Reminder! Don’t Worry What Happens Happens Mostly Without You

Brooklyn MFA alum featured in:


Exhibition dates May 4 – May 27, 2012
Opening Reception: May 4th 6 – 9PM
Featuring performance by Marni Kotak

Artists: Jeanie Choi, Camilo Godoy, Ted Kerr,
James Richards, Aldrin Valdez, Sam Vernon

Curated by Kris Nuzzi

"Don’t Worry" (2006), poster by James Richards.
Jeanie Choi, from the series, "Are You Here for the Sake of Togetherness?", 2012, Digital C-Print

Radiator Gallery presents "Don’t Worry What Happens Happens Mostly Without You", an exhibition that explores the personal identities of artists Jeanie Choi, Camilo Godoy, Ted Kerr, James Richards, Aldrin Valdez and Sam Vernon, as they navigate through a world shaped by experiences of marginalization, silencing and difference. Whether speaking from their own life, recreating a historical memory or representing an underrepresented community, their work explores poetic and subtle ways to communicate issues of immigration, race, queerness and desire. Together they reveal the connections and differences between these loaded social issues and invite the viewer to share in their intimate experiences.

Artist Jeanie Choi explores our longing to confess the unspeakable. Through a series of collaborations, her work mediates a language through gesture and silence by examining the relationships between the confessor and the unreciprocated other. Using photography, video and performance, the reiteration of symbols and mistranslations never reach a conclusion, but reassure us that we are all trying to broaden the possibilities of truth between us.

Camilo Godoy’s work is concerned with the politics of migration and citizenship in the U.S. by drawing upon the immigrant experience and playing upon narratives extracted from government documents. Through these intimate and powerful works, we hear their personal stories in deportation proceedings while addressing the quotidian struggles detained immigrants face in the U.S.

Ted Kerr’s piece "FOR MYSELF IN THE SCENE" is a poster installation comprised of 3 posters that are available for viewers to take. Through the work, Ted works to find himself amid socio-political-sexual anxieties produced in a time of ongoing AIDS, increased articulation of queer vs. LGBT politics, self-as-brand and digital culture. Using the poster, a format popularized during the AIDS crisis by Fierce Pussy, Gran Fury and General Idea, this work explores identity, activism and visual culture.

At the same time, James Richards’ poster "Don’t Worry" is inspired by a quote by Joseph Albers and is part of an ongoing project by James and artist Matt Keegan. He works with existing text, accessible images and footage from disparate sources that he then remixes and returns back into the world.

Aldrin Valdez tells his story through an installation that is a personal mix of collage and family photos, piecing together memories of his childhood. He presents images of being a child in the Philippines, photos of his parents in the U.S. when he and his siblings had not immigrated to America yet, and collages that explore patterns and surfaces.

Exploring identity and memory, Sam Vernon creates fictional characters that symbolize parts of her culture while blending aspects of neo-futurism with stereotypes, images, spirits and ghosts. Her work takes the form of drawing, painting, installation, photography and printmaking to pay homage to the past, while addressing questions of postcoloniality, racialization, sexuality and historical memory. Her work reminds us that our ghosts and past histories always remain with us and at times are unsettling and challenge us to remember.

The exhibition is on view from May 4th to May 27th 2012. The opening reception will feature a performance by Marni Kotak. In conjunction with the exhibition, on Sunday, May 20th, there will be an event on deportation titled "Retracing I.C.E.", organized by artist Camilo Godoy. On Sunday, May 27th, there will be a salon organized by Ted Kerr and Kris Nuzzi titled "I am not alone in this way", featuring live performances that invite viewers to consider how our most intimate ways of being-striving and surviving, often in a hostile world-can be viewed as responsible for positive social change.

Kris Nuzzi is a Brooklyn based independent curator and currently works as an art advisor. She received her BA in art history from Pratt Institute in Brooklyn and her MA in the art market from the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York, where her focus was site-specific installation art. She is the 2011-2012 recipient of the Lori Ledis Curatorial Fellowship, where she had the opportunity to curate the exhibition "Figured" as well as organize the public program "Embody" at the BRIC Rotunda Gallery. She is a former intern and continued supporter and volunteer for Visual AIDS, using art to fight AIDS through initiating dialogue and supporting HIV+ artists to remind us that AIDS is not over.

About the Performance artist:

In "The Storyteller" Marni Kotak portrays herself as an wise elder sharing her life experiences with the audience. Audience members can stop to talk with Kotak or use their smartphones to scan her body, which is covered in QR code tatoos linking to videos that relay the stories of her life.

Marni Kotak is a Brooklyn-based performance artist who makes multimedia works in which she presents her everyday life as art. She recently garnered worldwide attention for her Birth of Baby X exhibition in which she gave birth to her son as a live performance at Microscope Gallery. Kotak’s other "Found Performances", or works based on daily activities, experiences, or accomplishments, include staged re-enactments of her own birth (My Birth, 2011, Alice Chilton Gallery), attending her grandfather’s funeral (2009, English Kills), losing her virginity in a blue Plymouth (Fountain Art Fair Miami 2010), and her marriage to her husband, artist Jason Robert Bell (The Marriage of True Lug, Cape Cod, 2011). She received a BA from Bard College and an MFA from Brooklyn College.

*Title from "Don’t Worry" (2006), poster by James Richards.

Radiator Gallery: 10-61 Jackson Ave, LIC, New York 11106
Tel: 1.347.677.3418, email:,
Gallery hours: Saturday, Sunday 3-6pm or by appointment
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