PÁRAMO | 127
March 6–April 30, 2018
Páramo | 127 presents Naama Tsabar, an exhibition of both new and previously exhibited works on felt, sculptures, performances and installations that expands upon the artist’s practice associated with notions of music, freedom, body engagement and escape. The exhibition focuses on the relationship between Tsabar’s artworks and Páramo’s Upper East Side townhouse, creating an immersive experience in which the works on display invite the viewer to engage psychologically and perceptually.
Two new monochromatic sculptures, Work on Felt (Variation 19) Midnight and Work on Felt (Variation 20) Cherry Red, hang in the gallery, laced with piano string and attached to amps. Created for the exhibition, these works on felt confront the viewer with their minimal design. Viewers have the opportunity to directly engage the works by tightening or loosening the strings, which changes the degree of the bowing of the sculptures and the sound they make. The transformative nature of the sculptures is such that their appearance, their erectness or flatness, directly corresponds to the pitch they produce. In reference to the production of these sculptures,
Tsabar presents Works on Felt Paper Studies, reflecting on the evolution and transformation of elements in her work.
The exhibition also includes Closer (2014), which highlights key musical concerns in relation to implicit gender roles and coded behavior. The architectural sculpture, like most of the artist’s works, invites personal negotiation and physical engagement. Shown for the first time in 2014 at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, Closer will be activated at Páramo | 127.
Tsabar’s experiences as a bartender and a musician in a punk band inform a unique visual language, evident in her Sweat bottles (2011) as well as in her newest body of work, a series of sculptures of broken guitars, which focuses on the moment following the climactic act of destruction. Taking a Dadaist approach, she maps the broken guitar pieces as they fall and then reattaches strings to them in an unconventional way, creating a site-specific floor instrument. This work is part of her ongoing guitar series, which explores the coded behavior and structure of music as well as the intimate relationship between musician and object in order to rethink the iconic instrument’s gendered place in both art and music. The broken guitar serves as a prototype for Tsabar’s Melodies of Certain Damage, which will premiere at Soluna International Music & Arts Festival on May 11, 2018, in Dallas, Texas.
Her musical background is further reflected in her Transition (2018) works, for which the artist has removed the internal components of amplifiers and speakers and mounted them on cotton and linen canvases. Connected to power, each canvas retains the equipment’s functional role with a set sound and volume level.