Gravity & Grace (NR)

Guest Presented by Rafaela Pandolfini and Stella Rosa McDonald, and introduced by Z. O’Mahoney

Rafaela Pandolfini and Stella Rosa McDonald are organising Inside, a project that will be on in Sydney in November which examines the parameters of the social, cultural and physical body through the work of fourteen contemporary artists including Hannah Bronte, Jana Hawkins-Anderson, Ariana Reines, Senga Nengudi and Morag Kiel as well as two associated nights of music and sound organised by Matthew Philip Hopkins. Pivoting on the conflicting and contentious notion of abjection, from sources as diverse as Chris Kraus’ film Gravity & Grace and the writings of Julia Kristeva, Judith Butler, Hal Foster and Hannah Black- Inside explores the value of transgression in relation to the ‘abject’ body.

Inside is to be held for two weeks across multiple venues in Redfern and Darlinghurst, Sydney.

Z. O’Mahoney
The artist bio belongs to the bureaucratic dissemination of the arts via institutions and galleries linked to the machinations of corporate capital underpinning capital, which must either directly justify itself as economically rationalisable or go through the university system which is increasingly subject to the same checks and balances. Ultimately, the discussion of this is the art, as was it ever: portraits of the wealthy. This is what I write/make/do

A rare chance to see Chris Kraus’ infamous film

Gravity & Grace is the much spoken of and little seen experimental feature film by Chris Kraus, presented at Golden Age as a very special, one-off screening with Kraus’ permission. Known/feared/beloved for her now-iconic book I Love Dick, Kraus is an artist, writer, critic, filmmaker and co-editor of the brilliant Semiotext(e) Native Agents publishing series. This film explores the paths of two college students in New Zealand who come across a rather ineffectual, suburban cult. As Grace becomes ensconced with the group, who believe they will be rescued from an apocalyptic flood, Gravity tries to remove herself form this life, pursuing an art career in New York.

Why should you see this film?

If you’ve read I Love Dick (1997) or Aliens & Anorexia (2000) – which follows her attempts to garner interest in Gravity & Grace at a Berlin film market – you’ll know that the film was unsuccessful in its release, and difficult to fund. Its since become very, very difficult to see. Screened as part of a program of rarities at Real Fine Arts in Brooklyn, Kraus wrote the accompanying essay, noting “these films have nothing to do with me now. Their exhibition comes too late to feel like a vindication. Nevertheless it’s a pleasure — an abstract affirmation of a practice I’m no longer involved in but will never recant.” The intrigue!

Further reading on Chris Kraus: This Female Consciousness by Leslie Jamison (New Yorker 2015), Interview with Sheila Heti (The Believer, 2013).