Presentation: “Today I Shall Judge Nothing That Occurs: Selections From The Ektachrome Archives”, by Lyle Ashton Harris

8 / 03 / 2018

On 16 March Ivorypress presented “Today I Shall Judge Nothing That Occurs: Selections From The Ektachrome Archives“, the latest work of American photographer Lyle Ashton Harris.

In conjunction with the exhibition Elements of Vogue: Un Caso de Estudio de Performance Radical at Centro de Arte Dos de Mayo, New York-based publishing house Aperture has launched Lyle Ashton Harris’s latest publication at Ivorypress on 16 March. The book is based on the artist’s Ektachrome Archives, (New York Mix), 2017, a video installation that was purchased by the Whitney Museum of American Art last year. The installation displays more than two thousand photographs taken throughout the 1980s and early 1990s and is a sociological document that explores the cultural history of race and queer identity during this period, an essential contribution to the polyphonic account of the period. The publication, published by Aperture, presents this work in its entirety.

The photography of Lyle Ashton Harris (New York City, 1965) is iconic of the cultural wars that took place in the early nineties, when he used performance art tools to criticize the gender stereotypes present in representations of American blackness at the time. Ektachrome Archives is an installation created with photographs from his personal archive or ‘family album’ between 1986 and 1996. In the era of globalisation, the beginning of the AIDS crisis and the formation of Queer Nations, Lyle took intimate photographs of his friends, who would later become cultural icons—filmmakers like Isaac Julien, John Akomfrah and Marlon T. Riggs; artists like Nan Goldin, Catherine Opie and Glenn Ligon; poets like Essex Hemphill; cultural critics like bell hooks; curators like Klaus Biesenbach—together with images of lovers, boyfriends, self-portraits, landscapes, bedrooms and now-closed nightclubs to the sounds of a mash-up of Grace Jones’s Nightclubbing album.