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Hudson Valley Center for Contemporary Art (HVCCA) Opens CIRCA 1986 Exhibition

The Hudson Valley Center for Contemporary Art (HVCCA) presents CIRCA 1986 an exhibition on view September 18, 2011 – July 22, 2012, showing 65 artworks by 47 international artists who emerged with significant artworks in the extremely prosperous and exciting period between 1981 and 1991.

Gilbert & George, “The Long March” 1986. Ink and 48 hand-dyed photographs in metal frame with installation brackets. 95 x 198 3/4inches.

The exhibition attempts to capture a decade, a momentous game changing time that started in a rush and ended with the collapse of the art market. It is seen from the perspective of 6 New York based couples who, over much of the past 50 years, spent considerable effort building important art collections, each independent of advisors each extremely diligent and each original.

The art scene of New York in the 1980’s opened with a roar, with brash plate paintings by Julian Schnabel and huge works by Anselm Kiefer. New collectors flooded in as interests and directions shifted rapidly. Everything was “NEO” – neo-expressionism, neo-Geo, neo-surrealism, etc. Prices soared. By 1986 Jasper Johns’ painting “Out the Window” went for a then astronomic amount of a couple of millions in auction at Sotheby’s. There were so many new artists of apparent consequence: Jeff Koons, Robert Gober, John Duff and James Brown. Contemporary Art had established a post modern pluralism in which literally anything was possible. The East Village in New York with its storefront and club culture of the time was the epicenter of this artistic production. Art had gradually become part of our mass culture.

Galleries and art magazines were founded in response to the new demand. Museums opened in every major city throughout the United States and corporations started to build their own art collections. There was quick trend after quick trend and curators, museums, and collectors were anointing one artist after another as the newest and greatest.

Circa 1986 is not a comprehensive exhibit but one which hopefully tells a meaningful story about an extraordinary decade in contemporary art as seen through the eyes of several significant collectors. It is an independent and personal take on this period, and the inclusions from each of the collectors is of artists whom they felt and continue to feel made inventive and important work at that time.
The exhibition was curated by John Newsom (New York based painter), Nicola Trezzi (US editor of Flash Art International), and Astrid Honold (Director of OFFICE For Contemporary Art, Amsterdam). “A richly illustrated catalogue includes excerpts from discussions with the collectors selected by Astrid Honold as well as essays by curators Nicola Trezzi and John Newsom. The foreword is contributed by HVCCA Board Chairman, Marc Straus.

The HVCCA, which opened its doors to the public in June 2004, focuses on contextualizing current trends in contemporary art. Its exhibits have been highly regarded with visitors coming from around the globe. HVCCA is also focused on the education of its local and regional community and participation in the betterment of Peekskill, a lower economic, multicultural riverfront town with a large presence of artists.

Artists Included in the Exhibition:
Gregory Amenoff, Richard Artschwager, Ashley Bickerton, Ross Bleckner, Christian Boltanski, Jonathan Borofsky, James Brown, Sarah Charlesworth, Clegg & Guttmann, Walter Dahn, Jiri Georg Dokoupil, Moira Dryer, John Duff, Nancy Dwyer, Barbara Ess, R.M. Fischer, Gilbert & George, Robert Gober, Antony Gormley, Dieter Hacker, Damien Hirst, Jenny Holzer, Roni Horn, Mike Kelley, Anselm Kiefer, Win Knowlton, Jeff Koons, Paul Laster, Sherrie Levine, Robert Mapplethorpe, Allan McCollum, Mark Morrisroe, Elizabeth Murray, Bruce Nauman, Joel Otterson, Rona Pondick, Richard Prince, Rick Prol, David Robbins, Tim Rollins and K.O.S., David Row, Julian Schnabel, Mike and Doug Starn, Peter Schuyff, Jessica Stockholder, John Walker, David Wojnarowicz

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