The Experiment Was This

With Ada Smailbegović & Sylvia Hardy with Lucy Ives & Molly Kleiman 7:30 p.m. $5

How a quality isolate is lifted and moves away from the object into the flights and perchings of thought. One is furnished with ideas, according to the objects one converses with.

—Ada Smailbegović, “Of the Dense and Rare”

Triple Canopy is pleased to present an evening with poet Ada Smailbegović and photographer Sylvia Hardy, who will investigate the material qualities of natural substances, written language, and the photograph. Smailbegović and Hardy are collaborating on “Of the Dense and Rare,” a digital project based on experimental procedures drawn from Francis Bacon’s 1623 treatise The History of Dense and Rare. The material substrates for their linguistic and physical experiments include gold cubes, rust, petroleum, powder of roses, sponge, as well as light, time, sentences, and metaphor.

Infusing, dilating, sloughing, saturating, coagulating, Smailbegović performs Bacon’s experiments with the language of description as subject. Meanwhile, Hardy treats the very components of photographic and printing processes (light-sensitive paper, printer ink) as variables in her own experiments, at times mirroring or contradicting the state changes captured in her images. Join us for a reading, viewing, and discussion—of the manner in which matter folds and unfolds, an egg turns to stone, powders are pressed as close as possible, and droplets align along the surface of a membrane.

  • Ada Smailbegović is a poet and critic. Her writing explores relations between poetics, natural history, affect, and animal studies. Smailbegović is the author of Avowal of What is Here (JackPine Press, 2009) and one of the founding members of The Organism for Poetic Research. She is currently completing a dissertation titled “Poetics of Liveliness: Natural Histories of Matter in Twentieth and Twenty-first Century Poetry” in New York University’s Department of English.
  • Sylvia Hardy is an artist based in New York City. She studied anthropology and photography at Washington University in St. Louis and received her MFA from Parsons. She has exhibited at Gallery Tayuta, Tokyo; Sydhavn Station, Copenhagen; and Spazio Morris, Milan.
  • Lucy Ives is the author of many books of poetry and prose, including The Hermit (2016), the novella nineties (2013), and, most recently, the novel Impossible Views of the World (2017, published by Penguin Press. Her writing has appeared in Artforum, Lapham’s Quarterly, Bomb, Conjunctions, The New Yorker, and Triple Canopy, where she was an editor for several years.
  • Molly Kleiman is Triple Canopy’s director, co-director of the Back Room, and part-time faculty at New York University’s Gallatin School.