On Saturday, Oct. 29, CalArts’ MFA Class of 2022 celebrates the opening of durée, their postgraduate group exhibition, at Helen J Gallery in Hollywood.
French philosopher Henri Bergson uses the word “duration” (or “durée”) to describe the experience of time passing—for example, the inconsistent pacing that makes hours spent laughing with a loved one feel like mere minutes, while a sleepless night seems endless.
durée features the work of 27 CalArtians, most of whom started their MFA programs on Zoom or had their MFA experience upended by the pandemic. During their tenure at CalArts, these artists experienced the passing of time in extremes: the seemingly endless zoom classes versus the brief time actually spent on campus. Over the last few years, these artists adapted and operated across any number of various durées.
Including works of painting, sculpture, drawing, video, and multimedia, the exhibition reflects on past personal events and moments of intimate exchange; histories in the wake of colonialism and capitalism; attempts to re-narrate and seek truth; and the temporalities of the body and artmaking.
Curated by Amy Kahng—who was selected by the artists themselves—the exhibition asks: How can time collapse, rewind, return, and move forward? How do artists produce contemporary incarnations of the histories of imperialism, land use, and political events? How do individuals attempt to memorialize and connect with those we’ve lost?
“The postgrad show is always an exciting moment for our students to bring their work into the world beyond CalArts, together. It’s really a grassroots effort, and it’s also their last official act as a collective,” said Michael Ned Holte, associate dean of CalArts School of Art. “The title of the exhibition is fitting. This group has really persevered. So many from this group began their studies at CalArts remotely, disrupted by pandemic. They coalesced gradually, across great distances and against many odds. So, it’s particularly gratifying to see them bring their work together in this context, as an expression of a tenacious community.”
Open through Nov. 12, durée features work by CalArts alumnx Razan AlSarraf, Mahedi Anjuman, Rodrigo Arruda, C. Bain, Nick Bosworth, Joana P. Cardozo, Won Seok Chang, Amber Denker, Matthew DeStefano, Ross Doyle, Simons Finnerty, Kristofor Giordano, Elizabeth Herring, Lydia Horne, Christine Yerie Lee, Herry Kim, Annika Klein, Matthew Pagoaga, Jennie E. Park, Mehregan Pezeshki, Casey Poehlin, Matthew Adam Ross, Malte Sänger, Zoë Sturges, Cha Tori, Patrick Winfield Vogel, and Zenaido Zamora.
Saturday’s opening reception runs from 5 to 8 p.m. with a curator’s panel at 6 pm and live DJ sets from artist and CalArts alum Dave Muller (Art MFA 93) at 5 and 7 pm.