Interview: A Conversation between Sara Nadal-Melsió and David Dixon, Founding Director Cathouse FUNeral

On the occasion of Cathouse Proper's fifth-year anniversary, arts writer and independent curator Sara Nadal-Melsió, led a discussion with artist and founding director David Dixon about the gallery’s anniversary exhibition. The conversation took place at Cathouse Proper on May 19, 2019. DL is pleased to publish the conversation below.

David Dixon:          So, here we are. Thank you all for coming on this beautiful spring day. Basically, this is our fifth-anniversary conversation about the exhibition that we’re sitting in, “Cathouse FUNeral in Cathouse Proper: Life to Art to Life,” and also the five-year history of the space. We have Sara Nadal-Melsió here with us, who’s going to ask the tough questions. We’re not really doing much of an introduction as far as bios go, but if you Google Sara Nadal-Melsió you shall see lots of interesting articles about art and interviews, some of the people that you’ve written about are Glenn Ligon — I know that — Los Carpinteros, Allora and Calzadilla, and many others…

Sara Nadal-Melsió: So, the way I understood this is basically I’ll set up some scenarios so that you can develop them. It’s going to be very informal. The first thing is, I’m going to be talking about David as an artist, as a film-maker and as a curator, without distinguishing between the three very strictly. I was watching your film “David Dixon is dead” and there’s a scene that’s slightly comedic, that I like very much, and I thought we might start with that. In that scene, the character of the ‘father’ has just received a head — the character ‘David’’s head — frozen in a cooler, and he’s trying to figure out where to put it to drive off to Oklahoma to have the skull cleaned up and bleached for display… (as per ‘David’’s precise  instructions)

Irena Eden & Stijn Lernout at krupic Kersting / Cologne

Irena Eden & Stijn Lernout / congobos

7 April - 12 July 2019

Krupic Kersting
An der Schanz 1a
50735 Cologne, Germany 

Rafa Munárriz at Sala Arte Joven / Madrid

Rafa Munárriz / Espacio Relativo

30 May - 21 July, 2019

Sala de Arte Joven
Avenida de América, 13.
28002 Madrid, Spain

Lito Kattou at Tile Project Space / Milan

Lito Kattou / Unknown Synergy

Curated by Mattia Giussani 

May 27th 2019 – June 29th 2019

Tile Project Space
Via Garian, 64 
20100 Milano

Emelie Sandström at Nevven Gallery / Göteborg

Emelie Sandström / Spirit Farm

May 23 — 16 June 2019

Nevven Gallery
Bangatan 10 
414 63 Göteborg

HotHouse#1 Les Doigts En Fleur di Marina Cavadini at Turin Botanical Garden / Turin

HotHouse #1
Les Doigts En Fleur di Marina Cavadini

curated by Giovanna Repetto

18 May - 18 June, 2019

Turin Botanical Garden
Viale Mattioli, 25
10125 Turin, Italy

Carlos Noronha Feio at 3+1 / Lisbon

Carlos Noronha Feio / (sunlight!)/(sunclipse!)

10 May - 22 June, 2019

3+1 Arte Contemporânea
Largo Hintze Ribeiro 2E-F
1250 - 122 Lisbon, Portugal 

Bright Light at Gussglashalle / Berlin

Artists: Immanuel Birkert, Lutz Braun, Real Madrid, Raphael Danke, Johannes Wald, Julius Heinemann, Maximilian Kirmse, Marieta Chirulescu, Leon Eisermann, Talisa Lallai, Philipp Modersohn
curated by Domenico de Chirico

June 1 – 2 June 2019 

Wrangelstraße 28
10997 Berlin, Germany

The Chasm at Franz-Josefs-Kai 3/17, Vienna

The Chasm / organized by Yves-Michele Saß

Aline Bouvy, Viktor Timofeev, Stefan Fuchs, Ivan Pérard, Aniara Omann, Jannis Marwitz, Minda Andrén, Elisabeth von Samsonow, Lu Yang, Laurence Sturla, Yein Lee, Arik Brauer

2.5. - 2.6.2019

Franz-Josefs-Kai 3/17, Vienna

The Chasm, 2019, installation view, Franz-Josefs-Kai 3/17, Vienna

Aniara Omann, untitled, 2018

Interview: A conversation with Leila Greiche, Founder and Director of L’INCONNUE

Photo credit: Sandra Larochelle
Courtesy of Leila Greiche and L'INCONNUE
Leila Greiche and I already knew each other before the editorial team suggested I interview her. Nonetheless, I was excited to be given the opportunity to draw the portrait of the savvy gallery owner behind the charming and joyful woman I call a friend. Leila had proposed to meet for lunch at Manitoba, a unique restaurant in Montreal in that specializes in First Nation’s cuisine. I find her seated in the garden area dressed in a dazzling bright pink suit with impeccable hair and make up. She waves at me and I discover Truffles at her feet, her two-year-old Brussels Griffon. She has already ordered a bottle of Kombucha: “Let’s share!” she offers enthusiastically. In that moment, I realize how this first interaction already encapsulates who I know Leila Greiche to be: a sophisticated independent woman of good taste with considerate and caring manners. 

She begins to tell me about her homecoming three years ago after nearly a decade abroad: in New York first, then London. She had noticed that some of the Canadian artists she had come to follow were relatively unknown, rarely shown and certainly not collected in Canada. She initially opened the gallery in 2016 as a response to this realization. Around the same time, a number of other young spaces with similar mandates started pop up, bringing a breath of fresh air to what can sometimes feel like a reclusive Canadian art market. When asked how the name L’INCONNUE came about, she revealed that it was inspired by the story of l’inconnue de la seine, a woman who drowned in the French capital’s river in the beginning of the 20thcentury and whose face was plastered and reproduced industrially. “Her face became used as a CPR dummy, as a drawing model and was on many images and objects that found their way in people’s homes. Albert Camus called her the drowned Mona Lisa.” She liked the paradox: being unknown yet incredibly visible at the same time. 

No sense of place, only a mirror for reflection at Kunsthal ved sided af / Svendborg

No sense of place, only a mirror for reflection / curated by Kristoffer Kjaerskov
11 May – 16 June 2019

Ari Sariannidis, Beth Collar, Jean Marc Routhier, Manfred Pernice, Kristoffer Kjaerskov, Nanna Abell, Philip Poppek, Sara Kramer

Kunsthal ved sided af
Havnepladsen 1B, 5700 Svendborg, Denmark

Notebook on Cities at Rodríguez Gallery / Poznan

Notebook on Cities / curated by Domenico de Chirico
10 May – 12 June 2019

Viktor Briestensky, Henry Chapman, Chloe Quenum, Marianne Spurr, Keke Vilabelda

Rodríguez Gallery
Wodna 13/4, 61-782 Poznan, Poland 

Henry Gunderson at Castiglioni / Milan

Henry Gunderson / Echoes in the Neurochamber
In collaboration with Carl Kostyal

May 2 - 28 June 2019

Via Vincenzo Gioberti, 1 
20123 Milan, Italy 

Russell Tyler at A+B gallery / Brescia

Russell Tyler / Things at Night

May 16 - 20 June, 2019

A+B gallery 
Via Gabriele Rosa, 20a  
25121, Brescia

Rafal Zajko at Galeria Sleńdzińskich / Białystok, Poland

Rafal Zajko / We Were Here

18 May - 16 June, 2019

Galeria Sleńdzińskich
Ludwika Waryńskiego 24a
15-429 Białystok, Poland

photography: Catherine Scrivener

Nome d’us at Shore / Vienna

Nome d’us / curated by Sanna Helena Berger

Anna Andersson, Stefania Batoeva, Sanna Helena Berger, Maria Gorodeckaya, Adrienne Herr, Vera Karlsson, Miranda Keyes, Atiéna Lansade, Cecilie Norgaard, Matilda Tjäder, Julija Zaharijević

May 4th - June 16th

Glockengasse 21 Vienna 1020

Interview: A conversation with Christian Siekmeier from E X I L E / Vienna

Christian Siekmeier. Photography by Laura Schaeffer

Tula Plumi: Christian you started EXILE in 2008, in a garage in Kreuzberg. Today EXILE is located in Vienna’s 1st district among many museums, galleries and sightseeing attractions. Can you tell us about this transition?  

Christian Siekmeier: From the beginning, continuous transformation was a core factor of how I understood E X I L E’s identity. The name, with all its complexities, insufficiencies and inherent difficulties, remains programmatic and includes a certain temporal fragility and spatial restlessness. So since opening in 2008, E X I L E has moved, has transitioned, on multiple occasions from one context to the next. We found ourselves in a garage, a raw loft, an abandoned office space, a white-cube, an apartment and now in our current sauna-esque space in Vienna. E X I L E needs this transitionary state to remain relevant and alert.

Philippe Van Snick: Temperature Raising, 2019. Acrylic on wood, dimensions variable. Installation view, EXILE

unsettled at ADDS DONNA / Chicago

Kayla Anderson, Justin Berry, The Institute of Queer Ecology (IQECO), Sayward Schoonmaker and Tanya Fleisher, John Steck Jr., Katie Waugh

Curated by Holly Murkeson

April 26 - May 25, 2019

3252 W. North Avenue, Chicago, IL 60647

Circuits of Plastic Frenzy at D11 & Hiato Projects / Madrid, Spain

Circuits of Plastic Frenzy / group show

organized by D11 and Hiato Projects
artists: Abel Jaramillo, Fernando Romero, Artemio Sánchez
speakers: Clara Andrade, Cassandra Ash, Claudia Elies, Gala Knörr, Carolina Lio, Marta PCampos, Joshua Prezioso

11 May - 25 May, 2019

D11 & Hiato Projects

Avenida Pedro Díez, 21 B, 3º - 5
28009 Madrid, Spain

photos by: Laura San Segundo

Adrián Balseca at Madragoa / Lisbon, Portugal

Adrián Balseca / The Unbalanced Land

14 May, 2019 - 20 July, 2019

Rua do Machadinho, 45
200-75 Lisbon, Portugal

Littlewhitehead at Nir Altman / Munich

Littlewhitehead / Annexed Future

May 3 – 22 June 2019

Nir Altman
Ringseisstrasse 4 RGB
80337 Munich, Germany

Lucía Pizzani at Cecilia Brunson Projects / London

Lucía Pizzani / Coraza

May 4 – 8 June, 2019

Cecilia Brunson Projects
2G Royal Oak Yard
Bermondsey Street
London SE1 3GD

Sessa Englund at Haul Gallery / Brooklyn

Sessa Englund / all made of tender flesh, all put together

27 April - 27 May, 2019

Haul Gallery

219 9th street basement
brooklyn, ny 11215