Cleveland Institute of Art
The Cleveland Institute of Art Cinematheque is one of the country’s premier repertory movie theaters. Founded in 1986, it presents classic, foreign, and independent films year-round.
The Cinematheque hosts three artist films—by Tacita Dean, Leigh Ledare, and Asad Raza—throughout FRONT 2022. These films explore conversations (between both human and more-than-human participants) at growing scales: the dyad, the group, and the planet.
During the opening days of Oh, Gods of Dust and Rainbows, Tacita Dean’s One Hundred and Fifty Years of Painting enjoys an exceptional Cleveland premiere. This film, usually presented as a continuous loop, follows a conversation between two painters who share a birthday fifty years apart: Julie Mehretu (also featured in FRONT 2022) and the late Luchita Hurtado. The two discuss the serendipitous overlaps of their creative practices and lives, with musings on painting, motherhood, ecology, and more.
Leigh Ledare’s 2017 feature-length film The Task screens during the run of FRONT 2022. Shot by a film crew in a single room over several days, the camera observes real-life Tavistock group-therapy participants as they work toward the abstract “task” of articulating the conscious and unconscious relationships between the people in the room. As they negotiate their individual positions and try to name complex gender, class, and racial dynamics, they are guided and sometimes thwarted by a set of professional yet inscrutable therapist-consultants. The film’s climax raises questions about the power of artmaking to challenge and cross boundaries and to intervene unexpectedly in social structures.
Lastly, a new version of Asad Raza’s digital film Ge plays during the closing weekend of FRONT 2022. Ge is an endless and evolving video work that blends fiction and documentary as it moves around the planet. The first iteration explored a bioscape surrounding the Dorset home of James Lovelock, originator of the Gaia hypothesis, which proposes that all living organisms work together in a synergistic and self-regulating system. Lovelock famously lives and works in seaside cottages; a portrait of this land- and water-scape is thus also a portrait of the conditions that produced his thinking about the planet as a living feedback loop. The version presented here features footage from Raza’s performance for FRONT 2022, Delegation, as well as his public sculpture in Wade Oval.
In CIA’s Reinberger Gallery will be Jacolby Satterwhite’s Reifying Desire Seven – Dawn. Functioning as an iteration of his commissioned project of the same name located outside Cleveland Clinic’s BioRepository, Dawn will transform the gallery into an immersive virtual reality arcade. Centering on the question “What does Utopia look like to you?”—a question asked of Cleveland’s Fairfax residents as part of the BioRepository project—Satterwhite uses images generated by the community to create a complex codex of signs and symbols within the work.
Also presented within Reinberger Gallery will be celebrated Cleveland artist and 1990 CIA alum Dexter Davis’s ambitious The Less Dead. The exhibition will include new paintings, mixed-media collages, and sculptures inspired by the artist’s lived experience and survival after a near-deadly shooting. It will be divided into three subthemes: “Ritual,” “Ghost” and “Birth.” The Less Dead, a term that refers to marginalized groups of society most likely to be targeted by violence, is a story of survival and restoration through art making that also serves as a call for humanity.
Fiber artist Loraine Lynn, a 2014 CIA alum, plans to create a series of vibrant textile works that invite touch. This exhibition will be installed in the Mary Ann and Jack Katzenmeyer Student Lounge and the John and Sally Schulze North Lobby, where an accompanying program with renowned Cleveland drag queen Dr. Lady J will be hosted in the fall.
Lastly, 10 new paintings by Alexandra Noel will be exhibited in the Donna and Stewart Kohl Corridor. Rooted between personal memory and collective experience, Noel’s small, gem-like paintings invite viewers to engage in both close looking and thoughtful introspection. Opposing one’s impulse to “scroll,” each painting is an opportunity for discovery.