April 9 — May 14, 2022

Gods and Grifters

Annabel Daou

Conduit Gallery is honored to present Gods and Grifters, a solo exhibition of recent work by New York-based artist Annabel Daou.

Annabel Daou’s work takes place at the intersection of writing, speech and non-verbal modes of communication. Her paper-based constructions, audio/video works and performances explore the expressive possibilities of ordinary language and reveal intimacies between individual and collective experience. Frequently, her works evoke moments of rupture, chaos, instability and misunderstanding but always with the tenuous possibility of repair. The exhibition is comprised of text-based cut out paper artworks including one monumental piece titled Another Country, which explores existence in another place, the opposites becoming parallels in the constant roil of life.

Of Gods and Grifters, the artist says, “These works are about suspension and weight, rocks become rubble, fabric becomes threadbare, and we use the remains to imagine lives before ours and our own lives in retrospect, always contingent, everything shifting.

Looking at the peeled off bark of trees at the end of the summer, at the carved out lists of gods and places and bills and receipts in ancient Babylon, etched marks deciphered by juxtaposition, these works are both a search and a slow reveal, a stripping or cutting away to make place for words that are markers of our everyday lives and imagine other possibilities of connection.

The works are drawn and cut alternately, a jagged attempt at following a thread or weeding through excess, leaving a remain that blows in the wind, a garment, a tattered flag laying claim to very little.

The soft white porous paper is laid on the ground and drenched in ink and color that pools and dries like water on a stone, bright and liquid and then dry and silvery, worn copper, bare branches in the sun after the rain.”

Annabel Daou was born and raised in Beirut and lives in New York. Daou’s work has been shown at The National Museum of Beirut; The Park Avenue Armory, New York; KW, Berlin; The Drawing Room, London; and The Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin. Public collections include Baltimore Museum of Art; The Menil Collection, Houston; The Brooklyn Museum of Art; The Vehbi Koç Foundation, Istanbul; the Ulrich Museum of Art, Wichita; and The Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven.

Daou's sound installation DECLARATION is currently on view at the Ulrich Museum of Art in Wichita, Kansas through May 2022. The Museum acquired the work for its permanent collection in 2021. She is also currently the subject of the solo exhibition Global Spotlight: Annabel Daou at Arlington Arts Center in Arlington, Virginia from January through March 2022.

Artist Video