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Rebecca Bird & Matthew Thurber, Anti-Matter Alma Mater

60 North 6th Street, 718-599-4884
June 6 - July 6, 2008
Reception: Friday, June 13, 7 - 9 PM
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SOUTHFIRST gallery is proud to present ANTI-MATTER ALMA MATER, a narrative multimedia installation and series of performances featuring the works of Matthew Thurber and Rebecca Bird. This collaborative exhibition is on view through July 6 with performances at the gallery Sundays at 4 pm.

ANTI-MATER ALMA MATER brings to life and manifests in three dimensions the logic of the sixteen volume comic book series Thurber has been self-publishing since 2002 under the names Mount Olympus Society and Ambergris. A breath-taking seventy foot long painted panorama of the Himalayan mountains, created by Bird, and a picturesque, fluorescent village set the scene for two alumni from Thurber’s comics, who have returned to the Carrot School of Time Travel for a class reunion. The installation is supplemented by musical theater performances by Ambergris, which will extend the narration of Anti-Matter Alma Mater through prop-aided performance, nonsensical dialogue and original music in an absurdist futuristic gesamtkunstwerk reminiscent of Kasimir Malevich’s “Victory Over the Sun.” If Rebecca Bird’s gallery-size painted mountain range channels the sublime evocations of Caspar David Friedrich’s painting, Matthew Thurber’s sculptures are crafted from readily available materials – hot glue, neon colored paper from Chinatown, thick scraps of plastic, and rope and nails from the hardware store. This bricolage brings to mind the DIY aesthetic of Tom Sachs. His story lines are equally playful, paying homage to the absurdist writings of Raymond Roussel.

Matthew Thurber has self-published sixteen comic books and contributed work to publications including The Drama,Comics Comics, and Paper Rodeo. His recent performances have included The Armory Show (with the Swiss Institute), Issue Project Room, and the Hammer Museum, Los Angeles. He graduated with a BFA from Cooper Union and lives and works in Brooklyn. Rebecca Bird’s work was most recently on view at Blank2008, Beijing, and The Dark Fair, New York. She held a Fulbright fellowship to study painting in Japan and also graduated with a BFA from Cooper Union. She has shown previously with Southfirst, collaborated extensively with Thurber, and she lives and works in Brooklyn.
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