A Bruising Gaze on a Faltering Landscape: 2021 Art Theory and Practice MFA Thesis Exhibition: Block Museum - Northwestern University
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A Bruising Gaze on a Faltering Landscape: 2021 Art Theory and Practice MFA Thesis Exhibition

May 6-June 20, 2021
Alsdorf Gallery
Shabtai Pinchevsky and Katherine Simóne Reynolds, A bruising gaze, 2021. Courtesy of the artists.
“Following the credits, a boat glides down a thick, green river. Standing near the front of the boat is a woman in a long white dress and a large veiled hat. The image is familiar from dominant cinema's colonialism-as-entertainment genre. But we notice that this woman stands hipshot, chin cocked, one arm akimbo. These ebonics signify that filmmaker Dash has appropriated the image from reactionary cinema for an emancipatory purpose. She intends to heal our imperialized eyes.” 
Toni Cade Bambara, from the preface for Julie Dash’s Daughters of the Dust: The Making of an African American Woman’s Film

“How does a country look to the world? How does the world look to a country? And how can the landscape itself be said to have a perspective? Does this not suggest, quite literally, that the landscape looks back in some way at its beholders, returning their gaze with a blank, impassive stare, its face scarred with the traces of violence and destruction and (even more important) with the violent constructions that erupt on its surface?”

– W. J. T. Mitchell, Holy Landscape: Israel, Palestine, and the American Wilderness


Let us gaze upon a scene that is meant to garner a presence of security. 

Secure in upholding a false notion pertaining to an archive built on absent concepts. The pairing of a familiar melancholic midwestern landscape with the hermeneutics of a preserved view of Jerusalem, combine to complicate the focus of what actually is being seen, and the implications of a gaze that has been compromised in the process. Through video, sound, sculpture, and installation; This exhibition brings in questions of perception, scene and seen, and whether this gaze is one of warning or surveillance.

A Bruising Gaze on a Faltering Landscape is the culminating thesis work of Shabtai Pinchevsky and Katherine Simóne Reynolds, candidates of the 2021 MFA degree program in Art, Theory and Practice, Northwestern University.


Shabtai Pinchevsky

Shabtai Pinchevsky’s work is self-interrogation threaded into subjects of larger scale - the myths, landscapes, taboos, and images that form the foundations of identity and place in the country of his origin. Pinchevsky tackles the involvement of the photographic medium in the history of colonization in Palestine and the creation of the Zionist sense of place. He works from the standpoint, and in an effort to imply, that photography didn't only contribute to these colonial projects, but was also affected by the tasks it lent itself to. As a photographer, Pinchesvky challenges what is perceived to be native and naive in the images made by others and himself. In his works made outside of Israel, he addresses the local symptoms of his homeland, while connecting them with global phenomenon.

Pinchevsky, born 1986 in London UK, has a BFA from the photography department at the Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design in Jerusalem. His project with photographer Miki Kratsman titled Anti-Mapping is currently on exhibition at the Tel Aviv Museum of Art.


Katherine Simóne Reynolds

Katherine Simóne Reynolds’ practice investigates emotional dialects and psychogeographies of Blackness within the “non”, and the importance of “anti-excellence”. Her work tries to physicalize emotions and experiences by constructing pieces that include portrait photography, video works, choreography, and sculpture. In the process of making subtle changes to her practice she has learned that creating an environment built on intention brings the most disarming feelings to her work. Utilizing Black embodiment and affect alongside her own personal narrative as a place of departure has made her question her own navigation of ownership, inclusion, and authenticity within a contemporary gaze. She draws inspiration from Black glamour while interrogating the notion of “authentic care”. Her practice generally deals in Blackness from her own perspective and she continuously searches for what it means to produce “Black Work”.

Reynolds has exhibited and performed work within many spaces and institutions including the Pulitzer Arts Foundation, Museum of Modern Art New York, The Luminary, and an upcoming solo exhibition at the Knockdown Center in Queens. She has exhibited in national and international group and solo shows, has spoken at The Contemporary Art Museum of Saint Louis and The Saint Louis Art Museum, and the Black Midwest Initiative Symposium at University of Minnesota. Curatorially she holds a position at The Luminary in Saint Louis, embarking on many projects including a triennial scaled to a neighborhood called Counterpublic and is the recent SculptureCenter In Practice fellow for 2021.

Exhibition Programs

A Bruising Gaze on a Faltering Landscape: Virtual Opening Reception
Thursday, May 6, 6PM - 8PM CT
Hosted by ATP Assistant Professor Caroline Kent, Shabtai Pinchevsky and Katherine Simóne Reynolds

Join us in celebrating the opening of A Bruising Gaze on a Faltering Landscape via Zoom. Breakout rooms will host individual works featured in the exhibition and attendees are invited to peruse at their leisure, engage in discussion with fellow visitors, and pose questions to the artists in the “home room.” The evening culminates in a toast to exhibiting artists Shabtai Pinchevsky and Katherine Simóne Reynolds.


Lunchtime Gallery Virtual Walkthrough
Friday, May 14, 12PM - 1PM CT
Hosted by Associate Professor Mike Cloud, Katherine Simóne Reynolds and Shabtai Pinchevsky

Join exhibiting artists Shabtai Pinchevsky and Katherine Simóne Reynolds for this virtual gallery walk-through, conversation and Q&A facilitated by ATP Associate Professor Mike Cloud. Shabtai and Katherine will move through the Alsdorf Gallery, reflecting on both their individual works and their collaboration, revealing an intimate view of the artists’ process and practice.


Exhibition Reservations

This exhibition is open to the public with confirmed, time-entry reservations.   All visitors must follow the Northwestern University COVID-19 Guidelines, including wearing a mask at all times and maintaining social distancing.  In addition, all visitors, including those outside of the Northwestern community, are asked to display a “Cleared for Campus” screen on the Symptom Tracker website or application upon museum entry. Reservations are free and open to all but will be limited to parties of one or two individuals due to capacity restrictions in our gallery.

Access the Symptom Tracker

(Non-Northwestern Visitors completing the Symptom Tracker please list sponsor email as block-museum@northwestern.edu and phone as 847.491.4000)

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Exhibition Publication