Portfolio A / Atheists Need Theology, Too / Semen is the Piss of Dreams / Drawings
February 25, 2017 - April 8, 2017
In Gallery Two

My subconscious has melted away and seems to have been replaced by the muted, jangled chorus of my microbiome. I’m not sure if this condition is rare or widespread. I expect it is widespread and that our microbiomes are battling with our subconsciouses for supremacy. There is no battle in me, though. My subconscious is gone. Human Events is a series of works reflecting on this condition. It proceeds through a chain of associations. “Atheists Need Theology, Too,” the first of seven videos, begins with a poem by Emily Dickinson, “To fill a Gap / Insert the Thing that caused it — .” All of Human Events, then, could be read as a gloss on the poem. Or, one could choose — or be compelled by their dwindling subconsciouses and roiling microbiomes to choose — any other link in this chain of associations and use that as the starting point.

— Steve Reinke

For his first show at Western Exhibitions, Chicago-based artist Steven Reinke will present Portfolio A, ten prints he made with Stan Shellabarger at Spudnik Press; two high-definition videos from his ongoing series Human Events, and a suite of drawings related to the first video, Atheists Need Theology, Too.

Memories, fantasy and the desiring body have been central themes in the work of Steve Reinke since the 1980s. His videos typically take a diaristic or collage format, melding archival sources with a seemingly autobiographical narrative. Reinke is perhaps best known for The Hundred Videos, completed between 1989 and 1996; its underlying theme confronts the authority of filmmaking and the construction of the documentary genre. The Toronto International Film Festival named it one of the 150 essential works in Canadian cinematic history. Reinke’s work is in the collection of the Museum of Modern Art (NY), the Centre Pompidou (Paris), MACBA (Barcelona) and the National Gallery of Canada. His films have screened festivals including Sundance, Oberhausen and the New York Video Festival and his work has been exhibited at the 2015 Istanbul Bienali, Art Gallery of Ontario, ICA London, Wexner Center in Columbus, OH, DePaul Art Museum and a solo show at Isabella Bortollozzi in Berlin, among several others. In 2006, he received the Bell Canada Award in Video Art. In 2014, he was included in the Whitney Biennial in collaboration with Jessie Mott. Steve Reinke (born 1963) lives and works in Chicago and is a professor of Art Theory and Practice at Northwestern University.