Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Viera Levitt: BEAUTY IN THE BEAST, Photography of Brutalist Architecture


Photography of Brutalist Architecture

July 28th – September 1st, 2012 

Hera Gallery is pleased to present "Beauty in the Beast: Photography of Brutalist Architecture", a solo exhibition of works by Viera Levitt from July 28th through September 1st, 2012. The exhibition will take place in our new location on 10 High Street in Wakefield, RI.

Through her photographic exploration of a style of architecture often seen as soulless and austere, Viera Levitt provides us with a new lens to discover its hidden beauty. In Rhode Island, Brutalism is most evident at CCRI’s Warwick Campus, a building that inspired Ms. Levitt, to curate her 2011 New England Art Award winning, RISCA supported group show and Rhode Island Council for the Humanities funded forum on the history and ideas of Brutalism. In this solo exhibition, Viera Levitt continues her exploration of this overlooked style, derived initially from the ideas of Le Corbusier and that has, since its use globally from the 1950’s through the 1970’s, been universally considered too ugly, violent, crude and gray to hold any beauty. However, Viera’s photographs have been able to capture abstract and geometric sculptural forms, elegant details and even harmony in these architectural “elephants” through her clean artistic style that “listens” for echoes of the architecture’s grandiose and utopian vision. Supported in part by RISCA’s Project Grant, Viera photographed CCRI’s Knight Campus Megastructure in Warwick, UMass Dartmouth, Brown University’s Sciences Library in Providence, Fall River Government Center, Boston City Hall as well as buildings from her native Slovakia that, surprisingly, express the same utopian impulse and visual qualities as those in New England.

Viera Levitt settled in Rhode Island 6 years ago following her Artslink Residency at RISD's Graduate Studies and an internship in the Photography Department at the Museum of Modern Art in New York. She currently works as the Director/Curator of the CCRI Knight Campus Art Gallery as well as a freelance curator and photographer. Her show at CCRI about its Brutalist Megastructure “We Talk About Architecture, Architecture Talks Back” won the 2011 New England Art Award in the Concept/theme show – Curator category. Before moving to the United States, Viera served as the youngest public art museum director in Slovakian history. From 1996 to the present, she has curated or co-curated more than sixty exhibitions in Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Germany, Austria, Luxembourg, and in the USA and has lectured about contemporary art in Bratislava, Brno, Berlin, Rotterdam, Hiroshima, New Delhi, Caracas, Nairobi, as well as in Rhode Island. 

Funding for this exhibition has been provided in part by a grant from the Rhode Island State Council on the Arts, through an appropriation by the Rhode Island General Assembly, a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts and private funders.

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