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Groundbreaking ‘A Book About Death’ Exhibit at C.W. Post

Inspired by Long Islander Ray Johnson, ‘ABAD’ is part of MoMA permanent collection;
evening of performance and video art at Nov. 3 reception


Rita Langdon,Associate Provost and Director of Public Relations
C.W. Post Campus,
Long Island University

Brookville, N.Y. – “Ray Johnson and A Book About Death,” a groundbreaking, collaborative exhibition that features the work of artists from around the world, will be on display at the Student Art League Gallery at the C.W. Post Campus of Long Island University Monday, Nov. 1 through Friday, Nov. 5, 2010.

The opening reception, “Night of the Living Fluxus: Performance and Video Evening,” will be held Wednesday, Nov. 3 from 5 - 11 p.m. A full evening of performance and video art that will take place in and around the gallery space, it will include William Evertson’s “Kali Shadow Theatre,” Meredith Toto’s video installation, “What Sneeze Are You?," a lecture by C.W. Post professor Rachel Baum, a video clip performance “The Space Inside” by C.W. Post professor Maria Porter and numerous other works incorporating poetry, dance and audience interaction.

Last fall, 487 artists submitted a postcard to "A Book About Death," an open, unbound, unpaginated book about the theme of death conceived by Paris-based curator Matthew Rose. Displayed at the Emily Harvey Foundation in Manhattan, the exhibition received much acclaim. It was accepted into the permanent collection archive of the Museum of Modern Art, exhibited in galleries and museums in three continents and includes work from artists as well known as Yoko Ono to those struggling in obscurity. This project was inspired by, "A Boop About Death" [sic], the work of the late Ray Johnson, a Fluxus artist and "father" of mail art who lived on Long Island and had close association with Hillwood Museum in the 1980s.

The new exhibition, curated by C.W. Post professor of art Joan Harrison, alumna LuAnn Pagano Palazzo and Constance Sloggatt Wolf, will include facsimiles of pages from the original Johnson unbound book, pages from the ABAD archive and exciting new submissions from artists all over the globe.

"This is an amazing opportunity to become part of the rich, worldwide art community while exploring a universal subject," Harrison said.
Johnson, who died in 1995, lived near the C.W. Post Campus in Locust Valley, N.Y. He was a frequent visitor to the Hillwood Art Museum and staged several performance works on the campus.

The Student Art League Gallery is open from 10 a.m. until 7 p.m. For more information, visit  

Artists are encouraged to submit their 4x6 work in any media on the theme of death/life by October 15, 2010. Include the words “A Book About Death” on the front and your name and your e-mail address/website URL on the back. The work may be sent in an envelope for protection or mailed as a postcard. All submitted work will become part of a permanent Ray Johnson ABAD Archive. It will not be returned. Mail submissions to: Professor Joan Harrison, Art Department, C.W. Post Campus, Long Island University, 720 Northern Blvd., Brookville, N.Y., 11548. Artists should also submit a 4x6 jpg of the image with your name and e-mail and or web URL to: You must submit both a physical work and a virtual one to be part of the project.

Posted 10/04/2010

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