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Collar Works presents "Art Like Love! (ALL!)"

Collar Works presents "Art Like Love! (ALL!)"


Collar Works


Collar Works
621 River Street
Troy, NY 12180


Friday, August 25, 2023 - 5:00pm daily through October 7, 2023



Collar Works

Collar Works is pleased to announce Art Like Love! (ALL!), a cycle of films and performance installations by Pioneers Go East Collective and a new series of drawings and sculptures by collaborators Mark Tambella and Paul Simon. 

August 25–October 7, 2023

Opening Reception: Friday, August 25, 5–7pm

Featuring a performance by interdisciplinary artist and vocalist ALEXA Grae

Closing Reception: Saturday, October 7, 2–4pm

Featuring an excerpt from Pioneers Go East Collective’s Electric Blue

Art Like Love (ALL!) draws on DIY, camp, and genderfuck aesthetics to celebrate and develop otherness as a way to see what the queer community is, where it has failed, and how it can grow. The exhibition includes original works merging film, performance installation, and new media created by Pioneers Go East Collective over the past four years. The exhibition also features the work of two current collaborators: a new series of drawings by Mark Tambella and large-scale neon and metal sculptures by Paul Simon. 

Art Like Love (ALL!) is a springboard for revisiting artists of the 1970s and 1980s, a time when queer art was outside of commercially recognized career pathways and thus was imbued with a political and social activist direction. When queer art became an act of revolution! 



My name’sound (movement 1)

Film by Pioneers Go East Collective

A 22-minute video that reimagines and fictionalizes a series of interviews and speeches by literary genius James Baldwin. The project is based on Baldwin’s artist manifesto and the lesser-known queer-themed essays he wrote when he lived abroad, first in Paris and then in Istanbul. In a journey of self-discovery and queer creative agency, the protagonists in the video embody Baldwin’s passion, rage, lust, and sensuality. They pay homage to Baldwin’s writings on same-sex intimacy and shed light on the creative process through the lens of the queer culture. 


Art Like Love! (ALL!)

Film by Pioneers Go East Collective

An eight-minute video inspired by radical avant-garde filmmaker Tom Rubnitz, the film borrows DIY and camp aesthetics to celebrate otherness. The project is a springboard for examining DIY video artists in the 1980s who symbolized a refutation of commercial art at the time when SoHo galleries were just beginning to be commercialized. With the bold affirmation that “Art doesn’t have to be consumed,” Art Like Love! (ALL!) sets an optimistic tone, allowing us to reflect on the creative process and artistic intervention. It features New York downtown performance icon and Stonewall witness Agosto Machado, who plays a self-deprecating shaman from the future coming to save all artists, offering a meditation on desires and authenticity.


Agosto Machado: Interviews #1 & #2 (2018/19)

Film by Pioneers Go East Collective

In 2018 and 2019 Pioneers Go East Collective interviewed legendary performance artist Agosto Machado, who spoke about LGBTQ advocacy, the Gay Liberation Movement, Sylvia Rivera, and Keith Haring. 



Electric Blue 

By Pioneers Go East Collective

Electric Blue is a durational performance installation inspired by queer thought-provoking literary icon Allen Ginsberg. The installation is open to the public Friday, August 25, from 5pm to 7pm, and Saturday, October 7, from 2pm to 4pm. Audience members can arrive anytime during these open hours and stay as long as they like. 

A meditation on creative agency and censorship, Electric Blue celebrates past and present LGBTQ resilience in pursuit of artistic freedom. The work deploys personal reflections to underscore how the experiences of the individual and the artist and their communities are inevitably bound together, hinting at the potential for collective action. Taking Ginsberg’s writing (defined as pornographic literature when first published), Pioneers examines the author’s controversial poetry reflecting on same-sex love and male bonding. A cross-disciplinary project, Electric Blue is devised in collaboration with three solo performing artists: Daniel Diaz, ALEXA Grae, and Joey Kipp. Installation and concept by creative director Gian Marco Riccardo Lo Forte, choreography by Symara Johnson and Hollis Bartlett, design by visual artist Mark Tambella and production designer Philip Treviño. 



New Drawings by Mark Tambella (2023)

Mark Tambella’s new body of work includes drawings representing imagined intimacies of vernacular street life, work life, and club life in New York City. Through the 1970s and 1980s, the artist published many drawings celebrating gay life in Fag Rag and Gay Sunshine. The exhibition reflects on media and queerness starting in the late 1970s. It is inspired by avant-garde artists of homoerotic subject matter, including Keith Haring, Arch Connolly, Jimmy Wright, and Ahbe Sulit.



Loops by Paul Simon (2021–ongoing)

Neon and metal sculptures by Paul Simon. With a background in human biology and commercial photography, Simon says his approach to making is intuitive and imaginative. He uses light, glass, metalwork, assemblage, and movement as tools for investigation. “I often work with collected scraps and found objects, assembling gestural and expressive anthropomorphic forms that address the body’s contemporary relationship to multidimensional space,” said Simon. “My work subverts the figure—reducing it to bends, cuts, and joints—to depict an abstract and queer understanding of the body as multifarious and always shifting. I seek whim, loops, paradox, and wit encountered in daily life. I often change my mind, go full circle, and arrive at the beginning.”

Hours: Thursday and Friday, 3–7pm and Saturday, 10–2pm. Other times by appointment

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