Knowledge Base


November 21, 2009 to January 2, 2010

Deborah Colton Gallery, Houston, Texas

Mary Beth Edelson (New York), Molly Gochman (Houston), Amy Granat (New York), Marina Rosenfeld (New York), Mai Ueda (New York), Ultra Violet (New York)

Curated by Liutauras Psibilskis

Knowledge Base offers propositions about knowledge that are out of the ordinary and go beyond the immediately visible: invented rituals and innovative representations of mental states ranging from hidden family histories to abstracted intimate relational notions. Such subliminal information symbolically overwrites the works on display. Some of the works intentionally revisit and distort truths that seem to be inherent in our historical experience, thus conceptually transgressing predominant social norms.

Knowledge Base explored ideas of knowledge and power represented in unconventional ways. It began as a reflection on artistically formatted rituals and spiritualist situations and developed into a search for works that employ a variety of elusive media while remaining rooted in spiritual experience. This includes transmuted sound and various visualizations of esoteric memories in re-cycled images or “disappearing” films.

The project includes six renowned artists of different generations:

Mary Beth Edelson’s work is rooted in feminism, political activism, collaboration, and public participation. A feminist, her work focuses on a female-centered spirituality based on Jungian archetypes. In 1977, Edelson traveled to a cave in Hvar Island, Yugoslavia, where she began her ritual performances. Three years later, she returned to painting and now lives in New York. She has been featured in over thirty art books and her work is widely exhibited and critiqued in the U.S. and abroad in the diverse literature of psychology, women’s studies, feminist theory, photography, theology and art. Edelson’s art has been collected by numerous museums, including the MoMA, the Guggenheim, the Corcoran Gallery and the Walker Art Center.

Amy Granat was born in Saint Louis, Missouri. She is a filmmaker and multi-media artist who has exhibited at such venues as the Swiss Institute, White Columns and PS1. She took part in the 2008 Whitney Biennial at the Whitney Museum of American Art. She is a co-founder of Cinema Zero, a collective that that fosters collaborations between artists across different media.

Molly Gochman works with installation, video, performance, and photography. Several galleries in Houston have presented her work, including DiverseWorks, Margolis Gallery, and her own space, Commune. Gochman debuted internationally in 2005 at the Sara Roney Gallery in Sydney, Australia. Since then she has been artist-in-residence at the Vermont Studio Center and at Elsewhere in North Carolina. In 2007 she was invited to the Lincoln Center to introduce Waterfalls Wept, a 15-foot sculpture later installed at one of Chashama’s Manhattan locations.

Marina Rosenfeld is a composer and artist. Her work has deployed both musical and visual media, including a noted series of large-scale performance works comprising installation, video projection, photography and hybrid forms drawing on these. Her work has appeared in a wide variety of contexts: the 2002 and 2008 Whitney Biennials at the Whitney Museum of American Art and Artists’ Space in New York, Tate Modern in London, the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in Los Angeles and Contemporary Exhibitions, a public art project for Creative Time. She has exhibited in galleries such as Curt Marcus, Greene Naftali, Rosamund Felsen or Deitch Projects, and participated in festivals including Donaueschingen, Ars Electronica in Linz, Austria, Steirische Herbst, in Graz, Austria, Pro Musica Nova, Maerz Musik, Mutek, Wein Modern and The Wire’s Adventures in Modern Music.

Mai Ueda is a performance and multimedia artist. Shehas showed at the 2001 Lyon Biennale, Palais De Tokyo in Paris, PS1 in New York and Fargfabriken in Stockholm. ´Together with collaborators she used to run Electronic Orphanage in Los Angeles. She is a part of the art movement NEEN.

Ultra Violet was a central member of Andy Warhol’s Factory in the 1960s. Today she is a prominent and established avant-garde artist exhibiting throughout the world. She creates playful and intuitive works infused with energy, light, spirituality, symbolism, global meaning and humor. Ultra Violet’s paintings, 3-D constructions, mixed-media installations, and drawings reveal a visual universe filled with rainbows, angel, blue skies and white clouds, but they also contain material related to the chaos and destruction that challenges our 21st century world.

Marianne Vitale

Marianne Vitale

8 May – 26 June 2010

Deborah Colton Gallery
2445 North Boulevard
Houston Texas 77098

Deborah Colton Gallery is pleased to announce an exhibition of new work by the quixotic New York artist Marianne Vitale. With large, vibrant paintings, dense and thick with pigment, and relief sculptures suggesting enlarged body parts, Vitale hypertrophies the intricate intimacy of her pen and ink drawings into a churning no-fly zone over the contemporary. Accompanying the canvases I Got Rid of the Horse and Now There’s Just You, and Fifth Phase Handsome and two wall sculptures from her Healthcare Series – Navel and Elbow, (all 2010) Vitale has constructed one of her hybrid sculptures, in-situ, out of found material, debris, and a junked mini motor-bike – Presser (2010). Also on view are two series of drawings: Flushed Up and Ploughing (2009), five colorful and riddling pen and ink compositions, and Copper Line (2010), nine fast and forcible sequential graphite drawings on copper-coated paper (2010).

Vitale’s video Patron is currently on view at The Whitney Museum of American Art, New York for the Whitney Biennial 2010, in which she delivers a nine-minute abusive rant “like a psychotic drill sergeant” parodying authoritarian posturing.

Marianne Vitale is a New York artist working in various mediums. Her sculptural practice often evokes an idea of the natural world remade from what has been discarded and abandoned. Vitale freezes forms into make-shift structures, fantastic creatures, hybrid animals and contorted beasts that can appear both fragile and menacing. Sometimes sympathetic, often uneasy, Vitale’s sculptures pull the tension between figure and abstraction, mid-process of either melting or forming, with skin dripping from their frames. These extracts stretch, move, coil, hide, and invite to mark an encounter of sinister illusoriness. When using performance and video, Vitale draws on the instinctive yet carefully sculpted absurdity apparent in her drawings and sculptures, with an added personal physicality that creates a visceral, even combative relationship between artist and audience. Vitale’s work has been exhibited internationally, including the 2010 Whitney Biennial, SculptureCenter, White Columns, Kunstverein NY, Brooklyn Museum, all in New York; Kling & Bang, Reykjavik, Iceland; Tensta Konsthall, Stockholm, Sweden; Deborah Colton Gallery, Houston, Texas; IBID Projects, London, UK; and the Cass Sculpture Foundation, Sussex, England.

Emily Harvey Foundation: Roulette

November 6-22, 2009

Emily Harvey Foundation, 537 Broadway, New York

Roulette is co-produced by OUTPOST NYC DCG, Emily Harvey Foundation and Performa 09

The project is part of Performa 09

Michel Auder, Felicia Ballos, Salvador DalÌ, Molly Gochman, Amy Granat, George Maciunas, Maripol, Jonas Mekas, Lola Schnabel, Mai Ueda, Ultra Violet, Cecilia Widenheim

Curated by Liutauras Psibilskis

Roulette featured a performance by Jonas Mekas and the band Now We Are Here, with special guests. Mai Ueda hosted a dinner performance that included contributions from fashion designers, musicians and artists. A new video installation by Michel Auder was presented. Amy Granat, in collaboration with dancers Felicia Ballos and Cecilia Widenheim, showed an installation that incorporated performative film, movement and light. Documentation of performances by Salvador DalÌ, were screened, as well as rediscovered videos by Ultra Violet and Maripol. The show also included prints of the work by George Maciunas and the young artists Molly Gochman and Lola Schnabel.

By integrating the past and present, the viewer was presented with a variety of concepts and beliefs, past and now, all related to the idea of a performance and game. Roulette reflected on the risk-taking and possibilities of contemporary reality, marked by its gambles and potential rewards. The project changed with each successive event; as one event closed, another opened.


Friday, 6 November, 9-10pm

Jonas Mekas with friends and the band Now We Are Here, featuring Jonas Mekas as the lead singer.

Tuesday, 10 November, 7-9pm

Presentation of performance documentation and performative film. Rarely seen work, addressing themes of game, transmutation and the changing of social and gender roles, by George Maciunas, Ultra Violet, and Maripol, as well as documentation of Salvador DalÌís performances in New York filmed by Jonas Mekas.

Saturday, 14 November, 7-9pm

A Family Dinner in Parallel Universe by Mai Ueda and her friends. Ueda invited a selection of her friends: musicians, fashion designers, and artists to perform, dine together.

Sunday, 15 November, 7-10pm

Innocence in Extremis by Amy Granat in collaboration with dancers Felicia Ballos and Cecilia Widenheim. Collaboration between extreme cinema and dance: a variety of moving images and a simultaneous dance performance playing with light, darkness, shadows and sound.

Wednesday, 18 November, 7-9pm

The Good Life, new video installation by Michel Auder involved the poets Kathy Acker, Julien Blainem, William Burroughs, John Cooper Clarke, Ira Cohen, Gregory Corso, Brian Gyson, Harry Hoogstraten, Jean Jacques Lebel, Gerard Malanga, Michael McClure, Giulia Niccolai, Ron Padgett, Adriano Spatola and others performing for an audience and for Auder’s camera in 1979.



September 8th through November 3, 2007

Deborah Colton Gallery, Houston, Texas

Michel Auder, Hubert Kretzschmar, Maripol, Jonas Mekas, Michael Portnoy, Agathe Snow, Marianne Vitale

Curated by Liutauras Psibilskis