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ADAA: The Art Show

Adam Pendleton

Feb 27 – Mar 1, 2020
New York

Adam Pendleton’s practice continues to explore the construction and negation of meaning through Black Dada, a conceptual framework he developed to examine broader conversations about appropriation, representation, and the political.

Art Fair Details

Feb 27 – Mar 1, 2020
Booth B3

Image: Adam Pendleton, Untitled (WE ARE NOT), 2019, silkscreen ink on canvas, 36" × 28" (91.4 cm × 71.1 cm) © Adam Pendleton

Park Avenue Armory
New York

In a suite of new paintings being presented at ADAA's The Art Show, each with the title of Untitled (WE ARE NOT), Pendleton repeats a single declaration throughout: WE ARE NOT. The phrase, truncated and overwritten, weaves in and out of the frame, stuttering across the canvases with varying degrees of legibility. In Pendleton’s recognizable style, the words build up on top of one another in densely layered tones of black and white. Details reveal drips and splatters that suggest methods of graffiti, while the graphic nature of each work reveals their origin in printmaking and collage.

Black Dada: we are not naïve / Black Dada: we are successive / Black Dada: we are not exclusive…

Adam Pendleton's Black Dada Manifesto

The language in Untitled (WE ARE NOT) derives from Pendleton’s Black Dada manifesto: “Black Dada: we are not naïve / Black Dada: we are successive / Black Dada: we are not exclusive…” Here, Pendleton refers back to one of the founders of Dada, Tristan Tzara, and his satirical Manifesto of Monsieur Antipyrine. Delivered at the first public Dada soirée in Zürich in 1916, Tzara’s manifesto derided early 20th-century bourgeois culture: “Then came the great ambassadors of feeling, who yelled historically in chorus: … We are not naive / We are successive / We are exclusive.” Pendleton’s Untitled (WE ARE NOT) recasts Tzara's declarations with the insertion of Black Dada, raising questions of contemporary cultural issues surrounding subjectivity and marginalization while examining the modes and methods of abstraction.


Adam Pendleton

Adam Pendleton uses historical and aesthetic content from texts and visual culture to critically examine the resonance of ideas from varied cultural perspectives, including social resistance movements and Dada, Minimalism, and Conceptualism.

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