184 Noll St
Conceived and lead by Ivy Castellanos, collectively curated and organized by the involved artists: Chloe Bass, Ivy Castellanos, Quinn Dukes, Miao Jiaxin, Anya Liftig, Geraldo Mercado, Panoply Performance Laboratory (Brian McCorkle and Esther Neff), Itzy Ramirez,Hiroshi Shafer, and Matthew Silver.
Enacted in 1982, the New York State Returnable Container Law hoped to encourage recycling by giving back a rebate of 5c per aluminum beer or soda can. Performance artists have long been adept at recycling trash to make work, relying on the “readymades,” furniture, lumber, clothing, and even food that others discard. Similarly, many political theorists relegate art as a whole into a “sphere of excess,” lumping art-making in with leisure-time activities such as getting drunk, shopping for pleasure, and going to nightclubs. Can art be a part of daily life? Can it be a profession? Is it worth anything? Are artists useless members of society? The iCan exhibition roots through the garbage for practical responses to these questions.
The act of collecting cans becomes a collaborative social performance and an attempt at survival as 11 artists, lead by curator-project organizer Ivy Castellanos, use the returnable container laws to raise artist fees, gallery space and studio rental, transportation costs, and more. As cans accumulate in the gallery space IV Soldiers, filling up the front window, artists will make performances in and with the cans each Thursday night in September.
For the months of July, August and September, the artists will also collect cans on the street and through several performance spaces, in conjunction with public project participants. The rebate from the cans will fund the exhibition as it is going on, creating a sustainable cycle of performance, product, and purpose. The exhibition is part of an overarching self-sustainability initiative, during which the artists will work together to make their practices economically self-sustainable.
Anyone can bring 12oz. aluminum cans to IV Soldiers Gallery Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday 7-9pm through August or by appointment (firstname.lastname@example.org). Performances will take place in and using the cans on the Thursday nights in September at IV Soldiers. Cans will also be collected at Panoply Performance Laboratory (104 Meserole St. Brooklyn) throughout August and at Grace Exhibition Space in July.
iCan offers an aluminum structure for self-sustainability.
Aug. 1 – can collecting at IV Soldiers Gallery and Panoply Performance Laboratory,
Aug. 30–Opening ofiCan exhibition at IV Soldiers Gallery, Exhibition Performances 8pm-11pm
Thursdays, Sept. 6, 13, 20– Exhibition Performances, 8pm-11pm
Sept. 27 – Closing at IV Soldiers and can bagging, 8pm-9pm
Aug 30: Opening reception and performances at IV Soldiers – Matthew Silver, Panoply Performance Laboratory (Brian McCorkle and Esther Neff), Geraldo Mercado, and Ivy Castellanos
Sept 6: Performances at IV Soldiers – Hiroshi Shafer, Itzy Ramirez, and Anya Liftig
Sept 13: A traveling performance between 3 spaces. The performance will begin at 8pm at IV Soldiers with Panoply Lab, Miao Jiaxin and Matthew Silver.