Wednesday, September 13, 2017 from 6-7:30pm
Three Paintings by Josiah McElheny

155 Freeman Street, Brooklyn

This long-term installation concluded in April, 2022, when we relocated to our current space on Stagg Street.

Join us on Wednesday, September 13 from 6-7:30pm for the opening of our newly renovated space and the debut of a permanent installation by artist Josiah McElheny, to be immediately followed by a lecture from Felicity D. Scott.

Since its inception, Light Industry has offered a cinema reduced to its most essential variables: a projector, a film, a grid of folding chairs. So many little appurtenances of moviegoing have here fallen away in favor of what we value most, the work and its audience. In keeping with the DIY ethos that animates the project, it's our hope that the simplicity of this viewing situation presents itself as something that could be replicated; it could happen anywhere.

Yet we've managed to maintain this minimal environment while also making gradual changes to the theater which improve the character of exhibition, like the use of custom sound absorption panels, the introduction of a freestanding projection booth, and experiments with temporary paper masking—alterations that nonetheless allow us great flexibility to reshape Light Industry as needed when an event requires surfaces suitable for multiple projections, room for live performance, or other revisions to standard cinematic architecture.

McElheny, a longtime Light Industry regular, has witnessed the venue’s subtle evolution over time, and came up with a plan for the interior, austere in its design, that would allow for a still higher quality of projection and make visitors more acutely aware of the space in its various configurations. McElheny’s ingenious proposal consists of three components. The first is a painting on two opposing walls, rendered with Benjamin Moore Classic Gray and the specially formulated projection paint Rosco TV White, which serves as an homage to the wall paintings of artist Blinky Palermo, wherein the shape of a room would determine the shape of the composition. This subtle but significant modification will be accompanied by two additional pieces by McElheny—a nod to Palermo’s fabric paintings—of stretched black cotton that will function as adjustable masking for a range of aspect ratios.

Palermo left behind virtually no statements about his art. One of the very few exceptions is a single interview where he discussed his wall paintings, and the explanation he provided could handily double as a succinct description for Light Industry itself, as well as McElhaney’s new site-specific intervention, within which our enterprise will henceforth take place. “It’s not captured by photos,” Palermo remarked. “It remains only in the memories of those who actually stood inside it.”

Josiah McElheny
It exists only in the memory of those who stood inside (After Blinky Palermo in Munich, 1970) II, 2017
Wall painting installation on two opposing end walls and renovation with repainted ceiling and side walls
Interior house paint, video projection paint
Each wall 22' 4" x 11' 10"
Room length 33' 9"
Permanent installation at Light Industry, 155 Freeman Street, Brooklyn, New York

Josiah McElheny
Untitled Projection Painting I (After Blinky Palermo), 2017
Stretched black cotton cloth, wood, paint, adjustable hardware, 4:3 proportioned film/video projection

Josiah McElheny
Untitled Projection Painting II (After Blinky Palermo), 2017
Stretched black cotton cloth, wood, paint, adjustable hardware, 16:9 proportioned film/video projection