Past Exhibitions

Viewing Room V: Leandro Katz

September 8, 2016

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On View:
4:00–8:00 pm
Leandro Katz
The Catherwood Project (1985–1993)

Program:
7:00–8:00 pm
Incidents of Travel
With talks by Julia Herzberg, David Shapiro and Eugenie Tsai, a map by Lize Mogel and John Emerson, and lithographs by Frederick Catherwood

On Thursday September 8th from 4 to 8:30 pm, Colección Patricia Phelps de Cisneros and Storefront for Art and Architecture presented Viewing Room, a one day installation of images at Storefront’s gallery space, showcasing a series of photographs from The Catherwood Project by Leandro Katz and the 1844 book of lithographs Views of Ancient Monuments in Central America, Chiapas and Yucatan by Frederick Catherwood.

The illustrated publications documenting John Lloyd Stephens’ and Frederick Catherwood’s expeditions in the Maya region, undertaken from 1839 to 1842, caused a commotion during the nineteenth century. These have since inspired archeologists, historians and artists, as well as explorers and travelers of all walks of life, who have developed further work taking their cue from their predecessors’ itineraries, narratives, and images. One such case is the Argentinian artist Leandro Katz (b. 1938). Starting in 1984 and for the span of several years, Katz undertook numerous trips to Mexico and Central America, retracing and eventually completing the expedition itineraries of Stephens and Catherwood. His ensuing artwork, The Catherwood Project, dated 1985–1995, is a visual reconstruction of those expeditions, portraying an updated image of the ancient edifices first drawn by Catherwood, and, in the process, exploring the colonial gaze and postcolonial perspectives.

In this episode of Viewing Room, a series of photographs from The Catherwood Project by Katz was on public display for an afternoon, and the 1844 book of lithographs Views of Ancient Monuments in Central America, Chiapas and Yucatan by Catherwood was available for browsing. Then, in the evening, from 7 to 8 pm, a program of succinct presentations took place: art historian Julia Herzberg, who organized an exhibition of Katz’s work a decade ago at El Museo del Barrio, explained the artist’s project; curator Eugenie Tsai related Robert Smithson’s Incidents of Mirror-Travel in the Yucatan (1969) to Katz’s project; poet David Shapiro read from Incidents of Travel in Poetry (2016) by the late Frank Lima; artist and educator Lize Mogel provided a map of expeditions in the Maya region carried out by Katz, Stephens and Catherwood.


The Viewing Room series was a charted journey through some of the then recent acquisitions of the contemporary art collection of the Colección Patricia Phelps de Cisneros. It consisted of a series of events in which a single artwork from the collection was exhibited for a day in conjunction with a public program. Audiences were invited to experience seminal yet rarely seen artworks—in most cases, never before exhibited in New York—and to participate in programs designed to help articulate the working processes and contexts in which these works were created. 

Other Viewing Room events included the presentation of: A Voyage or ‘With the MS Remscheid on the Amazon’ or the Account of a Voyage Under the Stars of the Refrigerator, 1968–1972, by Lothar Baumgarten (Germany); Looting, 2010, by Regina José Galindo (Guatemala); The Fountain of Prosperity, 2006, by Michael Stevenson (New Zealand); and Secrets of the Amazon/Tomo River2011, by Gilda Mantilla and Raimond Chaves (Peru and Colombia).


Viewing Room was organized by Sofía Hernández Chong Cuy, former Curator of Contemporary Art at the Colección Patricia Phelps de Cisneros, with artist Alejandro Cesarco. The artists whose artworks were presented in these events participated in the conversations leading to the planning of this initiative. On certain occasions, these artists will be present at the public programs. Most times the events engage other members of the artistic community. 

Artworks

  • Leandro Katz, El Castillo [Chichén Itzá] (1985)

    Leandro Katz

    El Castillo [Chichén Itzá]

    1985

    Gelatin silver print

    50.8 x 40.6 cm (20 x 16 in.)

    The Museum of Modern Art...

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  • Leandro Katz, Uxmal-Casa de las Palomas (1993)

    Leandro Katz

    Uxmal-Casa de las Palomas

    1993

    Gelatin silver print

    40.6 x 50.8 cm (16 x 20 in.)

    The Museum of Modern Art...

    More
  • Leandro Katz, Tulúm, after Catherwood [El Castillo] (1985)

    Leandro Katz

    Tulúm, after Catherwood [El Castillo]

    1985

    Gelatin silver print

    40.6 x 50.8 cm (16 x 20 in.)

    The Museum of Modern Art...

    More
  • Leandro Katz, Half-buried Idol, Copán (1989)

    Leandro Katz

    Half-buried Idol, Copán

    1989

    Gelatin silver print

    50.8 x 40.6 cm (20 x 16 in.)

    The Museum of Modern Art...

    More
  • Leandro Katz, Kabah, Interior [a la manera de Catherwood] (1993)

    Leandro Katz

    Kabah, Interior [a la manera de Catherwood]

    1993

    Gelatin silver print

    50.8 x 40.6 cm (20 x 16 in.)

    The Museum of Modern Art...

    More
  • Leandro Katz, Templo de la Frondosa Cruz, Palenque (1986)

    Leandro Katz

    Templo de la Frondosa Cruz, Palenque

    1986

    Gelatin silver print

    50.8 x 40.6 cm (20 x 16 in.)

    The Museum of Modern Art...

    More
  • Leandro Katz, Arco de Labná, Interior [a la manera de Catherwood] (1991)

    Leandro Katz

    Arco de Labná, Interior [a la manera de Catherwood]

    1991

    Gelatin silver print

    50.8 x 40.6 cm (20 x 16 in.)

    The Museum of Modern Art...

    More
  • Leandro Katz, Arco de Labná, a la manera de Catherwood [fachada del este] (1991)

    Leandro Katz

    Arco de Labná, a la manera de Catherwood [fachada del este]

    1991

    Gelatin silver print

    50.8 x 40.6 cm (20 x 16 in.)

    The Museum of Modern Art...

    More
  • Leandro Katz, Uxmal, a la manera de Catherwood [Casa de las Monjas, esq. sureste] (1985)

    Leandro Katz

    Uxmal, a la manera de Catherwood [Casa de las Monjas, esq. sureste]

    1985

    Gelatin silver print

    40.6 x 50.8 cm (16 x 20 in.)

    The Museum of Modern Art...

    More
  • Leandro Katz, Kabah, a la manera de Catherwood [Templo de las Máscaras] (1985)

    Leandro Katz

    Kabah, a la manera de Catherwood [Templo de las Máscaras]

    1985

    Gelatin silver print

    40.6 x 50.8 cm (16 x 20 in.)

    The Museum of Modern Art...

    More
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Video

Video

Reading Images Series: Incidents of Travel

Images

Images