Curated by Polly Staple

Exhibition Run: 2 December 2001 - Sunday 20 January 2002

Private View: Saturday 1 December 2001, 7:00PM - 9:00PM

Event: Ice Cream Social and Symposium; In High Entertainment: Saturday 12 January 4 – 9pm

Cubitt presents David Robbins’s Talent (1986) – eighteen portraits of New York artists (Jeff Koons, Cindy Sherman, Jenny Holzer et al) photographed in the style of 10″ by 8″, black and white, actors’ promotional headshots. Now regarded as Robbins’s seminal work, the piece is at once an idiosyncratic recording of his peer group, historical evidence of a key moment in American art production, and a prompter to much subsequent discussion regarding the relationship between art and entertainment, the image of the artist, the tradition of the American maverick, the photographic, the documentary, hierarchies and categorisation, talent, context, curating, fetishism, visual pleasure, optimism….

On 12 January 2002, 4 – 9pm, David Robbins will be present at the gallery to host an Ice Cream Social, followed by a symposium on his pursuit of High Entertainment. Simple confections and light theatrical gestures will be offered for the enjoyment of all who choose to attend. Afterwards, guest speakers – among them David Robbins; writer and critic, Michael Archer; artist and writer, Padraig Timoney; artist, writer and curator at Cubitt, Polly Staple – will address aspects of the artist’s achievement to date.

David Robbins and Cubitt have collaborated with Black Diamond Press on the production of a limited edition poster The Frontiersman, which will be available free at the gallery throughout the duration of the show.

David Robbins has had more than two dozen solo exhibitions of his work in the United States and Europe, and participated in many group exhibitions. He is the author of four books – The Ice Cream Social (1998), The Dr Frankenstein Option (1993), Foundation Papers from the Archives of the Institute for Advanced Comedic Behavior (1992), and The Camera Believes Everything (1998) – as well as numerous essays, interviews and satires. Currently residing in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, in the U.S., he is Assistant Professor in the graduate writing programme at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. This is his first solo exhibition in Great Britain.

Please note the gallery is closed 22 December 2001 – 4 January 2002