Haunch of Venison, the contemporary gallery owned by Christie's auction house, is relocating from Midtown to Chelsea this fall. It will occupy a 6,000-square-foot ground-floor location at 550 W. 21st Street, in a space designed by architect Annabelle Selldorf.
The first show, "Boundaries Obscured," will feature nine artists—Ahmed Alsoudani, Kevin Francis Gray, Isca Greenfield-Sanders, Jitish Kallat, Patricia Piccinini, Peter Saul, Eve Sussman, Günther Uecker and Joana Vasconcelos-who address the effect on the individual of globalization and information overload in both urban or rural contexts. It runs Sept. 23–Nov. 5, 2011.
"Everybody's environment has become more rapid, and while urban and rural used to be very different, now things are more similar across the board," Haunch of Venison's international director Emilio Steinberger told A.i.A. "We are not so much making a didactic statement ... but rather seeing how a group of artists can have a conversation with their work."
HOV's first New York location, open since 2008 on the 20th floor of a high-rise near Rockefeller Center, though larger in square footage, presented obstacles for mounting exhibitions—namely, the necessity of fitting work in a freight elevator. "Up here, 'Boundaries Obscured' would physically not be possible," said Steinberger.
For the show, Vasconcelos will be presenting a new large-scale sculpture, while Uecker is bringing his seminal painting, Aschemensch (Ash Man), the ghostly silhouette of a human figure described by slashes of gray paint, which he made in 1986 in response to the radioactive spill at Chernobyl.
The gallery anticipates increased exposure for its artists. Steinberger says, "The artists are our main focus, the reason to move to Chelsea was to give them greater visibility."
Many of the artists in "Boundaries Obscured" will also have solo exhibitions at the New York gallery in the next year. Kevin Francis Gray, Joana Vasconcelos and Ahmed Alsoudani are all on the roster for 2012.
In London, Haunch of Venison will return to its original location in Haunch of Venison Yard, which has undergone an extensive renovation, also by Selldorf. Since 2009, the gallery has been housed at the Royal Academy of Arts. The gallery will reopen on Sept. 7 with a show of new paintings by Adrian Ghenie, which will be followed by Ahmed Alsoudani's first solo show in the UK.
Joana Vasconcelos' War Games, 2011. Courtesy the artist and Haunch of Venison.