interested in the intersections of modern and contemporary art with social sciences and political thought, focusing on questions of time and history. Her last book is /Transfixed by Prehistory. An Inquiry on Modern Art and Time/ (Zone Books, 2022)

This event is organized with the kind support of the Ad Reinhardt Foundation, New York, and co-sponsored by the Department of French at Columbia, the Maison Française, and the Alliance Program. Special thanks to Anna Reinhardt.