Artist Lab Residency & Exhibition:
September 29 – December 15, 2018
NEHA CHOKSI | ELEMENTARY
September 29 – December 15, 2018
ELEMENTARY has been extended through December 21st. Gallery hours are M-F 11 AM – 5 PM at 1639 18th Street, Santa Monica.
Neha Choksi began a year-long performance this fall, attending an elementary school as a kindergarten student. Elementary is part of Choksi’s larger Play!School! project that questions childhood as a limited category and extends childhood’s epistemic processes to foster new understandings about how we organize and address contemporary civil society. By attending school as an adult, Choksi aims to question many of the boundaries, hierarchies, and fantasies around the “civilizing” process of education. As a lived performance, Choksi’s work reorganizes ideas of art and an artist’s labor for her classmates. The accumulated experience in the classroom during her Play!School! project will help re-shape our perception of who we are and want to be, how we arrive at our ideas about self/other, childhood/adulthood, naïve/civilized, and more.
In 18th Street’s Main Gallery, Choksi’s spacious installation charts her daily interactions and emotions as a student. Absorbing the entire gallery volume, the installation is bisected horizontally to allow her classmates expanded access underneath, a space that adults may not easily occupy. The configuration of her installation changes daily using idiosyncratic scales and functions as a lyrical chronicle of her progression through kindergarten.
In Recess with Children, elementary school aged children interacted with the artist in co-creating a sited installation on Saturday, October 13, 2018 from 2-4 PM.
The exhibition’s opening reception will be free and open to the public. The reception will take place in the Main Gallery on December 1, 2018 from 5-8 PM.
ABOUT THE ARTIST
Neha Choksi works in multiple media, across disciplines and at times collaboratively and in unconventional settings to explore how we seek, experience and acknowledge losses and transformations in material, temporal and psychological terms. Increasingly her work includes her own intellectual, cultural and social contexts. She works by setting up simple situations and memorable interventions in the lives of everything—from a stone to a plant, from animal to self, from friends to institutions—disrupting logic to open a space for poetry, absurdity, humor, surprise and existential insight.
She has current and upcoming exhibitions at Hammer Museum (biennial, 2018); 18th Street Arts Center, Santa Monica (commission, 2018); University Art Museum, CSU Long Beach (solo, 2020). Her work has been exhibited or performed at Dhaka Art Summit (solo, 2018; group 2016); Manchester Art Gallery (solo, 2017); LAMOA at Occidental College, Los Angeles (solo, 2017); 20th Sydney Biennale (commission, 2016); Hayward Gallery Project Space, London (solo, 2015); Kochi-Muziris Biennale (2014); Armory Center for the Arts, Pasadena, California (2013); Whitechapel Gallery, London (2013); John Hansard Gallery, Southampton, UK (3-person, 2012); Asia Pacific Triennial, QAGOMA, Brisbane (2012); Shanghai Biennale (2012); Wanås Foundation and Kristianstads Konsthall, Sweden (2012); the Venice Architecture Biennale (2006); among others. She was awarded the India Today Best New Media Artist of the Year Award (2017) and the designation of Cultural Trailblazer by the City of Los Angeles DCA (2017/2018). She serves on the editorial board of the Los Angeles-based arts journal, X-TRA.