CLEVELAND (April 1, 2014) — Artist Kevin Beasley returns to Cleveland this spring to create his most complex sound environment to date in the historic Cozad-Bates house, the only surviving pre-Civil War structure in University Circle. This free performance takes place in four parts over the course of the day at the house and also as an all-day listening environment at the Museum on Saturday, April 12. The work will immerse audience members in a complex arrangement of sound that alters their perceptions of space and the passage of time, linking the oldest and newest building at the heart of a rapidly evolving community in Cleveland.
This performance grew out of Beasley’s inclusion in the 2013 exhibition Realization is Better than Anticipation at MOCA Cleveland, which featured 12 artists connected to Cleveland and the surrounding region, including Pittsburgh, Detroit, and areas throughout Ohio. Beasley was chosen for his strong connections to the art scene in Detroit, where he pursued a BFA at the College for Creative studies, and catalyzed dialog through exhibitions, symposiums, and shared studio spaces. Realization curators Megan Lykins Reich and Rose Bouthillier included Beasley’s sculpture and print works in the exhibition, but also wanted to engage him to create a new sound piece.
Bouthillier says, “The Cozad-Bates house just seemed like the perfect fit for Kevin, as his work so often deals with history, change, and their material weight. It’s an incredible environment for sound, and this will also be a rare opportunity for our audience to see inside this house, which add a very deep layer of history to University Circle.” Megan Lykins Reich adds, “Kevin is an exciting young artist who is really advancing contemporary sound work, both conceptually and technically. We are so thrilled to bring him Cleveland to produce a new piece that engages our environment directly.”
Since 2011, Beasley has developed a series of live audio performances, mixing found and recorded sounds into layered arrangements that address personal and collective histories. And in My Dream I Was Rolling on the Floor, Beasley’s newly commissioned work for MOCA Cleveland, will occupy both the Museum and the Cozad-Bates house, a historic Italianate mansion built in 1853 just across the street. The Cozad’s were a prominent landowners and abolitionists, and the house was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1974, and designated as a Cleveland Landmark in 2006. Stripped down for renovation, it has been vacant for the past seven years, creating a unique, transitional environment loaded with a deep sense of the past and ongoing change. Beasley’s sound work will consider the architecture, history and the condition of the bodies that move(d) through the house and the Museum. It will include sound recordings Beasley made during site visits from inside and around the house, inside of the Museum, the intersection of Mayfield and Euclid, inside the Church of the Covenant, and several other particularities of this neighborhood, overlaid with the artist’s own sonic marks and impressions.
The live performance at the house is structured in four approximately 30-45 minute sets, charting the shifting atmosphere over the course of a day. At the Museum, the entire scope of the compositions can be experienced in a daylong listening environment in the Gund Commons.
AT COZAD-BATES HOUSE:
Intersection. IV Arrangements on Presence.
6:45 AM — Civil Twilight I
1:30 PM — Transit
7:30 PM — Civil Twilight II
8:45 PM — Night
AT MOCA CLEVELAND:
Immersive sound installation in the Gund Commons
11:00 AM – 5:00 PM
A limited number of pre-registered tickets will be available online for each performance. Ticket holders must check-in 20 minutes prior to each performance to ensure admittance. There is also limited number of walk-up tickets held for each performance. 10 minutes prior to each performance, all remaining, unclaimed pre-registered tickets will be released to the public.
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In addition to his performance, Beasley will be in residency the week of April 7-12. During this time he will be connecting with students at Kent State University, the Cleveland Institute of Art, and MOCA Cleveland’s ACE high school student group, through talks and studio visits.
Kevin Beasley (1985, Lynchburg, VA) lives and works in New York City. He holds a BFA from the College for Creative Studies in Detroit, and an MFA from Yale University School of Art. Currently, he is an artist-in-residence at the Studio Museum in Harlem, and in 2013 he completed a fellowship at the International Studio & Curatorial Program (ISCP) in Brooklyn. Solo exhibitions of his work have been held at The Butcher’s Daughter, Ferndale, MI, and ORG Contemporary, Detroit. He has participated in group exhibitions at Interstate projects, Brooklyn; Casey Kaplan Gallery, New York; The Studio Museum in Harlem, NY; and The Museum of Modern Art, New York. He is currently featured in the 2014 Whitney Biennial, and participated in the 2013 Queens International, Queens Museum, NY. Beasley was included in the group exhibition Realization is Better than Anticipation (2013) at MOCA Cleveland.
On View in the Galleries
Current exhibitions include DIRGE: Reflections on [Life and] Death, with work by 23 artists using their individual practices to capture, react to, reflect on, and make sense of mortality, and Sara VanDerBeek, featuring new photographs and sculptures made in response to Cleveland’s shifting landscape and built environment. Both shows run through June 8, 2014.
About MOCA Cleveland
MOCA, founded in 1968, is a leading force in Northeast Ohio’s cultural scene and is recognized nationally and internationally for its presentation of the art and ideas of our time.
MOCA Cleveland’s hours are Tuesday through Sunday, 11–5 pm; open until 9 pm Thursdays; closed Mondays. For more information on MOCA and its programming, visit http://www.MOCAcleveland.org or call 216-421-8671.
MOCA Cleveland • 11400 Euclid Avenue • Cleveland, OH 44106 • 216-421-8671