con•tin•u•ums (time beyond lifetimes)

Curated by: Patrick Jaojoco


Artists: Bianca Abarca + Ally Hoffmann, Hugo Brégeau, Julian Charrière, Mark Dion, Dylan Gauthier, Mathias Kessler, Araya Rasdjarmrearnsook, smudge studio, Anna Zett


Location: Pfizer Building, 630 Flushing Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11206

Opening reception: Friday, April 21, 2017, 6-9 pm

Exhibition dates: April 21-May 14, 2017


To schedule an appointment to view the exhibition, please contact Patrick Jaojoco at

MA Curatorial Practice at the School of Visual Arts is pleased to present con•tin•u•ums (time beyond lifetimes), an exhibition-as-apparatus curated by Patrick Jaojoco for viewing the intersections of geological, cultural and biological histories. It is formed in response to an age in which both history and science are consistently called into question, while those currently in power demand the acceptance of “alternative facts.” The power of truth has been diminished, as the ever-growing phenomenon of the spectacle obscures the historical groundwork—literal and cultural—on which the very institutions that produce those spectacles rest.


con•tin•u•ums (time beyond lifetimes) is an experiment in constructing conceptual apparatuses that activate in the mind of the visitor both social and geological histories, situating the present in a radically broad intersection of human and nonhuman pasts. The artworks, participatory gatherings and performances presented together propose a way of thinking that is extended beyond the now, beyond the spectacle and beyond lifetimes in the hope that exploring long-term histories can provide a grasp of our places as humans in the present structures around us. This spectacular and tech-riddled 24/7 mode of being—influenced by popular culture, social media and politics—focuses on the now, with little criticality as to what the present’s historical context is and what its historical implications may be.


con•tin•u•ums is a reaction against this, pushing for a careful and comprehensive consideration of how we got to this point. It involves the reading and writing of history in a way that destabilizes hegemonic apparatuses for history, as the artworks in the exhibition attempt to restructure visitors’ temporal focuses. At the conceptual base of this restructuring lies the mid-century Annales School of historians’ concept, the longue durée, which is a way of interpreting slow, long-term, structural changes over time, rather than the conceptualizing of history as a series of discrete events. The histories in con•tin•u•ums, then, includes geological, technological, economic and evolutionary pasts, combining them in space to disrupt anthropocentric historical models while remaining firmly within human grasp.  


Historicity is thus the subject of this exhibition, as well as its structure. The goal of con•tin•u•ums, by way of pronouncing the past, by way of the exhibition and by way of artistic labor is to enable, both in and beyond the gallery space, the continued consideration of nonlinear futures, presents and lifetimes past.




Opening reception • NASDAQ (performance)

by Hugo Brégeau with Bianca Abarca + Ally Hoffmann

Friday, April 21 • 6–9 pm

performance at 7 pm


Contemporary economy is both predicted and produced by algorithmic systems that have become auto-generative, incomprehensible, and uncontrollable. By translating the evolution of the NASDAQ into a score for piano, Hugo Brégeau gives tangible expression to the evacuation of the human from economic processes at the same time as he would have us listen to the instability, increased vulnerability and crisis of finance today.  

A performance by choreographers Bianca Abarca + Ally Hoffmann will accompany the piece, adding one more step of translation to NASDAQ. By performing movements to Brégeau’s score, Abarca and Hoffmann further liberate the source data from their automation while necessarily remaining within the confines of the data. It is the dialectics between the human and the nonhuman, given form by way of translation, that drives the newly commissioned collaboration between Brégeau, Abarca, and Hoffmann.


The Last Eight Minutes: Everything We Take to be a Constant is Changing

by smudge studio

Sunday, April 23 • 2 sessions

11 am–12 pm • 12 pm–1 pm

advance RSVP required:


Eight minutes ago, photons of sunlight that took thousands of years to migrate from the sun’s core left its surface and traveled towards Earth.


As a result, everything we see is bathed in eight-minute-old light.


THE LAST EIGHT MINUTES is a micro-production by smudge studio. It invites visitors to re- establish an awareness of our direct connection to the sun, which has fueled planetary systems on Earth for the past 4.6 billion years. Photons (the smallest amount of light perceptible to our eyes) arrive every micro-second on Earth and flow into the gallery space through floor-to- ceiling windows. Each particle/wave is fundamentally new and different from the one that arrived micro-seconds before. The sunlight we experience as “given” or “stable” is constantly changing.


As a focused context for experiencing these singular moments of change across eight minutes, we draw upon and translate aspects of the Japanese tea ceremony. The April 23 event will include the brewing and drinking of green tea with sweets provided by wagashi asobi, Tokyo, and it will provide hospitality to strangers and guests. By way of this micro-production, smudge studio offers the question: “Who is the I that sees through eight-minute old light?

The staging of THE LAST EIGHT MINUTES: EVERYTHING WE TAKE TO BE A CONSTANT IS CHANGING at the former Pfizer factory is the third in an ongoing series of micro-productions that smudge studio inaugurated in early 002017, and entitled CONVEYANCE: what’s here. This series’ unrepeatable, ephemeral assemblages activate and meet the varied conditions and moments in which they are staged. smudge studio experiments with diverse forms—architectural, gestural, theatrical, conceptual—to create participatory installations that function as studio + teahouse + place of contemplation and refuge.


Dawn School

by Dylan Gauthier

Sunday, May 7 • sunrise

advance RSVP required:


Dawn School is a series of ten itinerant classroom performances realized over an intentional duration of 10 years (2010-2020). Dawn School engages with ideas of nature, time, labor, and the depletion of resources through the extractive processes of capitalism.

Prior Dawn Schools have investigated: the social and labor relationships in the industrial infrastructure around Greenpoint, Brooklyn, NY, the closing of a Ford plant in St. Paul, Minnesota, and signs of de-gentrification in the East Village.  In Summer 2011, Dawn School was held at MASSMoCA at North Adams, MA, at the invitation of Bureau for Open Culture, which included a visit to Specialty Minerals, a quarry and mineral processing facility in neighboring Adams, MA. In 2017 Dawn School will be held as part of the exhibition con•tin•u•ums (time beyond lifetimes) curated by Patrick Jaojoco.



The former Pfizer factory at 630 Flushing Ave. and the gallery in which con•tin•u•ums (time beyond lifetimes) is presented are ADA accessible. This exhibition is being held on the traditional lands of the Lenni-Lenape. The curator wishes to acknowledge them as the past, present and future caretakers of this land, traditional territory named Lenapehoking.



1. Araya Rasdjarmrearnsook, (detail) Death Seminar B, 2005. Single channel video, color, sound (18:00 min). Courtesy of the artist and Tyler Rollins Fine Art.

2. Julian Charrière, (detail) Metamorphism XXXXII, 2016. Artificial lava and molten computer waste (170 x 30 x 30 cm). © Julian Charriere / VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn, courtesy: Sean Kelly, New York.

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MA Curatorial Practice 
School of Visual Arts

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