Curated by Damon Brandt and Andrew Freiser
January 17 through March 2, 2019

DAMN! THE DEFIANT, gradually took form after an extended conversation between the curators about images of rebellion and dissent in contemporary portraiture. What began as a discussion about contemporary painting grew to include twentieth century Magic Realism, photography and folk art as well as the wider cultural context of social media platforms like Instagram. In the end, identifying the defiant gaze, proved to be a more nuanced, relevant and emotionally inspiring curatorial exercise.  

Nothing creates projected personal territory more than the emotional push back generated from the recalcitrant expression of a defiant subject. Yet ironically, it is the very nature of this engagement that makes it difficult for the viewer to quickly detach or withdraw from what in fact amounts to an extended glare or moment of social tension.  In a time of undeniable anxiety, finding both the common and contrasting ground in the portrayal of defiance speaks directly to the angst and pre-occupation for self-determination that has been and continues to be a pervasive human concern.  

Artists include John Ahearn, Andrea Bowers, Kathe Burkhart, Geoffrey Chadsey, Jenna Gribbon, Barkley L. Hendricks, Mary Reid Kelley, Karen Kilimnik, Walt Kuhn, Mary Ellen Mark, Toyin Ojih Odutola, Gordon Parks, Irving Penn, Walter Robinson, Dana Schutz, Zak Smith, George Tooker, Garry Winogrand, Nahum B. Zenil, Andrew Zuckerman, and others.  

Previously, Damon Brandt and Andrew Freiser curated “Images of a Floating World: 18th and 19th Century Japanese Erotic Prints and the Echo in Modern and Contemporary Art.”

Fredericks & Freiser is located at 536 West 24th Street, New York, NY. Hours are Tuesday through Saturday from 10am to 6pm.