Martine Syms: Fact & Trouble

Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA) , London, United Kingdom
20 Apr 2016 - 19 Jun 2016

Martine Syms: Fact & Trouble

Martine Syms performing Misdirected Kiss, Courtesy of the artist


An exhibition of new and recent photography, video, and sculpture by Martine Syms (b. 1988), a Los Angeles-based artist with an ongoing interest in historiography, semiotics, and pop.

Syms is interested in how language and physical gestures are used within the American media as expressions of identity. Her exhibition features works derived from her recent video series Lessons, an incomplete poem in 180 sections. Each Lesson takes the form of a 30-second TV clip. The footage, which is original and appropriated, is a distillation of everyday life.

Syms is the founder of Dominica, a publishing imprint dedicated to exploring black aesthetics in visual culture. Through publishing, video, and performance Syms explores the making and reception of meaning in present-day America.

Martine Syms is an artist based in Los Angeles, born 1988. Her artwork has been exhibited and screened extensively, including presentations at the New Museum, The Studio Museum in Harlem, Museum of Contemporary Art Los Angeles, MCA Chicago, Green Gallery, Gene Siskel Film Centre, and White Flag Projects. She has lectured at Yale University, SXSW, California Institute of the Arts, University of Chicago, Johns Hopkins University, and MoMA PS1, among other venues. Syms’ recently presented the exhibition Vertical Elevated Oblique at Bridget Donahue Gallery, New York. Forthcoming exhibitions include Electronic Superhighway 2016-1966, Whitechapel Gallery, London and Karma International, Los Angeles.

Supported by the Martine Syms Exhibition Supporters Group.


Martine Syms: Misdirected Kiss

22 Apr 2016 6:30 pm | Cinema 1 | £7.00 to £8.00

ICA exhibiting artist Martine Syms presents Misdirected Kiss, a performative lecture that tells a story about language, movement, and performance as observed in black female entertainers.


Gallery tour of Martine Syms’ exhibition Fact & Trouble, led by artist Evan Ifekoya.

5 May 2016, 6:30 pm

Evan Ifekoya is an interdisciplinary artist, exploring the politicisation of culture, society and aesthetics. Ifekoya’s current work investigates the possibility of an erotic and poetic occupation using film, performative writing and sound, focused on co-authored, intimate forms of knowledge production and the radical potential of spectacle. Ifekoya will be Artist in Residence at Wysing this Summer 2016, as part of the Wysing Poly. Recent exhibitions include All Of Us Have A Sense Of Rhythm, David Roberts Art Foundation, London, Embodied Spaces, FramerFramed, De Tolhuistuin, Amsterdam – both curated by Christine Eyene, Studio Voltaire OPEN, London (all 2015) and 30 years of the Future, Castlefield Gallery, Manchester (2014).

Read here ‘Post-Internet What? an Interview with Martin Syms from our latest Print Issue 


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