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Visual Art

Siebren Versteeg

Sep 14—Dec 25, 2017
Dorothy W. Levitt Lobby and Diker Gallery Café, Peter Jay Sharp Building
See location hours

Peter Jay Sharp Building
Dorothy W. Levitt Lobby: 8am—11pm daily
Natman Room: 8am—6pm daily
Diker Gallery Café: 2:30—6pm Mondays and during BAMcafé hours (see calendar at for details)

BAM Fisher
12—5pm daily with extended hours before evening performances in the Fishman Space


This group exhibition, Loss For Words, spans multiple spaces across BAM’s campus and examines the shift from a culture that communicates with text-based language to one where the image is the dominant tool of communication.

Each morning in the Dorothy W. Levitt Lobby, Siebren Versteeg’s video work Daily Times (performer) downloads a digital image of The New York Times front page to an 80-inch screen. An algorithmic program immediately goes to work, rendering a painterly abstraction that is forever in progress. Strokes are placed slowly, picking up on the particularities of color and composition of the given layout, while simultaneously displaying a nearly endless variety of color, density, and breadth. As digital paint builds and drips down the page, its layering effects obstruct and obliterate their newsroom source. The auto-generated gestural marks call into question notions of authorship in both the painting and the newspaper, while the blanketing over of information in the newspaper sets forth a new value system—the painting’s next mark is now the “breaking news.”

A second video work by Versteeg, titled small IS beautiful (after E.F.Schumacher), is on view in the Diker Gallery Café. Last fall, Versteeg, with the help of Fringe Projects, staged a public intervention in downtown Miami on the facade of the Intercontinental Hotel. Over the course of five nights, each chapter of the seminal Buddhist economics theory text Small is Beautiful: A Study of Economics as if People Mattered, by E.F. Schumacher, was broadcast to the city at a monumental scale. The piece at BAM exhibits composite documentation of all five chapters and nights at once in an 11-hour ultra-high-definition video.

Leadership support for BAM Visual Art provided by Agnes Gund and Toby Devan Lewis